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August 2015 Retro Gaming Article

August 1, 2015 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

Nintendo's organized Splatoon battles, Splatfests, are the first multi player games I've really enjoyed

Nintendo's July 4th Splatfest - Dogs vs Cats As a retro gamer, I still consider multi player games are a local event... you know - people gathered in the same room. We get together and dive into a 4-player Warlords battle on the Atari 2600 and progress forward in time to include several Nintendo consoles. It's a weekend necessity! It's fun and reminiscent of what "multi player" meant as I grew up with video games.

As connectivity technology improved, living rooms around the world contained fewer gamers, fun, and laughter. Those elements were replaced by headsets with microphones and a new era of cyber anonymity.

Most of us wouldn't turn to a friend sitting on our couch and call them a F&%#ing A$$hole. But a massive majority of gamers easily let the insults fly when they think no one can identify them. That entire scene disgusted me! I love having friends over to play video games. Being cursed out by some angry 12-year-old who hates his life isn't something I care to deal with.

While everyone was playing various war games and shouting at each other via headset, I was playing Yar's Revenge and expanding my NES library. Games are for fun. Everyone who games should have fun. It's sad that some people are incapable of any enjoyment that doesn't involve degrading others.

Nintendo's Splatoon Splatfests

Splatoon Callie & Marie cosplay When we bought a Wii U - primarily for Splatoon - my son took to it fast! He loved it and I had a blast playing with him. After the first few Turf Wars I watched him play... I realized this was my first experience with an online multi player game in a very long time. Lacking the ability to interact with teammate or opponents didn't really impact the game.

I'm sure each player was cursing out their opponents from the comfort of their own homes. Not listening to that sort of useless chatter was great. It let us simply enjoy the game and the other players he'd been paired with.

Then came the first Splatfest where we chose Team Dog (over those who preferred Cats) and spent a day in many Splatfest battles. Watching my son play was great fun and he had a blast with this new element of the game.

We're excited about the next Splatfest on August 7th. This time the teams are divided over campfire grilling. I'm thinking we're Marshmallow people rather than Hot Dog grillers. It should be another fun day of Splatoon battles!

Nintendo's August Splatfest I hope all the Atari, NES and SNES games I've played with my son will still resonate with him years from now. I see how excited he gets about Splatoon on the Wii U and some of our PS3 games. He still asks to play retro games and we spend a lot of time in the basement playing Berzerk, Missile Command, Joust, Robotron 2084, Food Fight, and a slew of others. Sometimes we go for Bionic Commando, but very often a game of Spider Fighter is needed.

His initiation into a communication-free online multiplayer seems like a safe environment for him to have fun. I can't imagine having the same amount of fun with anonymous cursing and name-calling over a headset. I wasn't made for this modern world of gaming. I hope my son sees the difference between playing games and being a jerk. The world is full of misery and hatred - games should help whisk us away from those things for a few moments of genuine fun. Splatoon is great fun... but so is Asteroids! :)

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