Another “new” character. Alfred started out as a throwaway character during my sophomore year of high school, where he was introduced as “Alfred the Emo.” This is his first introduction to IDS readers, although he did make a brief appearance on election day. He looks more like “Alfred the Hipster” now, but his basic purpose is to be highly negative and critical. Libby has taken up this role in most cases now, because my critical targets tend to be liberal in nature with such a politically inclined cartoon.
I still use Alfred from time to time for things that don’t work with Libby, and video games were one of them. In this instance, I’m poking fun at those “mature” gamers that insist that video games are about exclusion and violence. These are the type of people that won’t play a game unless it is highly violent (showing how “adult” it is) or highly competitive in an online environment. A steep learning curve is also a plus, because then they get to make fun of people new to the game or people that haven’t played it.
Even worse is their belittling attitude toward games that don’t fall into this “mature” category. These are the kind of people that won’t play games like Mario, Zelda, or Pokémon because they’re too “kiddie”. I’m sorry, but video games are, by their very nature, childish. Most activities where the sole point is recreation are childish. Dumping a bunch of blood into a video game doesn’t stop it from being a video game. Until recent years, video games have always been about inclusion. Everyone used to pump quarters into arcade machines, adults and children alike. It doesn’t make sense to belittle a game for being a game. Sometimes one wants to fight aliens as a bald space marine, and sometimes one wants to ride around on a dinosaur spitting turtle shells at walking mushrooms. When a game is rated “E For Everyone,” that means everyone should be able to enjoy it. Dismissing something outright in an attempt to look “mature” is the more childish behavior.
I’m a proud Wii owner because I’m a huge fan of Nintendo, and I can’t afford multiple consoles. It wasn’t willing to give up Zelda! Every once and a while I get someone that reacts like Alfred does, and I want to tell them to get off their high horse and remember that games are about fun, first and foremost.
What do you think of the cartoon? What games do you like? Let me know in the comments!