292: The Husband & Wife Videogame Super Team

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The Husband & Wife Videogame Super Team

His fingers, her brain - together, Chuck Wendig and his wife are an unstoppable force of gaming mastery.

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This is sort of what I do with my brother - he's my wingman, or, as we put it, peripherals. While I get the guy in my sights, he ensures I didn't miss that guy who darted past me earlier. It is a good system, and we can then talk about it afterwards. Especially when I insist he's wrong and that he's an idiot, and promptly have my guts pulled out.
Karma can (and does) bite me.
But it has to work this way around. I can't focus on the puzzles that are too complex, or I miss a part and die, but my brother, while capable, isn't that great at multiple actions in games - in Brother in Arms, he would frequently forget to actually move his squad around.
Apache: Air Assault is a great one for this: The co-op offline is on one screen - player one moves the chopper, while P2 shoots the machine gun and rockets. But while the gun can be aimed by P2, the rockets must be lined up by P1, neccessetating a definite need for co-ordination. But it is worth it, when a convoy is in ashes behind you!

I do this with my Lady Friend as well. Often if I'm going for completion in something she'll look up the walkthrough and we'll go through it together. I used to do this with my sister as well. My mom always wondered how two girls could play the same game with one controller for so long.

Sex-Bacon sounds awesome.

But different strokes for different people. I solve puzzles like those in Portal myself because the sense of accomplishment is much greater than if one were to collaborate their efforts. Independent gaming is by no means the wrong way to play. It's simply one of many.

This article was quite heart-warming. Ah, what a wonderful life.
Hm...would be cool to try this stuff, though occasionally i do this with friends who come over or when i go to their place.

I really like your articles Chuck, I wish you'd have more of a constant here.

It's true. Most games nowadays (I blame the PC, really) feel like they're catered for individual play and not much of an offline multiplayer experience. It's by no means wrong, but I do miss the days where you could crowd around a TV, yelling at the person with the controller what to do, while the person with the controller shouts verbal abuse back, all ending with the avatar forgotten, and a fist fight replaced.

I could have done without some of the sexual stereotyping, but I do understand how it helps to tell a good story. No real harm done.

There's a lot of this out there, including in my household, except for us it's usually me playing the Co-Star to my wife, who's become adept with the Wii controller in a way I can't ever manage. In fact, as I'm playing less and less WoW, she's become by far the primary gamer in the house. (And she's a car geek and a gridiron nut. And now I'm the one indulging in sexual stereotypes. *slinks off the soapbox and hides in a corner*)

While it's nice that you have developed this symbiotic bond in response to overcoming challenges in games together ... it just puts me in mind of trying to watch films with girlfriends who constantly ask questions throughout the story - who's that, what's going on, wasn't she on (insert inane film or soap), what's going to happen next - while I'm thinking "strangely, I don't actually know what's going to happen next, I was thinking of, and call me crazy if you have to, watching the damn thing and finding out that way" (though considering how predictable most stuff these days, it's rare when a film actually does something unexpected).

I think many of us enjoy solving the challenges by ourselves, like Dead Raen, without the need for some female satnav constantly pointing stuff out on the screen.

That is me and my sister. She won't play video games herself, more out of lack of hand eye coordination than lack of interest, but she loves to watch. Left 4 dead, call of duty, halo she enjoys watching me play them all.

Sabrestar:
I could have done without some of the sexual stereotyping, but I do understand how it helps to tell a good story. No real harm done.

There's a lot of this out there, including in my household, except for us it's usually me playing the Co-Star to my wife, who's become adept with the Wii controller in a way I can't ever manage. In fact, as I'm playing less and less WoW, she's become by far the primary gamer in the house. (And she's a car geek and a gridiron nut. And now I'm the one indulging in sexual stereotypes. *slinks off the soapbox and hides in a corner*)

Do I stereotype? Apologies if I seem to. I'm not stereotyping in terms of my wife -- it's just the way that it is in this household. I'm good with the buttons, she's good with the brains. (Arguably the more flattering and significant role, in my estimation.)

-- Chuck

Although recently the relationship ended, one of the main reasons I miss my ex-girlfriend is exactly this. She was the first romantic relationship I've had that truly shared my love of video games. We would sit through survival horror games together and scream together as she pointed out hidden collectibles and I fought off psychopathic monsters. She'd puzzle out a solution or find a hidden door as I would stab a goblin and drag blocks around a screen. Finding gaming as a hobby to enjoy together is an awesome treasure. Great article!

I've been doing this with my girlfriend for a while. Although when playing puzzle/adventure games she usually understand the "Insane troll logic" puzzles but never seems to get the really obvious ones.

We play the Lego games together a lot as well, she's generally the one legging it about solving the puzzles and switching characters like a mad-woman whilst I blast anything that moves with my whip/wand/lightsaber. Perfect brain and brawns team.

chuckwendig:

Do I stereotype? Apologies if I seem to. I'm not stereotyping in terms of my wife -- it's just the way that it is in this household. I'm good with the buttons, she's good with the brains. (Arguably the more flattering and significant role, in my estimation.)
-- Chuck

Oh, not at all. Actually I think I should be apologising for implying that. I was only referring to the tongue-in-cheek bits of the opening story (the Cheeto dust came to mind, though hey, maybe that's how it actually was in the house). I really liked the article and I apologise for suggesting that you stereotyped. I didn't mean it like that and I think it came out too harsh in text. (Maybe I'm just oversensitive considering that my wife seems to be better with both the buttons and the brains than I am.)

chuckwendig:

Sabrestar:
I could have done without some of the sexual stereotyping, but I do understand how it helps to tell a good story. No real harm done.

There's a lot of this out there, including in my household, except for us it's usually me playing the Co-Star to my wife, who's become adept with the Wii controller in a way I can't ever manage. In fact, as I'm playing less and less WoW, she's become by far the primary gamer in the house. (And she's a car geek and a gridiron nut. And now I'm the one indulging in sexual stereotypes. *slinks off the soapbox and hides in a corner*)

Do I stereotype? Apologies if I seem to. I'm not stereotyping in terms of my wife -- it's just the way that it is in this household. I'm good with the buttons, she's good with the brains. (Arguably the more flattering and significant role, in my estimation.)

-- Chuck

Dude, you got sex, bacon, cake, and video games all wrapped up in one nice article. I didn't see any stereotyping, just a life to aspire to.

Also, congrats on having a kid!

A) Now I want some sex-bacon.

B) Dude, you rock. Way to go.

C) You couldn't figure out the puzzles in Portal? Seriously? ;-)

Chuck Wendig:
The Husband & Wife Videogame Super Team

His fingers, her brain - together, Chuck Wendig and his wife are an unstoppable force of gaming mastery.

Read Full Article

When i was young (7-9), I had a neighbor: He was a big fan of the old Bioware RPG games, most notably Baldur's Gate and Icewind Dale (I may have misspelled that though). He was a bit older than my brother and I, but we were REALLY good friends with him. He was fun to hang out with and fun to play sports with; but i Loved him most because he was fun to play RPG's with.

You see he would go one step above, "playing while we watched and helped him". No he would MAKE US characters IN the game! One day he brought over Icewind Dale, where you make an initial party of 3 characters, before the start of the game. We must have spent a good TWO HOURS on that party creation, because we manually built virtual representations of all three of us, in that party. Then once we started, we role-played the entire game. Whenever there were dialogue prompts, we discussed the options and decided on what to say. In combat, we argued tactics and strategy. We built Lore to fill in the gaps. And most notably......I fell in Love with Video Gaming. So wherever you are now Tahmid.... Thanks mate. You were awesome! :)

OT: I hope one day I can have a relationship like you do. I envy you because I know how enriching the experience can be; but, at the same time, wish you all the best, and congratulate you. Your child shall grow up in wonderful company......elves, goop towers, and psycho robots :P

Sabrestar:

chuckwendig:

Do I stereotype? Apologies if I seem to. I'm not stereotyping in terms of my wife -- it's just the way that it is in this household. I'm good with the buttons, she's good with the brains. (Arguably the more flattering and significant role, in my estimation.)
-- Chuck

Oh, not at all. Actually I think I should be apologising for implying that. I was only referring to the tongue-in-cheek bits of the opening story (the Cheeto dust came to mind, though hey, maybe that's how it actually was in the house). I really liked the article and I apologise for suggesting that you stereotyped. I didn't mean it like that and I think it came out too harsh in text. (Maybe I'm just oversensitive considering that my wife seems to be better with both the buttons and the brains than I am.)

Oh, no worries! The tongue-in-cheek parts of the article, while perhaps amped oh-so-slightly, remain fairly accurate, I'm afraid. :)

Thanks for digging on the article.

-- Chuck

Wow, that's seriously cool. Playing portal and when one of you can't do one thing wrong, the other can but can't do something else right that you can do right. That's impressive of course, and contains teamwork. Never really put much thought into it honestly, but I must say that is seriously nice to know *Smiles*

What I also noticed was that she knew how to solve puzzles while you knew how to get by hard courses. Wonder what that means and all- but I shouldn't think to hard on it. All I will say is you guys are an original couple in my eyes and I am very happy for you, Congrats!

Thanks, I really enjoyed that one :)

It reminds me of how I used to do that in the past together with friends (and usually acting as the "brains" part), a tradition I should surely rekindle more often now, I like how in the end, it made you and your wife now share a hobby you used to do alone and I hope I will someday find a lady in my life with whom I can do the same :)

In the meantime, congratulations on the family expansion pack, I think the little one will make you form an even more awesome household Voltron in the future :) (and btw, for some reason, that reference made me giggle uncontrollably :D

My initial reaction to this title was, "cool, an article about Lori & Corey Cole!"

Slightly disappointed, but still a good read. My current wife is not a gamer, but I remember teaming up with my brother to play "harder" sim games like MechWarrior. We couldn't handle all the controls solo, so one person would be targeting & shooting with the mouse, while the other one would handle movement & weapons loadouts on the keyboard.

And of course, playing RPGs together. All the old SSI Goldbox games and more.

Good times.

Gaming is a fully couples-affair for my partner and I. We seek out full co-op experiences like rabid, hungry dogs, but even single-player games are something we play simultaneously and chat about during and after to no end.

When she's not around to game with, I usually end up closing out of my games and reading instead, because they no longer hold a candle to the experience I get with her.

Great read, and something which totally happened to me during my playtime in Portal as well. I'd get the first few (tutorial) stages down to a pat, but when it came to the more cerebral puzzles midway, the frustration of not having enemies to shoot at in first person mode combined with having to think made me want to toss the game and pc through the window if it wasn't for the wife who had been nonchalantly observing from the cityroom. A few pointers and observations and behold! The stage was completed! Next thing you know, she was the co-pilot to my portal-isque endeavors :)

Needless to say, I am most definitely getting Portal 2. For the both of us :)

This is an incredibly cute article, and a great alternative to the standard "How's the face-shooting going, honey?" school of marital relations and video games.

My wife and I did this in Heavy Rain!

Great read!

A third, eh? Mazel tov!

I don't play games like this but playing co op games with my other half really adds to a game. Sadly at the moment the only console we can do this on is the DS and there don't seem to be a wealth of co op title on it.

Great article!

I know what it's like, my lovely bf and I play MW2 co-op - sneaking, sniping, blowing up choppers ......together. :) Flowers? Chocolates? You don't know romance til you've been on the brink of death, only to have your partner appear to save your ass at the last second. "I got your back, honey!" Now that's LOVE. :D Except for when he accidentally shoots me, it's an awesome feeling.

Marriage, eat your heart out! Bonding through mutual fragging is clearly the way to go.

Great article! I know my wife appreciates video games but she doesn't want to try them as she knows from past experience how addictive they can get. She loves her other hobby more (sleeping). Our daughter plays games as well and becomes my wingman (girl) when I play single-player games.

I used to be my best friend's wingman as well, helping her play Final Fantasy Mystic Quest on to Final Fantasy VII.

Am getting more multiplayer games on a loaned Wii so that my wife and daughter can play with me as a family bonding experience.

And yeah, congrats on the new member of the family!

Well that was wonderful.

It's good to see two lovers sharing an interest like that.

It was kinda fun reading this article- while I managed to get through most of Portal by myself, my siblings watched me for the final part-and it was pretty fun. Especially when I accidentally fell into the pit with the last core. :P

But seriously, this was really heartwarming to read. I'm guessing the same's going to happen for Portal 2. :D

Thanks, folks!

We are, of course, chomping at the bit for PORTAL 2.

The baby's just going to have to deal with it. :)

-- Chuck

What a strange way to see things, so different from my own.

Not only because to me the thinking part is half the game. Mostly because the original state is so completely alien to me. I love it when people watch me play. My mom has given me great advice back in the N64 days (now, my gaming abode is sadly too recluse for that). And I remember one day when I mentioned one such occasion to a friend, and he mentioned that his dad, who didn't play, had managed to get past a ridiculously difficult section of Winback[1] full of one-hit-kill moving lasers on his first try. And of course I enjoyed showing off Eternal Darkness[2] to a friend. Well, he could play it himself, but ED's gameplay was its worse feature and he was having trouble with it, why not give him a hand?

[1] Full name Winback 64, a competent tactical third person military shoter for the N64 (duh). It never got even a cult following, which is why people nowadays think Gears of War does third person shooting well.
[2] The reason why horror game fans hate Too Human even more.

This is almost us ... exactly us. We haven't tried Super Mario Galaxy, but now we will have to get it.

Only two you didn't mention that we enjoy experiencing together: Mass Effect 1&2 and Uncharted 1&2. Aside from that, I can't believe how similar this article is to my wife and I.

a heart-warming tale, and congrats on the kid. if duct tape doesn't work try super glue.

I envy you Chuck I really do...If I kill you do I become you? I rembered doing this with an old childhood friend. It was really fun.

And congratulation to becoming a father!

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