>>> Against Your Will
By staff writer John Marcher

October 7, 2007

I know what you're thinking: “Marine, you’re a pervert.” And you know what? I am. But not because I want to marry a video game. I'm a pervert because I wear sunglasses at the beach. The fact that I wish I knew a woman who embodied the same sound principles as the Master Chief Spartan-117 is, on the contrary, grounded in a very real sense of normalcy.

But before I get around to explaining why this is the case, let's talk a little bit about the concept of Halo 3 as a woman. You might not otherwise realize it, but video games are a lot like women, without the orifices that bleed monthly and a total lack of accountability, of course. The first and most obvious similarity is the fact that they drain your wallet with no regard for the accruement of your hard fought earnings. Once upon a time, when the graphics were 8-bit, and the violence didn't get any crazier than a Fatality in MK3, a new video game would cost you about 30 bucks. About the time the original Xbox came out, prices had increased to 50 dollars for a new release. With this latest and greatest generation of consoles it's now 60 fucking dollars for a new game.

“You have to get over the initial infatuation stage to really delve into getting good at it.”

If you deal with a woman in any venue in modern society, the amount of money you have to spend increases in an eerily similar scale. You start off buying her a couple fruity drinks at the bar. With tip, maybe 30 bucks total. Then, you go out together, and you end up taking care of the cover, drinks, and cab ride home. Roughly 50 bucks well spent, depending whether you're laying pipe by that point. Next thing you know, you're paying for dinner, drinks, and the movies, and you're goddamn lucky if it only costs you 60 bucks by the end of the night.

The second way in which video games mimic the experience of having a relationship with a woman is the gratification they provide for you. Now, obviously video games are not providing sexual gratification to the vast majority of people who use them. I say vast majority because I am pretty sure Nick Gaudio once told me that he got a hard on during a particularly intense game of Mavis Beacon. With that said however, there are a lot of aspects of the enjoyment of a video game that are similar to the pleasure found in spending time with a woman.

When you first start hanging out with a new girl, things couldn't be better. You're giddy when you're with each other, and all you think about when you're apart is the next time you get to see her. This is exactly what it's like when you get a new game. The novel experience of playing it for the first time overwhelms you, and whenever you're not playing it (i.e. during the highly inconvenient necessities known as eating, sleeping, working, and going to class) all you do is fantasize about the next time you get to play.

What's even more amazing, these experiences continue to parallel each other throughout the entire cycle of the relationship. Once you've been with a woman for a while, the novelty wears off, and a sense of comfort sets in. With this comes a variety pros and cons. Sure, the puppy-love stage of walking on air is gone, but with it also goes the massive set of expectations attached to impressing her. You can stop dressing up, taking her out to eat, and begin passing gas in her presence. Furthermore, and more importantly however, you can begin really trying to get good at fucking each other.

Unless you're with a trained Siamese-whore, or Allison Parks, it takes a while to get good at having sex with someone, and it is only with time and practice that one is able to achieve sexual cohesion. This closely mimics the experience of playing a video game once you've been at it for a while. Sure, it is fucking AWESOME the first time you plasma grenade someone and their dead carcass gets blown into the gravity beam and shot up onto the roof. But it's way awesome-er when you start dominating Slayer mode continually through the vestiges of hard work and concentration. Much like with a woman, you have to get over the initial infatuation stage to get to the point where you're ready to really delve into getting good at it.

Sadly, all good things must come to an end, and women and video games are no exception. After a while, even a sweet video game like Halo 3 can get boring. Eventually, you either tire of playing it, or something new and better comes along. This is much like what happens when you've been dating a woman for a while. Just like plasma grenading someone into the elevator gets old after you've seen it 15 times, screwing the same woman, no matter how beautiful or well versed she is, will eventually become something you grow tired of. Sure, you might stick the disc back in a couple months from now when you've got nothing better going on, but in the end, the stacks of unused cartridges and game discs that pile up beside your television come to represent the women you have casually cast aside in your quest to reignite the passion you once felt for them with something new or better.

So you might be asking yourself at this point, why, if women and video games are one and the same, would you then want to marry Halo 3, Marine? Well, my dear reader, what you need to realize is that Halo 3 is part of a massive gaming franchise that in and of itself compromises a wide gamut of games. If we were to superimpose my analogy of Halo 3 as a woman into this concept, you would realize that marrying Halo 3 is kind of like becoming a Mormon and marrying a pretty girl with a never ending string of beautiful sisters.

The hits just keep on coming.