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Hobbies cone in various ways. Some you are good at, some you are not but you strive to enjoy it anyway. It maybe an expensive hobby like building and fixing laptops to participating in stage productions where you are in a musical. No matter what, you have things that make you happy and you enjoy this hobby. For me, that's video games.
In 1996, my mother met my step father and they hit it off and started dating. He moved into mine and my mom's tiny one bedroom apartment where they slept in the living room while I had the bedroom all to myself. This was a huge adjustment to Me seeings I always had my mother by my side. One night, I heard my mom's boyfriend awake while she was at work. At the time, they were not married and to be honest, they didn't get married for twenty years. I heard him up with my uncle and saw they were doing something and I heard a sound of an object falling. I peeked in and sat down to watch them. I saw a grey box and two cables attached to it which lead to my uncle and my mom's boyfriend's hands.
They were bowling... virtually? I watched them for a bit only to fall asleep on the couch watching them.
Much later, I saw my mom playing on a small grey box and heard music coming from it. I looked on the screen and saw she was playing with... blocks? She gave me the object wanting me to try. The music was playing and I watched the blocks stack up and get to the top of the screen and I heard a zipper sound effect.
I wanted to keep trying this out so I kept playing. One day, in 1998, I want to go see my cousin and he was playing on the TV. I saw a green controller in his hand and sat down watching him. I saw a cute little man jumping around with a red hat and blue overalls as his attire as my cousin was controlling him going through picture frames. It made me want to play again so my uncle swapped out the cartridge and put in a co-op game.
This was different from what I saw before. I saw a blue animal with an onion on the back and three blue spots on his head. After seeing my cousin build up this team with these creatures, I had a grey controller in my hand.
I chose six of them. An orange dragon. A purple butterfly, a tan rat, a yellow mouse with black tipped ears with red cheeks, a blue dinosaur with small spikes down it's back, an orange fish, and a cute little brown fox.
My cousin had a big blue turtle with cannons coming out of the back, a brown bird with a long beak, a purple dinosaur much like my blue one, a blue dragon with no wings, a yellow bird, and a tan monkey.
I got swept by what my cousin had. So I began to see what these things were.
In 1999, I got my own system for Christmas: A purple GameBoy Advance a long with Pokemon Silver. I saw the beautiful silver bird on the box and loved how it looked. I wanted it. I spent over four years in game looking for it. My team was pretty beefed up too. I was finally learning the ways of the gamer life.
My team consisted of a blue and cream colored mouse, a yellow sheep, a blue jellyfish with two red orbs on the top of it, an owl, a flower shaped like a pear, and a brown fox that soon became a purple cat with a split tail.
I loved these things. I felt like they were my best friends and that's saying a lot coming from a bullied eight year old. Each and everyday at school, I got bullied only to come home to those six masses of pixels and play with them seeings they were my best friends and I loved them.
2000 was a big year. Once again, it was Christmas and I was enjoying the snow covered morning with my family. By this time, my little brother was big into Buzz Lightyear. I was playing Spyro the Dragon series with my babysitter's daughter after school. We talked about those gifts for many many months. My brother received this big box and as soon as he grabbed whole of it, we all heard Buzz Lightyear's signature saying: "I am Buzz Lightyear. I come in peace." My little brother's eyes grew so wide he began to tear into it like how a puppy would tear into a bag of dog food if left unsupervised. He pulled out a silver Buzz and was so excited.
I got a clothing box with a Santa printed on it. I was expecting a new shirt or new pants but once I removed the tissue, I saw Spyro. I had the same reaction as my little brother.
As soon as I got done, my brother was running around the apartment making Buzz fly as I fired up my mom's boyfriend's PlayStation and put in my Spyro disk.
The colors, the music, the gameplay! Oh I was in love with what I was doing. I made the purple dragon charge, swim, breathe fire and glide.
Years passed and it was 2009. By this point, I had five video games for my GameBoy and earlier in the year, Pokemon released a new generation with new Pokemon in a new region. The Hoenn Region with colorful new Pokemon, new foes, and new mechanics that couldn't be done before. I begged for one of the games and never got it. Until my birthday. My mother was running late for work but she slipped me my birthday present just before she left. I woke up to see a small bag and in it was Pokemon Ruby.
I fired it up right away and began to play it. I already knew what Pokemon I wanted to start off with. Mudkip, a blue fish. I loved it when I first saw it in the show. It was cute and I knew how nice water types were. Bulky and defensive.
Let's just say the Pokemon series became more and more easy for me as the generations got on. I didn't even struggle with the physical special split that was fixed in generation four.
Generation five I skipped over seeings I felt like they were branching out too much but that changed over time.
In February, I upgraded from my metallic rose DS to my midnight purple 3DS and got my hands on Pokemon Y. Talk about broken! A new type, the EXP share was no longer a held item, but instead powered up your whole team. If you were not careful, you could have level 60 Pokemon when the final bosses were only around the level 40 area. And it was underrated and no fun for me. Especially when you are with the population and choose to use a Sylveon on your team.
Becoming an experienced gamer, I began to make up strategies and ideas for gameplay as I went along in my games. It consumed my life to where I forgot about everything and keeping to myself from elementary school until through high school, I met some friends who were into Pokemon like myself and went to gaming conventions to compete to win prizes. Sadly, the most I ever won was a stylus with a Pikachu head on it. Yet, it didn't matter to me, for over twenty years, these pixels were my friends and watching the graphics change overtime as I got older was enjoyable seeings now you can interact with them is fantastic!
Video games have become one of my escapes from reality as I struggled in my life to feel pure happiness as I seen my school mates starting to get married, have children, I'm just enjoying my Saturday nights in front of a monitor, television, or handheld console playing games like I did in my childhood. Not taking for granted everything I do but enjoying what I have.