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NewlyNested: Red Dead Redemption


a blogumn by Debra Goykhman

I never pictured myself completely geeking out on video games for hours in a day.  I grew up with two brothers who always parked themselves in front of a TV for hours playing the next greatest game and I always shock my head thinking, “What a waste of time.”  Like any kid, I loved Duck Hunt and Super Mario Brothers, but only for a half hour at a time.  When Super Nintendo grew out of fashion so did my skills with a controller.  All the new consoles had too many buttons for me so I no longer played any games.

Then in my mid-twenties I nested with my husband, who is not just a video game addict, but works in the industry as a graphic engineer.  Before we got married he voiced that his biggest fear was that I wouldn’t understand the amount he games.  He would tell me stories with the biggest smile on his face about how he would buy deli meat and not leave his couch for a weekend while he played video games.  I knew how serious he was and I also knew that that would mean I’d have to try playing with him.

Finally I have caved and begun to play the last game he worked on Red Dead Redemption. The first day I played for 5 ½ hours (I promised him a binge day where we ordered pizza and just played. He told me 5 ½ hours was a failure on this promise!).  At the beginning of most video games there are missions you pretty much can’t fail, because they are designed to teach you how to play the game.  I am so bad at using the controller in a 3D world that I failed my first mission because I couldn’t ride my horse straight.  I later found out many other spouses in the industry had the same issues with the controllers too.

But after I got over my lack of coordination (it’s actually still a bit of an ongoing struggle) I’ve actually enjoyed Red Dead Redemption. I know I have to love it since my husband did put over a year of his life into the game, but even with bias aside, it’s a fun escape into a world that’s not your own.  I always loved movies, books, and TV for this reason.  With video games it’s kind of like a choose your own adventure of the entertainment variety.

I don’t think I’ll be binging with my husband anytime in the near future.  I haven’t built up that kind of endurance for gaming, but I will be finishing the game and hopefully will play his next one, too.  Nesting with a graphic engineer the game industry has definitely expanded my entertainment horizons.  Girls can totally geek out on video games too!