A Christmas Without Games

A funny thing happened since my last post. I left New York City and my job at Squarespace to give it a go at Apple in Cupertino, California. It’s a job I’ve been dreaming of for a long time, and I couldn’t have made it there without all of the fine folks I’ve worked with throughout my career. While all that is incredibly exciting it means a lot of what I could potentially talk about on this blog could be construed as relating to my work or the business practices at Apple—I assure you, it doesn’t.

So I pack up all of my stuff and fly over to Silicon Valley and start looking for a place, then fly home for the holidays, than fly back to start 2016 of running. All the meanwhile, I’m not playing any of the game’s I own. Sure on the plane rides I dabble in a little Persona 4 Golden (push through the first few hours of dialogue, there’s a great nugget of a game in there), I start my Fallout 4 campaign on my youngest brother’s console and get as far as freeing a certain detective early on in the game, I pick up my copy of Tomb Raider, and it’s still in it’s wrapping, I play a round or three of Battlefront, which is so good looking I almost forget it’s shallow and expensive, heck I even pick up a bunch of meaning-to-play games on Black Friday to ensure I’ve got plenty to do during my first few months in a new place without any friends or family around me.

But I realized that for the first time in a long time, I had a Christmas without any video games. I never realized how central the environment of coming home, turning down the lights, turning up the sounds or putting on headphones and picking up a controller had become to me in the last few years. I found myself mindlessly cruising the isles of Best Buy to find the best deals on discs I didn’t have a way to play. It was weird, it was odd, and it was…. good.

Look, don’t get me wrong. I love games. But I found that my time for enjoying family and friends, going to the movies (I’m looking at you Star Wars), watching the Doctor Who Christmas special, eating mom’s home cooked meals, and driving around Massachusetts aimlessly looking at shoppers going crazy in the 70 degree heat of Christmas Eve all felt heightened. The real world has really high resolution textures it turns out!

Over the next few weeks I’m going to find an Apartment, move in, and go back to my power strips and big TV, and bells and whistles, but in the meantime, I’m enjoying myself.

What’s the plan for 2016 you ask? The answer is two fold: I want to take deeper looks into gaming trends and tropes, and I also want to share with you guys the things I’m checking out. Think “less about companies and platforms, more about content and creators”. I hope that once I surge past this past holiday’s list of titles I’ve yet to beat, a list that you may notice is getting pretty extensive:

  • Metal Gear Solid V
  • Fallout 4
  • Rise of the Tomb Raider
  • Halo 5 — It’s good
  • Forza 5
  • Soma
  • Witchier 3 — I know it’s old now, but I really want to finish it.

So, I’ll write back when I’m all set up for the new year. I hope you’re all rested and ready to go. Happy 2016, wish me luck.