Friday, 25 April 2014

V – Video Game Player

Long-time readers may have realised that I am quite an avid gamer.  I try not to talk about it too much on Muppets For Justice since this isn’t a gaming blog, so it is a side of my personality that I don’t show too often.

However, I have long sought to become a professional video game player. Pro e-sports athletes (the only sport other than sumo wrestling that you can be both obese and “athletic”) get paid ridiculous sums of money for sitting around and bashing buttons on a controller.  I can remember someone winning a Quake 3 tournament and receiving £100,000 in prize money.  That kind of cash could buy loads more games!  But is a particular game that I excel at?

Luckily enough, I am rather good at Tekken.  I was local youth club champion for two years running, and I still have the medal that I made for myself.  It was time to hone my skills and step up to the big leagues.
In a similar fashion to a martial arts student taking a grand pilgrimage to train with a wise old master, I booked a plane ticket to the land of e-sports and high broadband speeds, South Korea.  Over there, Starcraft players are revered as Gods, with legions of screaming fans at their beck and call.  I figured that if I did enough training montages, I too could become the object of affection for one million young Asian girls. Although my weak, Western technique wouldn’t stand a chance against the major Korean players, so I would have to begin my training as a complete novice.

Paul is a triumph of super-hold hair gel.

I had arranged to meet a Tekken master named Ji-hu who would show me the ropes of competitive Tekken fighting.  A young man who hadn’t even reached puberty arrived to greet me at the main interchange in Seoul.  When he introduced himself as said Tekken master, I laughed at him, brushing it off as some sort of bizarre joke.  I couldn’t have been more wrong. The young boy leaped up and plucked my eye straight out of my eye socket for “casting him a dismissive glance”.  As I rolled around in excruciating agony, Ji-hu arranged for my “fat corpse” to be transported to his dojo for training.

Ji-hu was an impossibly strict master.  Now with poor depth perception, I was forced to complete seven obstacle courses before breakfast.  I wasn’t allowed to speak any English at all.  In fact, I wasn’t allowed to speak at all, or else he would have pulled my tongue straight out of my head without a second thought.  I was forced to eat individual grains of rice from between floorboards with a pair of tweezers.  I slept upright on a chair with a mousetrap near my balls that would snap shut if I leaned forward.  I wasn’t sure how any of this would teach me to play Tekken to a greater degree, but I had to trust in my master if I wanted to learn his lessons, even if his methods seemed cruel and unnecessary.

The day of the tournament began.  I chose my favourite character (Bryan Fury if you’re wondering), and I was up against the number 5 seed.  Ji-hu was waiting in the wings with some sort of rudimentary flail, ready to strike should I slip up.  It was time to put my training to the test.

I lost two straight rounds without landing a blow.  I felt like I had become a far worse player since I started my training, as if the dehydration and mutilation I had suffered over the past few days had affected my motor skills.

In severe danger of losing the match, I decided to forget about Ji-hu’s training and revert back to my old tactics.  I went over to the other competitor and thumped him on top of his head, knocking him unconscious. I was immediately disqualified, which I didn’t understand since that’s how I managed to beat all my rivals back home in England. I left South Korea with a cloud of shame hanging over me, and a huge medical bill after Ji-hu flayed the flesh off of my back.  I guess this isn’t the game for me.

11 comments:

  1. It is almost amazing how revered the best Starcraft players are, especially over in South Korea. Professional gaming is something I personally considered and threw out. I game for fun and there's no better way to kill the fun of something than doing it for money. Plus every time I play online I get my ass kicked.

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    1. Yes, I tend to get destroyed in just about every online game there is. That's why I tend to play on my lonesome, making the most antisocial hobby even more antisocial.

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  2. What, you get disqualified for doing in real life what is the best tactic to accomplish what you need to do in the virtual world? That's just solid strategy.
    It makes me sad that people can make a living playing video games. Doesn't that mean you're taking a leisure activity too seriously, like anyone who plays golf?

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    1. Like anyone who plays competitive sport.

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  3. I think you misread your career path. You're not actually a gamer, you're a bully. But that doesn't start with a V, so I understand your dilemma.

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    1. I think gaming and bullying go hand in hand, especially if you play Call Of Duty with a microphone.

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  4. I dont understand computer games. I find they dont let you wander off, catch the bus into town and chat to others. I have tried being friendly more times than I care to think about to huge beasts and all they do is eat you. So it seems to me that you did the right thing.

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    1. The Sims let you wander off into town and chat to people. It also lets you lock people in a room until they wet themselves.

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  5. Well, I think I understand why you were having difficulty excelling. The South Koreans read from right to left. Therefore, it stands to reason that their video game controllers are also reversed. If you flipped the controller upside instead of bashing a child's skull in, you might have stood a better chance.

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    1. Hey, as a British person, I expect that all cultural differences have to be eliminated whenever I go abroad. If not, I will start shouting and getting violent.

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  6. Hi! Stopping by from the A to Z challenge. I watched a Halo tournament on Xbox Live which was pretty cool. I think it would be incredibly stressful to compete against other gamers but I respect those who are that good at it.

    Hope you are enjoying the A to Z Challenge! Here's mine on Memorable Characters

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