Around the globe, video game culture is seen as the subculture of the new media, initially formed by the video games impact. Especially in the recent years, video games are no longer seem as purely a hobby for someone who is engaged in the single type of activity. In the United States, the video games grew into the large-scale industry of entertainment and transformed into the subculture which has the behavior-change features. The perception of the subculture and the popularity of the industry has been seen as an interesting phenomenon, which not many experts manage to interpret.
In the American culture, the 1970s and the 1980s have been revolutionary for the American video games industry. These two decades substantially shaped the commercialization of the video, which resulted in the increased popularity of the video games. As the popularity grew on the American market, the number of the companies in the United States increased, too. Notably, companies such as Atari, SEGA, Nintendo and Namco produced the most successful games of those times. The two most popular games were Mario and Zelta which became extremely popular among the adolescent population. The impact of the video games on the public opinion as well as their popularity resulted in the video games becoming a new subculture. Currently, I see the American subculture as part of the larger behavior change pattern, which not only expands the mindsets of many individuals around the US but also shapes their understanding of numerous social issues. This is primarily linked to the perception change of the American video games and their growing popularity is now used for the attitude-changing purposes.
As noted above, the history of the American video games dates to the 1970s and 1980s. The most revolutionary time which shaped the video games into the separate ever-growing industry was the impact of the PlayStation company in the 1990s. (Cade, Gates, 2016) The video games creators faced a lot of public resistance with the references to the cultivation of violence among adolescents. ‘The media started to see how some video games were violent and how that may be destructive to impressionable children.’ (Jarvis, 2015) Notably, the references were made to the Mortal Combat and the Grand Theft games. However, a lot of people disregard the popularity of the video games and the extent of these games becoming hits in the numbers of people viewing them. In the American video games subculture, being a video gamer equaled to a certain lifestyle and the specific statement.
One of the most important features that demonstrate the shape of the American video games culture was its feature in the American National Museum. It is no doubt that the growing influence of the industry was featured in one of the most prominent museums (Chikhani, 2015). My personal experience with the video games started when I was a teenager. I started playing the games without putting too much thought into the context of the games. Later on, I would realize that I became a member of the larger community which was not purely engaged in the video game playing.
Some might think that the perception of the video games as a subculture is a pure nonsense. However, to me, this goes beyond the process of playing, and the addiction is not the key determinant for engaging in the activity.
To sum up, the American video game industry had a powerful effect on the cultural tradition in the country which resulted in the origin of one of the most powerful subcultures with the behavior changing features. The industry and the subculture thus comprise a substantive part of the American identity.
- Cade, Rochelle, and Jasper Gates. “Gamers And Video Game Culture: An Introduction For Counselors – Rochelle Cade, Jasper Gates, 2017”. Journals.Sagepub.Com, 2016, http://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/1066480716679809. Accessed 20 Aug 2018.
- Chikhani, Riad. “The History Of Gaming: An Evolving Community”. Techcrunch, 2015, https://techcrunch.com/2015/10/31/the-history-of-gaming-an-evolving-community/. Accessed 20 Aug 2018.
- Jarvis, Timothy. “The History Of Video Games In American Culture”. The Odyssey Online, 2015, https://www.theodysseyonline.com/the-history-of-video-games-in-american-culture. Accessed 20 Aug 2018.