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I had an Instagram page for a while but it was mostly for personal use to share with my family and friends. When I posted video game, comic book, movie reviews or novels I was reading nobody really gave a shit. Then I decided to start a public account and share what I really enjoyed. I decided to start this because I just finished writing a book about playing video games with my father when I was younger. I still play video games to this day so I have thirty plus years of stories to share but it wasn’t really something I was ever going to do. This credit goes to two people; my mother-in-law Mayra and my friend Niloy.
My mother-in-law was creating her own website and page and she wanted some stories to share she asked me to think of one and there was a couple in my head but nothing really stood out.
One day I invited my friend Niloy over to play some retro games as I just got a Raspberry Pi with 15,000 games and over 20 systems thanks to Emulation Station downloads. While I do have a pretty decent collection I lack the hardware and storage to have everything plugged into my house so this works for me. I asked Niloy what game he wanted to play and he didn’t hesitate to say Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2: The Arcade Game. When I said why did you choose that game, he said because his mother gave him this game. Much like my father, his mother up in the skies and looking down upon us. So with the emotional attachment to the game we began to play.
During the game we were talking about all kinds of stuff and crazy ideas especially when t the alcohol kicked. We thought wouldn’t it be cool if we started a YouTube page and shared this, I agreed but then we thought about the amount of work and time it would take to set up and decided against it. He told me he did enjoy the couple of Twitch videos I shared while playing For Honor on my PlayStation 4 with my two friends and my step-father. This was an easier option but I said I would just do it causally. Then he asked what game should we play next and millions of memories flooded my mind at once. I was transported to my childhood, I could even smell the scents of my old house and images of my father began to appear in my head.
I got very emotional and I could feel the hot tears run down my face, to cry like that in front of one of your close friends was a little embarrassing but he quickly gave me a hug and I composed myself. When he asked what happened I explained that I began to play videos at a really young age because my father had an Atari and an NES in the house and he would play video games often. I said lets play Contra because that was the very first game that I beat with my father. As I put the game on I input the Konami Code because Niloy stated he wasn’t very good at this game. As we got to the third level he kept dying because he wouldn’t wait for me. In the third level of Contra the level scrolls up, you must climb up a waterfall in order to reach the next building. If you jump up without your partner, your partner will die because he no longer has a floor to stand on.
It was at this very moment that I remembered my childhood again and it was at that very moment that I knew that I could write for my mother-in-law. Once Niloy went home I jumped on the computer and began to write the story of playing Contra with my father. I gave her the story she laughed and then she shared it. It did pretty well and she asked for another one. So I did and wrote two more stories for her. Then she said why don’t you share these yourself and I can post your links. I said that’s a good idea.
Then they went from stories with my father to an autobiography, memoir and retrospective all in one. My Instagram page became a chronicle of games but I thought about the order, I would cover the NES library in alphabetical order first, then move to the systems I had growing up and eventually get to the present day. It was a tall order but so far so good. To give the page a break from being to repetitive I included other gaming feats as well as, movie reviews, comic book art, currently playing and the occasional book I was reading.
As I finished the book it became 35 chapters of memories, stories and reviews but I didn’t stop there. I am currently on my second book which covers life without my father, growing pains and the Sega Genesis. The process of editing and getting it published is in the very early stages but hopefully I can get it all wrapped up soon.
This is how The Chronicles of a Gamer began thanks to my mother-in-law and my friend Niloy. With hundreds of games and memories hopefully I can share them all with you.