Sunday, June 6, 2010

Video games.

That’s right. Video games. This post is about video games. I love video games. Always have, but I’m not one of those people that has to run out and buy the game as soon as it hits the shelves and plants themselves on the couch until the game is beaten. On the contrary. I love them, but I rarely buy them and part of that is because I’m an old school video game girl and am not a huge fan of a lot of the new ones. So I tend to stick to my old favorites. And it takes me forever to beat a game. If that ever actually happens, which it rarely does. Most of the time I’ll get to a hard level and just can NOT beat it, so I move on to the next game leaving that one (mostly) unplayed until someone can get me past the hard parts. Yeah, I’m that girl. The girl that had her brother beat the hard levels cause she just could not.

There is no shortage of video game consoles in our house. Ready for this? Ok. So we start with Nintendo. The original. Move on to Super Nintendo, followed by the Game Cube, and finally the Wii. And we can’t forget about my DS. Well equipped with the games I love. We’re not strictly a Nintendo household because even though I tend to favor them my husband does not. We’ve got an original PlayStation. PS2 and PS3. We had an Xbox, but sold that after we got the 360. In my packing I even found an old, uncharged, and probably broken Gameboy. No games, just the Gameboy. I’d really love to get my hands on an old Sega system and the Atari I know my dad has somewhere in their basement. I might just breakdown and buy the Atari that’s preloaded with the old games because I really enjoy me some Frogger. So yeah, we like video games.

Ok so on to the reason for this post. #87 on my list of 101 things is to beat 1 of my video games (since that is such a rarity for me). And since I started this list, last January, I have been trying rather unsuccessfully to beat ONE of my games. JUST ONE. Well, it finally happened. For Christmas my wonderful husband got me Super Mario Brothers Wii. I have been playing it off and on since I got it. Last Friday I took a few hours to myself, no packing, no cleaning, just me and the game. I had previously reached the 8th level, and in standard Mario fashion it was the last level. I was having a hard time beating a few of the levels and had severely dwindled my awesome stash of lives down to single digits and kept having to go back to previous worlds to gain some extra ones. And finally. Finally. I made it to the castle. And worked my way through it and got to the end. And quickly beat the King. And as I said, that was too easy it became clear that that was not actually the end. And there was more and it was up to par with the final boss of the game. After many tries I finally got to the end. Rescued the Princess and the game was over.

Cue final scenes and secret world that Princess Peach so kindly opened for me.

To which I eagerly went to only to realize that I needed to find all of the coins in each level in every world to unlock the levels in the secret world. Awesome. I hadn’t found those coins. Some levels I hadn’t found a single coin so now I’m on the hunt for some gold coins. And it isn’t all that easy. But it keeps the game going which is the point I suppose. Either way, super proud of myself for beating the game.

And here’s where I get all sappy about how I totally need my brother. To help me beat games. And how I wrote him a letter to that affect.

I remember when we got our first video game console. The Nintendo system. It was so cool. We played for hours. And wanted every game. We had a lot. Some for him and some for me but we played a lot of them together. There were levels that I could beat with ease, and one’s where George had to beat. Don’t get me wrong, there were fights over what game we should play and who would get to be first player (usually me), but overall we played together and always had a good time. I would even take him on in Mortal Combat and give him a good run for his money even though I didn’t actually know how to play I just pushed the buttons until my guy (or girl) won the match. My favorite part was when we’d hear “Finish Him” though I didn’t enjoy it when the game was telling George to finish my character. Whateves, it’s good old sibling rivalry. I can remember the really long couple of months where we saved and pooled our allowance together so we could get the Super Nintendo because we just had to have it. It was new and we needed it. NEEDED. We saved up enough money to get the system, controllers and a couple games. We bonded a lot over those games. Even as we grew older he could always convince me to plop down to spend some quality video game time together.

So once I had beaten SMB Wii and moved on to trying to unlock those secret levels I eventually got frustrated and I switched my attention to some downloaded, old school, games on my Wii. Specifically, Donkey Kong Country. Oh yeah. Another old favorite and another memory trigger. As soon as I heard the music I wished my brother could be sitting right beside me playing along with me. Like old times.

I sped through the first world(s) and then I got stuck. On this hard level. One I knew would be hard to beat as soon as I started it. One I wasn’t sure I had ever actually beaten. On my own. Unassisted by my brother. And try as I might I And I was irritated. So I took a break from losing all my lives on this stupid level to write my brother a letter (#8) about how I needed him. To help me beat this stupid level. I wrote him an entire letter about video games. First, about DK and the hard level then of my triumphs of beating SMB Wii. I can hear him laughing right now and I just wish I could actually hear him laughing at me the way he used to when I got super frustrated and he beat those hard levels with such ease. In the end I beat that level, 15 lives later, and moved on to finish that level.

I’m stuck again on another hard level and it actually makes me wonder how far I truly got in this game in the first place because it seems to me I would have given up long ago. But something inside of me is forcing me to go on, even when I just want to quit. Something. Some voice. That little inside thing that says you can do it. And I realize, it’s my brother. Cheering me on and helping me out. Just like he always has and just like he always will. I can’t wait for him to get home. And if you’re looking for us when he gets home you’ll be able to find us. In my basement. On the floor. Like children. Playing video games. And loving every single second of it.

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