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Friday, December 30, 2016

Gamers and Significant Others

By SHINYGIRAFARIG - You don't need to force your significant other to play video games. It is acceptable to have someone who will accept your hobbies if you want to be happy.

I recently celebrated the three-year anniversary of my marriage.

I would say my husband and I have similar tastes in things. That does not mean we experience them in the same exact way.

We got a Wii U to experience simultaneous co-op play. I wanted a way to spend time with my husband and enjoy it. I already played games that have co-op on the Wii such as Donkey Kong Country Returns and I wanted new experiences, which is why we got a Wii U rather than just replaying games on the Wii. Little did I know how much anguish it caused both of us.

Let's just say on the casual to hardcore gamer skill scale, my husband is very casual while I am more hardcore.

Our gameplay styles really clashed. It was tiresome because I am well-adapted to these kinds of games to have to tell my husband what to do every single segment of the game. I wanted to enjoy the game together with him, not be a babysitter in-game. I refuse to be the stereotypical wife in sitcoms who nags all the time and I pretty much became just that. These co-op sessions turned me into one. It was “do this, do that!”

We got Super Mario 3D World to play through the game together. At the end I completed the bonus worlds myself. I can't even remember if we finished the main part of the game together. Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze also went the same way. We started together. We barely even touched it together. It was either towards the end of the first or second world where I just played the rest of the game solo. For Super Mario 3D World, I wanted to aim for all green stars and all obtainable stamps that do not require having to get the flag at the end of the pole for every character with my husband. With Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze I was satisfied just getting through the game with him in a main playthrough such as not getting all the KONG letters. It was frustrating doing even that together.

Super Mario 3D World jewel case box art
Plumbers can wreck relationships. Proceed with caution.

At the end, I pretty much played all co-op capable games on my own. The games are worthwhile alone but it would have been something extra special doing them all together. But I felt it was the best for our relationship to not have every gaming session become a screaming session on my end.

Is there another way to enjoy video games together without much frustration?

In Splatoon, there was a certain Splatfest theme in the North American regions that is if one prefers getting to their destination by a car or a plane. It was, at first, a no-brainer for me. I live in a city, notorious for bad drivers. I am fearful of getting into car accidents due to the accident I was in when I was very young. I was about to pick Team Planes. Then, for some reason, I thought about the teams some more. My husband absolutely adores cars. He knows about a lot of car brands, parts of the cars, where they came from, subscribes to the Car and Driver magazine and looks for different cars to rent every time we travel far from our home. In our honeymoon, I had the inspiration to go to the car museum in Florida because we already went to two different zoos there. I'm an animal lover and wanted to do something for my husband, the car enthusiast. With this in mind, I decided to go for Team Cars instead.

At the time while looking for the Inklings’ Splatfest shirts in the plaza and seeing just how many wore Team Plane shirts compared to Team Cars shirts, I felt it is going to be like NA Cats vs Dogs where Cars would be defeated by a vast popularity of Team Planes players despite the win rate score. I went through different websites during the Splatfest to see how many mirror matches Team Planes was getting. Imagine to my surprise and delight that Team Cars barely won thanks to the extreme popularity differences between the teams. I picked the winning team out of love. I don't think any victory of any other Splatfest I took part in was just as sweet as that one. I really hugged my husband and embraced him after the results were announced.

Splatoon Splatfest Cars vs. Planes travel Callie do some donuts to celebrate
I took this image from one of Ludwig's Miiverse posts since I never took my own screenshot.
Also my husband got what "do some donuts" meant and, no, it has nothing to do with food.

I got an epiphany since then. I don't have to force myself to know everything about cars to make my husband happy by being able to talk about them with him. I celebrated his interest of cars by going to car museums and supporting Team Cars. How about the other way around? We can do activities that aren't necessarily about playing video games but still are video game related.

Pokémon Symphonic Evolutions shirt Pikachu conductor outfit
Got this from the Pokémon Symphonic Evolutions concert. Can I even fit in this at the point of writing this?

We also went to a The Legend of Zelda: Symphony of the Goddesses concert together but did not buy any merchandise afterwards.

We can go to stores that interest us together such as the Nintendo NY Store.

Pikachu Perfect Pair plushies romantic couple heart
We got this when the store was still called the Nintendo World Store.
It is called Pikachu Perfect Pair if you want to try to find it online and buy it for your significant other.
I smudged the lettering that I wrote on the heart to preserve our privacy.

We also traveled from the East Coast to the West Coast to see live squids in aquariums. I enjoy both animals and Splatoon so the mix was great.

So it looks like the lesson is don't force others to like exactly what you like but you can still celebrate each others interests in a different way. I can't help but cringe everything I read someone on a forum wanting to introduce a certain video game or some other interest to their spouse. If the person is interested then they will come to enjoy said thing on their own.

Please spare yourself the aggravation by applying this lesson to your own lives.

ShinyGirafarig can be found on Miiverse. She is interested in buying this teether for her soon to be born child. It is great that Nintendo seems to be listening and are licensing more baby themed products.

Since it was mentioned, to read Ludwig's full analysis of the Cars vs. Planes Splatfest themes, click here.
Girafarig's child has been born, by the way.


  1. I almost never play co-op games unless it is online with others worldwide. I mostly just stick to single player games.

    1. It was fun playing SSBB back in college with others. Otherwise the most I play is with others online as well at this point.

  2. Very sweet.

    I just realized that I hadn't followed you on Miiverse yet, ShinyGirafarig, so I just went ahead and did that. Even though I haven't really directly interacted with you here in the KoopaTV comments section or on your previous articles (I don't think), it's great to hear your outlook on life around here. The internet could use more of this kind of positivity.

    On the topic, yeah, I try to have my brothers play Nintendo games with me sometimes, but now they usually prefer smartphone games! To imagine! But, nevertheless. I do what I can to share other experiences when they're here to visit around the holidays, of course.

    1. Now I understand why an ingame Splatoon comment that is buried by so many other posts of mine just got yeahed.

  3. By the way, since I also own the Pokémon Symphonic Evolution shirt, and the previous photo's caption was “I borrowed this from Ludwig” I was kinda hoping for a “I borrowed this from Ludwig, too” caption for the shirt. :x

    1. You had your chance for hover over comments.

    2. I prefer to make edits for grammar and stuff rather than my own editorial!


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