Arcades were to my generation what Xbox Live and World of Warcraft are to this generation. They were social gathering places as much as anything else, and I really miss them. I miss the flickering neon on the walls, the weird-smelling smoke, the stained casino carpet, the Van Halen and Joan Jett on the jukebox. [...]
They were a vital part of my generation's social development. If I beat another kid in a two-player game and taunted him mercilessly with explicit references to his mother's sex life and my role in it, the way some online gamers do, he would have justifiably kicked the ever-living shit out of me.
So I learned, in arcades, the importance of good sportsmanship, because arcades were physical places, staffed by real people. We had to worry about a lot more than getting kicked off a server if we were complete idiots in a game. And I feel like a cranky old man by bringing this up at all, but there's a lot of you here, so would you do me a favor? When you're playing online, have fun, but don't be a dick, OK?
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