By David Futrelle
I regret to inform you that the gamers are at it again. Or at least that subset of gamers who have somehow convinced themselves that finishing games on the hardest possible mode is an accomplishment as momentous as say, curing cancer or rescuing a litter of puppies from the 15th floor of a skyscraper in your underwear, or something.
What’s got the gamers’ manties in a bunch this time? Well, it tutns out that several games journalists have suggested that maybe the ninja vs. samurai game Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice, released last month, would be a bit more fun and accessible if it had an easy mode.
You’d think that someone had banned them from eating chicken tenders for life.
Gamebros have long preached about the evils of easy mode, but something about suggesting that a deliberately difficult game like Sekiro should have an option for those who don’t want to end up punching a hole through their monitor in frustration was too much for these sensitive — sorry, I mean, EXTREMELY TOUGH –gamer souls to bear
And then there was this masterpiece of angry gamer pomposity:
Some of the angry gamers (like, for example, Mr. Fetusberry himself) denied they were “gatekeeping” their hobby. But others did their best impression of a mean bouncer.
Others don’t mind letting the “weaklings” play, but only if they end up getting properly emasculated for choosing easy mode.
It’s worth remembering that these guys — and most of those yelling the loudest about this are indeed guys — are basing their self-assessments as “non-pussies” and “non-weaklings” om their prowess at a game that involves sitting at their computer hitting keys real fast.
Wow, guys, you’ve proved that you’re so obsessed with video games that you’re willing to grind through difficult game missions over and over again until you get good enough to beat it. Ten year olds can do this.
But these guys have convinced themselves that playing a ninja game has somehow made them the equivalent of an actual ninja.
What makes their complaints even more pathetic is that adding an easy mode to Sekiro wouldn’t stop them from playing the harder modes that these guys love so much. It would just make the game more accessible to a wider range of players.
How fragile must your masculinity be if you feel threatened by someone else enjoying a game that you like but with a little bit of the difficulty dialed back? WHO FUCKING CARES?
Some people play games in order to master them, to beat the final boss on the hardest difficulty setting; other people like to play to relax.
I’m in the second camp. And so, while I’ve been playing video games, off and on, for nearly three decades, I basically still kind of suck at them, despite devoting many hundreds of hours to some of my favorite games — generally the sort of open-world games that allow the maximum amount of just goofing off. I almost always play games on easy mode at first, at least until I get the hang of them. Sometimes I stick with easy mode because, well, I just don’t feel like dealing with a lot of frustration. I paid for the game, shouldn’t I get to enjoy it how I want to? Oh, and I was kind of addicted to the Candy Crush games for a little while.
Seriously, if the mostly casual way I play video games, sitting by myself or with a friend in the privacy of my own apartment, offends you as a gamer, might I suggest that you maybe just shut the fuck up about it? What fucking difference does it make to you how I or any other “weakling” gamer plays a game.
I mean, Jesus Christ, dudes. Get a grip on yourselves.
H/T to Shitty Gamer Takes on Twitter, who highlighted that tweet about “weaklings” needing to go back to mobile games and got me heading down this whole rabbithole.
UPDATE: I added the tweet from Fetusberry; thanks to kupo in the comments!
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