Most people may not be able to afford all three major consoles. We may not be able even to afford both HD consoles. But many “Hardcore” gamers are finding fulfillment through a combination of one of the high-end brands and the more affordable Nintendo Wii.
There was a time when the term “Hardcore Gamer” referred to those who not only spent a lot of time playing video games, but those who spent that time playing all sorts of games. They had favorites, but dabbled in just about everything for the sheer love of gaming, loving much more than they disliked. Nowadays, overzealous, and often hateful genre “specialists” have become would be usurpers of that title. They often use it in attempts to elevate themselves and disparage those who don’t fit into their tiny little niche.
It is true that after recent failures, the huge success of the Nintendo Wii has taken almost everyone by surprise, even Nintendo. But that surprise has given rise to two groups: those who respect what Nintendo is doing and/or take part in it, and haters who feel threatened by the success of something that isn’t their first choice.
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No doubt that as far as quality, state-of-the-art graphics games of classic genres go; the PS3 and XBox 360 fill the need a little bit better than the Wii in some cases. But the Wii is no slouch in those departments either. In addition to Nintendo’s quality lineup of classics being upgraded for this console generation, there are a host of new and refreshing ideas being expressed through the Wii for gaming enjoyment. For all of the talk regarding certain low quality Wii games, there is also much to talk about regarding high quality Wii games, and the truly “Hardcore” have noticed this.
PS3 owners are still in awe of Uncharted: Drake’s Fortune because of its graphics quality. They can’t wait for Metal Gear Solid 4, Final Fantasy XIII, and God of War 3. XBox 360 owners are having a ball switching back and forth between COD 4 and Halo 3, and playing out as much of the Mass Effect story that they can. They can’t wait for Gears of War 2, Grand Theft Auto 4, with its load of exclusive downloadable content, and Halo Wars.
But you know what? Many of these respective gamers are wishing that they could also play Super Smash Bros Brawl, Tales of Symphonia 2, Mario Kart Wii, and No More Heroes. They’ve heard about Super Mario Galaxy being pure fun. They’ve read about how challenging, unique, and innovative Zack and Wiki: Search for Barbaros’ Treasure is; and how much “off the wall” fun a lighthearted game like Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games is with a group of friends.
While many have in fact created for themselves a “Wii60” or “PSWii” combo, many more who would like to do the same, worry about the Mom and Granny stigma that haters have tried to apply to the system that they feel threatens them. They feel as though buying a Wii to round out their gaming experience would damage their ability to call themselves “Hardcore”.
The truth is, if Hardcore is somehow limited only to state-of-the-art graphics, 80 hour RPG’s, racing games and first person shooters, then being a Hardcore Gamer is a joke. Those game genres are great, but there really is nothing better, or special about limiting ones self to them. In fact, people who do limit themselves are stretching the term Gamer when they refer to themselves that way.
And so the questions remain: If you own only an XBox 360 or Playstation 3, aren’t you about ready to also experience the other end of the gaming quality spectrum? If you own only a Wii, wouldn’t you rather also have the option of playing Soulcalibur IV instead of just secondary efforts like Soulcalibur Legends?
If you hate any console other than the one(s) you own, for any reason, isn’t it about time to knock it off and admit that the others have got some good things going for them? Isn’t it time to be unashamed of owning or playing any system or games that we like? Isn’t it time to respect and enjoy all well made games again, whether they’re our particular cup of tea or not? Isn’t it time to stop defiling the term “Hardcore Gamer” with bias, hate, and niche play? Isn’t it?