Sunday, February 19, 2012

Essay proposals

For this essay I want to Explore the socioeconomics and class structure of Gamer and/or The Surrogates which is essay topic number 5. Also I want to combine that with my last post about the movie the Gamer and elaborate a little more on how what happens in the movie is not too far from our own reality.

When a videogame becomes reality


The movie "Gamer" shows and sends a message that is relatively close to reality. In this movie today's popular video games such as Call of Duty or Modern Warfare are a thing from the past. In the future, according to the movie, people will be playing RPGs but not with computer-made avatars but with actual real people.
Call of duty is a popular game that reflects a reality. You control what happens in the video game. You give orders to the avatar about when and who to shoot. The Army works in a similar way. The high-ranking officials control the rest of the soldiers; tell them who to kill and when they can start fire. Being a soldier in the Army is somewhat like being a slayer. The system controls them by giving them orders.  
"Society" in the movie is made up of people who sold themselves and were being controlled by other people. This is somewhat actually true. People ARE controlled by other people in a way, though not of course with controllers like the movie suggests. We live in a society where since infants we were taught how to act, speak, and behave. We grow up thinking something is right or wrong according to what the standards say. And who makes up those standars? People of socially high ranking class. They say "money runs the world", and the people with the money control the ones without it.
Women in the movie were seen as sexual objects. That is not far from true. In the "society" some women were controlled by men who did whatever they wanted with them. The males behind the screen dressed the females however they wanted and controlled their actions. The females were only free in their own thoughts. This reminds me of prostitutes, who are just like the women living in the "society." Prostitutes sell their bodies and are in complete control of the buyer. They may not want to do what they do with whom they do it, but yet they still do it. Alot of times, and it's sad, girls are kidnapped and forced into prostitution. These girls are like puppets to their "owners" just like the women in Gamer's society. 
People who play videogames excessively are somewhat being controlled by their videogames. They could spend entire days playing and living in a virtual world. What happens in the Gamer is not too far from our reality. It shows how what happens in video games can happen in real life too.


Sunday, February 5, 2012

Fantasy and Reality

Playing video role-playing games (v-RPG's) is a good way to pass the time and entertain yourself, but it can get addicting.  For many people this is more than just a pass time or hobby; it's a lifestyle.  There are people who would spend entire days playing a video game. According to Waggoner in his essay, "Videogames, Avatars, and Identity" the heavy use of RPGs can blur one's ability to distinguish between fantasy and reality.
I'm not a big fan of modern video games. I grew up playing games such as Mario, Donkey Kong, bomberman and such. I loved playing these games because passing the levels was a challenge, and each time it got harder and harder. I could spend hours and hours in my cousin's computer playing these games because it was so entertaining and in a sense additing. I still play Mario every now and then, (that game never gets old) but in no way have I ever mixed the fantasy of the video game with reality. It would be impossible for me to break bricks with my knuckle or spit fire balls, and most certaintly I wouldn't die if a turtle touched me.
FIFA has always been a game that I actually enjoy playing. Even though I don't play as much, whenever I do I could spend hours trying to improve and win championships with my team. A few years ago my parents bought me a PS2 with the FIFA 06 game along. FIFA was the only game I ever had but it was enough for me to kill some time and enjoy myself. I created my own player and I named him after myself. This, I believe, prompted me to play even more, because my player was doing what I always wanted to do. Play professional Football for the club I like the most, Real Madrid. I lived through him when I played FIFA. He was "living" the life I wanted for myself. He was living my dream. But, this NEVER blured my ability to distinguish between fantasy and reality. I always knew that was just a video game and that the reality was another. I love playing football and still hope to someday play professionally, but this takes REAL sweat and effort. I would always rather though, play football for real than play it as a video game. I can't improve my skills by sitting down and pressing bottons.
The reason why some people get addicted to video games, I believe, is because they get to do what they can't in real life. The get to live the lives they want without effort, but most importantly, they never really live but they never really die.