Speaking at Waseda — For the belated first time gamers

At a panel discussion at Waseda some months ago, I was once asked “For a middle age and above who has never had much experience in playing games, what would be the best way to have the first esports experience?”. And to be very honest, I never thought of that before. I think I babbled something that day that I do not recall in detail and pretty sure the questioner was probably not very happy about the answer. Let me try to think more carefully and articulate it down here.

I’d say the nicest way to have the first experience is through your family members and here I am talking about their children or grandchildren or cousins or that sort. The point is, it’s hard to know where to begin with, even if you use computers on a daily basis at work for instance, and to navigate around the gaming screen until you are able to reach the start of the game. Trust me in recent PC games there is a lot of buttons and animations that you need to go through before you can actually reach to “play” the game.

Not only that, you wouldn’t know the rules of the game at all. Yes, recent games there are good in-game tutorials that anybody can follow, but having an experienced person near by and giving live feedbacks and instructions do change the first time gaming experience, and perhaps more chances of engaging the game longer.

And if that person happens to be your family member (say your grand son), imagine the kind of bond that the two would share. You may have been the authoritative figure in your household, always trying to teach your children and below — in the gaming world, it’s the opposite. You are a complete new-by while your grand son is your Master Yoda. An old family relationship in a completely new dimension. How exciting is that!

Speaking of which, there is an esports team in Sweden called “the Silver Snipers” with the team member’s average age being 60+ (or even more). Each had their own motivation to start out the new gaming adventure, I read in an article, and I remember one of them being “to have closer relationship with my grand children”. This is the beauty of esports — Closing the loop.

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