Last night I played the demo for Lionhead's "The Movies". Cool game. Because sometimes I just want to play a game where nobody is trying to kill me. I'm sure when most of the people who associate me with gaming think of the games I play, they think "Quake". That would of course be partly because they don't play games and they don't understand that nobody has played "Quake" since, like, 3d cards came out, or dinosaurs roamed the Earth.
They don't, I expect, think of me sitting down to several hours of "The Sims". Interestingly enough, it was "The Sims" that broke me out of my violent war toy shackles. I really had no intention of ever looking at "The Sims" on the shelf, let alone buying and installing it. But, my roommate at the time had a copy, and I was bored, and it was getting a lot of good press.
Two weeks later and Hank Poody was somewhat infamous. At one point my wife stopped and watched over my shoulder for ten minutes.
"What are you doing?", the tone here was giving the subtext of cautious-but-certain-you're-an-idiot. I get that a lot, so I recognize it.
"Playing the Sims." I came back. Very clever with the comebacks, I am.
"Yes. But what are you doing?!" I can sense a certain amount of exasperation. I, of course, should be able to use telepathy to discern at this point what what is what.
"Well," I said, not really able to resist a chat about my new favorite game, "Hank here needs to get these dishes done. His Need for Clean (that how I said it: Need for Clean. Like Need for Speed in "Top Gun", but no F14s) is getting in the way of his next promotion. And I really want to get the plasma TV. For Hank I mean."
There is a brief pause. "If you want, there is a whole sink full of dishes in the kitchen..." Lesson learned. I now do dishes almost every day.
So, "The Movies". It's like "The Sims", except you're building a movie empire. I like the empire bits, too. And that's what makes me a real gamer. I just really like to play games. Even games about doing the dishes.