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How to Tell If Someone Is Fake Geek

By Rebecca Pahle | Seriously Random Lists | July 31, 2014 | Comments ()


fake geek girl.jpg

If you’re a person who does things on the Internet, you might be aware that the National Review is catching a bit of heat for their cover story about a sneaky wave of liberal intelligentsia who are feigning interest in geeky pursuits in order to appear smart. You may scoff, but the fact is that this is a real problem. These geek posers are infiltrating our spaces, making a mockery of all the things we, real geeks, hold dear!

They have to be stopped. But before we can do that, we must identify them. Here are ten ways to know if someone’s a fake geek. Use your knowledge well.

1) As National Review writer C.W. Cooke points out, instead of Star Trek they prefer Star Wars, which as everyone knows is the realm of mainstream sheeple. They also shoot jets of diet cola out of their butts every morning at 10.

2) They own a Batman shirt, but they’ve never read a single Batman comic. Also, they have 12 fingers on each hand, a physical trait that allows them to be uniformly excellent at playing the ukelele.

3) They want to get into a TV show/game/comic book run, but they really don’t know where to start, so they ask someone with more knowledge than them for advice. A real geek would spend hours wading through Wikipedia! Where’s their nerd cred?!

4) They play video games, but only casual gamer bullshit like Candy Crush and Kim Kardashian: Hollywood. They are literally five-headed dragons.

5) When at comic conventions, they dress in revealing cosplay explicitly so that they may fulfill a lifelong dream of being groped by gross, obnoxious dudebros. They’re covered in fur and survive on a diet of blue glitter and paste.

6) They don’t know the backstory of every single character on [INSERT TV SHOW HERE] or stalk the cast on Twitter. Who are they fooling?! Also, they’re incapable of any sort of physical movement that’s not Prancersize.

7) They point out, on occasion, that there are issues in the geek sphere with discrimination, including sexism, racism, and homophobia. They respectfully ask that things might be a bit more inclusive, because they want to take everything from us real geeks and ruin it by making it PC! They spend their entire lives living inside the left breast of Betty White.

8) They watch comic book movies and appreciate the attractive actors therein, because they don’t take stories about alien gods with magic hammers seriously enough for the rest of us. They are the aliens who built the pyramids.

9) They’re proooobably women, amirite guys? Plus, heat vision!

10) They’re anyone who doesn’t like the exact same things you like in the exact same way you like them. Also, they’re motherfucking unicorns, because fake geeks do not exist. You are a geek if you say you’re a geek. Case fucking closed.

ben wyatt mic drop.gif

(Rebecca is an Associate Editor at The Mary Sue, where she got to write a post today about a 1997 instructional video on cybersex, so that was fun. You can follow her on Twitter.)


Comments Are Welcome, Bigots and Trolls Are Not


  • poopnado

    I don't know if anybody works in a field where this is a problem, but I work with birds, and while my "normal" friends think I'm a bird freak, the real bird nerds won't give me the time of day until they find out where I've worked or who I know. Most of the time it's because I'm a lady, I'm not a crazy "lister", and I don't go around bragging about my credentials. BIRD NERDS folks, it's a different level of geekdom.

  • MellieOleson

    IMO if someone tells you how pissed they are that Disney's upcoming Star Wars movies won't be sticking to the Extended Universe, that's a card-carrying geek. Leave the SW versus ST arguments to Shatner and Fisher.

    Second, assuming I'm not missing irony, enough with the "fake geek" vituperation. indulge them; either they move on or you convert someone into loving something as much as you do.

  • ZestyItalian2

    Oh thank God. I thought this was going to be a serious examination of "geek purity". But you nailed it.

    I'm extremely heartened, by the way, that we've finally, as a society, pulled the curtain back on much of the angry self-pity of self-styled "geeks" and "nerds". These fedora'ed neckbeards are every bit as exclusionary, every bit as narrowminded and tribal (more so in many instances) than their despised "jock" culture counterparts. Having a persecution complex doesn't allow you to catagorize and taxonomize humans, administer tests of purity and purge those found wanting. It's honestly the saddest thing in the world to see those who have experienced marginalization furiously decry "impersonators" in their midst. It's no surprise to find this mentality featured in The National Review, as the broader Right wing has many of the same traits of self pity (and stealth misogyny) in common these days.

    What makes a "geek" or a "nerd" is anybody with a deep love of any one thing, bordering on the obsessive. It's often esoteric but doesn't need to be. It can be sci-fi or comics, but it can also be literature, theater, mathematics, medicine, breadbaking, carpentry. Fuck, it can be SPORTS. Go over to Grantland and gawk at the nerd herd milling around that place. Guys, it can be RELIGION. You can be a nerd about JESUS. You can be a nerd about goddamned anything. Not being a sad straight white male on the low end of the aspergers spectrum wearing a 3XL "Bazinga" tshirt does not exclude you.

    This redundant rant brought to you by Friday and my aversion to work.

  • ZbornakSyndrome

    I agree, I think zealotry should be avoided when possible. Because it's so easy and tempting to feel superior to people who have less knowledge than you do.
    *This message brought to you by a crazy baseball and Jane Austen fan.

  • Brooke the Replicant
  • Jonathan Strickland

    I'm also tired of the fake geek/real geek non debate, particularly when such a large part of geek identity revolves around the idea that geeks are a community that support love of geeky things. Geeks - we can't claim that we are a big ol' supportive group of folks who love geeky stuff if we exclude folks from the group. At least, not without being hypocrites. Oh, and also, nice Welcome to Night Vale reference.

  • My kid is a total Star Wars fanatic. Star Trek wasn't really on when he was growing up, which is to say the later spin off shows were around, but no... just no - and I say that as someone who prefers Star Trek. After resisting all our attempts and braving the despair of teachers, he finally learned to read so he could play video games, and I understand approximately 30% of what he is telling me at any time, because it is inevitably game related. He was the only person in his game design class to point out the flaw in the first exercise, which allowed you to skip to the end and "win." If there is a way to make your own map or scenario in a game, he does so and then tests it over and over, so he can work out the bugs. He doesn't read comic books much, but he loves all the movies. And if you ask anyone who goes to school with him, whether they know him well or not, the very first thing they will tell you is that he is a geek. So screw other people's requirements for "real" geekiness.

  • BWeaves

    I've worked with geeks for 35 years. You can tell by just looking at them. You know have to know their likes or dislikes.

  • tarkin12

    I love this. All being a "geek" or "nerd" means is that you are unironically enthusiastic about stuff that other people may not be. And if that includes geek-culture in general, rather than a particular franchise, then so be it. These "fake-nerd" arguments are distressing and usually misogynistic. Articles like this are the reason why I visit this site daily.

  • ZbornakSyndrome

    Agreed. The only fake geek is a cardboard cut out.

  • Stephanie Walters

    If you say you a geek it doesnt make you a geek... when geek got cool everyone claimed to be one... doesnt make them one.

  • ZbornakSyndrome

    But why do you get to set the standards? What are they? Do you have to log a certain number of hours in your chosen geek field? When does it become good enough?

  • foolsage

    Well, Malcolm Gladwell claims that it takes about 10,000 hours to become a real expert in any field. That's as good a measure as any. I'm certainly an expert in comics and video games by that standard. ;)

    Having said that, I don't think being an expert means you get to set rules of any kind, nor does it ever make sense to try to dictate to others what they should enjoy or how they should enjoy it. It just means you know a lot. That's it.

  • ZbornakSyndrome

    By that standard I'm definitely a film expert, and probably woefully lacking on just about every other subject, including math. Yikes.

  • foolsage

    I've put a lot of time into several interests besides the aforementioned, which is good in one sense. That's an advantage that can come with age, provided you continue doing new things.

  • ZbornakSyndrome

    I think I'm too scatter-shot to be an expert in anything besides film. I cast far too broad a net.

  • Guest

    so I hear you a virgin... ditto... at one stage everyone was one.. although not really. same applies.

  • Slytherin Sister

    What?????

  • ZbornakSyndrome
  • Al Borland's Beard

    How much time must one invest to become a geek? Can I do it in a quick montage set to "Takin' It to the Streets"

  • You can do ANYTHING to a montage.

    I am a fan of "We Built This City" for my own personal montages.

  • Stephanie Walters

    Uhm, not sure what you are getting at but its not a investment thing, its really a form of lifestyle.. I live with one, you know he is one because of his daily routine... People are buying a PS4, playing 20 minutes of mario and then dont do it again, wear shirts with printed words on them and then say they a geek.. Geeks are so much more... This article started by saying things to identify a fake geek and end off saying that their is no such thing.. So basically wasted all that time typing an article when it had to use.

  • Al Borland's Beard

    Mario on PS4? Thank the gods you're not posting this on reddit.

  • Stephanie Walters

    my point exactly... I had someone tell me they played it on PS4... Maybe they got Doki Doki Universe confused with Mario... as they a "geek" right.

  • Al Borland's Beard

    Everyone has to start somewhere. We aren't born with the knowledge of Batman's origin or what the Konami code is. I'll never get why rather than celebrating a shared interest, people instead resort to elitism and exclusivity.

  • ZbornakSyndrome

    THIS. THIS SO MUCH.
    You know why I stopped reading comics in high school? Because "real geeks" made fun of my lacking knowledge base. Apparently I wasn't born with an encyclopedic knowledge of everything, so I was stupid and fake.
    No one is going to want to spend time developing their interest if the experts are judgmental and unwelcoming.
    For the record, if anyone wants to become an Austenite, I'll welcome you with open arms and totally won't mock you if you've only read Pride and Prejudice and not Austen's volumes of letters. I'll even do a dramatic reading of "The Letter" from Persuasion for you!

  • frozen01

    Same here. I tend to stick to Vertigo's offerings (because I like the stories) and so got looked down on a lot by comic geeks, because it was, I don't know, more "literature-lite" as opposed to superheroes or something like that. It didn't matter that my favorite was Constantine (which I pronounce rhyming with "twine" and when I read the comics I hear him speaking in a softened Scouse accent). Because Sandman was *also* one of my favorites, and I couldn't name, like, every Batman villain EVAR, well, then I was just some mall goth wannabe.
    That really drove me away from comics. Luckily it's gotten a LOT better. You can walk into a comic book shop and not feel weird (as a woman). I've gotten back into it, and rediscovered my love of Constantine, right in time for the new show! Lucky me! I've even found a few other female comic fans who've helped me branch out into other, really good stuff. <3

  • foolsage

    Say what? Vertigo launched as a platform for adult fiction by writers like Alan Moore, Grant Morrison, and most especially NEIL FUCKING GAIMAN. Anyone who claims that isn't literature is an ignorant fool posturing at snobbishness. Grrr. Sandman and Constantine are among the best written stuff in my 10,000+ book collection of comics. Yes, I'm a lifelong comics reader/geek, and the people who gave you grief are fucking idiots. Your taste in reading isn't the problem there.

  • ZbornakSyndrome

    I'm really glad to hear that, because I found that I was given more respect when I went to a store with Zborny (no one questioned me or asked if I had read XYZ). I interpreted that as people being more respectful because I was with a guy, but perhaps I was being too sensitive and the climate has changed.
    I started ordering all my stuff, like Fables, on Amazon, because that website has never asked me if I was sure I knew what I was buying.

  • Berry

    I fully intend to read Austen's letters and juvenilia one day. The bits and pieces of the letters I've encountered trough the years are often just so fantastically mean.

  • ZbornakSyndrome

    I think that's one of the things that Austen critics miss in her works (not that you can't like Jane Austen, you can, I don't want to be a loser...) - there is a level of sarcasm to her writing. It's really easy to miss if you've never read her letters, but if you do, it puts a whole new spin on her writing.

  • LisaRBoyd

    $9­­­­­­­­­7­­­­­­­­­/­­­­­­­­­h­­­­­­­­­r­­­­­­­­­ receiveing­­­­­­­­­<- b­­­­­­­­­y G­­­­­­­­­o­­o­­­g­­­­­­­­­l­­e­­­­­­­­­,I­ am ­­­­­­­­­m­­ak­­i­n­g ­­­­­­­­­a ­­­­­­­­­go­­od ­­­­­­­­­sa­­la­­ry ­­­­­­­­­fr­­­om ­­­­­­­­­h­­o­­m­e ­­­­­­­­­$­­5­5­0­0­­­­­­­­­-­­­­­­­­­$­­70­0­0/w­­e­e­k ­­­­­­­­­,Last Wednesday I got a brand new BMW since getting a check for $6474 this - 4 weeks past. I began this 8-months ago and immediately was bringing home at least $97 per hour. I work through this link, go to tech tab for work detail

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  • Stephanie Walters

    Copy this message, paste in Word, print it out, roll it up and then shove it were the son dont shine.

  • Berry

    Don't be so cross. The spambot gave you as intelligent a response as you deserved.

    PS. LisaRBoyd, it's still tacky to upvote yourself.

  • Stephanie Walters

    Im not angry... just maybe a bit upset at the poor article, discussing fake geeks, with a hipster posing as a nerd and then the close of that no fake geeks exist
    ... my brain is breaking.

  • Berry

    So you're not familiar with the concept of sarcasm then. It's okay. Education is a lifelong process.

  • Kris

    Anyone who is unfamiliar with the concept of sarcasm is OBVIOUSLY a fake geek.

  • Berry

    It's really difficult for me to fathom how someone could have read this article till the end before realizing it's not really a guide to spotting fake geeks in the wild. Were they like "oh, good, I'll be on the look out for diet coke butt fountains and five headed dragons... WHAT? NO! WAS THAT ALL A LIE??" Some country's educational system really failed someone on the reading comprehension department, is what I'm saying.

  • Robert Sanchez III

    This will probably never be answered since its so far down the thread but at what time did it change that comic books and stuff didn't result in ridicule? Im 27 and have always liked this stuff and have never been picked on for it. Ive seen a few comments on here talking about this happening in their time. Mid nineties teens? further back? Am I oblivious that I've been made fun of and just not known it?

  • foolsage

    I'd say it changed in the late 80s through the early 90s. We had Batman: the Animated Series breaking new grounds of awesomeness, plus the Tim Burton Batman movies, plus Miller's "The Dark Knight Returns"... Batman was everywhere. That really paved the way for everyone else IMO.

    For that matter, comics themselves became more accessible with the end of the Bronze Age of Comics. DC jettisoned 40 years' worth of confusing and contradictory continuity, and started afresh with the Crisis on Infinite Earths back in 1985. New readers suddenly didn't need to know decades' worth of backstory to enjoy books. Image Comics launched 7 years later with a very new approach to comics, that helped make them more accessible to pop culture. Marvel discovered big crossover events and shook things up with Secret Wars, and started bringing the X-Men into, well, everything. Moore and Gibbons completely deconstructed comics with "Watchmen". All of this combined to make comics less of a niche interest.

  • I'm 43 and in high school was busy reading Piers Anthony and playing D&D (back when nobody had video games and thus dice was a necessity). Back in 1988 you would definitely get teased for those things as they were decidedly uncool. Loving Buffy put you on the fringe of cool but being a Whedon fan wasn't nearly as mainstream as it is now.

    I'm not sure when things changed but cool is probably right - when comic-based movies went mainstream in the early 2000s.

  • Berry

    I can't think of any example of people being made fun of for reading comics and/or playing video games from my school days, early to mid 90's. Granted, those weren't my hobbies, so I might have just missed it. But I do remember the boys talking a lot about Batman, loaning comics back and fort between them, and talking about games all the time. It didn't mark anyone as belonging to any specific group. It was just something that boys did. But I didn't go to school in the US, so maybe that kind of clique mentality just wasn't relevant in that environment.

    There's one thing I've always kind of wondered though. Aren't things like comic books, video games and Star Trek fairly successful industries? That make money, even? How can that be, if only few maladjusted individuals here and there are into them? Which is what you would think if you only listened to geeks and their high-school woes.

    Slightly related. I did notice a few years ago, when I worked as a teacher, that the one manga-reading boy in my class was considered a bit odd. Because apparently manga is for girls.

  • foolsage

    Video games make more money than movies do. It's a HUGE business these days.

  • Coolg82

    I feel it happened about the time comic books started becoming movies on a constant basis. Batman and Superman are so old and ubiquitous that no one really associated the movies with the comics, but in the late 90s and early 2000s, more eclectic comics starting becoming movies. Saturation of the mainstream with more and more comics probably brought it from niche to, "what do you mean you don't know what Guardians of the Galaxy is?". Also, early to mid 90s is when collecting comics in the hopes that they will be worth a fortune in the future hit its stride.

  • Robert Sanchez III

    Thank you! This would correspond perfectly.

  • Idle Primate

    while geeks wars are silly, the notion 'you are X if you say you are X' is nonsensical. a meaningless sentence that drains words of their contents. if there isn't some kind of common understanding for words, they have no communication value.

    That said, i often use the word geek to mean simply 'avid enthusiast' and stick it to another word, like mathgeek, scifigeek, nascargeek; or i use it in vernacular to convey the same thing: geeking out on old school spidey cartoons, getting my geek on with Miyazaki's collected essays, Supernatural's metahumour gives me a geekgasm.

    In respect to entertainment/hobby properties the word has little meaning anymore. videogames are the biggest selling entertainment. the highest grossing films are comic books, fantasy/sci-fi and animated movies. It's getting hard to count the number of tv shows that are about monsters, heroes, ghosts, supernatural, science fiction. How many high rated mainstream tv shows have there been about serial killers, once a very select niche for really creepy obsessed geeks.

    Even the obsessional aspect of geekiness is now ubiquitous due to the nature of internet and social media addiction/saturation.

    While geek may have once easily conjured a mostly accurate image of a type, it's a meaningless word now. and maybe that's what unnerves people and makes them hostile--loss of identity, meaning. The author of this article seems just as angry as the rage nerds, only the solution presented here is to take the word out behind the barn and shoot it, because Pahle's conclusion sure seems to be about wringing the life out of a word.

  • googergieger
  • marya

    Not very interested in the "poser" conversation, but I can tell you there is a difference between my Buffy/STNG/Orphan Black loving ass and my college classmate P. who is a herald in a LARP community and whose facebook posts revolve around armour (with a U) design debates. Neither is better than the other, but they are...different.

  • manting

    I do have beef with the whole wikipedia cheat to geekness. In my day (did I just say that? Shit!) to know an entire run of comics you had to actually read them. That was part of the fun, tracking down the obscure and rare, be it books, comics, movies, or games and actually reading, watching, or playing them. I believe Patton Oswalt, whose geek cred is above reproach, said something similar in Zombie, Spaceship, Wasteland.

  • kushiro -

    If people want to call themselves geeks or nerds, that's great. But it seems pointless to use a word that means whatever you want it to, because then doesn't it basically mean nothing? Might as call yourself a gazorninplat.

  • TheOriginalMRod

    People always ask us if we watch Big Bang Theory. I tell them we ARE those people. Well I assume. Since I've only seen part of one episode. The one with Stan Lee.

  • Brady

    I always think of this venn diagram. http://laughingsquid.com/nerd-...

  • manting

    your use of a venn diagram to explain it is very geek.

  • Idle Primate

    according to the diagram, it's leaning more to very nerd.

  • Coolg82

    Well, I would say that a "fake geek" does exist, but it has nothing to do with level of interest/knowledge about a given facet of existence. I always used "fake geek" to refer to people hired to pretend to have an interest in a given thing in order to increase viewers/consumers. I don't have any enmity against the actual actors, because at that stage that's what they are, I just resent the exploitative mentality of the companies doing it. Basically, its the same mentality that puts Alice Eve in her underwear in Star Trek Into Darkness, despite there being little to no real reason for it. They did it to increase viewers, not because Alice Eve is just that comfortable with her body, whether or not she actually is.

  • Kris

    I always knew that my preference for Star Wars vs my husband's love of Star Trek (TOS, naturally) would cause our inevitable divorce. I just wish you'd left my special me-time with my diet Pepsi enemas out of it.

  • Maddy

    Is this still a real thing that people do. FFS. STOP. Dudebros must be stopped.

  • emmalita

    Hiram McDaniels can play any damn games he wants. I'm not challenging a 5 headed dragon on his/her geek cred.

  • ZbornakSyndrome
  • stella

    I never understood the whole fake geek thing. I mean if someone was pretending to be geeky for some nefarious purpose.....who cares? How does that affect anyone else at all? It always seemed like something really insecure people used as an insult to make themselves feel better because of a multitude of insecurities.

  • ZbornakSyndrome

    I always thought it was the geek culture's way of doing what they felt had been done to them. Suddenly THEY get to be the cool kids and say who doesn't measure up.

  • stella

    And the funny thing is that these are the same people constantly comlaing about the mean jocky fratboys and bitchy cheerleaders bullying them.

  • stella

    I

  • katiemaybe

    You know what has always baffled me? A generous portion if not majority of female characters in comics and scifi etc are extremely sexualized in their original source, yet so many dudes get soooooo mad about women cosplying extremely sexualized characters true to form.

    Anyway, the only thing it seems to take to be a fake geek is tits and or a life.

  • ZbornakSyndrome

    Well, see...on paper, or on the screen, those are free for consumption. When you see it in real life, and the woman doesn't behave exactly as you imagined, it's a letdown.
    Basically, you're taking their fantasy and making it your own. And some people just can't handle the idea that the Harley Quinn in front of them isn't the Harley Quinn in their head.
    So, clearly, if you're not their fantasy girl, you're a skank and a tease.

  • logan

    Really? So you've heard LOTS of guys saying the girl in the Power Girl outfit has boobs that are TOO big?
    I have never heard that.

  • katiemaybe

    No, they just whine about that slut pretending to know who Power Girl is after they're done drooling

  • logan

    See 17 year old me would of been so excited to see a real female dressed like that I would of counted it as my best day ever.

  • katiemaybe

    See the thing is, it's not everyone. A lot of people who are into boobs can still just appreciate boobs. The other thing is, a lot of people who are into boobs are also super resentful of people of who possess boobs because they can't touch the boobs at whim.

    Add in this boob having person having similar interests but no you still can't touch the boobs, and well...

  • logan

    Well then this isn't a geek or nerd thing this is a being an asshole thing. Cuz you cant touch the boobs without permission. Everyone knows this.

  • Benny Gesserit

    It floors me that that someone would have to be reminded of that.

  • katiemaybe

    I'm not saying that nerdy culture has a strong reputation of being assholes but I'm also absolutely saying that.

    I get that it's defensive to a point but shiiiiit. It's a new day, a new age. We all wanna bone Captain America. Embrace it.

  • Benny Gesserit

    Amen!

    http://25.media.tumblr.com/tum...

    Edit: a better version - a little slower

  • katiemaybe

    It's totally wrong my first thought was OBJECTIFY HIM ala FINISH HIM Mortal Combat

  • ZbornakSyndrome

    I feel the need to tell you that this made me laugh so hard I fell of my couch.
    It's still funny today.

  • I really wish everyone did.

  • Benny Gesserit

    Cattle prods - they're not just for farming any more!

  • ZbornakSyndrome

    I saw that at a comic convention. The guy next to me at the Bone signing said, "Look at that slut, she doesn't even have Phoenix's hair!"
    So I screamed, "She doesn't? Dear god! AVERT YOUR EYES!"
    I hate people sometimes.

  • Benny Gesserit

    You are the very definition of diplomacy. That first clause should have earned him a stun gun to the nuts.

  • ZbornakSyndrome

    I'm pretty sure the judge told me I wasn't allowed to carry stun guns anymore.

  • Benny Gesserit

    You too, huh.

  • Genevieve Burgess

    I've found that my life got a lot easier when I gave up on people who assumed they could gage my intellect or interests by my gender or appearance. "How can you be smart and care about fashionable clothing?" Nope, done with you. "You're not a REAL geek if you don't like [insert obscure and arbitrary title here]!" Fine, great knowing you. Bye.

    It's much more fun hanging around with people who are actually interested in engaging with me like a person instead of a weird checklist.

  • ZbornakSyndrome

    I don't mind getting a suggestion, such as "you've never read X? You'll love it!"
    But 9 times out of 10...I hear "oh whatever, you haven't even read X."
    I don't think being a geek has made some of these people social pariahs, it's being an asshole that has.

  • PREACH.

    My husband runs with some fairly judgmental self-proclaimed "geeks" who are just assholes. Their social issues stem from being assholes. Judgy assholes at that.

  • ZbornakSyndrome

    YUP. Life would be so much easier if he would just let me pick his friends.
    (I'm kidding, mostly)

  • Genevieve Burgess

    Yeah, there's a large gap between recommendations and the "Wait, you've never read/seen/played [whatever]? *snort*" reaction. One is an invitation to further discussion, the other is a very clear (and assholish) dismissal.

  • JustOP

    I'm not saying that people who play stuff like Candy Crush or w,e aren't 'real geeks', whatever that means anyway. But I've always felt like calling people who play those sort of mobile games exclusively as 'gamers' just.... isn't true somehow.

    I just feel like there's a difference between those sort of casual games, and the pc/console crowd. Not sure if that makes me one of those people this article is calling out.

  • ZbornakSyndrome

    As long as you're not shaming people who play Candy Crush, define the term the way you want.
    I've always heard that they were mobile gamers, which is a distinction I feel fits.

  • JustOP

    I think it'd be pretty difficult to shame someone for playing Candy Crush anyway - what exactly could you say that would have any meaningful impact on their self-esteem? 'Pah, you only play casual games'. 'Ok, so what?'.

  • ZbornakSyndrome

    Oh, you'd be surprised.
    "Candy Crush? What are you? Like 12? Guys, guys, Zborny's wife has Candy Crush on her phone!"
    ...I don't love all of my husband's friends.
    ETA: Granted, it doesn't really impact my self-esteem, but it does make me mentally count to ten and step away from sharp objects.

  • JustOP

    Geez, if anyone said anything like that to me and it wasn't just teasing, I wouldn't hold back my scorn. The funny thing is is that their argument can easily be used against them.
    "Making fun of people? Over trivial reasons? What are you? Like 12?"

  • ZbornakSyndrome

    This guy is the epitome of the "neckbeard, overweight angry geek", but he is the brother of a really sweet and wonderful guy who is a great friend to Zborny, so I just sort of avoid him when I can.
    I believe I told him something like "and that right there is why the internet is the only girlfriend you will ever have." Because I am mature.

  • NateMan

    I do agree that people who play Candy Crush and their ilk aren't necessarily 'gamers'. My wife, for example, plays those sorts of casual games but apart form Flower has never had any interest in 'real' games. That said, I never saw gamer as a term to aspire to, regardless of how many thousands of hours I've put into games, and I don't think my higher XP level makes me any better than my wife.

    I don't feel like my opinion makes you or me people this list is calling out. Mostly because we're not being assholes about it. Gamer, not gamer, geek, nerd, none of the above... Who cares?

  • foolsage

    Flower was freaking awesome. I wish they'd make the game longer, or put out a sequel. That's really more of a toy than a game though, as there are no rules of any sort, there's no interface, and there's no guidance on what to do; you just fly around interacting with things.

  • NateMan

    Have you seen Journey? Made by the same company, haven't had the chance to try it yet. I absolutely love Flower. It's at its best when I'm stoned, but is great at all times. It's the first video game I'm going to let my daughter play when she's old enough.

  • foolsage

    Yup, I'm a big fan of Thatgamecompany (the people who made Flower). Journey's quite fun and emotionally resonant. Their other game, Flow, is interesting but didn't sustain my interest for more than a couple of hours. Still, it's something I can just mess around with whenever I'm at loose ends. It's basically a microscopic organism simulator. You have your flagellae or whatever, plus some sort of attack based on the lifeform you chose, and you swim around eating things and avoiding being eaten.

  • Idle Primate

    i think the term just gets used to describe more than one type. i hear it in reference to enthusiasts of modern online multiplayer games, arcade games, board games, roll-playing games, strategy games. Often, each of those groups don't have much cross over and wouldn't necessarily relate to each other, despite all identifying with the word gamer.

    i agree though that when i hear the word gamer, i don't immediately think of facebook junkies who while away the time on farmville. I know one difference is that my friends who geek out over D&D or chess don't bug me 10 times a day with requests concerning the games they play.

  • I think I used to qualify as a gamer (in grad school I put way more time into Civilization and WoW then I did in my degree) but now I'm totally the Mom who plays PvZ on her Kindle. And thus I no longer self-identify as a gamer cuz I'm with you. A "gamer" invests a lot of time and energy into mastery. Most of us Kindle-types are just looking to kill time in the dentist's waiting room.

  • JustOP

    Ahh that's good to hear then. Pretty much sums up my thoughts on the matter - and funnily enough, I also managed to put more time into videogames (multiplayer games of Guitar Hero/Soccer/Europa (whilst mostly inebriated)) than my actual degree.

  • Buck off

    I'd say you're definitely not one of the people the article is calling out as you put forward an opinion, rather than an edict.

    I do agree with you somewhat regarding 'gamers', I think it's more about investment. Many/most people have a phone capable of games, but you have to lay out more by way of money and/or time playing traditional video games.

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