Grinding to Valhalla

Interviewing the gamer with a thousand faces

Genda (Chapter 2)

Posted by Randolph Carter on April 22, 2009

MMO community connection:

The Grouchy Gamer

Chapter 2: Origins

What kind of games (if any) did you play as a child before you got into video gaming? Did you play with family, friends or was it more of a solo activity?

My gaming was mostly relegated to board gaming and puzzle gaming before the electronic bug struck. I was a FIEND for Mouse Trap, not because the game was good (it wasn’t) but because of the Rube Goldberg device that was part of the mechanism. A couple decades later I found myself just as enthralled with The Incredible Machine on the PC. I tended to play games with mostly family when I was a kid.

What other hobbies and/or activities did you have as a child (sports, music, etc)?

I played a lot of sports (mostly baseball and basketball. Played some football later. All team sports), did model rockets, and loved table tennis. I was very competitive so no one would play with me but my dad, and he tired when I started beating him consistently.

Were you ever exposed to pen and paper role playing games? What was that experience like?

I never was. 😦 I know. I was deprived.

Did you read much as a child? If so, what did you like to read (books, comic books, etc?) Please list some favorite authors, titles, etc.

I read voraciously as a child, but mostly non-fiction. By the time I was in 4th grade I had read the World Book Encyclopedia cover-to-cover (all 20-some volumes.) To this day, my head is full of useless information. I later got into some select fantasy. Like many, it started with Tolkein.

Would you say that any of these games or books had an effect on your later appreciation of computer gaming and ultimately MMOs? Please explain.

No, I think my MMO involvement came mostly from my playing games in general, and some RPG’s in particular.

How were you fist introduced to video games? How old were you? What was the platform?

I first played video games on an old console, and I honestly don’t remember which one it was. This is a sure sign that I’m getting really old.

Did you ever play coin-op games at the arcade? What was that experience like?

Oh, yeah. Many a quarter dropped from my fingers into obscurity in the name of standing at the box and gaming. I played a lot of these games the same way I played everything else. By the time I got a little older, I had learned to tone down the outward signs of my competitiveness so I could find some people to play with me. Played a LOT of pinball and quite a bit of Asteroids, Missile Command, and Mortal Kombat.

What was the first video game you can remember playing that really made an impression on you? Please explain.

When I got my first computer in the mid-80’s it was a Mac. I got a game, Wizardry, I think it was, that totally captured my imagination. I made maps on graph paper, played WAY too late at night, and really learned to love the genre. Before that, there were tons of console games I loved, but never anything like that.

What gaming consoles have you owned in the past?

Coleco Vision, Atari 2600, TurboGrafx 16, NES, N64, Genesis, SuperNintendo, Intellivision, PlayStation, PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, Game Cube, Wii, XBox, Xbox360, and some others I’m sure I forgot.

Feel free to share a story related to your gaming experience as a child.

I remember doing some of what I would consider gaming with a friend at school.  He had a playroom that was huge at his house and we set up a slot car track. We spent hours tweaking our cars trying to make them go faster or stick to the track better, then would race each other for hours on end. I loved the competition and the little cars flying around the track. Still think about those days to this day.

One Response to “Genda (Chapter 2)”

  1. Genda said

    BTW, regarding that reading question, I don’t read like that any more. My eyes are betraying me, and honestly I would rather spend the time in something interactive. Go figure.

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