Day 3: I like to play.

So if you didn’t know, I like to play. Nay. I love to play. Play what, you ask? Whatever is there to play. Recently it’s been more video games than anything else. I do play instruments (turntables included), board games, DVDs & Blu-Rays, amongst other things (really, I can’t think of other things to play), but as of late, it’s been Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3, any night that I can. I’ve made a conscious effort to try and get better at that game.

There was a time when I made a serious run at going semi-pro playing Halo 3. I picked up a properly sized television (22″ is the “standard” for pro gaming, generally), started using headphones — your ears and your teammates can be just as good, if not better than a HUD radar, and I analyzed gameplay video from the pros, just as one would do if they were on a professional sports team, breaking down opposing teams offensive and defensive strategies and tendencies. I did pretty well, relative to the skill I was before the push. I could keep up with other semi-pros, and on occasion beat them, to my surprise and satisfaction. I never did enter a league — life hits, and video games are usually the first to drop off the daily routine — but I definitely had, as it is known in pop culture, “game”.

But then along comes Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3. On PS3. Not even XBox 360. (And there is a difference. From the “Black Ops” days, my skill on XBox 360 was below average to average. Translate that to the competition on PS3, and I was well-above average to “beast mode”, as they say.) This game has me stumped. It seems that every attempt to change my gameplay, adapt to the situation, and speed up my reaction time just fails. I’m thinking that it may just be rust, and that I don’t put in the amount of time as those who excel at the game. But it’s just a game, right? I shouldn’t be so concerned about it, right? Not exactly. Not for me, at least. (Or maybe just my brain.)

You see, I like puzzles. And I’m good at puzzles. Crosswords, sudoku, jumbles, whatever, I like solving puzzles, getting better at solving them, and solving them faster than the last time, every time. Modern Warfare 3 is like a puzzle to me. And I know that I can solve it, and get better at not dying all the time, and contributing more to the team effort, but right now, I feel like I’m a bit stuck. Now granted, over the past few nights, I have improved greatly compared to the first week I got the game in November, but I’m still not where I would like to be, or at least not where I feel I should be.

Don’t get me wrong. I am very aware that it is just a game. This unsolved puzzle doesn’t keep me up at night, but it is one of those trivial things that I can’t just give up and put away. Everyone’s got their oddities and vices. Mine just happen to be simultaneously fun and frustrating.

But that’s just me. As always.

If you’re interested in gaming avec moi, my PSN ID is “djtronix” and my XBox Gamertag is “Troy Steel”.  Feel free to add me and whoop me/get whooped by me at Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3. And yes, I’m that guy who buys both console versions of certain games, simply because I have friends and family who want nothing to do with the console they don’t have. (And also, that whole PS3 = easy mode, and XBox 360 = hard mode gives me the option of casual vs. competitive gaming. But in the end, I get competitive either way.)

Also this is made with an iOS app:

You should get it.

-Mickey

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