VGT – Video Games from the Perspective of a 76 Year Old

I am very blessed to have a guest blogger fill in for me as I focus on a couple of papers for seminary.  I would like to introduce you to Ellie Loring, my mother and one of my best friends.  I helped her get her first computer back around the year 2000.  I knew it wouldn’t take her long to enjoy the world of email, Facebook, and of course  – some games.  Think video games are for the young?  They are for the young at heart, that’s for sure.  I asked her to write about some of her favorite games.  Enjoy!

Meet Ellie Loring

Meet Ellie Loring

I have been told that I am a faithful fan of Wild Man Ted.  Faithful in that I wade through paragraphs of video equipment descriptions and gaming skills information to find the spiritual gems that Ted gleans from his life outside of and often including his love of video games.  let it be known before I go any further, that I am seventy-six years young, and do not kindle or text or own a smart phone.

However, I have always loved to play games whether it be cards, board games, or crossword puzzles.  When Ted set me up with my own computer, it wasn’t too long before he introduced me to the never ending fun of computer games.  He then gave me a gift card to BIG FISH and I became hooked.  (Editor’s Note: Big Fish is one of many flash-based gaming websites.  They are inexpensive and fun, but be wary of getting inadvertently signed up for a monthly commitment)  I soon found through trial and error that I prefer the matching games that can keep me challenged because of increasingly difficult levels and fascinating story lines.

Around the World in Eighty Days

Around the World in Eighty Days

My favorite game is Around the World in Eighty Days.  It follows the Jules Verne classic book and I travel for eighty days to different countries.  The graphics are exceptional and the games are challenging.  I visited Ted one weekend and I introduced him to this game.  Needless to say, I spent our time together watching him play.  I have taken the journey at least seven times.  The only change in successive games is the intrusion of ominous clouds that get in the way of an easier win.

Jewel Quest Heritage

Jewel Quest Heritage

There is a series of Jewel Quest games of which I have tried two.  My favorite is Jewel Quest Heritage.  Beginning with a girl in 1940 you trace her lineage through members of her family tree culminating in ancient “Moctezuma.”  It becomes a mock history lesson while you work your way through some fascinating games.  This game allows you to increase your time as needed.  However, I have yet to complete the more challenging game when you do not have that opportunity.

Cradle of Rome

Cradle of Rome

Last night I went to bed late trying to get to Olympus in the game Cradle of Rome.  In this game I build an empire by earning enough money to add to my city.  Soon the games add other rewards like hatchets, lightning bolts, and bombs.  There are additional games in the series which I am ready to try.



There are two other games I must mention that are great fun, but frustrating because I can’t beat them.  Zuma is a popular game of speed and flashing marbles zooming out at me at such a speed that when I go to bed at night, I still see them when I close my eyes.  I have never been able to get past level nine.

Mah Jongg Dimension Deluxe

Mah Jongg Dimension Deluxe

The other game is Mah Jongg Dimension Deluxe in which speed and accuracy are also important.  I may never get through the hard level of the game.

I have not progressed beyond a mouse controlled computer game.  My kids find my ability to use anything more complex to be a source of annoyance and laughter.  Perhaps Wild Man Ted will ask me to write again when he tries to advance me to a new level.  But don’t hold your breath.

Mom, I think you are doing great right where you are – Wild Man Ted

7 thoughts on “VGT – Video Games from the Perspective of a 76 Year Old

  1. I really enjoyed this article, Ted. I’m also very close with my mother and have recently gotten her into some games that she really enjoys (Animal Crossing, Bejeweled, Plants vs. Zombies). It makes me a little mad when I hear people lamenting about families “wasting time” playing video games together when they could be doing more traditional things like playing board or card games together, as if those games are somehow more social. My mother and I cherish our game-playing time together; she loves the fact that she has a hobby she can share with her son, and if she thinks we should be spending our time together doing other things (which we DO do from time to time, as is healthy), she hasn’t voiced those concerns. For us, spending time together is the key, and even if we’re momentarily looking at our screens rather than each other, we still somehow manage to converse and interact like real, social human beings.

    This was a wonderfully written article and a really unique perspective on gaming. I’m glad you put this up on the site, and kudos to your mother for stepping up to the plate. I suppose great writing runs in the family, eh?

    And I’m not gonna lie: your final line choked me up a little bit. I agree: it’s important to let her explore gaming at her own pace, and if she decides to stick with Big Fish, there is absolutely nothing wrong with that. So what if she can’t work a controller? Everyone knows that real gamers are PC gamers anyway!

    • I remember when we tried to put a PS1 controller into her hands so she could drive a car in Destruction Derby. It was a disaster – and a good thing the point of the game was to have collisions! She just has never quite been able to get the hands and eyes together when there is a joystick involved. She definitely took to the mouse right away. Thanks for the positive comments. She’s a special lady and I’m going to make sure she reads what you wrote when I go to visit her this weekend.

    • Everyone knows that hardcore gamers play ALL the systems! There is beauty in consoles and pc games, they are completely different experiences that are great in their own way. Sorry to comment on your last, but I had to 🙂

  2. My parents in law are HUGE Pogo games players. This is same as big fish. However my mother in law plays any sonic and mario platformers on her gamecube and weee(wii). She has no problems with these kind of games using a controller. But Mario Galaxy…forget it!

  3. Pingback: Where We've Been - Lazy Edition - Theology Gaming

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