Another piece from my personal archives. This was originally filed to a video game blog known as GamerWho, but due to that site currently being down I’ve decided to re-post my best content here.
Everyone has memorable moments in their life. 1st time, 1st fight and even, for some people, first gay experience. I’ve had all of those moments and am certain they will stick in my mind, but, oddly enough, there’s one important thing that I cannot seem to recall no matter how hard I try.
What was my first video game?
It seems strange to say, but I honestly don’t know. Much like Super Mario Brothers and its unknown release date in North America, this essential moment is a mystery to me. Forever an enigma wrapped in a riddle and concealed in a warehouse next to the Holy Grail and Elvis.
Was it X-Men: Mutant Academy for the Game Boy Color? Maybe it was. I can recall getting this and the device to play it on during Christmas 2000, but I’m not certain it was my introduction into the glorious and occasionally highly sexist world of interactive video game entertainment.
I can also recall playing the original Super Mario Bros. at my grandparents’ house. It was sometime in the 1990’s, or so I think. I was drinking a can of orange soda, the atrocious work of Savage Garden was playing in the background and my Uncle Darcy was making jokes about Diarrhea that would make any 6th grader bust a gut with laughter like I do at Louis CK. The music does suggest a date, but could the CD have just been kept around? I will never know.
Now, though those two seem like very strong contenders, flashes of Return to Horrorland run through my mind. For those not in the know, this was a FMV point and click adventure game released in 1996. In this piece, viewers were taken to the famous theme park devised by the Stephen King of Children’s Literature. You dealt with a werewolf, saved a 12 year old from a 45 year old vampire who creepily wanted her to “be his” and got to meet Stump. Ah, good times.
That seems like a strong contender too, but still, more flashes persist.
Was it Fallout? Or Blake Stone? Or Doom? I am vexed by this quandary. So many great moments, but I still don’t know which one was the one that brought that world to my attention.
I sense I’m not alone in this wondering. Video games are a great medium for one to enjoy, but as so many enter and exit one’s life, it becomes more and more difficult to remember them all. In time, will the experience I had playing the Mass Effect Trilogy elude me? Will I not be able to look back fondly on the times I had playing Halo 3 online with my friends? It’s an interesting thing to ponder. I’d hope not, but life has a way of throwing you a curve ball or two or five.
So, in closing, I recommend this to you all. Take the time to document your experiences playing games. As you age and start to focus on other things, you may not be able to remember them all.