Many moons ago I bought my then-boyfriend a PlayStation for his birthday. I remember shopping for it; salesmen would light up at the mere idea of their lady-loves buying them a video game. One friend of mine warned me I'd rue the day that I handed over the PS2 - it'd sound the death knell of our relationship. Once my man plugged in, he'd never be back.
But I knew better. Those days were the early days of our romance. The days when "staying in" meant, well, you know...wink, wink, nudge, nudge... And I knew no playstation could ever come between me and my man.
That man is now my husband. And after many nights of, ahem, staying in, we have three children. Which of course gives the term a whole new meaning. Now "staying in" means staying home, catching up with our beloved pvr, going to bed early, or all of the above. Or at least it did...
Until last week.
Last week was my beloved's birthday once again. And I revisited the idea of the gadget gift. No more sweaters, bags, or, erm....sweaters. I was going for fun this time. We were ipodded-out and the PS2 was looking a little sad in its new role as basement dvd player. So I went for it... and bought my man a Nintendo Wii.
Well, my old pal was right. I have created a monster.....ME!
I'm completely obsessed. My man is too, don't get me wrong. In fact, we now spend our evenings on a World Tour. RockBand, that is. He's drums, I'm guitar and we vie for the mic now and then. To get to the songs you love (and know!) you need to get past various levels. It makes it difficult, or some addicts may say, impossible, to leave the band hanging without reaching just one. more. level. And while you're at it, you learn to love songs you never in a million years thought you could even stand. Bon Jovi - where have you been all my life?!
But it's not just about Rock Band. My five-year old son has a thing for the bowling. And the air hockey. My 3-year old likes to watch the tennis. And my 5 month old likes nothing more than to lie on his playmat, rolling around to the sounds of gunfire.
Yes, gunfire. Loathe as I to admit it, I'm hooked on the shooting game. It starts with balloons, followed by targets, skeet/clay pigeon thingies, and cans. Finally, it ends with a group of characters running around a field being abducted by aliens - which you have to shoot down. And I can't get enough of it. My oldest and I played for over an hour yesterday. Me, the mother who resisted buying water guns, is now channeling my inner Sarah Palin and going hunting with my child. Sick!
But oh so much fun! And I've barely broken the surface of the world of Wii!
The prime demographic for videogames is male, aged 13-25. But not anymore. Teenage boys, move over for Mama. There's a new gamer in town and she's looking for action!