My first introduction to gaming was through games like Boulder Dash, and Duke Nukem. I was so sure our first computer was a Commodore 64 - though I'd have to run that past my brother. Eventually, we ended up with a couple disks full of a 1000 games, okay, so it was either 1000 or 100 - I can't remember. It was enough that I doubt we ever played them all. My favourite was always Duke Nukem. Which is amusing now, if you know the franchise at all.
On one of our trips to Adelaide my older brother and I had saved up enough money to buy an Nintendo 64, and I paid for this out of coins. Yes. The lady behind the counter had to physically count my coins. Today I can just feel her pain and frustration at this action, but back then, I was so excited. We were actually buying a gaming station. WOW.
The first time I ever felt that rush of gratification that comes from winning a boss fight was when I was sitting in my brother's room, alone, constantly losing to Bowser in the final level of Mario. I played it over, and over, and over - again, and again, and again - until I won.
The sense of immense achievement that I - Kylie Leane - had WON A GAME - was enormous. My brother hadn't helped me. I did it.
I have never forgotten that experience. I'm pretty sure that's the day I became a Gamer Girl in my heart.
My love for RPG's began when my older brother upgraded his computer with a new graphics card and received a copy of the Elder Scrolls Morrowind game with the card. Here, let's just hand out free games with graphic cards. Do they still do that?
Anyway, I was glad they did.
Because I was instantly hooked.
I fell in love with the concept, the idea, the way of telling a story, of being immersed within a world. One of my favourite memories of the game was killing a very important "character" to the plot of the overall story and getting this popping up on my screen.
When Oblivion came out, I bought it - but I never finished it. That game was so scary. I could probably manage it now, but when I was a teenage, the whole "hellish" landscape of Oblivion actually gave me nightmares.
I wish I had the opportunity to have played Zelda. I think I would have been an enormous Zelda fan. I ended up getting into Jax and Daxter, very interesting story.
My favourite games though, are games filled with lonely wandering. They match me the best I think. Games like the new Death Stranding, or No Man's Sky and of course, my beloved Skyrim and Fallout.
This doesn't mean to say I don't appreciate other sorts of games, I really enjoy city-building games (likely from watching my brother for years playing them) and sometimes popping Age of Empires back on is a good lark for nostalgia sake.
I would probably label my favourite gaming franchise of all time as Kingdom Hearts. The story is so complex and crazy it makes me incredibly happy. I know, I know - that's very weird, but I love it.
I'm still trying to make my way through Red Dead Redemption 2 - gotta be a good Cowboy, but I cannot shoot, at all.
I am terrible at gaming - to be really honest. Both of my brothers will testify to this. It could be due to my hand and eye coordination being abysmal, it could be due to both my hands moving together - making it difficult to control, well, controllers.
Gaming is, therefore, a good thing for me to do, as it forces me to try and rewire my very odd brain. But I have never felt comfortable playing online games simply because I am so bad. I die. A lot. I wouldn't want to be a burden to a team.
Even though... I really... I really, really want to do it someday. It's on my bucket list to be part of a gaming community online. Someday.
There always seems to be a lot of negativity around "gaming". It has never been a negative environment for me, unless we're talking about all the negative press games get, then I feel condemned and deplorable for being a lonely cat-lady. Gaming itself has been a fun, personal, enjoyable experience, but maybe that's because I have always been a lone wanderer, heading out into games alone - but I have never felt that's made me any less a part of the "community".