Last week, I talked about the most popular fighting game series in the Philippines, Tekken. And since Tekken has such close ties to Sony, that got me thinking of another Sony game. It’s actually a game that’s close to my heart. Well, I’m not sure if you could call it a game actually. It’s more of a social experiment.
That “social experiment” is PlayStation Home.
While I know that, to a lot of people, this is actually pretty good news. These are the people that tried out PlayStation Home when they got their PS3, tried it out for a couple of hours, thought “why the hell am I in this dumb virtual world instead of playing games?” then quit and then never touch PlayStation Home ever again. It just takes up a lot of hard drive space. It’s slow and clunky. There are better online social apps that PlayStation Home. Yes, this is all true for the most part. But I do feel a special love for Home.
The reason why I love PlayStation Home is because it wasn’t a game. There were no challenges to meet. No way to die or fail a mission. It was simply a world I could enter and enjoy myself. I would watch other people interact with each other, like a bunch of people just dancing around the area that plays music. Or people just running around wearing weird costumes. Or people “glitching” by taking advantages of the bugs Home had. It was a wild frontier for me!
And I watched the world of Home grow. I started playing Home when there was really nothing much to do. You could sit around the Home Square and watch people, visit the mall to play chess (of all things), go to the game area to play some bowling or go to the theater and watch some commercials… sorry, movies while there. Then they slowly started to add new things and activities. There was the Siren lounge, where you could play a short survival-horror game. You could travel to the cantina of Star Wars. They kept on adding new location after new location and it was always fun to check out a new place!
As Home grew, the people slowly matured as well. During the initial days, pretty much everyone were jerks. As a girl logging into Home, I would get harassed by some immature pervert at least once! There would be the stalker that would follow me around, hounding me to send him a naked pic! There were also a lot of guys would would just log in just to insult people with lame jokes because they think it’s funny.
Still, throughout my many years of playing on Home, it’s the sexual harassers that stick out in my mind. Because, after a while, instead of ignoring them, I started to fight back verbally! The first time I fought back, it was a pretty exhilarating experience! I was always a shy person and always backed off from a fight. But, one time, I just felt that enough was enough and took a jab at them! I remember the guy just backed off after a while! I was pretty proud of myself!
That’s not to say that everyone in the olden days of PlayStation Home were jerks. I actually met a ton of nice people throughout my entire tenure of logging into this virtual world. These were the people that helped me against the bullies or just people who were just fun to talk to! These people, even though I notice that they haven’t logged in for months, even years, are still in my Friends list even up to now.
But, like I said, the people did mature during the entire 5 or 6 years of Home’s growing up. I’m guessing the people that were doing all of the bullying, harassing and just all-around trolling left as most hardcore Home users started ignoring them. And without anyone left to feed the trolls, they left… and started to complain “why the hell am I in this dumb virtual world instead of playing games?” Which is the exact same quote I left at the start of this article!
So all that’s left during these final days of PlayStation Home are the real fans of this odd experiment of Sony. Just this week, I took a break from studying for finals just to visit Home one last time. I went to my favorite location in Home, Glittering Sands Beach. I had my little Robin wear her polka-dot bikini (something I wouldn’t wear in real life) just to enjoy the virtual sand and surf. As I laid myself out on the blanket off the shore of Glittering Sands Beach, I struck up a conversation with the girl beside me. She was extremely friendly and fun to talk to. I found out she loves making cakes and such! We talked about a lot of thing, especially the things we’re going to miss from PlayStation Home.
You see, for me, it’s not the things I could do in Home that made me love it. It’s the people. The fans of Home that love visiting places like Glittering Sands Beach. The hardcore people that just love to talk to people from different places, races, sexes and genders. These are my people. And it is the people of PlayStation Home that made it an enjoyable experience.
So, on April 1, 2015, I’m going to be moving out of PlayStation Home, permanently. I will be PlayStation Homeless. But I will not be deleting it from my PS3 hard drive. I will miss everything about it; yes, even the perverted harassers! I have too many memories of that wacky online world. I may not be able to log back on after this month, but, boy, it sure has been a great ride!
So, since I touched on how people have different opinions on Home, next week, I’m going to talk about a topic I’m probably not qualified to talk about. And it’s about Gamergate and my views on it. Please don’t hit me!
Do you have any memories of PlayStation Home? Let me know what are you’re experiences in that virtual world in the comments section below!