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The Console That Got Me Into Video Games

I grew up on Nintendo, but it was another console entirely that sparked my lifelong love of video games

Sebastian Sanchez
Aug 14 · 4 min read

Nintendo is responsible for getting many people into video games originally. That’s only partially true for me. Sony’s PlayStation 2 was definitely a bigger influence on my gaming career — it’s the console that turned me into a self-professed huge video game nerd. Believe it or not, the PS2 is turning 20 years old soon.

When I was eight, I was a Nintendo kid. I had an NES, Game Boy, Game Boy Color, Game Boy Advance, and Nintendo 64. I still have both my NES and Game Boy — though I don’t know if the latter still works. The NES definitely does. It’s perfect, and I’m proud to own it.

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Hey, that’s me!

But even at a young age, I openly wondered if I was over video games. I loved them so much only a few short months ago, so what happened? I didn’t known if other gamers experienced this level of doubt about their favorite hobby — but I certainly did. I was at a gaming crossroads.

I’m not sure if my parents noticed this crisis of gaming faith, but one Christmas, they set a large boxy present down in the living room. I rocked it to see if, maybe, it was a big LEGO set. But it didn’t make any noise. I knocked on it but it didn’t sound hollow. It was also very heavy. I bothered my parents every day, trying to guess what was inside the box.

“A huge boombox?” I would ask.

“No.”

“Hm, then a tiny computer.”

“No.”

“Small TV.”

“Stop asking!”

I had no idea what it could be.

Finally, on Christmas Day, we had returned from my grandmother’s house at one in the morning, and I went directly to that big, bulky box. I ripped off the mustard-coloured wrapping paper and noticed a chunk of solid blue appearing. What is all the blue? Once I reached the center of the box, I saw the “PS2” label. I turned around, bemused.

What is this?

“It’s a PlayStation 2. [It’s] like what your cousins have, but brand new,” said my father.

I couldn’t believe it. One second I didn’t know this thing existed and now I couldn’t keep my eyes off it. It transfixed me…my precious.

I opened the box and there it was, a futuristic black console, with two small buttons at the front, power and eject. I inspected the box further and there were two games inside. Gran Turismo 3 and Jak and Daxter: The Precursor Legacy. Strange box art: it had a dude with funny blonde hair and some ferret on his shoulder, and a giant egg? Weird.

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Photo by Nikita Kostrykin on Unsplash.

It was two in the morning by the time I opened all the gifts. I was exhausted, but I was so excited I still asked my parents if I could plug in my new console and play. They said yes!

Looking back, Jak and Daxter wasn’t anything new. It was a 3D platformer with a cute mascot, a la Spyro, but something about it grabbed me.

My love of video games was restored that exact night.

The next day I played more and more and I never stopped. To this day I am still playing video games, and it’s because of this one console and this one game.

I don’t know what would have happened if my parents hadn’t supported my love of video games. Maybe my cousin would have gotten a PlayStation 2, I would have seen it and I would have been all in again, but also, maybe not.

I can’t even imagine the person I would be today without my love of video games. Can you?

Do you have a special console or game? What are your favorite video game memories? Let me know!

Sebastian Sanchez is a gamer, writer, and film lover. He received his B.A from UCSD in Creative Writing. You can follow Sebastian here, on twitter, or his podcast “Best of All Time” available on Apple Podcast & Spotify.

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Cover image by albert renn on Unsplash.

SUPERJUMP

Celebrating video games and their creators

Sebastian Sanchez

Written by

Writes cool stories from time to time. Co-creator and co-host of “Best of All Time” available on Apple Podcast & Spotify. Child of La Linea and UCSD alumni.

SUPERJUMP

SUPERJUMP

Celebrating video games and their creators

Sebastian Sanchez

Written by

Writes cool stories from time to time. Co-creator and co-host of “Best of All Time” available on Apple Podcast & Spotify. Child of La Linea and UCSD alumni.

SUPERJUMP

SUPERJUMP

Celebrating video games and their creators

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