If video games have taught me anything…

We’ve been fortunate enough to be nominated for seven blogging awards since the beginning of the year. We can’t thank our followers enough for their support! We held our first blog party on Friday to show our appreciation (look out for the next one in the summer).

A common theme of many of these awards is helping new bloggers find their feet and giving those that have been around for a while a bit of well-deserved acknowledgement. Nominees are usually expected to give one or two pieces of blogging advice they feel their readers may benefit from; but what about the life lessons we’ve learnt from playing video games?

I asked several friends about the most ‘useful’ things they’ve ascertained through gaming and here are their responses*. This post is dedicated to DJMMT from DJMMT’s Gaming Blog, who nominated Later Levels for the Blogger Recognition Award earlier this month.

Tip 1: ask anyone nicely enough and you’ll get what you want

BioShock, video game, would you kindly, writing, wall, photographs, paperwork

Manners are important: they’re a sign of courtesy and professionalism, and having them will go a long way to increasing success in both business and life. Ask someone to help you with something in the right way and they’ll be more willing to give you a hand. Just take a look at BioShock for instance: add a ‘kindly’ into your question and you’ll have people bringing down planes, heading to specific destinations, killing your enemies and generally eating out of the palm of your hand in no time.

Tip 2: the government are totally in cahoots with aliens

Beyond Good & Evil, Jade, alien, DomZ, eye

Tim from GeekOut South-West says: “The world can be a truly terrifying place. To make it even more frightening, how about if I were to say that the government is looking to hand us all over to our alien overlords for a boatload of cash? What if I told you that all it would take to overthrow said government is a camera? Well, that’s exactly the lesson I learnt from Beyond Good & Evil: our leaders are going to sell us out to the DomZ. We’re all pretty much doomed.”

Tip 3: the more ridiculous something is, the more likely it is to work

Saints Row, Saints Row IV, dupstep gun, dancing, twerking

Chris from OverThinker Y: “If games have taught me anything, it’s that there’s a direct correlation between how ridiculous something is and how likely it is to work. For example, I struggle no end to overcome foes in Saint’s Row IV using a pistol or rifle, but give me a giant dildo bat and a dubstep gun and I’ll be laughing. Or Portal: overwhelmed by an angry AI? No problem; just warp it to the moon! I do try to apply these valuable lessons in life, but there are sadly few opportunities to do so.”

Tip 4: The Legend of Zelda has all the answers

The Legend of Zelda, A Link to the Past, video game, Link, dungeon, chest

Kevin from The Mental Attic says: “There are so many things that can be learnt from The Legend of Zelda. Such as the quiet ones are usually the chosen ones. Or if you see a Gerudo man, you should kill him because he’s probably evil. Faeries are crunchy, and there’s always time for a harp solo. Lost in the woods? Then follow the music! It’s called Death Mountain for a reason; villains laugh in surround sound; and finally, most importantly of all: it’s dangerous to go alone, so take this.”

Tip 5: think outside the box to solve life’s problems

Metal Gear Solid, video game, Snake, box, cardboard box, sneak, hide, enemies

Nathan says: “Metal Gear Solid has taught me how to get creative in order to get out of sticky situations: whether it be using a Japanese model magazine to distract your foes whilst hiding in a locker, or using a cardboard box to sneak past enemies. This game and many others like it encourage you to think outside the box to solve life’s issues. When you walk down the street and catch the eye of someone you don’t fancy, pull a box out of nowhere and watch an exclamation mark appear over their head – problem solved!”

Tip 6: hooking up with work colleagues is never a good idea

Mass Effect, video game, Kaiden, man, male, topless, muscles

Getting it on with one of your co-workers is never recommended: one moment it’s all flirting by the water-cooler, and the next staplers are flying across the office in an all-out war. The space dating-sim Mass Effect teaches us about the dangers of conducting a romance in the workplace. Have an illicit encounter with a colleague and they’re more likely to bite the bullet – and there’s always the chance that a horde of highly-advance killing machines will be unleashed by the Human Resources department. It’s far easier to just stay away, regardless of how hot your co-workers are.

Tip 7: it’s good to be bad

Dungeon Keeper, video game, vault, casino, demon, devil, roulette

Tim from GeekOut South-West says: “Dungeon Keeper was a game that allowed you to be as bad as you wanted and rewarded you with points for it. This meant you’d be compensated for imprisoning fairies and knights, wizards and even the lord of the land. You were really aiming to be as bad as you could be – and it’s a-okay to do so. I guess it’s time to go slap some imps, dig some rooms up, make casinos and rig them so my minions spend all their money in their work time. It’s good to be bad!”

Tip 8: girls act all nice and then WHAM!

Mario Kart 8, video game, Princess Peach, racing, car, go-kart, motorbike, track

This piece of advice actually came from my stepson Ethan and was the inspiration behind this post. After a particularly difficult race in Mario Kart 8 where Princess Peach had got the jump on him at least once in every lap, he said: “Girls act all lovely and nice and then WHAM! They hit you over the back of the head with a blue shell.” This boy is wise beyond his years and has offered a life lesson that many a man may wish they’d paid attention to.

* Later Levels and its associates cannot be held responsible for any monetary losses, bodily harm or other unforeseen consequences arising as a result of taking our advice. Thank you.

10 thoughts on “If video games have taught me anything…

  1. Anybody who is vitally important in the story, who you must spend hours finding and taking care of afterwards will run headlong into the first hail of bullets they find.

    Ashley from RE4 being a prime example.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Ahh Dungeon Keeper! I wish more games would implore you to be as purely evil as possible. It seems you are either pushed to be good, or given the choice, but generally punished for being bad. So few games have tried to get you to be pure evil!

    Congrats on all of the awards by the way! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • I must admit that I’m one of those ‘boring’ people who tends to play on the side of good! My brother is the opposite though – I can remember him hogging our computer for HOURS with Dungeon Keeper when we were kids.


      • I tend to stray on the ‘chaotic good’ side of the good/evil spectrum, but I think what Dungeon Keeper did so well that hardly any other games have been able to replicate, was make the user _want_ to be as evil as possible. Every evil move and action is celebrated! I mean, torturing the ‘hero’ and turning him into a ghost to murder his own people? Brilliant!

        Be right back, reinstalling Dungeon Keeper! :O


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