A few reasons to be thankful this year.
I’ve been writing about games for a long time, and I can’t remember all of the holiday-themed articles I’ve written, but I do know that I like a little sappiness when I read about that people are thankful for. I expect it, in a way. As embarrassing as they may be, the things we’re often thankful for, are the things we’re most passionate about: the hobbies that we love, the jobs that challenge us, the education that we have, and the health that literally keeps us alive.
I am happy for all of those things, and more. I love my life and am thankful for the things and people in my life. There is no better feeling in the world than coming home from a busy day at the office, to the greeting from your family.
The floppy-haired 3-year-old who is happily exclaiming that he went pee in the potty on his own, The 13-year-old who is beside himself with excitement because he doesn’t have to worry about school for the next 5 days. The 5-year-old who is learning to read and write, and drew an awesome stick person family where I looked like a mix between the 50’s style dad with some radical 80s new-wave hairdo. The dog who won’t stop barking until you just pet her for God’s sake — and then continues to do so afterwards. The wife who gets to prepare her own Turkey for Thanksgiving, and is beside herself with happiness to start a new family tradition at our own home.
These are the things that make me happy, they give me strength, and they are the things in my life that I’m thankful for. They are my proudest accomplishments, and I wouldn’t trade them for the world.
But I suppose this can’t be just a sappy Thanksgiving themed feature, on a video game site, if I played it straight and didn’t mention my favorite hobby: video games.
I think what I’m most thankful for, right now, is that there is a new freaking console on store shelves. It’s not just a handheld launch, or a new smartphone, or another iteration of your favorite iOS device. I’m talking about an honest-to-goodness brand new console: the Wii U. I didn’t get one, and I don’t plan on getting one until later next year, but it was a lot of fun reading Tweets and Facebook posts on Sunday from the people debating whether or not to try and go to a store to buy one. People were buzzing about a brand new console — some of it was good, some of it was bad. No matter what it was, it brought me back to simpler times, more than 5 or 6 years ago, and it was exciting to think that a brand new console was upon us. It was exciting!
I’m thankful for mobile devices, like the iPod and the iPad, as much as I may have thrown them under the bus for a brief moment in the previous paragraph. My two youngest boys, 3 and 5, have demonstrated some impressive skills in using and adapting to today’s new technology. It’s amazing to see how quickly the kids pick up on some of the games and apps I show them. Developers today are doing some amazing things, and it makes learning fun. My 5-year-old is ahead of the curve, and I think a lot of it is due to the fact that he uses these apps, and has been for a couple of years, and doesn’t realize that he’s learning while he’s having fun.
I’m thankful for the Kinect, and motion gaming in general. As cringe-worthy as that statement is, it’s a genre of gaming that I’ll probably never master, and it’s a part of today’s gaming industry, whether us gaming enthusiasts like it or not. The Kinect games are the ones that my wife will kick my ass in over and over and over again, and there’s nothing I can do about that. I just can’t move and groove the way she does in Dance Central 3 or Just Dance 4. The enthusiast in me wants to hate them because they’re casual games, but the truth is, people like them and it’s a completely different way to interact with technology and have fun. If it makes my wife and kids happy, then it’s something to be thankful for.
I’m also thankful to the new site owner, Jason Micciche as well as the Editors in Chief for the UK and US, Zeth Ward and Amy Nelson, respectively. Without them I would not have a weekly soapbox with which to stand on and talk about games (or kiss their butts in a Thanksgiving-themed feature).
I’d also like to thank you the reader, for visiting the site, and reading our coverage of video games. Without you, this wouldn’t be possible.
Whether or not you celebrate Thanksgiving, if you’d care to share some of the things you’re thankful for this year, gaming-related or not, let us know in the comments below.