It started at the young age of 7 for me or at least that’s the earliest I remember. My parents got me the Nintendo system and back then it was the talk of the town (Sometimes it’s good to have separated parents)! I learned to play Mario at that age learning coordination with just an a and b button
And my dad bought me an Atari where I learned to play PAC Man and get quick reflexes on the board!
It was a couple of years later after that that my Mom got me a game gear! Sonic was the man and the color handheld was something heavy but still portable.
I moved houses a lot as a child as my mom and grandma rented the places we stayed in. It wasn’t until a couple years (1991) that my brother was born and I needed to be further entertained! Luckily it was the same year that the Super Nintendo and Sega were coming out! My cousin was a year a head of me in age and said that the Super Nintendo would be the system to get, but because I played game gear and Sonic was the “hedgehog” of my life I fully neglected The Nintendo system. I got the Sega and lived with Sonic and his chronic battles with Mr. Robotnic and his crazy inventions. It was during that time that I visited my cousins often and that super Nintendo did look quite amazing. And with him being a year older he always got the cool games.
It wasn’t until I saw Mortal Combat that I was in love. Lui Kang transforming into a dragon and eating his opponent made me learn super combos which helped further to my coordination on a controller.
Even though that game was amazing and the Super Nintendo had other great games I refused to believe or admit that Sega was not the future. I was very stubborn and continued to believe Sega would have an answer. Then they releases Sega Saturn and I knew this was the next gaming console! My parents however were hesitant to get me another system so I made due with the Sega.
One night, our house got broken into and the thief stole a lot of things including my 4 video games and the Sega itself. I was devastated. Luckily we had insurance for the house and they covered a lot of the damages and stolen products! My parents told me to pick any games I wanted and they would cover it. I got to order over 30+ games!!! I was in heaven! I remember playing some amazing games including Major League Baseball, Fifa and NHL games. The Major League Baseball one was my favorite as it had 3 types of players to chose from, the super tall, the medium build and the stalky guy. I tried to find an image but couldn’t find the exact game. I also had teenage mutant ninja turtles but I got a stupid version in which they battle 1v1 like mortal Kombat or Street Fighter which was no where near as good as Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Turtles in Time that was on the arcade and other systems.
In the end I borrowed my cousins super Nintendo any time there was a party at my house because that was still the better system though I wouldn’t admit that the Sega was a failure.
From there I switched to PC gaming. Computers were just coming out and we got our first computer with 700 megabytes of storage! It was a beast and I could play all kinds of cool demos! At school Pokemon for Gameboy started making its rounds but I never got one. The cools kids got the Gameboy color but I ran home to play it on PC since I figured out how to download Roms and emulators. Internet was on a 14.4 k modem and let me tell you every game downloaded was that much more enjoyable when you had to wait!
Another solid game I was given was Kings Quest by Sierra which my uncle introduced to me. It was an amazing RPG which I really loved the story line. From there I played a few other games Monkey Island which taught you how to win games with words and anither RPG game which was a lot of fun. If only I had a walkthrough!
Couple years later I got into a couple other games such a Duke Nukem and Rise of the Triad. Games that were First Person Shooters and I think this is where I started to really enjoy FPS genre. The monsters in Duke Nukem always scared me so it felt great to destroy them!
During this PC gaming the N64 came out and was a huge hit. Mario was back and was fully 3D and fun. My parents were open to the positive game play and this game consumed my life until I retrieved all the stars in the world! It was so much fun and I very much enjoy the sliding down carpets to new worlds with awesome picture frames to go into! Amazing work that really brought Nintendo into the lime light once more.
At the same time as my computer gaming was getting bigger my friend got a Sony Dreamcast he brought over to my house. He also was able to burn games using a bootleg CD. You would burn the game you wanted, put the bootleg in first the Dreamcast would read it then pop out the bootleg and put the game you downloaded in its place and it would work which would allow you to play whatever games you burned to CD. It was pretty awesome but the only game we played was Power Stone which to this day I think was one of the most fun 4 players on screen battles and before it’s Smash Brothers time.
Finally the turning point of gaming in my life happened. Quake and Counterstrike for PC and I was absolutely hooked to play online. It was a head of its time in my opinion with amazing graphics (for back then). I got very good at de_dust not de_dust2 but the first one, as well as cs_office and my favorite de_rats in which you played in a kitchen with some starting in the fridge and the others in a cupboard. I still love that map to this day! Overall, this game blew me away and playing online was amazing which led to my love of first person shooters.
From there the PlayStation 2 and Xbox wars began. For me I was never a huge fan of the PS2 and convinced my parents to get me an Xbox! Halo was the the game to play back then! Friends would come over and we would the split screens all day after school! I personally felt Microsoft was very competitive in the gaming field and would win this battle (much like I though Sega would).
Both systems started to fall behind in technology and it was time for the next gernation once more and that opened up the gaming world to PS3 and Xbox 360. Once again I stuck with Microsoft and the 360. Out family actually had 3 systems so my brothers and I could all play. My room consisted of two of the systems so we could play next to each other with no split screens! I played on a computer monitor ever since then since TVs always caused a slow refresh rate, which got you killed. It was this time that Call of Duty Modern Warfare came out. This was my game of choice and my brothers and I really got into it. I was young and raged a lot back then but back then there were no consequences for online gaming chat. I loved to win and found a group of gamers that also loved to win and were overall great guys. We varied in age but it just didn’t matter! It was further expanded when my best friend at University also got into gaming. His name was Tim or what most of you know him as Pickleddictator and Snobby Bok Choy. He used to play a bit with me after classes when we both got home. I used to take my system to his house so we could play together with our friends. It wasn’t until he severly injured his back and needed surgery that he played with me all the time. He was unable to do much of anything else so we just gamed all day and all night. We picked up many other players, Avilicious, Texdog, Priest,FamousNoob, Youth and Coolhand and we switched out any other players that wanted to play. The trash talk that happened with these guys was glorious and I wish recording devices were around at that time. We used to play team deathmatch but switched to Demolition as newer call of duty titles came out and we wanted to get more and more kills.
As I mentioned we started with Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare and we really liked the future world so when they released World at War the following year we stayed on advanced. A couple of my core guys got it and said it wasn’t worth it, so I stayed away. It wasn’t until Black Ops 1 came out that we started transitioning over year over year to the next Call of Duty Title. I was significantly great at these game types but also very patient and a hard scope sniper on a lot of maps. Quickscoping was introduced but not many tried it against a solid team of 5/6 players.
The Call of duty genre got me through school for better or worse on my Xbox 360. The 360 was the exclusive provider and always got things earlier which made me appreciate the system and what it did for its gamers. I would line up each November to get it at midnight launch which unfortunately seems a thing of the past to see other COD gamers also drop in to grab their copy. I would pick up Pickled and we would go wait in line always mumbling to ourselves how we would trash these other people waiting in line. There really is no competition from players in Vancouver. Its primarily the Western servers we played and most of the competition came form LA and that region. We also took time off from Call of Duty with some Rock Band! Did I mention I dyed my hair!?
(That’s Pickled behind me singing)
Finally both Sony and Microsoft decided it was time for a newer console with more options. Welcome the Xbox One and Play Station 4. At this point I was done school, I met my future wife and decided it was going to be an end to an era. The group of guys I had grown up with were having lives of their own with TexDogg having twins and FamousNoob also with young children. It felt like the right time to walk away from the scene.
My allegiance to Call of Duty and gaming was over, or so I thought. My wife was also a gamer but not on the major console systems. We got each other the Nintendo DS to play games together and that was enough for a time. Then it happened.
I was with my wife and another couple when we went to Seattle Washington for a weekend. We had a great weekend and were heading back home when I had such a craving for Mcdonalds. Since I’m the one that was driving (I love to drive) I decided we were going to find a McDonalds on the way back. This was the first time I couldn’t find a McDonald’s! It was nuts! I was driving for a very long time and people in my car had to use the washroom. I had to make a stop before getting to the McDonald’s. We stopped at a TacoTime for them to use the washroom. I didn’t use the washroom so I waited and was staring at the menu. When they came out they asked me if I just wanted to eat at Taco Time. I said “No!” I was dead set on McDonald’s! They accepted and we continued on for another 15-20minutes. I was very happy that they accepted that we continue on I told them all that McDonald’s was on me! I paid for everyone’s meal at the table. It turns out McDonald’s was doing a promotion of Xbox and its new system and that each meal came with a peel and win at least a video game. I let my future wife peel all the stickers because she is always good luck and when she peeled it, it said Xbox One. I stared at the sticker trying to understand what it was that I was holding. Do I need to collect 4 or at least match this sticker? I took it up to the counter to ask because I was very confused. He looked at the sticker and handing it back with a smile and a warm “congratulations”. I stared at him in shock! I had just won my Xbox One
This was the beginning of a new era. Call of Duty was once back on my list with the purchase of Advanced Warfare. It took a while to get Pickled back on board but by the end of it I twisted his arm to get it. I did have to lie and tell him how amazing Advanced Warfare was but it was so worth the white lie to get him on board! Avilicious, Youth and Priest with Omar and PyschoCID were still playing and had purchased the new Xbox One. The game was challenging and made maintaining a high KD impossible but it was a good jump off point to get used to the new controller in my hand.
I then tried Titanfall since it had a free demo and that was a nice change of pace to COD until Black Ops 3 came out! Then it was back to the game and something a lot more enjoyable than AW.
I played with my regular crew, Priest, Avi, Pickled & Omar as it started out. Then Pickled pick up a night job where he had access to the internet but could no longer game the late nights with me. He was a huge part of my gaming experience and I missed him a lot. Cue Twitch! My Xbox One came with a Kinect so I had a camera and Pickled said he woud love to watch from my point of view! I downloaded the app for the Xbox One and away I went. It started out every night just gaming and chatting with Pickled since occasionally someone jumped in now and then. This went on for a couple months and more people started to jump in to chat. Before I knew it I was chatting more and gaming a little less. My KD was dropping slightly but my overall happiness seemed to not revolve around my KD anymore which is huge for me as I felt that was a great differentiation between me and someone else. Now I felt my personality and my ability to reach an audience over the world was open to me! I told my brother that I was serious about this and build me a custom computer! I continued gaming my way with the Kinect for another three/four months while the computer was on its way. It was exilerating to get people to follow me and my move from a box to a Blue screen/wall.
My experience to online streaming started out with positive curiosity with some of the guys, but that unfortunately quickly turned to online negativity. They were not happy that I was always chatting and ignoring them as we played or bringing players in that couldn’t do well or I couldn’t carry them. But, as I mentioned my KD was now something there but not my top concern. I wanted to meet new people and new players and help out where I could (while still winning a majority of games).
A lot of people are on Xbox because it’s an outlet to their world and you never know who you’re going to meet. Now Twitch made it easier for that outlet to be found and not just in a lobby where I found my main guys but another source that allows the viewer to decide if they want to invest time into someone that brings them something positive, negative or a raging lunatic.
For me, I’ve grown over my gaming years from that young raging child to someone that wants to see more positivity in the community. That’s hard to say in a Call of Duty mind set, but that is what I think brings me something of an edge over others. Don’t get me wrong, a little bit of jabbing now and then is always fun but I still digress back to my positive happy going self that smiles and listens to music with other like minded people while slowly venturing out into other games!
Through streaming I’ve met a community of gamers (not just one type of console) that also want to be a part of something larger. I’m happy to bring them with me to see how huge we can grow this community that I envision.
If you read that, I am very impressed as that is my gaming history and I’m very happy to share with you where I came from!