My childhood gaming memories are a disjointed mess spanning several PCs and consoles, but some moments stick out more than others. I remember getting hopelessly stuck in Hugo 3: Jungle of Doom on my first computer while trying to type the correct sequence of bizarre actions to exorcise an angry ghost guarding a cave.
Started on NES
I remember struggling to beat the NES Gauntlet II with my younger brother, fighting off endless mobs of ghosts and yelling at each other over food for 50 levels, and despairing after realizing the game had no ending. I remember repeatedly renting an N64 and Ocarina of Time from the local video store and restarting the game each time someone had overwritten my save, and the feeling of triumph when I finally beat it months later. And I remember thoroughly enjoying all of these moments, frustration and all.
However, my most formative gaming moment was rushing to buy a Gamecube on launch day after frantically raking leaves to make the last $20 I needed. I never could have guessed that this family-friendly Nintendo console would create my love for the horror genre in the years to come.
Love for Horror
The Resident Evil series immediately hooked me, though I may have yanked out the Gamecube's power cord when I saw the first zombie and needed a week to muster the courage to play again. Then I stumbled across Eternal Darkness: Sanity's Requiem and was blown away by the elaborate story, disturbing Lovecraftian atmosphere, and fourth wall-breaking insanity effects. This game shaped my taste in games more than any other, and now I am always on the lookout for psychological and atmospheric horror, and story-heavy games that weave their narratives in creative and interesting ways.
Current faves to play are the Yakuza series with all its melodrama and absurdity, the Soulsborne series and similarly masochistic games, and short indie games with unique mechanics and hard-hitting stories. I also stream laughably bad gameplay on Twitch.tv and have fun making a fool out of myself for others' entertainment.
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