What Types of Video Games are There?

 

Ever wonder about the different types of video game genres, or how to describe them to others? Well, fear not! An online friend, David Arceneaux (INTP), identified and described several genres with examples to illustrate each type. Thanks, David! <3 

RTS:

Real-Time Strategy game, a genre where you control almost every aspect of an army in real time in order to beat up some other dood's army, be it computer- or player-controlled. This is your Starcraft or They Are Billions type game.
 

JRPG:

Japanese Role Playing Game, a genre where you control a party through menus and usually turn-based combat against computer-controlled monsters. This is the kind of game that rewards persistence over raw twitch reflexes, as the player gains power through working through the game's scenarios, and this power makes prior challenges easier to overcome. Examples include Final Fantasy games


MOBA:

Multiplayer Online Battle Arenas, a genre where you and a team of other players team up to beat up other players and destroy their base, defending yours in the process. This is your League of Legends (LoL), Defense of the Ancients (DOTA), or Smite

Stealth:

This genre is like a real-time puzzle solver where sneaking through some predictable obstacle course to achieve a goal is the main gameplay element. Examples include the Metal Gear Solid series, or Thief.


MUD:

Multi-User-Domains/Dungeons. This is a genre that gives the player a text-based interface where they navigate through areas and engage in combat with computer-controlled baddies or even other players by typing console commands. Think of it like classic Zork, but with other players along for the ride. https://www.achaea.com/



Rogue-Likes:

This is a genre where the user goes through a randomly-generated environment to achieve some well-defined objective using abilities/items randomly dropped from the randomly-generated monsters or events, and failure is unrecoverable. Examples are varied, going from spaceship combat game FTL to rhythm-game hybrid Crypt of the Necrodancer, to arcadey Binding of Isaac.



Fighting:

This is a genre where users control a fighter and beat up another fighter using a series of timed joystick and button presses to execute defensive & offensive moves. This is your Street Fighter/Mortal Kombat type of game. (trailer has violence and blood)

 

Horror:

A genre where the player is thrust into a scenario where there is a spooky scenario, and the player has limited health/attack abilities to use against whatever spooky scenario in the game, which range from jump scares, to seemingly insurmountable opponents. Examples include the Resident Evil series, Insomnia, and Outlast. (video can be suspenseful, creepy, contain violence, and gore)


FPS:

First-Person Shooter. The player controls a character where you see what they see, usually using ranged weapons to attack computer- or player-controlled opponents. Play consists of maneuvering through the play area to collect weapon upgrades, ammunition, and health items, and achieving goals, all the while fighting off baddies. Examples are the venerable Doom and Wolfenstein series, and even multiplayer online versions, such as Call of Duty. (gameplay has gunfire, violence, and some blood)



MMORPG:

Massively-Multiplayer Online Roleplaying Games. These are, as the name says, scaled up and networked RPGs where some opponents are tough enough to require social coordination to take on, but also with enough things for solo players to work through. Examples are World of Warcraft, Final Fantasy 14, and Elder Scrolls Online.


TBRTS:

Turn-Based Realtime? Strategy. (I think the RT is a typo). This is a genre where the player controls an army/nation and gets to make decisions in a discrete timeline. It's like RTS games, but built around more analytical deliberations. Examples include games in the Civilization series, or Galactic Civilizations (made by another company from the one that makes Civilization). 



Puzzle:

Player controls a game area and has to reach some goal condition to win, or at least rack up more points. Gameplay can range from matching colors/shapes of objects operating under gravity (Tetris, Bejeweled) to solving equations (Sudoku) to moving objects around a play area to get an item from one place to another (Sokoban). 

 

Grand Strategy:

Much like the Realtime/Turn-based Strategy games, this is a genre where the player controls a nation/army, but the computer handles all the micromanagement aspects. Examples include Romance of the Three Kingdoms series. 


RTSA:

I can only guess this means Realtime Strategy-Arcade. Wikipedia doesn't even know about it. LOL so, no examples!


ARPGs:

Action RPGs, where timing and reflexes in combat come into play against baddies, as well as gaining power by making it through the game's scenarios. Examples include the long-running Zelda series


Sports:

The player simulates a real-world sports game, where the rules and activities are modeled as closely as the UI & hardware can allow for. 

To watch gamers stream, you can visit Twitch.tv or Mixer.com

Follow the Geek Therapy on Twitch

or Boonie on FaceBook or Twitch

 

Pokémon Go - Safety Tips and General Playing

Pokemon Go is a free augmented reality (AR) mobile game released this week. It is currently in beta version, so there are kinks to work out. The data generated by users will definitely help developers guide the evolution of this game. There are plenty of sites devoted to the ins and outs of playing, so the focus of this writing is safety and general observations related to playing pokemon go.

Be Mindful of Your Surroundings.

When you open the game, this is your first message. From playing and watching others, here are some things to consider:

pokemon-go-safety

Stopping While Walking

In public, and crowded spaces, stopping unexpectedly can make people bump into each other. It may not be a big deal to some, but it might upset others and cause trouble.

Objects, and Tripping

Watch where you’re walking. Some gamers walked into walls, each other, or missed a step on a flight of stairs while walking. Two players have already walked off cliffs catching Pokemon. Please be mindful of where you are walking. 

Crowding in Areas

This might also lead to pushing. This game is meant to be fun, and some gamers are more serious than others when it comes to catching pokemon.

300 Yard Radius

When you’re tracking a pokemon, you may potentially wander from your group. Let friends know before wandering off, and identify a meet up spot when you do get split up.

 Private Property

Sometimes there will be pokemon in areas you cannot reach. Please think about boundaries and respecting the space of others.

Respecting Small, Quiet Communities

There are already locations being swamped by players hoping to catch rare Pokemon. This is changing and disturbing the quality of life for those who moved away from the big city for a quieter life. Please find another location to hunt Pokemon, and petition to have pokestops and gyms in areas that can handle larger numbers of people. 

Trash and the Environment

The sudden influx of people into many cities will lead to noise pollution and trash. It will happen. Please represent the gamer community well by doing your part to clean up after yourself, and leaving a space the way you found it, or even better. 

Pokemon in the Street

This is a beta version, so there are kinks to work out. I’ve seen pokemon in the street, and people walking into traffic to get their pokemon. Wait. It’s not worth getting hurt, or hurting others. 

 Driving While Playing

Please do NOT do this. People have a hard enough time driving without checking their texts. This is a potentially huge safety concern, and it can lead to more accidents and untimely deaths. (This is not the same as having a passenger play while you drive.) A player crashed his car trying to catch a Pokemon while driving. DON'T DRIVE & PLAY

 Well-known Public Spaces

pokemon-go-irvine

Malls, downtown areas, and universities are busy areas that tend to have lots of pokestops and gyms. Walking in the middle-of-nowhere can be a safety concern, and it may not be as fun as meeting other players in public spaces. 

 Working and Playing

It depends on how flexible one’s work environment is, but losing a job over catching a pokemon, or accidentally taking a photo of confidential information is a huge risk. Pokemon GO player almost loses job

The Camera When Snapping Photos 

Some people may not want their photos taken and plastered on the internet with pokemon on them. Be mindful of offering this respect.

Children & Searching for Pokemon 

It can be easy for enthusiastic younger pokemon trainers to run off when they’re tracking. It can also be easy to talk to younger gamers because of this connection. It will be important for parents and community members to talk to, and keep an eye out for the safety of little ones.

This meme is a joke, but it raises a very real concern about the safety of children when playing.&nbsp;

This meme is a joke, but it raises a very real concern about the safety of children when playing. 

Safety & General Playing:

  • Wear comfortable shoes, socks, and clothes. You will be traveling for a while. Your body may be sore from this new level of activity.
  • Rest often, and drink water. Lots of us get carried away when gaming. There have been stories when gamers exhausted themselves to death, or they got really ill from playing too much without self care. Drink water, take breaks. The pokemon will be there another time. Your health and wellness is important.
  • Bring a charger, and map out rest stops. Some places will have outlets and quiet spaces for you to rest in between catching pokemon or battling in gyms. As any athlete will tell you, rest and nutrition are as important as training. Familiarize yourself with each area you travel to, and note resting places.
  • Safety in numbers: It’s safer with a group. Keep an eye out for each other, and have meeting spots and times if and when the group gets separated.
courtesy of legit lady gamers community united fb group &lt;3&nbsp;

courtesy of legit lady gamers community united fb group <3 

  • Scout your area before settling down to explore. Drive around, check with other players, or walk around before playing. Look for the pokestops and see if there are people lurking nearby. Trust your gut, and walk away if things don't feel right. 
  •  Sportsmanship: This is a game. Some of us may take this game more seriously or personally than others. Please consider how others may feel when they lose or do not catch a really rare pokemon when you do.
  • Turning off AR: This may help with extending the life of your battery.
  • Check your data usage before, during, and after playing. This will help see if you will overuse data. 
  • Look for public spaces with free WiFi. Malls might have free WiFi while you play.
  • Battery-saving mode: Turn your phone upside down for this feature to work. It will dim your screen while in this position.
  • Share the love: This is a game for people of all ages; new pokemon players, and well as those who’ve grown up with the cards, cartoons, and games. Encourage each other, and share the joys of success. This world has enough negativity in it. This game can bring people together (even when we’re on different teams).
pokemon-go-list

So far, it seems these are the classifications of pokemon from how common to rare they are to find. Have fun catching all those Rattatas and Pidgeys! :P Some Pokemon GO Gameplay Tips | BuzzFeed

Online Relationships are Real

I had a wonderful conversation with a young man about the realness of online relationships. He recently ended a LDR (long distance relationship) with a young lady he'd never met. We touched upon many things related to internet culture and relationships, one of which, was the validity of online dating. 

Is it a real relationship if we never "meet" or never touch each other? 
second life character screen shot, online relationships

second life character screen shot, online relationships

With half my life with the internet, and meeting many of my friends through AIM, World of Warcraft, and Facebook groups, I would say that yes, online relationships are very real. Mike Langlois, the Gamer Therapist, wrote about how dopamine, a neurotransmitter, is released while playing games. If you meet someone online and develop romantic feelings for them while playing online together, those same chemicals are released. 

It makes sense, though. Have you ever seen a gamer rage quit or have nerd rage? If you can get angry at someone while playing games with them, or interacting online, why would it be difficult to believe you can fall in love with someone using the same medium?

Studies have shown that oxytocin, the love drug, is usually released during physical contact. This is why connection is so important. Hugs and gentle touches can release oxytocin and make us feel contentment, and bonded with others. Online interactions in social media and playing games with strong narratives have also been found to release oxytocin as well!

Lots of people meet through online dating sites to weed out mismatches, and initially chat with someone before meeting in person. This can help make dating more efficient, as well as allow those with social anxiety a slower pace to warm up to others. 

With dating sites, and massive online games for people to meet, play together, and potentially fall in love, what makes strictly online dating so different? 

  • It can feel stigmatizing not to find a physically present partner. Family and friends can make fun of you, or simply not understand how intense and real these emotions are. There can also be pressure to be with someone else.
  • It can be confusing what defines intimacy. Each relationship is unique with differing levels and need for physical contact. When you find someone who gets you, and makes you feel safe to be vulnerable, sometimes the lack in physical contact is worth the risk. 
  • Online sex, sexting, or phone sex. More people are participating in online sexual acts. Sometimes it can be a barrier or uncomfortable for people to accept that is can be a main intimacy people share in a romantic relationship. Some choose not to have any type of sex, and still have a strong connection together online.
  • Being vulnerable through words. This culture is very visual. It can be difficult to see something that isn't obvious. When many people think of romantic relationships, they think of holding hands, hugging, kissing, and a physical person. Text can be the most honest way of connection for many people. Some of us stumble when we speak, some of us freeze, and compose amazing responses when the moment is over. Having time to pause and think allows more of us to express ourselves more genuinely. 
  • Having a screen in between you and another person can reduce inhibitions to be more authentic. This can go the other way, of course (trolls), and in terms of romantic relationships online, having a screen as a conduit can help couples communicate more honestly about conflict and concerns. 
  • Catfishing. It's very common for people to lure lonely people into relationships. There is a genuine concern for those who date someone with an avatar, like in online games. You may or may not be dating who you think you are. Part of this interaction involves risk, and being vulnerable. (I will write more on this in a later post)

Despite all these differences, online connections can be rewarding and fulfilling. 

  • Emotional support can manifest in different ways. Having someone online offer a virtual hug, compliment, or words of wisdom can mean so much to someone. This is partly why there are so many online groups and forums.
  • Clarity in communication. Lots of us born with the internet are sponges for information. It's very normal to refer to google or an article we recently read while conversing with others. Having access to websites and being able to share them immediately, can help some of us explain our thoughts or feelings more clearly.
  • Mutual interests. If you met your significant other, or friend in an online group or online game, it is very likely that you both have endless conversations on the original topics that drew you together. With the MBTI and gaming groups I've belonged to, there is this history of a culture and inside jokes we can always refer to to strengthen our connection. 
  • Constant connection. Having your smart phone or being online can feel like this person is always with you. It can be very isolating not having a friend or loved one around, but some of us can feel warm and loved knowing they are a text away. 
  • Special bond. Sometimes the distance can make the relationship even stronger. Perhaps in your immediate community, there aren't potential matches. It can be romantic and idealist to find someone hundreds or thousands of miles away, and somehow the internet made it possible for you to be together. This can many times, encourage you to accept the distance while building on mutual dreams to meet in the future. 
  • Love is worth the (calculated) risk. Sometimes you can't help who you fall in love with. Sometimes it just happens, and sometimes it's magical. Other times, it's a painful series of events that you wish never occurred. It's these joys where we are able to acknowledge how necessary pain is to appreciate the nuances life can offer. Online relationships can give us the entire emotional spectrum. 

 

LOOK AT THIS: Artist Illustrates Her Long Distance Relationship Struggles & Joys | BoredPanda

 

 

Felicia Day's Book Tour

Felicia Day's Book Tour, Los Angeles, 2016

Felicia Day's Book Tour, Los Angeles, 2016

I was invited by another geek therapist, The Mindful Misfit MFT, to attend this book tour. She messaged me on FaceBook and asked, 

"Do you know Felicia Day?"

In my head I was thinking, "Uh, yes?!" (I've followed her since her YouTube days with The Guild, and it empowered me to be more of my geek and gamer self at the time. It was so relateable, and sad and funny to see a script based on the lives of online gamers.)

So it turns out, Felicia Day wrote a memoir. And in this memoir is very personal things about growing up with home schooling, acting, and being a professional creative female. She also talks candidly about her depression and gaming addiction when things got overwhelming for her. 

Even though she lived with her brother and home schooled with him, it seemed like they never connected until they gamed together. I resonate with this statement because my brother also introduced me to World of Warcraft. We didn't have much to say to each other in person, but gaming and having goals to accomplish as a team really connected us. 

Bringing people together is one wonderful aspect of gaming. 

Wil Wheaton interviewing Felicia Day

Wil Wheaton interviewing Felicia Day

Some tidbits that I wanted to share from the talk she had with Wil Wheaton are the following:

Collaborate & Seek Others: 

Both Wil and Felicia talked about how isolating it can be as an artist with depression and/or anxiety. Sometimes it feels like a burden to share so much emotion with others. Wil disclosed how he felt so bad that Felicia was going through this pain and didn't have anyone to share it with. He was right there and didn't even know. And that's how depression can be for many of us. 

Self-worth and Pressure on Achievement: 

Perfectionism is a curse for many creatives, and it limits the enjoyment of creation. Both paired their self-worth and ability to be liked by others with approval and tangible outcome. Wil and Felicia are both working on this self love and acceptance, and shared that it is enough just being you. You are enough without the accolades and accomplishments. 

How to Balance Work/Life as an Artist:

The practical advice came as learning what your baseline is. This is in terms of one's depression and anxiety. Each of us has a baseline that we stray from in times of stress or high emotion. Taking time to acknowledge what we look like without any stress can help us work towards maintaining the ups and downs closer to this baseline. 

o Coping Skills: Figure out what works for you, and what doesn't work for you.

o Self-Monitor: Sometimes we're so busy, we don't take notice of how we're feeling and our body's internal state. Start noticing what's going on when we feel certain ways can help bring us back to that baseline.

"Find a place to perform for the love & joy of performing." -Wil Wheaton

Boonie Sripom &amp; Felicia Day! &lt;3

Boonie Sripom & Felicia Day! <3

A part that struck a chord with me is the overall society view of art. It's seen as something as a hobby, something that couldn't really be compensated well until one becomes a celebrity. Being in the middle of unknown and well-known has its financial and emotional consequences. Both Wil and Felicia touched on this topic of money, and said,

"Make art...creative outlet for the sake of creativity." -Wil Wheaton

"You do it because you want to get your voice out there."-Felicia Day

(on whether her YouTube series would be successful now, and advice to others thinking of making work on YouTube)

Felicia advocated for seeking a therapist as an artist or geek. Her writing of this memoir helped sort through many of her life's moments, gave herself permission to fail, and acknowledge that she has accomplished so much. She encourages more of us to write that memoir to see how healing telling our story can be.

Thank you so much, Felicia! 

Anxiety Gaming connects online gamers to therapists

Anxiety Gaming connects online gamers to therapists

Felicia gave me one resource, Anxiety Gaming, and it is a nonprofit that connects gamers with therapists. The nonprofit can help pay for services. I hope to work with them soon. 

If these tips from Wil & Felicia are difficult to implement or maintain, give me a call! I'm in the OC area and love to help fellow artists, geeks, and gamers level up. (949)381-1894

Take care,

Boonie

Purchase the Book here:

 You're Never Weird On the Internet (almost): a Memoir, Felicia Day, 2015

Additional Links:

The Guild YouTube webseries

Felicia Day's Official Website

Wil Wheaton's Official Website

Connect Online Gamers With Therapists | Anxiety Gaming

Geek Links | Organized Messes

Links on Creativity | Organized Messes

Wondercon 2016

 
Link is playing video games at Wondercon 2016

Link is playing video games at Wondercon 2016

I attended Wondercon this year on Sunday, and spent two of the six hours being lost, and searching for my party. So! What I learned from this visit was if I am going with a group who has a diverse range of interests, it's a good idea to plan times to meet up, instead of trying to follow each other around the entire time. It was packed. In a good way. 

Ghostbusters cosplay&nbsp;

Ghostbusters cosplay 

The age range was really nice to see. It's still family-oriented where children can see vendors and activities for them. 

Avatar Kyoshi cosplay

Avatar Kyoshi cosplay

I admit that I giggled, and jumped up and down when I saw this Avatar cosplay. I love Avatar! 

Selfie with Avatar Kyoshi &amp; me with tears of joy LOL

Selfie with Avatar Kyoshi & me with tears of joy LOL

This was one of the cosplays that made my day! :) 

Easter cosplay for Joker and Harley Quinn

Easter cosplay for Joker and Harley Quinn

It's a wonderful sight to see little ones involved with cosplay culture, while their parents help ensure it's fun and appropriate. 

Black Cat and Spiderman Cosplay

Black Cat and Spiderman Cosplay

The event lulled when it was time to get food. There were food trucks serving $20 meals, with a 45 minute wait to get your food. A recommendation is to bring your own food and drink when possible. Tickets to Wondercon are only $16 on Sunday. 

the Professor from Powerpuff Girls

the Professor from Powerpuff Girls

I love seeing props like stuffed animals used in cosplay. It adds a little fun and imagination. 

Wonderwoman and (?)Black Widow Children's Cosplay

Wonderwoman and (?)Black Widow Children's Cosplay

These girls were so smiley to have their photo taken (with parent's permission, of course). It's awesome to see girls empowered to be their favorite heroes here and potentially in the real world, too.

Bob's Burger's Cosplay

Bob's Burger's Cosplay

I had to chase her down a couple times, and she was super friendly with my asking to take her photo. 

Kingdom Hearts Cosplay

Kingdom Hearts Cosplay

It's always a treat to see cosplay with weaponry. The craftsmanship is something I admire. 

Legend of Korra Cosplay

Legend of Korra Cosplay

I am a huge Avatar fan, and and even huger water tribe fan! I was overwhelmed with joy to see people from "my tribe" LOL

Children cosplaying Loki and Spiderman

Children cosplaying Loki and Spiderman

These kiddos also smiled so wide as I asked for their photo. The time taken to choose the costume, and find its elements probably contributed to some quality family time together. 

Travis Hanson, Children's book illustrator and author

Travis Hanson, Children's book illustrator and author

Travis Hanson and I chatted about our processes with writing and illustrating. His words and journey are very inspiring. He is a very talented and humble person, and I wish him all the success in the world. 

Deadpool Cosplays

Deadpool Cosplays

A part of cosplay (like Halloween) is giving adults permission to act silly and playfully. It's refreshing to see adults not be constricted by social definitions of what it is to be "an adult".

Unknown cosplay, really cool armor

Unknown cosplay, really cool armor

I'm not sure what her cosplay is, but the weapon and armor are pretty darn neat.

Disney's Belle Princess Cosplay

Disney's Belle Princess Cosplay

At the end of the day, we all got together to walk across the street to our cars or taxis. Even Disney princesses needed to find their way home after a long day of magic and creativity.