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Comic for: March 20th, 2009
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Gaming News: "We Hath Been Forsaken"
Posted: Friday March 20th, 2009 by

Speaking at BAFTA, Pong Creator/Atari Founder Nolan Bushnell, deemed online gaming "not cool" saying, "Social is buying someone a drink. Sitting in a dark room in your underpants talking to thousands of people might seem social, but it's not cool. The public space is always going to be here." He also described the internet experience as "stilted and flat". Bushnell also talked about his latest gaming endeavor uWink, and "entertainment dining experience" where people play games at their tables while waiting for their meal.
Source: GamesIndustry.Biz [ more info ]

If James Brown was considered the Godfather of Soul, Nolan Bushnell could well be considered the Godfather of Gaming. And most of the time, what Bushnell says tend to rings true with me. But dismissing the social nature of online gaming put me a bit on tilt. Maybe he's not really considering the inherently social nature of MMOGs. But those are the gaming circles I move in; so obviously, I'm biased. And I don't like to be called "not cool" for my social interaction preferences especially when it comes to how/where I choose to play games.

There's no part of me that says in order to play a game socially I have to be sitting in a restaurant or bar with other people around me interested more in their food or drinks than in their game. That being said, of course Nolan Bushnell would want people to play games in a restaurant. The man was responsible for Atari and Chuck E. Cheese's. His life has defined the basis of his opinion, unfortunately it seems out of sorts with the opinion of a vast majority of online gamers. We like our darkened gaming spaces and the freedom to play in our underthings if we like.

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