9 Things I Learned From Video Games

9 Things I Learned From Video Games


My upbringing can be attributed to my mother and father, and I owe much gratitude for the values and morals they passed on to me. But let’s be real here, true life experiences have come from the lessons I learned playing video games.

7. Zombies Will Always Be Slow, Dumb, and Wear Tattered Clothing

I’m actually looking forward to the zombie apocalypse for no other reason than I desperately want to get on top of a car with my AK-47 and shoot the crap out of some soulless assholes. No, I’m not angry at my father and I don’t have ‘issues’, you’d do the exact same thing with a horde of “walkers” coming at you. If video games are any indication the zombie apocalypse will bring forth a near endless supply of ammunition and weapons for the taking. I’m always dumbfounded by characters in video games and even in movies that get caught by these slow moving zombies. How hard is it to outsmart a dead guy? I mean really? Also, I’ve yet to encounter a smoking hot zombie in lingerie. Is that realistic? I think so, not every zombie everywhere is going to be wearing rags. Just once I’d like to play a zombie game that portrays the undead as slow walking fashion models. Maybe base the game in the fashion district of New York City or Paris, France and have a really gruff mountainous man for the hero. Have him trek into the city in his hiking boots, blue jeans and flannel shirt with nothing else but a shotgun and a Gatorade (get it? Flannel is out of style and he’s fighting a bunch of hipster zombies in the fashion district? Genius, right?). Instant classic.

6. In A Gunfight? Just Take Cover Behind That Obscure Box Over There

One thing that has always amazed me about video games, and first/third-person-shooters especially, is that you can always tell a big gun battle is about to go down by where the cover is positioned. Take the Mass Effect and Gears of War franchises for instance. You’re exploring, exploring, exploring then BAM, all of a sudden you’re surrounded by short little walls, mysteriously placed corners, and the obligatory box that absorbs bullets upon contact. Can they make things a little less predictable, please? While video games are one thing the real world is vastly different. Can you imagine if you’re in this incredibly intense gun fight with some extraterrestrial beings and there’s a box to your left…for the love of Christ, do not get behind it!

5. The ‘Cake’ Is Always A Lie

By now if you haven’t played Valve’s Portal titles I really have no business with you. Like, you might be dead to me, no business with you. Well, if you haven’t played it, in Portal you are enticed to complete puzzles with the reward of “cake” – physically and metaphorically as something that motivates you to achieve success. As it turns out, there was no cake at the end of your rainbow in Portal…and that’s just life. Isn’t it status quo that you’re steady striving for something in your daily life, plugging away, and you see the finish line and then all the sudden it’s ripped away at the last second? Yep, the cake is and always will be, a lie. No two ways about it. Valve have become legendary developers built on the premise of “cake” but they went ten times deeper than that with the subliminal message that no matter what you do and how hard you try, nothing will ever be that rewarding. It’s true, isn’t it? It’s like the game is trolling you, needling you in the ribs every time you escape one of the title’s many puzzles. Saying, “haha loser! You’ll never be as good as you hope and think you are!” Now don’t go slitting your wrists anytime soon because inevitably “cake” is only as good as you make it out to be. I got metaphors on metaphors on metaphors! Dead Poets Society!

4. Things Are Always Better In Co-Op

I don’t know about any of you, but I’m a wimp when it comes to survival horror games. I hate creeping around a dark warehouse or mansion with nothing but a pistol and a flashlight, by myself. There’s nothing worse than being devoured by a dead thing and there’s no one around to even witness your demise or record your hopeless heroics. Which is why Valve’s (hey, them again!) Left 4 Dead titles will always be amazing to me. You never have to die alone, ever again! What’s better is that, if you take my strategy, you can sit back and allow all the zombies, aliens, things to kill your buddies while you mow them down from afar with your flame thrower. The undead hate fire…just ask Jon Snow. Isn’t this same premise true in real life though? Isn’t everything easier with someone next to you? No, I’m not talking about living with your girlfriend or spouse…I’m talking everyday stuff. Like driving long distances and being able to say to your friend, “dude, it’s your turn to drive…” and then crawling in the back and taking a nap. Or how about as a kid in the swimming pool using the “buddy system” so neither one of you two assholes drown. Best. Summer. Ever.