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Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Gamer Girl Tuesday: Gaming terms for the uninitiated

Over the last few weeks of doing this feature, I realized that a fair amount of my audience may have no idea what I'm saying half of the time. 

So I thought every now and then I'd put together a little primer for those of you that aren't gamers.  It'll help you understand me more, and maybe surprise the teenagers in your life that you know the terms

(One of my biggest kicks as a teacher was being able to call kids on using slang.  They were always amazed that I knew what the terms meant!)

Today I'll be focusing on game genres.  This will let you speak knowledgeably (or at least enable you to bluff your way through a conversation).  It's also one of the most confusing because there are so many acronyms.  Keep in mind this is just a basic list, and is by no means exhaustive. 

FPS-First person shooter.  Think of all the military games that have flooded the market.

MMO-Massive multiplayer online. Any game that is played online with other people around the world. World of Warcraft (or WoW) is the biggest in the market right now.  However, it is really a MMORPG. (All the people you see running around in the video are actual people playing together from around the world).

RPG-Role playing game.  Usually fantasy based.  Any game that allows the player to make decisions or tries to immerse the player in the character's role.  Dragon Age is a current popular RPG. (Skip to about 3 minutes to see actual gameplay)

Turn based RPG-This is the older style of RPG, where literally characters take turns taking action.  You would often form a queue of actions and wait for the fight to end.  Earlier Final Fantasy games are great examples.

Sim-Short for simulation.  These can be anything from flight simulators, life simulators (such as Second Life or The Sims), or city-building experiments (Sim City).

Platformer-Classic style of video game, where you have to jump over, or duck under obstructions.  Can be simple like Mario or complex like Prince of Persia.

Side scroller-The most classic style of video game, a two dimensional game, where the player literally moves to the left and right of the screen. (The video is of a game called Braid. Look for a review soon!)

I've skipped a lot of game genres (like action, puzzle, survival horror), because the titles are pretty straightforward.  If there are any other genres you're confused about feel free to leave a comment.  If you have any other acronyms or gaming terms you'd like me to work on for another time let me know!


Budd said...

thanks for stopping by my blog and commenting. Hey, I passed the test and knew all of the acronyms before you told me. Go Me!

Michael Offutt, Phantom Reader said...

Nice rundown. Is that your UI in the WoW screenshot?

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

RPG's are my favorite - Dragon Age, Diablo.
Most favorite will always be Starcraft, though.

Rachael Harrie said...

Must admit I've never really gotten into computer games. My husband is a huge FPS fan though (LOL, had to scroll back up to double-check the acronym!). So it's useful to know these, thanks!



Coreene Callahan said...

I'm not a gamer, but am facinated by all the acronyms and the multitude of games on the market. There's something for everyone, isnt' there? Great info!

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