: Editorial: Do Elitist Gamers Have Fun?

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Editorial: Do Elitist Gamers Have Fun?

I've been wondering. Do the elitist gamers get any entertainment from video games, or do they just spend their lives trying to prove to everyone else they're superior?

Any fan of gaming is well aware of the fanboys, but that's just ignorance for the sake of Internet posturing. But on the exact opposite end of the spectrum are the elitists, and to be perfectly honest, I think they could use a little ignorance. Aristotle outlined the concept of virtue vs. vice, where the vices were on either side of the virtue, which occupied the exact middle. In other words, while courage is a virtue, rashness and cowardice are its vices. Using this formula, fanboys and elitists are the vices while only the true gamers sit firmly in the middle. And I'm sure I've voiced my displeasure with the fanboys, who continue to infect every corner of the Internet, but now it's time to address the elitists. These people are starting to wear on me.

As a gamer, the fanboys piss me off, but as a journalist, the elitists irritate me even more. These are the people that, regardless of the subject at hand, they always know more about anyone involved with the industry. In fact, they're convinced all games journalists are little more than teenagers living at home, pretending to write news reports. Sadly, I will have to concede that in this respect, the elitists are sometimes correct; it's one of the major stumbling blocks in this industry today. If we want to be taken seriously, our journalists should have - God forbid - a journalist's background. But I'm getting off on a tangent. For the most part, the elitists simply believe they know more about games and the industry than anyone else on earth. They know random, trivial factoids that nobody else knows. They've owned every console ever made. They're the only ones on the planet who beat E.T. on the Atari 2600 (and they're actually proud of this).

Then, they turn around and lecture everybody on the Internet. And I mean, everybody. They seek out the smallest mistake and pounce on it, gleefully proclaiming to all just how knowledgeable they are. They were probably the first to spread the rumor that all game critics are paid off, and certainly the first to accept that lie as truth. I promise you, that GameSpot/Eidos/Gerstmann thing is an extreme rarity, and there are reasons behind it, but I won't get into them now. The elitists are the first to explain why a reviewer is "wrong." They're the first to claim the casual gamer is killing the industry, which is an argument that holds little water. If you've been around long enough, you've probably encountered one of these elitists, be it in real life or online. The elitists have zero social graces - and certainly no social status to speak of - and because of this, they attempt to make their mark in video game forums. They want to be the all-knowing gurus. They despise the really popular games because the "masses" like them...so they obviously can't be any good.

So my question is simple: do these people have any fun playing games? Ever? It seems to me as if they partake of this entertainment medium as if they're out for revenge. When you're out to prove something all the time, the fun factor disappears fast, doesn't it? At the very least, even the fanboys have fun (we won't talk about the obvious fact they could have a lot more fun if they weren't so biased). The older I get, the more the elitists irk me, because I can only see them as useless, unhappy, nose-in-the-air unpopular students. Last I checked, entertainment centers on this theory known as "fun," and I understand becoming educated on certain matters pertaining to the industry in question. I also understand solid discussions between two learned individuals, and I'll be the first to get into detailed conversations concerning my favorite hobby. But it's about the attitude; the personality. The elitists have their label for a reason.

Essentially, does the comic book guy in The Simpsons have any fun reading his comics?

10/3/2008 Ben Dutka

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Comments (43 posts)

Skillz
Friday, October 03, 2008 @ 10:35:03 PM
Reply

I really don't think so. They are soooo wraped up in accomplishments they fail to realize the fun they're capable of having in video games.

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Qubex
Saturday, October 04, 2008 @ 5:39:55 AM

I have to agree with both Ben and Skillz.

Maybe these people are not bad people inherently, they obviously lack self confidence to some degree and have to find "strengths" they think they have to prove a point, whatever that may be.

While they try to prove these points, they also miss the point that gaming is supposed to be fun... actually, and having a good time with friends and family...

Reminds me of the movie, "The Mask"... I guess they wear a mask when commenting, we don't see the real person behind the mask. Once they are on their trip they cannot be stopped... damn the industry, the talent and the good journalists that are actually working within it... according to them they are the Gods Of War...

Q!

"aLL RoAdS LeAd ToO HoMe"

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Qubex
Friday, October 03, 2008 @ 11:23:14 PM
Reply

I have to agree with both you Ben and Skillz.

Maybe these people are not bad people inherently, they obviously lack self confidence to some degree and have to find "strengths" they think they have to prove a point, whatever that may be.

While they try to prove these points, they also miss the point that gaming is supposed to be fan... actually, and having a good time with friends and family...

Reminds me of the movie, "The Mask"... I guess they wear a mask when commenting, we don't see the real person behind the mask. Once they are on their trip they cannot be stopped... damn the industry, the talent and the good journalists that are actually working within it... according to them they are the Gods Of War...

Q!

"aLL RoAdS LeAd ToO HoMe"




Last edited by Qubex on 10/3/2008 11:25:06 PM

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Kiengo
Friday, October 03, 2008 @ 11:37:19 PM
Reply

"Wear your learning, like your watch, in a private pocket: and do not pull it out and strike it, merely to show that you have one."

I agree Ben. I have a LOT more fun being dumb and seeing who can get fragged in the most spectacular ways than hearing from someone who knows it all.

Also, you've always got people who appreciate your hard work (and proper grammar - THANK YOU!) right here.

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Saturday, October 04, 2008 @ 12:36:19 AM

I wouldn't write things like this if I thought the community wouldn't appreciate it. ;) But it's always good to know!

Also, who owns that quote...?

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www
Saturday, October 04, 2008 @ 5:46:47 AM

Yeah "proper grammer",it's always "take a book n read n improve on ya grammer",well how about "go on the internet n read n improve ya grammer".
I don't enjoy readin any book at all,so readin game editorials is good for me since i enjoy games already.

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Kiengo
Sunday, October 05, 2008 @ 2:17:18 PM

The quote belongs to Philip Stanhope.

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MetalHead09
Monday, October 06, 2008 @ 11:29:22 AM

yea dude cool quote.

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Scarecrow
Friday, October 03, 2008 @ 11:41:44 PM
Reply

Aye!
It's one thing to be a fanboy and love your system to death.

It's another thing to scream in everybody's face that it is the only thing worth getting/playing.

Even worse when they feel that the only way for them to feel happy 'bout their console/game is to bash other people's consoles/games.

I know everyone will not like the ps3, Wii, or 360, that's fine.

Like Ben, Ben doesn't feel the appeal of the Wii. Fine with me it's not a console for everyone, I love it though but I will not bash the fact that he likes the 360 just 'cause he doesn't like the Wii.

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Saturday, October 04, 2008 @ 12:38:03 AM

Yeah, I'm not about to bash anything. I may not get the Wii's appeal, but I'm not about to say that millions and millions of people around the world are just stupid or wrong for enjoying it.

THAT, by the way, is the kind of thing I won't tolerate around here. Don't mind Sony fans (obviously we'll get those), and I don't mind telling everyone how much you love the PS3 or whatever. But NO senseless bashing on other systems just 'cuz you don't like 'em. :)

P.S. Not talking about anyone in particular; just a general comment there.

Last edited by Ben Dutka PSXE on 10/4/2008 12:38:54 AM

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Aftab
Saturday, October 04, 2008 @ 12:48:37 AM
Reply

Have I felt a little dirty after spending more time talking about something, like a game, than it actually deserved? Yeah. Hope that doesn't qualify myself as an "Elitist", though. And I hope I haven't offended anybody while doing so.

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m2tbo
Saturday, October 04, 2008 @ 12:49:33 AM
Reply

My good friend says: "He who over analyzes everything is not as smart as he thinks he is" or something to that effect.
Games are great for experiencing something outside the real world. It's great to sit down to a game and lose your day to it. Why analyze and critique games to death? If you enjoy it, play it, if you don't, move on.
If a game is a masterpiece then everyone will love it, and just because it is mainstream doesn't make it less a masterpiece.

Elitists can take their opinions and shove it.

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WorldEndsWithMe
Saturday, October 04, 2008 @ 1:57:31 AM
Reply

The Simpsons comment hit the nail on the head, no way that dude enjoys his hobby (life) If I had to point to another it would be anyone who goes to a Renaissance Festival with an accuracy axe to grind against the kids who like to go there and do the "Lord of the Rings" thing. Hell with it I say, everyone deserves a playground that isn't organized by the bossy kid in class. I think we are all guilty of fanboyism and elitism on one post or another, but everyone is going to fall into the continuum at a different spot any given time of the year. That said, the advent of the internet has given everyone a voice and it's probably best if we don't take that (or thoughtful commentary by journalists on free sites) for granted. If there's anything I've learned it's to be wary of "industry types" words moreso than what is said by the down-to-earth gamer. When all is said and done, as my father would say "Consider the source."

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LightShow
Saturday, October 04, 2008 @ 6:35:32 AM

that was a lucid, well thought out commentary.

glad to see it exists...

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BigT_1980
Saturday, October 04, 2008 @ 2:00:59 AM
Reply

When I come across an elitists on an online form I just ignore him, because responding to them or reasoning with them is it like adding fuel to the fire. Elitists should honestly just get a life in my opinion.

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HUSO
Saturday, October 04, 2008 @ 2:50:05 AM
Reply

Ben u ought to cut these guys (elitists and fanboys) some slack. I'm guessing they should have the right to indulge in watever they wanna do and have their own opinions, as long as they don't try to impose their views on us and try to make us adhere to their rules.

But yes elitists do tend to sound overly geeky, but surely u must enjoy reading some of the fanboy rants on forums :P of late reading some of the fanboy war postings on sites like N4G has become one of my past times. IMO fanboy wars is better than reading a gossip column :)

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Saturday, October 04, 2008 @ 10:23:18 AM

"...as long as they don't try to impose their views on us,"

Er, that's exactly what they do. That's why they are who they are. :)

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PhilipJWitow
Saturday, October 04, 2008 @ 3:11:26 AM
Reply

I dunno, maybe I'm not an elitist - but I am someone who HAS to finish the game 100% or else it's not completed. At the same time, if I am watching someone else play and they're not copying my style, I usually assume they're not playing it correctly.

But playing games, I hate hate HATE getting the last 2% for 100% - but when I look back on it it's the most fun I ever have, and when you achieve it it's like the most amazing thing in the world and you feel so fantastic.

So not sure if I'm really in the elitist bracket or not, I certainly don't have the personality to be an egotistical little sh** on the internet, but I definitely try to be the very best there can be and I do enjoy my games.

I think the only difference is I'm an elitist at the actual game and I pretty much keep that to myself, while you seem to focus on people who want to tell everyone they're elitists. In which case, elitists aren't annoying people in general, there are just a few di**s who go online and ruin our names. :(

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Saturday, October 04, 2008 @ 10:24:13 AM

That's not elitism. That's just becoming absorbed in your own hobby, which I think all of us have done at one time or another.

Without the attitude and personality, you're not an elitist or a fanboy.

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DcIronfist
Sunday, October 05, 2008 @ 3:01:48 PM

Would this make you a completist? I would be guilty of this myself I try to beat a game to 100% it does not always work out that way, but it's my journey.

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Deleted User
Saturday, October 04, 2008 @ 3:48:37 AM
Reply

With editorials like these, you wonder why you're not taken seriously.

My answer to the editorial is: who gives a crap?

There are seriously hundreds of important (yet thoroughly ignored) topics that should be discussed concerning games and the gaming community, and this certainly isn't one of them.

Last edited by n/a on 10/4/2008 3:55:09 AM

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Qubex
Saturday, October 04, 2008 @ 5:46:51 AM

Jason, I think Ben's topic has its merits... much "noise" and "distortion" is generated by heavily "weighted" points by the elitists that are incorrect, over the top or down right insulting to everyone's intelligence.

Have views, be flexible but give people space to express themselves without imposing your world on theirs... that is what I say!

Q!

"aLL RoAds LeAd ToO HoMe"

Last edited by Qubex on 10/4/2008 5:51:39 AM

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www
Saturday, October 04, 2008 @ 6:03:31 AM

@Jason Lee,u sound like one of'em. "
There are seriously hundreds of important (yet thoroughly ignored) topics that should be discussed"....Well are these topics so important dat smaddy dies if it's not discussed.

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www
Saturday, October 04, 2008 @ 5:59:38 AM
Reply

"In fact, they're convinced all games journalists are little more than teenagers living at home, pretending to write news reports"....true dat,maybe the fact dat u take part in the conversations/comments makes some think so.
BUT the reason i luv PSX is the fact dat we get to interact with the editors,so we can get some answers n make some things clear to us.People like the elitists n fanboys will always exist,we just need to deal with'em if necessary otherwise u give'em the deaf ear,just the way of the world

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Jed
Saturday, October 04, 2008 @ 11:12:24 PM

@Ghana,
That's the trouth man. Ben's editorials are one of the reasons that I really love this site. And the fact that he and the others at extreme actually read the comments and interact with the readers. It's hard to find good sites like this on the internet but I'm glad I did.

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LightShow
Saturday, October 04, 2008 @ 6:32:34 AM
Reply

as far as not playing games because the Masses play them, those are the only games i can buy anymore. i cant afford many games, so when it's crunch time, i reach for the popular one. mostly because there's a reason its popular.

However, I try to go off the beaten path whenever i go to the game rental place =D

also, as a general comment, in every aspect of life, in every country, city, and neighborhood, there are people who need to feel superior. it's how they verify their life. weather its the guy down the street who spends more time with his lawn than his wife, or your manager that won't stop taking credit for your work, there is a good chunk of the population that verifies their existence on how theyre superior.

I'm pretty sure the Elitists were genuine fans of games at one point, but got caught up in proving how much better they were then everyone else. tis a shame.

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Saturday, October 04, 2008 @ 10:28:00 AM

"I'm pretty sure the Elitists were genuine fans of games at one point, but got caught up in proving how much better they were then everyone else. tis a shame."

Yup, more than likely.

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Saturday, October 04, 2008 @ 10:26:11 AM
Reply

Everyone: Ignore Jason Lee's comments. He has one shot left to fix his bashing habits at this site. So far, he's made nothing but ELITIST posts to try to prove he knows more than me and everyone else here. Adolescent superiority complex crap. As I said, I don't tolerate the attitude and I certainly don't tolerate uppity children who have no more credentials on the subject at hand than a semi-conscious chimpanzee.

So...last chance, Jason. I know you'll blow it because I know what kind of person you are, but I'm just saying. And thank you VERY much for proving the point of this piece. Much appreciated.

Last edited by Ben Dutka PSXE on 10/4/2008 10:26:44 AM

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DcIronfist
Sunday, October 05, 2008 @ 3:06:54 PM

I am glad you take this Stance Ben. It's nice that there is a site that does not cave into the adolescents that think if they yell the loudest they are right.

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robinhood2010
Saturday, October 04, 2008 @ 12:20:09 PM
Reply

He has done exactly that! How amusing. And contrite.

The only elitist thing i have ever done is claim to know everything about final fantasy vii. but anyone who has played that game will know how amazing it is, and how compelling it is trying to find everything out about it.
Apart from that, i cant stand it.

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Deleted User
Saturday, October 04, 2008 @ 1:36:04 PM
Reply

You have no idea what you're talking about, Ben. You have no idea what kind of person I am. I'm afraid your comments say much more about your humanity than it does mine. You do yourself a disservice by presumptuously misinterpreting my comments as "elitist" just because they differ from yours. THAT is adolescent.

You're in the publishing business and you posted an editorial, which is open to criticism. Sorry, but you nor your pieces are sacrosanct. You can hold your opinion, that's fine, just so as you know there are people who hold different viewpoints. If you want immunity, write in a diary.

And sorry, your poor attempt to insult and judge me only perpetuates the stereotype you mentioned in your article. It's like watching a guy fight a fire with gasoline.

Last edited by n/a on 10/4/2008 1:45:30 PM

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Annihilator221
Saturday, October 04, 2008 @ 3:18:41 PM

Jason, you truly prove Ben's point.

"You're in the publishing business and you posted an editorial, which is open to criticism."

You were in no way criticizing the topic of the post but the fact that Ben posted it at all, which leads me to believe that either you never read the post, or you read it, saw yourself in that, and decided to begin a flame war with Ben based on your lack of self-assurance.

I would personally appreciate you not posting unless it is on topic. It's a basic standard that most follow.

Your posts have been uninsightful, and if you have nothing worthwhile to say concerning elitists (a la yourself, obviously), then please don't post again.

/rant

On the topic of elitists, the best possible thing that we can do when they begin their childish rants is to call them on it, laugh and ignore them. :D

Thanks!

Last edited by Annihilator221 on 10/4/2008 3:24:22 PM

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LightShow
Saturday, October 04, 2008 @ 3:57:56 PM
Reply

Deco-what?

dude, there's no decorating the site. thats the HTML dude's job.

=P

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Saturday, October 04, 2008 @ 4:28:01 PM
Reply

Jason, you're done. Your entire purpose from day one has been to insult us all, starting from the childish reply to the MGS4 editorial, which addressed nothing.

Good riddance; we keep our community safe from this type of thing. You may sign up again if you like, but as it takes about two seconds to delete you, you won't win that battle.

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Annihilator221
Sunday, October 05, 2008 @ 12:34:30 AM

Cccccccccombo broken!

Way to go Ben!

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WorldEndsWithMe
Saturday, October 04, 2008 @ 6:49:44 PM
Reply

Good riddance to bad rubbish, the only Jason Lee I like is the one on My Name is Earl.

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Saturday, October 04, 2008 @ 11:11:07 PM

Heh...I didn't think I'd like that show, but I do.

But I can't stop picturing that dude when he was in "Mallrats."

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Jed
Sunday, October 05, 2008 @ 12:18:16 AM

Ben I think the same thing every time. I'll be watching earl and think, "there's no way that was the guy from the view askew movies" but it is. weird.

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LightShow
Saturday, October 04, 2008 @ 7:29:30 PM
Reply

=/ i guess everyone is entitled to their opinion. then again, we all have the responsibility to express that opinion in a (god forbid) semi-mature manner.

Bah, such a fine line...

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Aftab
Saturday, October 04, 2008 @ 8:44:28 PM
Reply

"Contender Eliminated."

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Jed
Sunday, October 05, 2008 @ 12:41:50 AM
Reply

Everyone is of course entitled to their opinion, but when they start to think their opinion is fact, they become one of the elitists or fanboys.

I have unfortunately known many elitists in my time and cannot stand them. Not just in video games, but about all kinds of pop culture. Movies, music, cars, whatever. They obsess over these things for one or both of these reasons. 1)self esteem, they fell like they are better than others that dont know as much, 2)to try and impress people with what they know.
I think it must be hard for many elitists to have fun playing video games. It's more like they are studying, not playing. They have to know more about the game than everyone else, they also have to study the entire game for discrepancies in the story and what not.

I also thing that anyone that doesn't play a game because it is too "popular" is an absolute idiot. Halo 3 is a great, fun game, but I know people that despise it, just because it is so popular. the "I'm cooler than everybody that plays that game" attitude. They get so deep into games that nobody likes, but they are not even willing to try something that is popular. sometimes, they don't allow themselves to have fun.

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DcIronfist
Sunday, October 05, 2008 @ 3:14:58 PM
Reply

Some personalities are not happy unless they can show other people up and try to have others feel bad. I imagine they must have a few minutes of fun in a game(even if it may be by accident), because how could you not?

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MetalHead09
Monday, October 06, 2008 @ 11:45:03 AM
Reply

ben i like how you run this site. i run my socom clan pretty much the same way. i dont care about your age or skill. we gotta have fun, get along and you have to have a good attitude. the more time goes by the more i love this site. keep up the great work psx.

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