Recently I have been on something of a 'Flash' binge. I have read literally every Flash book since 'Rebirth' right through to New 52 Issue 6. That last sentence won't mean allot to you unless your pretty 'into' comics. This is the thought that this blog is fleshing out. When I decided to start reading The Flash I actually had to do research to find out the best place to start reading the series. As pretty dedicated gamers we assume that knowing what to play is a natural thread for anyone but like my problem of what Flash comic to read do 'new' gamers know what to play?
My logic is this... some one who is just getting 'into' games would naturally have a starting point. lets assume our fictional new gamer is called Todd. Todd is 25 and married to Tina, she is a brain surgeon by day and stripper by night and..... no wait, I'm digressing into a whole different sort of hypothetical situation.
Todd gets a PC/PS3/Xbox (pick one) for his birthday because he hears that Skyrim is awesome. He, unlike the rest of us jaded gamers chooses his next game by simply walking to a local retail store and looks for 'something good' knowing nothing about games other than that he quite enjoyed Skyrim would leave Todd as likely to pick MW3 as he is "Hyper action adventure 4: now with waggle guns!" (not a real game) how does Todd know the difference between a good game (or at least one he will enjoy) and a mass produced converted flash game with no depth of fun to it? - the answer is simple, he picks something he may have heard of from friends, advertisements or even other gamers in the store.
Where as jumping into the DC universe of titles left me a little irritated by the lack of simple guidance Todd would be as perplexed about something that is to us bloggers/blog readers/obsessed masses a simple processes.
So lets assume Todd is a neighbour of mine ans asks me the very question "How do know what's good?" I would answer "Visit Kotaku/Rock Paper Shotgun/Meta-critic/Massively/Eurogamer and play anything that Valve develop."this seems simple to "gamers" but Todd would answer "Where are those stores?" and I would probably punch him in the head.
To us "gamers" we always know what's good or bad just by listening to the Zeitgeist of the internet but to some one who just wants to play something the chances are they will get lost.
Just like I was simply lost in a sea of potentially bad comic books Todd would be lost in a sea of bad Motion games and flawed PC conversions. people.
What if Todd would love MUD's or MMO's but hated FPS's and due to bad advice never gets to find his the genre he would one day love.
Do we need a 'hit list' of multi-platform games to 'induct' new gamers. I think I would tell Todd to Play Minecraft, TF2, a WoW trial and Pokemon on his DS. I'm sure one of those would stick.