The Billy Mitchell Effect

Tom Endo writes: "There are few things more impressive to me than the physical and mental performances of humans under stress. These times of duress are when legends are born and the validity of athletic endeavors upheld. When I witness this kind of athletic bravado I cannot help but be uplifted by it. During these moments I feel embraced by a collective experience of awesomeness.

So why are these moments so few and far between in the world of videogames? And why are they something people laugh at with amusement when they do occur? Initially I blamed Billy Mitchell . Forget that Mitchell may have been unfairly vilified in The King of Kong: A Fistful of Quarters and forget that the film also portrayed that entire community as little more than overgrown 10 year old savants. The issue here, I thought to myself, is that Billy Mitchell is a mullet-adorned parody of a gamer whose feats of gaming prowess are ultimately overshadowed by his American flag ties and fondness for hot sauce. One of our preeminent gaming legends is exactly what the media expects - a sideshow attraction."

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