• Paul Davidson

Words For <i>Your</i> Enjoyment: Time-Wasting Web Games

For today’s “Words For Your Enjoyment”, WFME good friend Hilary asks the superbly-paraphrased question, “You know, so maybe if you could, why dontcha maybe possibly talk about how much of a time waster those damn web based games are?”

Boo-yah! Great idea.

In preparing to talk about time-wasting web entertainment, yours truly set upon a variety of research activities — all of which involved playing games. Oh, and I ate some candy, too — because as we all very well know, candy provides energy and energy provides excitement, and excitement begets more excitement which eventually causes you to seek out excitement when the previous excitement has ended, and since you have no more candy to fuel said excitement [as previously referenced in the earlier part of this run on sentence], you’ve got to find a web game to fill the void.

And so I did. And so it goes.

The problem with web-based or flash-based games on the Internet is this: much like they say there are only seven stories in all of entertainment from which movies and books and television shows are drawn (romance, revenge, comedy, tragedy, etc etc) — there are only four web based games on the Internet. Our friendly-neighborhood programmers simply recycle the same four concepts over and over again.

These four web based boiler-plates are limited to the following types of games:

Hit ’em Games: You are a knight, a bug, a young girl in tights, a tennis star, an anime bicycle rider, etcetera! Your goal? To hit things. Hit people, hit bugs, hit balls, and so on and so on and so on.

Shoot ’em Games: You are a mercenary, an outerspace pirate, a young girl in tights, a monster, a monster-fighter, and so on. Your goal? To shoot things. To kill things. Rack up your score, and be done with it.

Do This As Long As Your Stamina Holds Out Games: You are you. You must do something for as long as is humanly possible. Keep a packing peanut floating in mid air by adjusting the air out of your straw. Keep a ball from falling from a ledge onto a floor. Balance a clown on a wavering ledge. Blah blah blah blah blah. Just keep doing it forever and compare your score! Yay!

Click ’em games: You are the master at clicking the mouse. Your goal? Click things on the interactive screen and make the computer-generated people/characters/whatevers do things while leading them to some sort of goal. Whether it’s trying to get them to reach a prize or simply attempting to get them to traverse a pathway to the finish line — you’re like a crazy fool clicking things and trying to determine just what should be done.

That’s it. Four types. It’s a secret I think most people don’t appreciate — that if you wanted to create your own flash-based, web game — a time waster for everyone who sits at a desk and wishes the clock would go faster, all you would have to do is look at the above list, pick a category, and get crackin’!

Sure, you need to know how to program — but, c’mon! Like that’s hard!

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