How video games can change a life.

You want to know why video games rule?  This is why.

The difference between me and my online character is pretty obvious. I have a lot of physical disabilities in real life, but in Star Wars Galaxies I can ride an Imperial speeder bike, fight monsters, or just hang out with friends at a bar. I have some use of my hands – not much, but a little. In the game I use an on screen keyboard called ‘soft-type’ to talk with other players. I can’t press the keys on a regular keyboard so I use a virtual one. I play online games because I get to interact with people. The computer screen is my window to the world. Online it doesn’t matter what you look like. Virtual worlds bring people together – everyone is on common ground. In the real world, people can be uncomfortable around me before they get to know me and realize that apart from my outer appearance, I’m just like them. Online you get to know the person behind the keyboard before you know the physical person. The internet eliminates how you look in real life, so you get to know a person by their mind and personality. In 2002 at the Ultimate Online Fan Faire in Austin, I noticed that people were intrigued by me, but they acted like I was one of them. They treated me as an equal, like I wasn’t even the way that I am – not disabled, not in a wheelchair, you know. We were all just gamers.

Atheists have a Steam group, for all you godless gamers out there.  :)  My games are retro games, Guild Wars 2, Borderlands 2, NBA 2k12, The Secret World, and occasionally League of Legends with my bro and fiance.  What are yours?

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Claire games: Diamond Defender.
Streaming until I pass out for Secular Students Week!
ESPN reports on the League of Legends North American championship!
RIP Satoru Iwata.
About JT Eberhard

When not defending the planet from inevitable apocalypse at the rotting hands of the undead, JT is a writer and public speaker about atheism, gay rights, and more. He spent two and a half years with the Secular Student Alliance as their first high school organizer. During that time he built the SSA’s high school program and oversaw the development of groups nationwide. JT is also the co-founder of the popular Skepticon conference and served as the events lead organizer during its first three years.


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