Okay, this is getting a little recursive, but SynCaine linked something Loque Nohak said in a comment on Tobold's blog the other day that got me thinking.
The relevant part is "coming from WoW it seems I’ve been playing a videogame for small children". It tied in with a conversation I had with a friend recently about the movie version of "We've Got To Talk About Kevin". My friend had been to see it and didn't rate it all that highly. I was saying that I'd heard good things about it, but I wasn't really interested in going to see it because I feel like I'm about done with being "challenged" by entertainment.
|Bring it on, bad guy!|
I didn't really notice when I stopped feeling that way. Maybe it happened when I started playing Everquest . Maybe it was already happening and that's why I connected so strongly with MMOs when I found them. Either way, I think it must have happened around about the same time, a dozen or so years ago.
|I bet it's not that deep|
I was a happy child, by and large. Much of my childhood consisted of roaming around the countryside, alone or with my cousin, often with a gang of kids. We were always exploring. We found small caves and ruined buildings, waded across rivers to islands, spent countless hours in the woods, climbing trees and building dens. We hunted (for animals to catch alive and bring home and try to keep as pets). We had fights and played games and made friends and enemies.
|Middle Earth - about a mile from my house|
So, calling an MMO "a videogame for small children" doesn't seem like that much of a criticism to me. As I get older I find that I appreciate more and more those things that bring back to me what life was like when I was very young. I've been an adult a long time and it's not really all that when you get down to it, is it? On balance I reckon I could have done with being a child for longer. MMOs help with that.