Gaming since the early 90s
My mother got me a computer in 1990, maybe 1991, I’m not sure anymore. It was a second-hand 286. It had less than 512 kilobytes of RAM. I’m not sure about the HDD size either. But it got me gaming. The first game I was playing was Monkey Island 1. Soon my collection grew. Looking back, I’m amazed by the amount of time everybody spent back in the days, copying games from floppy disk to our hard drives and then to other floppy disks again.
My passion for gaming grew while living through the great stories told in lots of adventure games! LucasArts was the best studio for these, both when it came to storytelling and computer graphics. Monkey Island 1 and 2 kept me busy for a loooong time. I also played the Indiana Jones series, which when I started was already available in magazines. Besides that were the classics: Dynablaster, Dune II and Lotus III. And I of course I also played Prince of Persia and various later platform games (Jump ‘n’ Runs).
Gaming – Civilization for life!
I’m always mad at myself for playing 3 games in a row without posting – because then I have 3 posts in a row to do without playing.
One series, I always stayed loyal to, was Civilization. As you may have noticed on this site (see recent posts), Civilization kept me gaming ever since. Since Civilization was released in 1991 I played every single version of this gaming evergreen. Read more about Civilization and my personal strategy guides (starting with Civ4) and Steam achievement guides (for Civ5) here: Civilization I, II, III, IV and V.
Gaming since 1995
While first adventure games and platform games were the best in story telling, soon real-time strategy games caught up. Blizzard and back in the days Westwood Studios were masters of this genre.
For me it started with Westwoods Command & Conquer (Tiberian Dawn, the mother of all RTS games). This was the first time I experienced storytelling on a whole new level: They used real actors and enriched the game with cutscenes. So between each level in the campaign there were MOVIE SCENES! It was awesome! At the end of the scene you usually got your mission briefing and then started into the next level.
I’ve played the entire series, except for the last part:
Later Blizzard introduced Warcraft I, which was not as good as Command & Conquer, but its setting in a fantasy world made it more unique. Maybe that’s a reason why Blizzard is still around, while Westwood is a name barely known amongst kids of the 90s (no offense).
Warcraft II was the first boxed game I ever bought (35 Deutsche Mark). It had an even more compelling story (continuing Warcraft I) and great computer graphics.
As everybody knows, Warcraft III completed the series as an RTS game. Unfortunately. I still would love to play a good old real time strategy game in the Warcraft universe. Since the beginning I was (and am) a big fan of storytelling and this is where Warcraft III excelled! The story was so amazing, I would love to see it in a movie. Most people won’t believe it, but in my opinion it’s better than Lord of the Rings. And I’m not saying this as a gaming addict now, but as a person who’s read hundreds of books. While writing this I got the idea of summarizing the Warcraft story here.
Gaming during my studies 2004 – 2008 – WoW
Early 2005 World of Warcraft was launched in Europe. I played right from the start. For the next years I barely played anything else. World of Warcraft was shiny and new, incredibly well done, challenging and deep. The storytelling was great and gave you a whole new experience with every character, every tribe you played. Nonetheless I never let gaming take over my life. Only 2-3 times I went on scheduled raids (you know: 40 people meeting on time at 7 PM on a Sunday evening just to slay a dragon or here and there a firelord). When I finally stopped playing WoW I had some high level characters:
- Level 80 Tauren Druid (Kaltalon on Anetheron)
- Level 76 Troll Shaman (Kaljiin on Anetheron)
- Level 70 Dwarf Hunter (Kalrodin on Kel’Thuzad)
- Level 70 Human Priest (Kalromir on Kel’Thuzad)
- Level 60 Blood Elf Hunter (Outofrange on Anetheron)
- and some more, I would need to look up on the Armory…
Gaming since I finished my studies
While writing my diploma thesis in 2008 I decided, it might be better to stop playing World of Warcraft. And I did. I just stopped. It was hard, but it worked. Since then I only played it some more months end of 2009 when I was home sick for a while…
Other than that my gaming was limited to the occasional shooter (again only those with great stories, like Call of Duty: Modern Warfare) and – you will have guessed – Civilization.
I also started playing casual games on GameDuell.