For some people, playing video games is about experiencing graphic or immersion into a story. For others, the video game experience is more about being social with friends (or even random people online). Do you have a certain ritual or routine for a certain game with your friends? It could be playing a new game in a series with someone specific, or eating a certain food along with a certain game. Maybe it’s getting together with a group of friends to eat chicken wings and play the latest sports game that came out that year. A popular multiplayer ritual these days is for people to get Call of Duty at midnight on launch, take a few days off of work and play online. Whatever it is, gaming is ritualistic for a lot of people.
When I was a kid, I would go to my buddy Adam’s house and we would play whatever the latest Nintendo (NES) game was. It seemed like it was always a Mega Man game, but there were some others like Little Nemo: The Dream Master, or Super Mario Bros. 3. We would trade off with who was playing based on either losing a life or beating the boss for the stage. After that, it was on to the other person. This was our ritual, play then pass. I have a feeling that this was common amongst people my age. We played some multiplayer games as well such as Contra or River City Ransom, but co-op games were few and far between in those days due to limitations in software and hardware. With the Super Nintendo (SNES) we were able to play more games at the same time, and this was really my first introduction into competitive gaming with F-Zero, Mario Kart and Street Fighter II. Our ritual evolved from taking turns playing games into playing games at the same time.
A few years ago, I shared an office with my buddy Mike. We didn’t know each other before that but we became fast friends. I had been gaming a little, some Fallout 4 and some No Man’s Sky, but nothing that frequent or intense. Then he started telling me about The Division and my interest was immediately piqued. After a few months of discussing the game I decided to get an Xbox One so that we could play it together. After playing mostly single player games it was nice to get back into co-op multiplayer games. We played The Division hard for a few months, Fast forward a year, Mike starts talking to me about Ghost Recon Wildlands and I thought to myself, “Oh man, here we go again” and laughed. I decided to go ahead and get the game so Mike and I could eliminate the fictional drug cartel in Bolivia. Fast forward a year again and we decided we would both get Far Cry 5. He said he hadn’t been playing video games in a while so he was getting the itch. It’s at this point that I realized my latest gaming ritual was playing the newest Ubisoft co-op shooter with my buddy Mike. I have a feeling that this will be our new ritual going forward.
What gaming routines or rituals do you have?