Meaning-making moments are simply memorable times that take place inside of the gaming world as the gamer has a memorable moment that extracts a real emotion. This emotion can either yield happiness or sadness, and people who have played video games throughout the years can attest to the reality of these emotions. Now, I do think that those people who don’t believe that this feeling is real have never played video games and have not experienced the happiness or sadness that video games bring out.
When we think of why people even play video games, we can trace it back to having a fun time, building up or testing one’s skills, playing a multiplayer mode where you can play with others similar to yourself. That’s a way one finds friends through the game, playing through the story and seeing if the story mode is good and intrigues you enough to bring out an emotion while playing. When I think of a good story mode, I think of a story that brings realism to me, and I can connect to it. When I can connect to a story mode, it can make me think of myself in the game, and if I can relate to a character that’s even better. Then I really can be induced in the story and feel emotions of the character.
I recall the story mode that brought out emotion in me. It was the Gears of War franchise. I loved it, and still do. To sum up the story, there are aliens in the Earth's crust that have risen up, and you have a squad of maybe four people that try to get to the core to kill off the aliens and throughout this grueling story of killing aliens. When we almost got to the core to kill of the final boss, the best friend of the main character died, and he had a kid and family waiting for him. It brought out the emotion of sadness and a desire for redemption for his life; this was the greatest meaning-making moment in my gaming history. So much so, that I still remember it. Also, the first Red Dead Redemption ending was a huge meaning-making moment for me as well.
I think it’s also important to point out that video games bring out true friendships that can possibly be stronger than relationships in the physical world, which are also meaning-making moments. I know this because I can speak from experience. I've made friends in the virtual gaming world who I've spoken to outside of the game. A great example is those inside Guild Wars 2, who are members of a guild and join with the intent of making real friendships among the members. They usually succeed, and many members find common ground. They build bonds through the battles they go through, the conversations they have, and the wins and losses are all a part of building a bond within the members of the group. Meaning-making moments are immensely important for gaming and gamers as they transform the virtual world into a real world.