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A Second Life

When gaming is timeless to the one who is timeless.

By David BrandyPublished 3 years ago 3 min read

Whether it's rain or shine

We can leave it all behind

Anytime you're feeling low

We can pick a universe, let's go

- Tryhardninja "Pick a Universe"

Did you ever escape as a kid? I did, directly into virtual worlds. What did I expect though? I have an addictive personality and one super close friend. That close friend? Also a big gamer. It was amazing.

We played Naruto Clash of Ninja on the GameCube for hours and hours. Countless nights spent at each other's houses bowling virtual bowling balls to knock down virtual pins while trying not to throw the Wii-mote into the TV screen. I even pulled an all-nighter with my brother for his birthday playing COD Zombies until the sun came up.

Could things have gotten better? I mean what really could beat playing the COD 2 campaign while shirking off homework? Nothing, honestly. Some people have stories of getting wasted at parties or sleeping with countless partners. Me? My crazy story is going to Walmart at midnight to get frozen pizzas to fuel our Army Of Two run. You can call it lame, but I know better.

If you know the kind of magic that I am talking about, you know better too. Literally, nothing was better than accomplishing in virtual reality. That elation filled us when we finally pulled off the "Black Hole Glitch" on Super Smash Bros. I still remember the cramping in my hands after countless attempts failed. I remember not being sure if this was a real thing or not as the failures mounted but when it happened. We. Lost. Our. Minds.

(Not my photo)

My first shooter? 007 Nightfire was flawless, it was what got me started on buying every James Bond that came out after. When I got my hands on a copy of Lord of The Rings Battle for Middle Earth 2 I got my first sip of RTS that started a lifetime addiction. Gran Turismo 2 was my first racing love, my dad and I may have spent a little bit too much time playing that game. Fighting games have never been my favorite, but my first and still my favorite is Virtua Fighter.

Speaking of fighting games? Soul Caliber was the first game that my best friend brought over to play and we played it. We played it so much in fact that he fell asleep sitting up, facing the screen. We sprayed him with air freshener because he wouldn't wake up when we poked him. Childhood shenanigans are the best.

You never really know how amazing something is as a child until it is gone. I went from indestructible cubes, to scavenging for batteries to put in my 360 controllers, to building my PC, to marriage and kids. Now? Well.

Won't you help me sober up

Growing up it made me numb

And I want to feel something again

- AJR "Sober Up"

I'll never forget Lt. Leonov telling me to hold the line on December 2nd, 1942 or when I discovered that the arcade in my garage played a very noneducational game about geometry. Gamers can "claim" to have done some very strange things. It's beautiful. Now I have to "claim" that I have grown up.

The years spent playing were not wasted, I wouldn't trade the hours of endless fun trying to find just the right star for a City Trial in Kirby Air Ride or speeding downhill in Tony Hawk's Downhill Jam for anything. Unfortunately, everything comes to an end. Or does it?

I still play, but I now have things that I could never have dreamt of having as a kid. A stunning and amazing wife, two perfect kids, a home, and both of us have businesses. As they say, "Life gets in the way." Guess what I can do though? I can go back to my childhood.

All I have to do is call up my best bud and ask him if he wants to play some StarCraft 2 and bam, I am a kid again. Look down on gamers if you want, but it's a bad choice. Gamers have something that others don't, a portal back to the past and sometimes that portal is, well, Portal.

Video games aren't inherently bad, even though they can be a problem. I remember wondering if I played too much, and my mother wasn't a huge fan of how much I played. I wouldn't change anything th0ugh. Maybe play a little today.

"We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw

action adventure

About the Creator

David Brandy

My very first story crafting was an imaginary game that me and my two younger brothers would play when I was 12. My love of storytelling manifested itself quickly. Today I am a husband, father, and business owner.

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