Gaming going beyond the controller

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Author: Will Westwater

It has been a year now since I started Nerd’s Eye View — since then, gaming has turned into more than just a hobby or a pastime for me. I received amazing opportunities to play, talk about and most importantly, meet and connect with people who have a passion for video games. I experienced little moments that opened my eyes to a side of video gaming that I acknowledged but never truly appreciated: the human side. These gaming moments revitalized my appreciation of video games and all the people behind them, without ever having to pick up a controller myself.

No Man's Sky

Last June, the 2014 Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) showed a trailer for the highly anticipated, procedurally-generated space-explorer game, “No Man’s Sky,” at the Sony press conference. Following the trailer, Sean Murray, founder of Hello Games, stepped onstage.

“Thank you. [I’m] feeling a lot of emotions right now,” Murray said, smiling brightly behind slightly watery eyes.

He, along with the team at Hello Games, are putting their heart, soul and thousands of hours into the digital world they created. Murray stated that the small, independent developer is simply “a group of friends making ‘No Man’s Sky.” His passion for classic science fiction books and movies inspired Hello Games to make worlds that he “wanted to escape to but never could,” forged out of pixels and imagination.

Later that week at E3, during the last press showing of “Rainbow Six Siege,” a developer was unexpectedly sentimental while telling the audience about the game. He mentioned how he started with Ubisoft over a year and a half ago, and that all of his time was taken up with this game. The reception was fantastic, and he was thankful for the appreciation.

E3 contained a plethora of other moments of cooperation and appreciation. Different developers and competing companies praised each other’s work. Finally, press members, editors, cameramen and writers from different outlets and countries hugged and high-fived in the media suite as the show came to a close.

The video game industry has been, is and will continue to be full of passionate people, with teams who will stop working only when the project is done; who will pour themselves into building something new. They know and love their audience, and they want to make something their fellow video gamers will enjoy.

Moments like getting a nuke in “Call of Duty” or experiencing the ending of “The Last of Us” will continue to be highlights in my video game history, but as the lines blur between my gaming career and life, I find nothing compares to seeing people with passion work hard and succeed.

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