Monday, March 31, 2014

What is Your Favorite Game? and Why this is a terrible question.

I get asked what my favorite game is all the time.

It is literally one of the hardest questions anyone can ask me. I am sure people think something along the lines of "oh man he has a ton of games, he must love games, he must know a lot about them, he is probably an authority on this topic so his opinion holds weight. I'll ask what his favorite is. I wonder if it will be something I haven't heard of, or maybe he will confirm what everyone else says, or maybe it will be a game I have played." Okay that sounds a little ridiculous, I am sure most people don't think that much about it. Some people do think that much about it though, and when they do, they look at you with expectant eyes. They hope something profound comes out, but in truth my answer is flexible, long, and not straight forward. I do not always have the same favorite game, they fulfill different needs.

I am sure many of you have suffered against this question as well. It might not have been about video games, maybe it's board games, comics, favorite song, or movie. The point is, if somebody asks you about your favorite anything, it isn't usually an easy answer. The main reasons it isn't easy can be reduced to: time invested in the subject matter, expertise or knowledge of the subject matter, and sample size. Large amounts of any of these three factors can make the "What is your favorite?" question very difficult to answer at best. I can tell you my favorite Katie Perry song no problem. It's easy because I don't really care about Katie Perry or her music, also the sample size is small. I can tell you  my favorite Star Wars movie, even though the answers has changed as I grew up. Currently it is Empire Strikes Back, but when I was 5 it was Return of the Jedi, and ROTJ still has some of my favorite moments in the Trilogy. Even though I know a lot about Star Wars telling you my favorite is easy because the question is focused and the quantity I have to choose from is small. Compare "What is your favorite Star Wars movie?" to "What is your favorite movie?" Suddenly the pool goes from 6 movies (strictly counting the two trilogies), to thousands. Now the question is too big and ungainly, it has all the subtly and precision of a napalm strike. It is the same for games.

I can't tell you how many games I have played, over a thousand I am sure.  If I had to guess I would say I have probably beat over 500.  This is just a guess, maybe one day I will sit down and count. For now let me ask you to revise this question to "What are a few of your favorite games?" or "What is best game you have played in the last year?" Better questions make for better answers.

So I guess since you have read through my lecture, you might now be asking why?  The answer is easy enough. I was asked "What is your favorite game?" and I decided I did not like my answer or the question. I wasn't offended at all, I just didn't have a good answer so I decided to think about it more. The end result of me thinking it over is this entry, and my next entry which will just be a list of my top 50 games 60 games.

Thank you for reading, and be sure to check out my next post.

I have a Facebook Humor Page: Why Is Everybody So Bad At Everything? If you like the little jokes I put in the links, this is of the same ilk.

1 comment:

  1. This is almost verbatim my response on "favorite band" or "favorite movie." For pretty much the same reason.

    The benefit of being a Final Fantasy whore is I have a go-to answer.