Friends: Forgotten, Imagined, Unreal

To see my friend, invisible like me.

amigo_invisible

amigo_invisible (Photo credit: LRdeChile)

We spend our time floating on the ocean.

Waiting for a wave to take us away.

Or maybe you’ll find us inside hiding.

A closet for shelter from the mad world.

We built a treehouse with shelter to spare.

Just in case anyone wants to join us.

A complete circle, no chants or verses.

Open membership, but no one applies.

So I work through the days and cry at night.

I watch them all go home to laugh and smile.

As I stand outside freezing in the cold.

An icicle’s warmth melted by my heart.

Feet frozen by the fire, stoke some more.

Smoke signals rise, hope they come to rescue.

Beggar of the world. Don’t cheat, lie or steal.

Live it wrong, and you’ll start to smolder.

The chimney releases your warmth burden.

Inhale your last breath before you finish.

Blow out the plumes, see twisted faces there.

Not your friends, but demons, hauntings and ghosts.

Open your eyes, let them sting for water.

Sealed within the aquarium bubbles.

Swimming in circles, don’t let the fish die.

Let others enjoy your life just for once.

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Loss of Reality (4/4): Bourgeois Games

Bourgeois games are characterized by an increased need for escapism, societal isolation, a lack of normal societal functions, and the focus on exploitation and capital gain. These aspects in video games will be discussed below.

Need for escapism

Bourgeois games attempt more to appeal to an older audience because of the knowledge of alienated laborers needing escapism for psychological balance to lives that are unfulfilled by abnormal social relations and work.

Bourgeois games also focus on realism as an artform in order to adhere to escapism with even the least imaginative minds.

The more serious and gritty tones, along with darker graphics and settings cue into the psychological damage caused by the alienation of the laborer and societal isolation.

Escapism is also assisted by customizable characters and their development, allowing the alienated laborer to accurately or ideally project himself into his false setting. He is also allowed to make dialogue choices for himself.

Societal isolation

Bourgeois game developers consciously and subconsciously take into account the societal isolation and individualism that characterize bourgeois culture when they are developing games.

In order to adhere to an individualistic and socially isolated culture, bourgeois games can be characterized by an open-world setting that allows players to function alone, doing what they please without considering others.

In bourgeois games, interactions with non-player characters are limited to the exchange of commodities as in a capitalist society, and therefore NPCs are often one-dimensional, serving no other socially interactive function.

Not only are social interactions with NPCs limited by an exchange of commodities and the consequent generic dialogue associated with it, but the player-character also often lacks character development.

Characters being devoid of personality or background also indicate the xenophobia prevalent in a bourgeois society that prefers the preservation of self.

This xenophobia also results in bourgeois developers avoiding topics such as religion and blasphemy in order to appeal to bourgeois minorities by circumventing compelling topics.

Normal societal functions

Bourgeois games are also characterized by attempts to replace a lack of normal societal functions with alternatives in-game.

What to do with Halo 2

What to do with Halo 2 (Photo credit: evil angela)

The feminization of bourgeois culture results from abnormal social relations and the alienation between the sexes, as well as sex being used as a means of exploitation. This causes bourgeois developers to create predominantly male protagonists exhibiting overtly masculine physical features and mannerisms in order for players to balance their natural tendencies with bourgeois society.

Real-time combat and first-person shooters are also a replacement for abnormal social relations and allow specifically males to hone in on natural instincts that are suppressed in bourgeois culture.

Focus on capital gain

The most glaring identifier of bourgeois games is the overtly exploitive nature of developers’ ventures.

Bourgeois developers ultimately seek to maximize capital through the most acute degrees of exploitation. Rather than focusing on experience, they attempt to exploit every aspect of bourgeois culture for profit and selfish gain.

This is why they are often not finely tuned or polished, when they know there is something in their sales pitch that fills a gap in bourgeois culture. This allows developers to not need to be innovative, and able to create repetitive structures and concept to appeals to the same tried and true successes in exploitation.

Developers derive game concepts from over-played ideas that have worked for other developers or even for themselves in the past. They can also focus on quantity of product over quality of product due to being positioned within a bourgeois society that makes it difficult for the petty-bourgeoisie to differentiate within bourgeois culture.

Bourgeois games are characterized by an extended lack of effort to produce games without variety, narrative strength, or mechanical intricacy because of the increased cost of labor.

Alone

Managing emotions - Identifying feelings

Timothy wanted to tell her how beautiful she was, how she made his heart jump with every look and pound with every word when close. But Timothy couldn’t tell her how he felt, no matter how hard he tried. Because Timothy was mute. So instead of words, poetries, and the like that would flow from an enamored’s lips, Timothy said nothing at all. Not, “hi” not, “hello” not, “how are you” not, “you’re beautiful” “do you want to hang out sometime” “I’d like to get to know you”. All Timothy could do was plead with his eyes, beg her with a look to come home with him so he could show her how he felt. He could shower her with gifts, surprise her every day, translate every ounce of affection into symbols of love that he could not put into words. But it would never become, because he had no way to tell her how he felt inside. He could only plead with his eyes that she’d understand, but she never did.

So later, after Timothy’s car accident, after he’d tried yelling at the other driver a warning yet unheard, she came into his life again. Would fate give him another chance to communicate these tidal waves of emotion and bring her into his life? No, because those of us who have seen this before know of fate’s cruel and sadistic ways. Still without a way to communicate his words, Timothy’s accident caused his neck to twist in such a way that despite all strained efforts, all he could do was look down at his own feet. And when he walked, those feet shuffled in such a way that made others look upon him with relief that God had not put them in such a condition as well. Timothy tried to maintain his demeanor, to smile at others as if nothing were wrong, but his eyes could never quite reach a friendly face, and without words to bridge that gap, he had nothing to offer.

So years went by, and Timothy suffered through his cruelly imposed condition, losing friends and opportunities at friendship, and family as well, because it is difficult to communicate with one who cannot. So he was forced to withdraw from society, slowly though, because he still went into public, held a job, bought groceries, visited museums and aquariums, and attempted to make the most of his increasingly solitary life. But without friends, acquaintances, or any other people in his life to make loneliness go away, Timothy began to lose hearing. Because though science shows less noise improves our hearing, Timothy’s got worse with no conversations or even kind words directed at him, to the point when he became deaf. And now he could not even hear when the nice girl told him to have a nice day, or see when she leaned over to smile at him.

With nobody to spend time with, he started eating less, since there was nobody to share his meals with they became routine and boring, sometimes skipped now for fear of reminders of loneliness. Eventually Timothy stopped eating at all, because he knew that everyone else ate meals with smiles and conversations, and belonging to groups of people who laughed and enjoyed life in public while he sat alone. And then came the physical numbness, when his emotions had been so hardened by life’s cruel fate that he no longer felt things like the cold winter air or blistering summer heat. His emotions had been turned off so that no longer could he feel anything inside, nor outside of his body either. And eventually Timothy shuffled along a cold, lonesome street, not knowing the time because he could not ask, and not feeling the frostbite set in and slowly bringing his lonesome experience of life to its death.