Preeminent Prejudice in a Post-Praetorian Paradise

Author: Scott Wallace

I am a gamer. I like to play games. Good games. Fun games. Games that let me embrace reality, as well as those that let me escape it. I care not what for platform said games might appear, what company the are made by, nor in what era they were created. Be it NES, Game Boy, Genesis, SNES, PSX, PC, or even (dare I say it?) N64. If it’s fun I play it. I consider myself open-minded about such things.

Of course, each system has its own strengths and weaknesses. The SNES had the tremendous offerings from SquareSoft including but not limited to Final Fantasy II and III, Secret of Mana, and Chrono Trigger. The Genesis refined the 2-D platform side-scrollers to another level. The Game Boy provides portable fun, period. Personal Computers allow for levels of complexity simply not possible on console systems. The N64 has its 3-D platformers which are superior to those found anywhere else. The Playstation’s role has changed over its long and storied lifespan. It was once, like the NES the “only game in town”. Having that distinction allows the software producers for that platform to produce a whole lot of crappy games, dotted with the occasional classic. A game would be released and people would buy it, regardless of actual quality. That unfortunate situation is remidied, of course, by competition. Unfortunately, the NES existed for so long without legitimate competition that by the time there were competitiors, the NES market was flooded with sub-par software. That fact, coupled with the realization that the NES’s competition was far more advanced than itself, was enough to persuade Nintendo to step into the “next generation”, thus killing the market for 8-bit gaming. Don’t blame Nintendo for the NES’s demise; however, as they held on to their monopoly of the 8-bit market as long as they could. Some would say too long. It was not until late in the 16-bit wars that Nintendo finally overtook Sega’s Genesis as the industry leader. That brings us to the current state of gaming.

Regardless of what some might tell you, there are some really great games in today’s market. The 7th installment of the Final Fantasy series is sure to spawn a new generation of RPG’s. Mario64 still impresses me with its combination of immersiveness and fun. The Legend of Zelda: the Ocarina of Time is simply the finest game I have ever played. And that’s to say nothing of breakthroughs in 4-player simultanious fun. I guess what I’m trying to say is that while there are still many bad games comng out, just as there were for the NES, but a person would be foolish not to partake in the great games still coming out, just as they would be foolish to ignore the great classics of the past. Hey, fun is fun... right?

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