Video gaming could be considered a sport. It's a competition, whether it's between you and the A.I., other humans, or your high score. If poker can be shown on all the sports channels, then video gaming should be classified as a sport. But that's not the important thing.
My rant is about sports video games. This is a genre that takes advantage of loyal, rabid, overly-enthusiastic-to-the-point-of-embarrassment sports enthusiasts (and I use the word enthusiast in place of "nuts"). There are few improvements to annual blockbuster titles such as FIFA, NBA Live, NHL, and of course the Madden NFL series.
Most people don't know that John Madden died in 1998. There is no way someone that old can subsist on a diet of burgers, onion rings, beer, and human legs. But he's too important to his associated franchises, so they keep him alive, as only the electronic media can. They re-use and edit voice clips from previous recordings, which is why he hasn't said anything new in over a decade. Never mind important or intelligent. His image is digitally recreated for video games and TV broadcasts. For rare live appearances, an inflatable industrial-sized, gray, vacuum bag is used. A makeup artist (mortician) adds a few distinguishing features such as eyes and a mouth, that thankfully doesn't work.
Big-game sport hunting video games are in a class of their own. Kind of like the slow-learning class. No self-respecting redneck would ever be caught dead playing some sissy, robot-shooting game. But replace the alien with a deer, or any other kind of defenseless creature, and he's as happy as pig in a poke. Yee haw, good buddy! Don't forget the fishing video games. You won't have to worry about falling out of the boat when you go to drain your sixteen cans of Bud.
Olympic video games cash in on the frenzy, but fail to deliver more than a handful of cheap mini-games. And I'm not even talking about the Winter Olympics, and I'm not even going to mention curling. How about a Redneck Triathlon? Guzzle a 12-pack, race home in your pickup truck, then shoot your way into the side of the doublewide before the cops catch you.
If there's anything slightly less exciting than a tax audit, or darts, it must bowling. I've actually heard bowlers are referred to as athletes, and not just in Mad Magazine. If I were Shaun White I would be pretty pissed by such careless and gratuitous use of the term. Bowling as a video game is a cry for help. The developers are essentially saying, "We've run out of imagination juice." Who wants to play a video game of a game they wouldn't play for free in real life? I already mentioned curling, didn't I? Or as I like to call it, Bowling on Ice.
The only way the video game industry, and the sports world, can ever hope to get it right is to make video gaming an official sport. Then the gaming industry can replicate sports games perfectly without having to replicate an actual sports game. Confused? While you think things over, I am going to figure out how to combine bowling, poker, drinking, gun shooting, running, ball throwing, bat swinging, and kickboxing. I think I'll call it, Weekend at My Place.
CCC Senior Contributing Writer
*The views expressed within this article are solely the opinion of the author and do not express the views held by Cheat Code Central.*