Extra Lives: The game that got me playing again

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Nick Booth, JagWire copy editor

It’s been quite a while since I’ve uploaded a blog here, and that’s a little saddening. For the past couple of months my life has been a little bit hectic, from schoolwork to college applications to performing in our school’s fantastic production of “Oklahoma!” Needless to say, I’ve been very busy.

What that meant is that I didn’t have time for games anymore. I stopped playing. I’ve been so caught up in the whirlwind of work that I forgot how to take a break and curl up next to the fire with a good video game. I also ended up neglecting this blog. The other week, something changed. I found myself with just a little bit of free time, and I loaded up a game that I had bought in last year’s Steam Christmas sale and never really looked at again.

That game was “Darwinia.” It’s a game that came out back in 2005 and won the grand prize at the Independent Games Festival in 2006, and I can see why.

At its core, the game is a bit of a twist on the traditional real-time strategy genre, with not very many different units to choose from and some puzzles sprinkled in among the action. The game’s story is rather unique as well, placing you in what is supposed to be a virtual environment populated by artificially intelligent beings labeled as Darwinians. Your task is simple: guide the Darwinians to safety and destroy the infectious Red Virus.

But it’s not the game specifically I’m writing about today, it’s what it did for me. I’ve been gaming since I was a little kid, and I originally wanted to write this blog in order to honor my passion for the hobby. For me, video games represented not just an exciting and relatively new medium for art, but also gave me the wonderful feeling of bliss that only really good entertainment can.

Games have made me laugh and they’ve made me cry. They’ve made me angry and they’ve made me gleeful. Somewhere along the way, I forgot about that. “Darwinia” reminded me of hat fact with with its simplistic charm and engaging mechanics, but another game probably could’ve done the same.

Even though I still have a lot on my plate, I fully intend to make more time in life for games and for this blog. Games are an incredibly positive influence on my life; they always were. The only thing I had to do to remind myself of that was load something up and start playing again.

Senior Nick Booth has played games since he was a young child. He is still an avid PC gamer to this day, spending a large portion of his time playing with a keyboard and mouse.

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