We All Have War Stories

As enthusiasts of the trusty old video game we’ve all been bestowed with a wealth of stories to tell.

Long, starlit nights around the campfire glow spent recounting those tales of epic endeavour and derring-do, as woodland creatures and Gods on high revel in our glorious escapades. Okay, over-egged it a tad. Hang on…

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Long, light bulb lit nights around the TV’s glow spent drunk and a bit nauseous from a Dorito over indulgence, trying to remember that time the grenade we threw bounced off a wall and killed our whole team, as spouses, parents and kids tut disapprovingly from the kitchen. Nailed it!

But honestly, despite scenario two being closer to the truth, I consider myself a romantic from camp one, and I do love a good yarn spawned from the digital playground.

Stories are something we’ve all taken from the games we’ve loved, and hated, and been indifferent about. Each one leaves us with a tale to tell, and whilst the single player by and large leaves us with a similar story, the online multiplayer madness that exists beyond the solo realm offers something far more unique and rewarding.

I’ve got war stories. I’ve got loads of them. Some are sprawling epics of drawn out battles across  desolate, distant battlefields, odds stacked heavy against our merry band of van drivers, postmen, builders, IT specialists, and more, who at that point are soldiers, bonded and battling side by side towards an uncertain future and the likelihood of death. There’s that over-egging again. Others are little snapshots of joy, of humour and hilarity, and of, “How the hell did I just do that” awesomeness!

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And I love these stories. I enjoy when they pop back into my head unexpected.

Like the time two of us, strangers to one another, held off the oncoming rush of snarling German soldiers (They were snarling to me okay). Holed up inside a ramshackle barn, limited ammo, little defence, side by side we fired, reloaded and fired again, until eventually after what felt like an age the smoke cleared and a victory was ours, a lot of the other team probably rage quit, but victory is always to be savoured. We celebrated over the mics, an unbreakable new friendship formed in the smoking guns and shrapnel of that day…I forget his name now, but it happened! And it was memorable, unique and a little bit special.

Or the time I sat passenger in the sidecar of a hurtling motorcycle, German this time, racing towards the enemy flag deep in what I like to call, The Death Zone, ominous I know. Heavily defended Allied territory we ploughed headlong into the fracas, bullets whizzing by my noggin as all hell broke loose around me. The rider of the bike, leapt from the saddle all blazing guns and bravado, he was the first to die. Axis and Allies fought all around me, grenades ruptured the air, smoke rose, yells, screams, someone playing music down the mic, I paused to mute them, death and destruction spilled from the screen. And all the while I sat in the sidecar trying desperately to remember which button it was to get out. Eventually I hit the right one and leap into the fray, but the fray was already frayed and gone. All that remained were the bodies of those heroes from the fight. I take a moment, a moment of silent contemplation, of respect for my fallen comrades. Then I pick up the flag and skip whistling away into the sunset. I think we all know who the real hero here is.

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These are the gifts we take from our games. When the joy of the moment subsides, the stories we can share with friends remain. I’ve got war stories, you’ve got war stories, all of us have war stories, and that is a part of gaming I’ll never tire of.

If you have any tales of your own from the battlefield, or from Battlefield, or from anything else from Super Mario to The Last of Us and beyond, give us a shout in the comments for a quick blast, or email them our way to see the story featured on site in the near future.

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