The Virtual Beowulf:
Ode to the Gamer and the lives we have lived.
by T. M. Goss (c) 2004
- theme music coming soon -
I have stalked digital prey.
I have bested fighting champions, I have faced an 8ft, 16-bit gorilla that wears a tie and a mad robot scientist that was shaped like an egg. I have kinged my fighters, mortaled my kombats, and gotten engaged to a pretty lady named Eliza - a bazillion times. I have sped through London without getting a ticket, and chased ghostly figures while eating little yellow dots. I have made Al Unser, Jr. eat my smoke on the racetrack and served root beer soda to angry patrons; most of whom were lousy tippers. The grim reaper swiped a sickle at me, so I ran around in my boxer shorts...I don't know why. I have been behind enemy lines and successfully stolen their secret plans, I have tested my strength on wood, bottles, bricks, ice, oil drums, barrels, and funny shaped blue import cars. I have doubled my dribbles, doubled my dragons, and doubled over in laughter when yet another trash-talking windbag went down in flames, hit the canvas or watched me win the superbowl - again. As a mercenary, I have fought in countless wars. As an environmentalist, I fought to keep an amphibian from getting squished on the highway. I’ve also fought wack controls where two buttons were sticking, another one was missing and I could not move backward, only forward, depending on whichever direction I was facing. I have scaled castle walls and crawled through dungeons, halted organized crime rescuing multitudes, and sometimes just a single person. A giant, upright-walking “brontosaurs” has spewed a 30ft long flame at me and I survived.
I have been a boy on a bike, a kid on a skateboard and a warrior trained in the deadly art of salt and pepper shakers. I have been an athlete, an acrobat bat, an astronaut shooting at rocks in space, a pilot, a prince, an undercover officer, a cowboy, a crime-fighter, a spy in black, a spy in white, a spy with a really cool sneak ability and a really classic mullet hair-do. I have chosen to be hero, not villain and have seen those vanquished who have been a villain to oppose me. I have been emperor, warlord, ninja, blacksmith, singer, dancer, superstar, xiao-lin monk apprentice, president, football coach, baseball coach, elf thief class, mutant, investigator of oil barrons, a daring knight in armor, a rebellious country nobleman, and king of the jungle. I have been a tall, voluptuous, armored warrior princess and a short stubby man with a cheesy mustache all on the same day. I have been told that all my base belong to them. I have had a dino, a plumber, a robotic panther and a strange ocelot meerkat-type loudmouth creature as my sidekick. Sometimes I have faced overwhelming odds with my band of merry adventurers as we wayfind and depopulate. And sometimes I have faced these odds alone, forced to leave behind my fallen comrades or my cubed shaped companions. I have solved puzzles, riddles, mazes, and collected coins, alpha-beta suits and occasionally colorful fruit. I have wondered why the blasted wizard was still eating all the food!
I have been hit, punched, kicked, shot at, stabbed, electrocuted, burned, poisoned, squashed, disintegrated, pummeled, diced, skunked, minced, bombarded, flattened from a 1000-story fall, crashed into, been tackled, been propositioned, laser-bolted, noogied, eaten, beaten, whipped, and fragged and...I've always come back for more.
I have sprained my fingers, blistered my hands, wearied my non-blinking eyes and spent fortunes (real and digital) in pursuit of more gear. I have written albums and created personal libraries of music to accompany me on my journeying. I have tweaked, modified, coded, upgraded, uploaded, downloaded, reconfigured, networked, daisy-chained gear and watched as cities and nations were created and destroyed before my very eyes.
I have been asked, "Do you want to save?" a gogleplex of times.
I am gamer....and I’m game.