Image via The New York Times
You’ve laid waste to endless pig domiciles. You’ve planted and harvested fifty years worth of crops. You’ve cut miles of rope. And yet you keep thinking: “Just one more game.” Just what is it about this new breed of super addictive gaming?
The Times has a fascinating piece on the emergence of “silly, stupid games.” The author, Sam Anderson, wonders what has happened in the last five years that has changed the way we approach gaming. It has to do with technology, for one (iPhones and iTunes made distribution larger than ever) and the relationship we have with games. Gaming used to be a big endeavor: pull out a clunky system, plug it in, waste a few hours. Now games can be had in all of those interstitial times we find lying around: waiting for the bus, standing in line at the store, riding the elevator. And most important, they’re addictive. They give us an immediate reward for an immediate task accomplished.
The article is worth checking out for one more reason: it practices what it explores. It recreates the classic “Meteor” game, and you can fly an intrepid triangle/spaceship around and destroy everything on the page—headers, advertisements, navigation boxes—until the only thing left is the article. It’s stupid. And addicting.