The Truth about games, apparently

Let's face it, television never lies. That is just one of those facts. And television, as well as other media, teaches us a lot about video games and video game development.

* * *
Video games are played almost exclusively by young boys who sit upright on pouffes a few inches away from a CRT television and hold their controllers up in front of them. All games can be played while mashing buttons and simultaneously holding conversations with the person standing behind you.

Though graphics have progressed, video game sound has hit its peak in the mid-80s. Even today sophisticated FPS games use bleeps and bloops for audio, incessantly.

The only genres in video games are sports and shooting.

A lot of games require text input, which must be delivered in perfect English grammar and must be sounded out by the player as he is typing.

Video game development studios are always housed in lush, modern buildings with a lot of space and cool, trendy lighting and technology. There are never any security measures for visiting friends, family, delivery boys or crime scene investigators who can waltz through the premises with impunity.

The boss's star employee in every company is the programming genius, with an I.Q. in the high 300s with matching sociopath tendencies. Or indeed homicidal tendencies. He always has his own office which is spacious and has many, many monitors and awards.

The best job in video game development is that of Quality Assurance, or "tester", but competition is hard. Only the most super-elite video game playing masters need apply, but they get compensated extremely well and everybody looks up to them.

Triple-A, next-gen, big name productions require a team of around 7 people with job titles as "gore designer" and "bullet programmer". It may look like they live in a frat-house like, spacious office, but this tiny band of heroes actually makes your games for you. Except those times when the rogue tester creates an entire game on his own to wow the boss with, at home, doing code, art and design, while being stoned most of the time.

Nobody in game development is older than 23. Producers and bosses may be older, but only if they are metrosexual and take care of themselves, like ex-surfer dudes with money. Developers themselves are pretty and handsome in bland GAP-model ways, but all female developers geek themselves up by wearing glasses.

The role of the producer is to come up with game ideas.

Video games that inspire murders can faithfully recreate the circumstances of the real-life murder and lead to revelations on the identity of the murderer.

Massively-multiplayer on-line worlds are run and kept up by one guy.

Browser games look identical in style and quality to the best console games and load up in seconds.

You can always tell if an artificial intelligence wants to kill you because it will ask you, using a bad speech synthesizer, if you want to play a game. Never play games with a computer that asks you to play with it out of the blue.

Game development is fun!

20 comments:

  1. Don't forget that -- according to television -- Dance Dance Revolution is played not by reflex and rote, but by improvisational steps at a leisurely pace. (Novice players can only flail their feet about the pad, naturally.)

    I think I might have seen one show that's portrayed video games even somewhat accurately. The vampire drama Moonlight has a recurring character who's a nerd-vampire; he looks to be in his mid-twenties, doesn't wear glasses, and isn't ugly or awkward-looking. He's most often shown playing some version of Guitar Hero in his basement dwelling (he is a vampire, after all), surrounded by action figures. He's also (predictably) a computer whiz, but for big jobs, he actually has to take some time to make miracles happen.

    All in all, and considering his supernatural background, a believable gamer character. Hell, he even shouted "Leeroy Jenkins" before a big caper. I'm pretty sure that's a requirement for joining most WoW parties nowadays.

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  2. The video's no longer on youtube, but the text pretty much covers another absurd and hilarious example of gaming on TV: http://gaygamer.net/2007/11/video_prince_of_persia_butcher.html

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  3. Looks like someone watched Grandma's Boy over the weekend, eh JC?

    Watching that movie made me froth at the mouth. In a bad way.

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  4. @lloyd: haha, not this weekend but yeah. This is mostly from Grandmas Boy, J-Pod, the horrifically bad Wargames 2 and several laughable episodes of CSI/Law&Order.
    I honestly love how games and development are portrayed on TV and in film; it's so sweet and misguided. It reminds me of the many times I've interviewed for jobs outside the industry only to be declined because "compared to games this job would b boring for you". Bless.

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  5. To be fair, almost everything is portrayed inaccurately on TV for purposes of drama.

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  6. @JC

    I think my favourite misguided line in the whole movie has to be 'that bump mapping - I love it - so Miyamoto'.

    Also you forgot to mention in your post that game developers all sleep in beds shaped like cars and their mums still pack their lunch for them.

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  7. Anon, how does Donkey Kong-era sfx played in the background as a child randomly hammers buttons to an unseen video image create drama?

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