Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Wii for the New Dad

Having a child changes every aspect of your life. When you are watching a drama on TV where a kid gets sick or dies, you feel it differently than before. When you see other parents at Wal-Mart you immediately feel some type of connection to them or sympathy for them depending on what exactly their child is doing. When you come home from work watching the baby takes precedent over watching the TV. Your sports watching portfolio is trimmed to the bone. There is no time for watching that random basketball game very often so you stick to the teams you follow closely. I could go on making this list for the rest of my life but the last thing I will mention is the effect on your video game playing.

I have been a playing video games as long as I can remember. My dad and I played Atari all the time. Some of my favorite games were Decathlon and Pitfall. I remember at the end of Decathlon you had to run the 1500 m. The Atari had one button and a stick so the options for making the guy run were limited. You made him run by shaking the stick back and forth. This created a decathlon like experience as you just wanted to survive to the end and get rid of the cramps in your hand. After that we moved to Nintendo, Super Nintendo, Sega, PlayStation I and II, and finally now I have a PlayStation 3 at my house. Along the way I enjoyed Zelda, Mario Brothers, GTA and dozens of sports games. I got the new additions every year. When I was at home my Dad, brother and I had a team. I was the player. Dad was the strategist offering tips on patterns he could see and tactics that might work. My brother manned the map and any guides or books. His memory was outstanding. We beat a lot of games with our task force and I hope someday I will form a gaming partnership with my son. I have always liked console games and never had much interest in the Wii. Playing the PS is a skill that I have developed over years of practice and I am proud of it. I never wanted to play a game with an easier controller method but like I said things change.

I played the Wii for the first time over Christmas with my brother and our wives. Of course the wives love it so that is enough reason to consider a purchase. But this blog is about being a dad not a husband. As I played this ridiculously popular new type of game swinging my arms around in every direction, I had to think of my son. This is no doubt the type of game that he will start playing when he gets older. It may be different but this type of motion sensor console is probably the game of the future. We can play tennis, bowling, racing, shooting or any other games that they will dream up and it will be great. Difficult controller based games could separate father and son but I think the Wii can bring us together. It is something that he can do at a young age and I can hear his laughter already. See the biggest thing being a father does is change your point of view. All your life you have a self centered point of view (I am not interested in the Wii). Now you have a child centered point of view (he would love the Wii). That is what fatherhood is all about. I am already excited for our first Wii match and if they come up with a decathlon game this time the cramps will be in more than just my hand.

1 comment:

Rob Barron said...

Spot on! When we were pregnant the first time (ack!), I wondered if there was a secret baby handshake or something....

We also got the Wii... care for a bowling tourney? :-) Ny nephew (Gunslinger on the blog) is 4 and already comes close to besting me on several of the Wii Sport games. I'm hoping my ColecoVision Rocky Super Action Boxing experience will keep me ahead of the game.