Thanks to a mixed-up sleeping schedule, I was up at around 3 this morning. As such, I decided to continue my second playthough of Far Cry 3 (first was on the casual mode - this is on Hard, though I could probably bump it up to Master). I'm still on the first island, though I have made sure to scale all sattelite towers and fully upgrade my equipment already.
Anyways, I suppose a couple hours passed while trying to rescue my amigos. My grandmother passed me while heading into the kitchen to make some coffee. We were chatting, and she glanced at my screen and saw Jason wielding a flamethrower (I had just finished a certain mission that some may know involving a field of...plants). Her immediate reaction: "Are you playing a war game?"
At first, I was hesitant to reply. I finally responded laughing, saying, "Noooooooo...," but then again I wasn't totally sure. I suppose if you consider Jason waging war on the pirates in order to rescue his friends, then yeh, I guess it would be. Then again, it could also be an open-word survival shooter. Matter or perspective, I suppose.
But I can imagine how age barriers for non-gamers (not counting Facebook games) can skew how one might view a game. Considering what she has gone through, a single glance at a weapon (regardless of intention) could qualify a title as a "war game" in her mind. That also made me feel really awkward playing the game with her present, so I saved and shut it down (so I could write this - and good thing 'cause I wasn't sure what to write about today).
Should I feel bad playing a game that includes violence in her presence? I mean, I understand the differences between the virtual world and the real one, and it's really just a form of entertaining escapism for me to pass the time. I think it's important for gamers to know this, as sometimes we get a bad rap based upon bad examples of gamers who don't understand the differences between worlds. I wasn't shouting out my kills, nor was I putting each animal skinning on display for PETA to see (I must say I wish there was more use for skinning beyond crafting and selling for a couple dollars).
Maybe I'm just overthinking it, and she's just messing around with me. There are so many different genres of games these days, with hybrids of genres coming out the wazoo (I'm quite fond of RPG hybrids myself). It seems hard to try and explain that non-competitive/professional gamers just enjoy playing video games for fun, and we're not all training to be soldiers or race car drivers, nor is that elf or halfling we're leveling part of an adult web site. I hope this post didn't come across as ageist...was just something swimming in my head at the time.