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timber maniac


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Which video game has challenged your perspective on the way you live your life and how?

The video game I credit is a role playing game called Final Fantasy 7.

The conflict of the game begins immediately. As you play the story unfolds and you learn of a corporation that is extracting 'Mako Energy' from the planet by means of giant reactors. This 'Mako Energy' is then converted into electricity that is used in the city surrounding the reactors. It is a lucrative business. As a player, you begin the game with your character being directly involved in a vigilante terrorist group; a group whose goal is to destroy these 'Mako Reactors'.
Though the character you play cares little for the goals of his group (your character's main interest is making money), you continue to be involved in these vigilante missions. As time progresses in the game (meaning you complete more story-line) your character learns that 'Mako Energy' is found in all of the creatures and plants that inhabit the game's world. When a life ends this 'Mako Energy' flows back into the planet. It is then recycled by the planet and used to create new life. You understand that the extraction of 'Mako Energy' will result in the disabling of the planet's ability to support new life, and it also means that the planet is itself a living thing (as a player you can visit a place in the game and hear the planet itself making painful noises). You learn that the corporation's president is aware of these facts and is yet still planning to progress with the extraction of 'Mako Energy'.

How did this challenge my perspective?

Growing up I had been exposed to many different ideas of accountability but only at the age of 12, with the help of this compelling story, did I seriously contemplate my role in society. I wondered what kind of character I was, and what kind of character I would like to be. The story made it clear that those who act from a source of greed were ostracized from a moral society. I decided that indifference towards suffering cannot be hidden and that greed will never be satisfied.


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    Jan 28 2012: Wow, so many great comments. I've never owned a console so I've only every played PC games. I have found some addictive and had to give them up, sometimes with great difficulty (like deleting and then buying back the same game 4 times!) and was so surprised to find that I had an addictive side to my personality. I'm very logical and a bit of a loner so I found games like the SIMS and Second Life extremely boring, but anything requiring problem solving is great. My favourite now is the Richocet series of games - puzzling combined with eye-hand skills. Wonderful. Sorry, no life-changing events for me, but I do understand aspects of my personality more now. It's taken a long time - I'm 58!
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      Jan 28 2012: I learned this lesson about myself from purchasing games. I would buy games and never play them. Now when I buy games I think, "What do I want to get better at?" and then I selectively pick one game. Addiction rears its ugly head in all aspects of life and it's fantastic that you recognized it and did something about it.
    • Jan 30 2012: Might I suggest taking a look at the Professor Layton series if you're into puzzles.

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