Top 5: Multiplayer Experiences

As someone who writes on the Internets, I do a lot of reading as well. As just about any successful author will advise, if I want to be a better writer then I should be reading as much as possible. Thus, I tend to spend a good amount of time scouring the gaming websites and reading commentary from just about anyone. I wouldn't insult anyone by pointing out flaws in their work (as I'm host to many of my own), but it is sufficient to say that there is great diversity in the quality and other general attributes of gaming commentary. One source that I do consistently enjoy comes from GoNintendo's head honcho, known as RawmeatCowboy. Equal parts Nintendo fan and beard enthusiast, RMC has a passion for gaming unmatched by nearly anyone else in the entire industry. Whereas some journalists and commentators may give off an impression of jaded cynicism, this particular blogger is a bundle of video game-loving joy. Though he's not quite the wordsmith of a Jerry Holkins, his joy and optimism transcend any potential criticism. And after all, that should be the reason we play video games: for happiness.

Stepping away from worshipping his shrine, I'll get back on target. In a recent post, RMC discusses offline multiplayer via a get-together involving several friends of his trying out Guitar Hero: World Tour. He states that multiplayer is more enjoyable in person than online, and I find it difficult to disagree. That is not to say that online multiplayer is garbage; quite the opposite is true. Aside from the obvious pragmatics of not always being able to round up a few friends to play a game you enjoy, there's the global aspect behind online gaming. Though I've been battling people online via chess years before any major console had such capabilities, the enormous power of the technology didn't register with me until very recently. As I was connecting to an online race in Mario Kart Wii, the identification of racers on the globe really hit home. Realizing that I was simultaneously connecting with individuals from Japan, China, Germany, and England was strangely beautiful.

Despite the fascinating global implications of such connections, I remain a bit of a luddite in that I don't think there's anything better than having your friends in the same room with you while fighting with or against each other. Here's the Top 5 ways we recommend that you enjoy such opportunities.

The Top 5 is a weekly feature that provides us with a forum to share our opinions on various aspects of the video game culture, and provides you with a forum to tell us how wrong we are. To further voice your opinions, submit a vote in the Wii Fanboy Poll, and take part in the daily discussions of Wii Warm Up.

This article was originally published on Joystiq.