Oh Yea….I Forgot….I have a Blog.
Top 5 reasons for why I have not written a new blog post in a while….only one is really true
- Nobody reads it anyway.
- I have been sick.
- My computer had a virus.
- I was organizing my sock drawer.
- I was playing Star Wars Battlefront III on XBox One.
Only one of these reasons is true. Have you guessed which one it is?
This past Christmas I made sure that the family gift was the XBox One and the game Star Wars Battlefront III. I haven’t played any console games for years. But now I have adult children and my youngest is 13 I decided I could have a little fun too. When I became a wife and mother I had to become a responsible adult (Gaaaaaaaa), so my gaming time took a back seat (as it should).
Let me give you a little background of my gaming history. I think I got the gaming gene from my father. We had a pinball machine in our 70s, orange shag carpet basement. When the Atari console came out we got one and he was played for hours trying to shoot down the space ships.
When I was in my 20s I spent a lot of time in arcades, but unlike other girls that trolled them looking for boys, I was actually playing the games. There was a bowling alley near my apartment when I lived in Denver Colorado. My then boyfriend and I would go there to play games in the arcade, NOT BOWL. My favorite was Gauntlet! I loved that game and spent a lot of quarters playing it. I remember being so mad if someone else was on the Gauntlet machine.
In 1989, I was still single and nearly 30 years old. I saw the Sega Genesis in a Sears and fell in love with Sonic The Hedgehog. I had to buy it. I played that game to death. To this day the Sonic The Hedgehog game music triggers a memory of playing the game in a hydrocodone haze during a time when I was recovering from a surgery. I don’t know how I played it under the influence of pain medication, but I did.
In my mid-30s, I got married and had kids. I passed the Sega Genesis console down to my kids. They knew how to use a controller and a mouse before they could walk.
I was not into the early PC games and did not play much on a PC till the late 90s. But when we did get a computer I spend a lot of time controlling the lives of the Sims, even tho I had very real kids cats, dog, husband and house to look after. Now don’t get me wrong, I took care of my family. But instead of soap operas or a good book, I would reward myself with PC game time. The kids and I were addicted to great games like Rollercoaster Tycoon, The Sims, Sim City, Zuma and Cesar (“Plebs are needed!”)
At the age of 5 (he is now 13) my son loved to play Rollercoaster Tycoon. He would build rides that people would just fall off of while he laughed gleefully. Do you think I need to get that looked into?
We had a Playstation in the house as well. I have a video of the Christmas the kids opened it up and the screaming was deafening. In the house we were renting at the time there was a whole extra little bedroom dedicated to the TV watching and gaming for the kids. They had a DVD player, VHS player, Playstation and Sega Dreamcast hooked up and played on for hours.
Just so you don’t think that is all my kids did was play games, because I’m sensing that you are, they were involved in sports and marching band and Awana. My youngest is 13 and is currently on a swim team and plays the saxophone. See, they are well rounded, sort of.
There was a time in my recent past where I stopped gaming. I lost the desire. The console games my kids were playing had such complicated controller button combinations and my hand-eye coordination was not up to it. I was content to sit and watch my boys work their way through Fallout and Super Mario World.
My oldest son loved Star Wars Battlefront II. It was one game I don’t remember watching him play. When he learned I was going to Star Wars Celebration Anaheim, I was given the task of making sure I went to the EA Battlefront presentation since he was not going with me. I took the photo below while waiting in line to see the game trailer.
What an amazing presentation and trailer! I was blown away by the graphics and how immersive the game would be. I could not wait for this game and I was determined to play it, in spite of my slow eye-hand coordination.
Recently I read about how playing computer games is actually good for the aging brain. I am in denial about it but, I am on the downside of middle age and will turn 55 in July. I got a late start on marriage and family. At an age when my husband and I should be retired, we are still raising a family. I guess it’s keeping us young, it’s what THEY say, who the frack are THEY?
On the upside, if I didn’t have kids wanting an XBox One and Star Wars Battlefront for Christmas 2015 I would not be enjoying this game right now. FYI, we also got Fallout 4, which is such a beautifully rendered and scored game.
I was determined to learn to play Battlefront. I am not one to do things half way, so I started a live game streaming Twitch account to I could share my new gaming experiences and how epically I fail. Titled The Epic Deaths Of Red5Mom”, I share the epic ways my game character meets her end, over, and over, and over again. I have recorded my experience playing certain parts of the game for the first time and the results are pretty funny. I think it might be agonizing for a seasoned gamer to watch. I am getting better and I have actually reached rank 34 in Battlefront at the time of this blog post.
I absolutely love how a player can choose to be a man or a women rebel or stormtrooper in the game. It is so cool that I can choose to be young looking or have some lines of experience in my face and hair. I decided to mirror real life and my rebel and stormtrooper are older looking women. The first time I played Starfighter in Battlefront I was surprised and excited when I spawned as Red 5 and that the audio spoken is “Red 5 standing by.” in a distinctly female voice!
I have enjoyed playing Starfighter the most. I believe (others may not think so) I have gotten pretty good at it. It also depends on the mix of gamers in the multiplayer mode. This was my most Epic win so far.
As I wrote earlier, we did not own the new Star Wars Battlefront game when it first came out. I read and heard all the complaining and disappointment that gamers were saying about the game. It was very reminiscent of the way fans complained about the Prequels. People were giving away their copies on Twitter because they hated it so much. I don’t know exactly what their issues were. My speculation is this. Gamers waited for this game for over 5 years. The gamers that played it while young, had the time to spend playing it for long chunks of their lives, and were well practiced on their controllers and their eye had coordination. But they grew up, had to adult, and were out of practice. It was not the same game experience and it made them mad. My next speculation is that I never played the previous Battlefront games. I have nothing to compare it to. To me it is the most beautiful and most wonderful Star Wars game ever.
The Starwars Battlefront game is amazing to me. The familiar sounds of explosions, lasers, bombs and blaster guns and the iconic Star Wars music themes immerse me in the Star Wars world. There might be Tie fighters and X-Wing fighters crashing to the ground right in front of you. It is amazing to look up at the battle in the air while you play within the battle on the ground. The AT-AT walkers are so cool. The detail of the environments is astounding. I recently played the new Hoth Ice Caves map. My soldier ran over an area that had pristine, sparkling deep snow. When I respawned after being killed an AT-AT had walked through that same area and the footprints were there, I had to jump in and out of them. What wonderful attention to detail the game makers have. This is why I wish I didn’t die so quickly sometimes. I just want to wander around and explore the Star Wars inspired locations in the game. I enjoy the interaction between players as we wait for a multiplayer game to start. Everyone is showing off the emotes they have chosen. My favorite emote is “I’ve got a bad feeling about this.” I just love the incidental voices in the background as you run around the battlefield. I get a big kick out of the voice that says “Your fine! get up!” or “Your OK, are you OK?” right after I’ve been killed. I enjoy the times when perfect strangers will try to interact with me while in the game. One soldier was calling me over to the squad shield with the
I enjoy the interaction between players as we wait for a multiplayer game to start. Everyone is showing off the emotes they have chosen. My favorite emote is “I’ve got a bad feeling about this.” I just love the incidental voices in the background as you run around the battlefield. You hear many voices and sounds of other soldiers near and far. It is sad to hear one crying out “I’m hit!”. I get a big kick out of the voice that says “Your fine! get up!” or “Your OK, are you OK?” right after I’ve been killed. I enjoy the times when perfect strangers will try to interact with me while in the game. One soldier was calling me over to the squad shield with the emote “Over here!” It made me feel a camaraderie, I was a soldier in the battle, and my brother in arms was looking out for me. I laugh at how I have caught on to the way most gamers shoot at each other right when a multiplayer game starts, it really is quite funny, and that is why they do it. I often wish I knew the ages of the people holding the controllers. I just don’t know why some people are complaining about this game.
If you are older and struggling with gaming, If you are frustrated and angry at how much you suck at gaming, I say don’t get mad, get glad. I, a 54-year-old woman, who sucks at gaming, kept on trying. I laugh at my mistakes. Does it make me mad when I die the second I respawn in a multiplayer game? Sometimes it does. But I know my limitations. I am gaining skills slowly but surely. My goal is to reach the top rank and complete all the rewards and challenges. I have no idea how long that will take. Honestly, I hope it takes a long time. Because I don’t ever want anything Star Wars to end. I am believing I will go to my grave never having seen the end of Star Wars Pop Culture.
I have decided to make light of and promote my epic gaming fails and deaths. I am having a mid-life crisis and decided to have fun and be a gamer again. Will I win tournaments and be a star at PAX conventions? HELL NO! Will I find the joy in learning new things, challenging my limits and not allowing my age to hold me back? HELL YES!
You can see Epic Death’s of Red5Mom on my YouTube Channel and My Twitch Channel. Please follow me there, if you like, I don’t smell and I don’t bite. My streaming quality is not good so the replays are the best way to watch. I seriously want to one day stream my gaming in the glorious way I see the top dogs to it now. I want green screens, HD cameras, awesome audio and fast no buffering streaming. A Gamer Mom can dream.
May the Force be with you…always.