Sunday, December 19, 2010

Video Arcades: An Obsolete Social Network?

Was reading a story over at Kotaku that got me thinking about the old days of going to the arcade.

Mind you I myself never went to arcades that much growing up (on a count of living in a rural area where they simply did not exist even at their peak) but when I did I really enjoyed myself.

I was a shy kid growing up and really didn't do the whole socializing thing too well. But when at an arcade things changed. It was still socializing but not the same. Instead of trying to talk to girls, or act cool, or anything like that it was all about the game, and then that other stuff may have come later.

There were times when I'd be at an arcade playing with random people talking about all kinds of stuff while waiting in line. Making friends. Meeting acquaintances. Things folks do these days with Facebook and Myspace and Twitter and so on. But arcades gave you the extra touch of actual in person contact. These days with online gaming you could spend months playing a game with someone and never know what they look like or even what their real name is. Just feels like something is missing when that happens.

Don't get me wrong I have the utmost respect for online gaming (been playing Lord of the Rings Online for the last 2 years) and I don't wish for online gaming to cease in order to bring back arcades. But at the same time I think the death of the arcade is one of those things I lament over and while I wouldn't sacrifice online gaming to do so I kinda would like to see arcades come back to prominence. But who am I kidding that will never happen. So excuse me while I (and probably many others) reminisce over fond memories of days long past.