What does your preferred gaming genre say about you?

Matt Barton's picture

What does your genre say about you?What does your genre say about you?I've been thinking a lot lately about the personality differences among gamers. Some of us love RTS; others are bored to death by them. Some would happily play SHMUPS (ahem, Mark) until they collapse, whereas others find them frustrating or even tedious. In short, there is a broad spectrum of games out there to enjoy, and I'm wondering what your preferred genre says about you.

Read on to see what your favorite genre says about you!

If your favorite genre is...

Adventures. You enjoy fantasy and escaping the humdrum of daily existence, which probably doesn't satisfy you. You have vivid dreams and enjoy feeling intelligent, yet in touch with your emotions. If you veer more towards the LucasArts/Sierra style adventures, I'd say you're young at heart and find humor even where most people don't. This could manifest itself in a zany personality, or someone who likes to make quips.

If you're more into Myst and the abstract puzzle solving adventures, you enjoy analyzing a situation and putting together clues. You probably also enjoy history and museums, particularly the pre-historic and very ancient cultures. You probably aren't very religious, though, and like to think everything has a nice solution if you're just patient enough to find it.

CRPGs. You're a perfectionist, obsessed with detail, and a "finisher." You're able to think about the long-term and don't mind putting work into your projects--the endless little details that add up to greatness. Your constant desire for perfection probably permeates all other areas of your life, including just being in traffic--couldn't they work out a system that would make the traffic flow more efficiently?

Fighting. You're a scrapper, concerned always with being the alpha male and able to defend yourself--intellectually as well as physically. You are a good at winning arguments, though probably frustrated in love.

FPS. You like to think of yourself as the lone warrior, the brave, strong individual who makes all the difference in a moment of real crisis. You're general attitude in life is "bring it on!" You don't mind planning things, but most of the time you'd rather just jump in and get things done--your way. You don't like fiddling over details or getting bogged down in needless conversation or meetings.

Racing/Driving. You're a hands-on type who enjoys remarkable craftsmanship. You can appreciate high performance and like being praised for your expertise. You enjoy being respected and admired by people you care about. If you've got kids, you're probably a good dad, though your relationship with your spouse might be volatile.

SHMUPs. You're calm, collected, and not a guy that always goes flying off the handle. You enjoy unwinding with a nice game, but you don't want a game to take over your life. You don't tend to get obsessed, and have an easier time taking things in moderation. Sometimes you might worry about being too boring or predictable, so you try to spice things up by indulging your quirks and eccentricities. It's okay being weird, but don't get carried away.

Strategy. The classic control freak. You like bringing order to chaos, finding ways to make things more efficient and predictable. However, you realize that brawn isn't the way--you often just need an innovative idea to turn the tables. When presented with a difficult problem, you like to lay everything out on the table and think about all the possibilities before making a decision.

I'm hard-pressed to select my favorite genre, since I like three of them almost equally: CRPGs, strategies, and adventures. I typically rotate between World of Warcraft, Civilization, and whatever adventure game I'm currently playing (right now it's Darkstar). However, I spend the most time with the first two, and although they're quite different, I can see a lot of similarities. For instance, both require long periods of careful attention, long-term planning, and, let's face it, lots of tedious repetition (work). Both also utilize a sort of expanding tree mechanic, so you get more options as you play. In WoW, this means new talents and abilities for your character. In Civ, it means new kinds of units, buildings, and so on. Usually the new item is always just around the corner, so you play for that additional time to get it. Then you feel obligated to try it out, and next thing you know, you're hooked until the next treat.

I've thought about what an interest in these sort of games entail, and basically think it comes down to control. I seem to have a personality type that likes knowing what's going on, what everyone else is doing, and a steady drive towards improving the situation. This is reflected in many aspects of my life, such as an interest in working out (I especially like the idea of making slow but steady progress towards being healthy), work (I would despise life if I were stuck in a dead-end job with no possibility of promotion), learning (I'm always reading non-fiction and listening to podcasts to try to learn more), and even beer (I always try new ones with the idea of eventually trying them all). These traits drive some of my friends and loved ones crazy, particularly my wife, who is very much in the "be content with what you have" mindset. That causes a lot of friction between us, since I can't ever imagine a point in my life when I would just be purely satisfied and not have any more goals left to work for. Indeed, the very phrase "Be happy with what you got" rankles me.

In any case, both Wow and Civ aren't designed for easily contented people. They THRIVE on people like me, who love the idea of building up and expanding out, increasing our power and influence in steady, predictable ways. For me, it's the discipline they require and control they award that makes them so enjoyable.

What about you? What is your favorite genre, and what does it say about your personality? Maybe there's a type of genre whose fans you've learned to steer clear of? :)

Comments

Carmine
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Joined: 09/05/2010
Man... I'd say the FPS genre

Man... I'd say the FPS genre defines me as a gamer more than any other genre, but my favorite games don't reflect that very well. Perhaps my favorite games could reveal the truth in the eyes of others. My top ten (at the time of this writing) are:

1. FFVII
2. FFVI
3. Shadow of the Colossus
4. Chrono Trigger
5. Red Dead Redemption
6. Half-Life 2
7. Deus Ex
8. Ocarina of Time
9. Metal Gear Solid
10. Baldur's Gate 2

The Squaresoft RPG's from 1992 -- 1999 is my favorite niche in gaming. Along with that I would also say PC gaming from 1993 -- 2002 would be another golden age for me. Within there, I was all about RPG's, FPS's, and Adventure games mostly. I did play some major RTS games during the Golden Age, Red Alert 1 being my favorite, but on the whole I've never been an RTS gamer. If I wanted to manage resources and control mobs of idiots I would start a box company.

If I were though to classify myself as a gaming archetype I would say I'm an "experience gamer." I'm much more concerned with an interesting experience rather than a fun experience. For instance one of my favorite games is Eternal Darkness by Silicon Knights. The combat is atrocious, but that doesn't hold it back for me at all. You could almost say the same for the original Resident Evil. I do often pick up a game just for fun factor though. Sometimes that's what I want, like a good session of Super Smash Brothers. I also find that games people consider to only be fun are interesting experiences for me. This could be said of the original Doom, particularly the episode Knee Deep in the Dead. The ambience of it left a pretty strong impression on me. Somebody had to design that world, and it was designed well.

PS: What is that a screenshot from Matt?

Chris Kennedy
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Joined: 08/31/2008
Ahh Carmine. The world isn't crazy afterall.
Carmine wrote:

1. FFVII
2. FFVI
3. Shadow of the Colossus
4. Chrono Trigger
5. Red Dead Redemption
6. Half-Life 2
7. Deus Ex
8. Ocarina of Time
9. Metal Gear Solid
10. Baldur's Gate 2

The Squaresoft RPG's from 1992 -- 1999 is my favorite niche in gaming.

A great list and a great phrase Carmine. Japanese RPGs are lost on most of the staff here, but do not fear! I will stand by you. Haha.

Square/SquareSoft/Square... EA?/Square Enix has definitely had its own eras throughout the years. They had some great 16-bit classics, they evolved well into the Playstation 1 era (thank goodness they didn't take the Nintendo route!), and seem to have gotten lost in the large lake of high budget monstrosities on modern day consoles.

n/a
Carmine
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Joined: 09/05/2010
Ha! Stay your shame Chris,

Ha! Stay your shame Chris, the JRPG's of the 1990's are worthy of praise!

The genre really died for me when Tidus started talking in the J-Pop violation FFX. I acquaint it to the "mediclorians" scene in The Phantom Menace. I considered FFIX a well designed game but a misstep in enthusiasm, and had hoped Square would put their foot down with the next game, but oh boy was I in for a vomitous experience. Now with all the high-budget filth disgracing the genre out there all the folks unfamiliar with "vintage square" are baffled by its lameness. I don't blame them!

clok1966
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Joined: 01/21/2009
Of track but.. the Asian RPG

Of track but.. the Asian RPG games of old where all excellent in my mind, but all held some very annoying problems that seem to hold even today. The extremly youthfull hero. While I understand games where about kids or at least thouhgt to be about kids in the past the average gamer is not a 16 year old who can swing a sword that wieghs more than a fridge. The backstory of every asian PRG is horrible!!!! orphan, dont know my parents, parents killed in the great moose migration! Come on!!! that sucks.. its like a diablo loot. Pick a word form column a and b and c and then say happned to me. With that said, most of the stories where ok to actually good once it got going. I do understand we have to sympthise with our Hero, but geez... my house burned, my parents dead, they kicked my dog and stole my underwear is just over the top.. and they kept doing it.. and still do it!!! I have alwasy had a hard time (even when iwas young) relating to the 16 year old hero... And i TRULEY!!!! hate the EWOK thing... they all have some cutsie animal companion thing... bunny ears and can fight like a 10 foot badger with laser claws.. again... geez... and the one I hate most.. the whiny kiddy banter (the last FF was the worst, the 2 kids had me wanting to MUTE the whole game!)

the characters are all BAD BAD movie stuff. And when they are not, they seem to have such horrible dialog. It all works great if your 14, but after a few year its bad, real bad.

Again, pleast dont think im ragging to hard, I'm not, I love those RPG's Phatasy Star is a presonal favorite on consoles. There are not many I didnt like for gameplay and the Greater story, its just so sad they did so much on a grand sotry arch (in some) and totally just threw in some silly dialog.

I pretty much quit playing them around the PS2 middle life Shadow Hearts and Persona games where some of the last I played through.. Up to that point I played almost all of them..but the PS2 sheer amount made it hard to keep up. I have played almost all the 360 and PS3 ones.. but they are both starting to overwhelm with amount too (after 5 years! they finally are putting more than 1 a year).

I do have a question on somthing else for Carmine: Red Dead, i picekd it up and the undead pack finally a few weeks ago for $20. I really like the game but once you do the first few missions it seems ot get a bit to open world.. I seem to lack direction.. and once you just wander the game loses alot of its appeal (to me).. I did all the ranch stuff that was offered, and the sherriff and town bounties.. now it seems Im kinda lost, no direction. I know there are other towns, should I look and see if the they have missions? And a silly questions... people who want a ride, are they any LEGIT ones? Ones you should pick up? i have picked up maybe 6 and all stole my horse (well tired too, only one succeded, we where on a cliff edge, she(yes she) threw me off and down a cliff, I couldnt shoot her off! long dang walk!)

Chris Kennedy
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Joined: 08/31/2008
JRPGs
clok1966 wrote:

Of track but.. the Asian RPG games of old where all excellent in my mind, but all held some very annoying problems that seem to hold even today. The extremly youthfull hero. While I understand games where about kids or at least thouhgt to be about kids in the past the average gamer is not a 16 year old who can swing a sword that wieghs more than a fridge. The backstory of every asian PRG is horrible!!!! orphan, dont know my parents, parents killed in the great moose migration! Come on!!! that sucks.. its like a diablo loot. Pick a word form column a and b and c and then say happned to me. With that said, most of the stories where ok to actually good once it got going. I do understand we have to sympthise with our Hero, but geez... my house burned, my parents dead, they kicked my dog and stole my underwear is just over the top.. and they kept doing it.. and still do it!!! I have alwasy had a hard time (even when iwas young) relating to the 16 year old hero... And i TRULEY!!!! hate the EWOK thing... they all have some cutsie animal companion thing... bunny ears and can fight like a 10 foot badger with laser claws.. again... geez... and the one I hate most.. the whiny kiddy banter (the last FF was the worst, the 2 kids had me wanting to MUTE the whole game!)

the characters are all BAD BAD movie stuff. And when they are not, they seem to have such horrible dialog. It all works great if your 14, but after a few year its bad, real bad.

Hey clok1966 - I realize that below that you state that we shouldn't think you are ragging too hard, but you made an example of some of the dialog I expect from a select group on the net -

I believe that there are people that have a strong prejudice toward Japanese RPGs.

Sure, there are those that dislike other gaming genres - but I think a lot of people just love to harp on JRPGs. I have found that many of them are those that played CRPGs and then frankly became angry when JRPGs essentially usurped CRPGs to claim the "RPG" title. This one action alone (simple "naming rights") has caused quite a few people to become hostile towards JRPGs. It's quite an interesting and unique situation, really.

I am not trying to file you into this category, but you illustrated my point with a bit of your rant. There are certainly valid points in there, and I agree with several of them. I have overlooked (or just not cared) about many of them, however there are a few elements that actually caused me to say "I think I have literally 'outgrown' this" at one point.

That said...I still play the Final Fantasy games.

Quote:

Again, pleast dont think im ragging to hard, I'm not, I love those RPG's Phatasy Star is a presonal favorite on consoles. There are not many I didnt like for gameplay and the Greater story, its just so sad they did so much on a grand sotry arch (in some) and totally just threw in some silly dialog.

Are you contrasting those that have a compelling story with those that look to have a promising story and then just threw in silly dialog, or are you comparing gameplay with story?

Quote:

I pretty much quit playing them around the PS2 middle life Shadow Hearts and Persona games where some of the last I played through..

Interesting that you mentioned the Persona games. Those are some of the more modern RPGs that I can latch onto. Persona 3 was a blast. I also enjoyed Persona 4. They are rated M, and this is mostly due to simple adult content rather that straight up violence, sensuality, or all of the extremes. There really is a lot in there that can make you think.

Of course - They are also a bit of a level-grinding festival!

n/a
davyK
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Joined: 05/21/2006
I find it very hard to define

I find it very hard to define the genre that would define my playing pattern. The main feature is the abstract and an absence of story , or at least , the narrative can largely be ignored (witness shmups and the disposable nattering you get in puzzle game story modes).

Big into shmups and puzzle games. I also really like mini-game compilations when they are done well. I also like racing games but only when they are of the arcade variety (F-zero, Wipeout, Outrun etc). Then I am also attracted to out there stuff like Super Monkey Ball - particularly got great value out of the supporting multi-player mini-games.

Love the multi-player in a room set up - Warlords, Monkey Ball, Mario Kart, Worms Armageddon, Bomberman et al.

Think limited time is one factor and the fact I get bored with story-led stuff results in me going back to the pick-up-and-play stuff that has a little bit of depth to it.

The modern classical FPS is usually a turn-off. I loved Doom 2 back in the day and enjoyed a bit of LAN Quake - but the modern mission type stuff leaves me cold. As a consequence I will play with tighter FPSs - Timesplitters 2's arcade mode for example and Outtrigger on the DC with its small arenas is fun. I don't adapt to the FPS control scheme very well which makes for a frustrating time in multi-player....

Carmine
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Joined: 09/05/2010
Are you familiar with the

Are you familiar with the modern Grand Theft Auto mission formula? If you are than it is largely uncharged for RDR, except that the game is actually interesting. If not then just stick to your map, it will show you an icon for each mission available to you. Until you finish the game there is ALWAYS at least one mission icon on the map for you to check out. They all advance the story and all of them must be eventually completed to finish the game. There is no choosing which mission-giver to favor over another other than choosing which ones you'd like to do first.

In the first chapter, New Austin, there are 5 different mission givers I believe. These would be Bonnie, The Marshall, Nigel West Dickens, Seth, and Irish. Bonnie is more tutorial based and the others contribute more to the storyline. Just keep doing missions with them to advance the story. I would only recommend doing Bonnie's missions early because she nets you a wonderful steed and the lasso which are great tools from the start. The Marshall also sets you up with a nice Winchester 30/30 for free at some point, so don't go buy one.

There are many other icons, the vast majority actually, on your map that have nothing to do with story missions; however, these are smaller looking. These include bounty postings, Stranger missions (which are like mini side quests marked by a "?" icon), side jobs like horse breaking and guard duties, and various mini games in which you play to gamble munnies. You can spend a lot of time doing these things to just enjoy the world and make more money and unlock an array of items. As a movie buff you'll definitely enjoy some of the stranger and story missions as virtually all of them are homages to western classics in one way or another. The entire premise of the game is an adaptation of The Proposition I believe.

In addition to all these things on your map there are challenges to pursue as you explore the game. The categories are hunting, sharpshooting, treasure hunting, and plants collecting. Complete these challenges and you'll unlock new outfits and new weapons for sale. They're not that important and can be ignored if you're only looking to finish the story. The game is incredibly easy if you aren't on expert mode mostly due to the ridiculous auto-aim. I would highly recommend treasure hunting because it is AWESOME.

Now those people who want a ride like that, just waving you down in the wilderness, will always steal your mount. I usually just ride passed them or if I'm having a bad day I'll just offer them the ride and shoot them in the back of the head as they ride off with my Kentucky Saddler. Each territory in the game has a plethora of these types of things. I'm not sure what I'd call them. Sometimes hookers will be attacked by drunks and you can choose to save them. Sometimes members of the Walton gang will steal some guys horse. Sometimes you'll run into some lost soul being chased by a pack of wolves. They serve only to provide you with small sums of money, fame, and honor points if you choose to intervene. They're fun but they become tiresome after a while.

My last bit of advice would be to stick with the game until the end. The story is fantastic (I think). Just know that the narrative drags its heels quite a bit in Mexico. I found myself saying 'why am I doing all this crap for these people they're not good for their word at all?' So just stick with it! And use your map!

clok1966
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Joined: 01/21/2009
Oh I like RRD alot... So much

Oh I like RRD alot... So much that when i couldnt find missions I was disapointed.. GTA games.. sorry no, I did play them a short bit but not my type of game (and yes RDR is it but with horses.. but its so much better to me!) I really like RDR. maybe Im not looking hard enough.. I did most of the Bonnie stuff (as you say tutorial really) she did give me a horse but I havent got a lasso out of it yet.. so I suspect Im missing somthing. The sheriff gaem me 3-4 missions but one give me any more, the bounty board gave me 2 or 3.. but now nothing.. maybe I havent talked to the right person yet. there are alot of them.. I did just go explore a bit, i prefer it in RDR to GTA as it feels more real (but fallout wasteland like areas appeal to me). yes i ahve ran into the save the overturned wagon from bandits stuff.. I was just wondering if the "need a ride" people ever really just wanted a ride... its like the old joke.. fool me once shame on you, fool me twice shame on me, fool me three times... Im an idiot... i keep trying to give um rides and they all steal my horse.. as you say, no biggie they die easy :)

treasure hunting is frustrating me.. I found a map to hanging rock. im sure but I sure cant find the treasure.. i have looked ofr almost an hour...

No, this year, easily the best game i have on my 360. not sure why it didnt get game of the year. I guess im to used to MMORPG, alwasy one more mission to do and marked very cleary on the map.. bad in a way, doesnt encourge us to search for stuff anymore, its all right there on your mini map.. I will have to do some more exploreing.. the old days you talked to every NPC you could find.. now ...ehhhh not unless they do something for me.. sad really...

Carmine
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Joined: 09/05/2010
If you've done that many

If you've done that many Bonnie and Marshall missions I'd say you have to do the first Nigel West Dickens mission to keep the story going. He's down somewhere in Rio Bravo or south Cholla Springs if I recall correctly. Maybe near Lake Don Julio? Anyway there should be a big NW icon on the game map saying where he is. Also the map that comes boxed with the game is a huge help for navigation, because when you zoom out in the game map a lot of the details fade away.

As for the first treasure hunt... I was stuck on that danged map for more than an hour! What I didn't realize is that there are actually TWO DIFFERENT pictures on that map. It's not just one picture with a fore and background. The treasure is much easier to find than you think...

Yeah I never really got into the GTA games because of the setting. The slice of life features like "hey let's check my email and then go on a date!" was never very appealing to me. There is real life for those things. RDR version is, "hey let's go hunt grizzly up in Tall Trees and sell the skins at Manzanita and then go blow our earnings at the Liar's Dice table at Rathskeller Fork." Sweet.

It's a stunning world to ride around in sometimes in RDR. Just riding across county no matter what you're doing just feels like you're in a western. I totally agree that it was the best 360 game of 2010. Mass Effect 2 was incredible to me, but also sneakily reduced the complexity of the RPG genre by way of combining so many mainstream or "casual" elements. RDR pushed the envelop in story-telling and atmospheric quality in games I think. Anyway this post has been shamefully derailed off topic. I apologize!

Rowdy Rob
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Joined: 09/04/2006
These genre's weren't listed in Matt's List!

I just noticed one rather large and serious omission from Matt's genre list (adventure, FPS, strategy, CRPG, etc.). And the fact that it wasn't mentioned by Matt, or mentioned (as far as I can tell) by anyone else in the comments so far, and didn't even occur to me until just now.... I think it says a lot about what kind of crowd we are here on AA. The reason I consider it a LARGE omission is I've known MANY people who exclusively game in this genre, and have even bought consoles to exclusively play games in this genre!

Ok, enough with the suspense. What genre am I talking about?

SPORTS!

Yes, I've known many a "Madden" football gamer. And I am not one. Nor, do I suspect, are many of you. We don't play these games! What is the psych profile of a sports gamer?

Before you say "well, sports can be considered strategy" or whatever, most of the listed genres could involve "fighting" in some form or other, CRPG's can have "strategy" or "adventure" elements, and so forth. I think sports qualify as a specific genre.

A couple other genres:

Puzzle: self explanatory.

Simulation: a rather wide-open genre that's hard to define. "Economic" and "Flight" simulations are wildly different beasts, but both are generally about putting gamers in the middle of complex "real life" situations.

Matt Barton wrote:

Fighting. You're a scrapper, concerned always with being the alpha male and able to defend yourself--intellectually as well as physically. You are a good at winning arguments, though probably frustrated in love.

FPS. You like to think of yourself as the lone warrior, the brave, strong individual who makes all the difference in a moment of real crisis. You're general attitude in life is "bring it on!" You don't mind planning things, but most of the time you'd rather just jump in and get things done--your way. You don't like fiddling over details or getting bogged down in needless conversation or meetings.

What about you? What is your favorite genre, and what does it say about your personality? Maybe there's a type of genre whose fans you've learned to steer clear of? :)

I seem to be a very eclectic gamer, but there seems to be one constant in most of the games I play. It seems like I enjoy whupping someone's ass! It seems that in some form or other, there must be a battle involved. Hence I've played a lot of "fighting" and "FPS" games.

I like stories, or "quests," in my game... a goal to reach the end. The story keeps me involved, providing the motivation to play the game though to the end. If faces get pounded along the way, so much the better... :-)

I loved the "Puzzle Quest" series. I do enjoy mild puzzle games, but the basic "match three" casual game mechanic is not what kept me motivated to keep playing these games, it was a (suprisingly) goal/story/quest-oriented motivation that kept me coming back, to see it through to conclusion. It also helped that the "tile-matching" game was played to kick the butt of your immediate opponent! :-)

On STEAM (which measures the amount of time playing the games you play on their system), the top three games I've spent the most time with were "Star Wars:KOTOR," "Faerie Solitaire," and "Geometry Wars." All three have some form of "butt-kicking" motivation to them, even "Faerie Solitaire," believe it or not (which is sort of a distant, milder relative of "Puzzle Quest). Strangely, "Geometry Wars" had no story, but I played it in short bursts over a long period of time.

So I guess I like "fighting" games in some form or other. It may be because I am more reserved in my "combat" instinct in real life, and usually try to diffuse or avoid conflict, verbal or physical. I hate "fighting." Though if I'm backed into a corner where I must "fight" in real life, I tend to be quite effective at it. Perhaps "fighting" in games is a release of some sort.

P.S. I've never played a JRPG, so I don't know first-hand what the fuss is about, pro or con.

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