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Gamer Girl: A eulogy for classic childhood video games

I have an embarrassing confession: I’m a late bloomer when it comes to video games.

My first true video game was The Sims. I became obsessed with my cyber family. I spent hours creating the best neighborhood I could make, and then spent even more hours having my Sims live their near-perfect lives.

This is all ironic because while doing this, I was wasting hours and hours of my own life.

Until I bought my console in high school, The Sims was all I had experienced as far as games go — besides the occasional Roller Coaster Tycoon and playing a Harry Potter game on my Game Boy Advance.

This addiction started sometime in third or fourth grade — right around when the PlayStation 2 was released.

All of this made me miss out on quite a few essential games. Sure, I can catch up on some of them now (I have a Nintendo 64, bought right before college to have dormroom Mario Kart parties), but it just isn’t the same.

During the summer, I bought Luigi’s Mansion for my Nintendo 3DS. I instantly loved it, but felt a little sad about the other Mario games I’ve missed out on.

Sure, I’ve played Mario Kart and Super Smash Bros., but something about playing them in 2013 is a lot different than playing them in their heyday with my ’90s childhood friends.

In my opinion, I really lucked out being a ’90s kid. We had Full House, Disney Channel original movies and an endless slew of Nickelodeon infomercials selling everything from Floam! to a Skip-It.

I remember spending every day of summer at my best friend’s house across the street, building couch cushion forts, playing dress up and swimming in her pool. I also remember going to a male classmate’s house and feeling both confused and left out as I watched him play some kind of Scooby Doo video game on a foreign device that I didn’t understand.

I never had to blow on a game cartridge to make it work again. I never got a chance to angrily unplug a console when I would soon lose the game to a friend. I didn’t get a chance to fully learn about some essential gaming characters such as Zelda, Mario and the whole Pokémon crew.

No matter how many of these games I play now, I’ll never get to experience them to their fullest extent. I’m very happy that I get to experience the most modern gaming technologies the world has ever seen, but I’ve missed out on experiencing where it all started.

Sure, I had an awesome childhood, but I can’t help but mourn about all the lost games I never got to play.

Sophie Kruse is a sophomore studying journalism. What games did she miss out on? Tell her at

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