This week my son joined me for an advanced screening for the Pixels Movie. While both he and I were excited to see the video games come to life and the action to save the world, we enjoyed the movie for very different reasons.
For my son, it was all about Pac-Man. He couldn't wait to see the big yellow guy on screen. I get it. Pac-Man is currently one of the video games my son is familiar with. But as I explained to my son about waiting for the Pac-Man scene, I thought to myself, kid you really don't know Pac-Man. Or at least not the way I know Pac-Man.
You see I grew up with the start of Pac-Man. There's a scene in Pixels when the kids visit an arcade to play the games and I can so relate to that experience. It's in that setting that I first learned to play Pac-Man and so many other arcade games in the 80's.
During this scene my son asked what kind of place the kids were playing games in. And I had a moment. it was bitter sweet. My son has grown up playing games at home, on mobile and on various hand held devices. There really isn't a reason for him to know what an arcade is.
Yet, I didn't want to dismiss the experience. So during another media event, I saw a wall of arcade games and reminded my son about the scene is Pixels. I encouraged him to try playing. He of course thought I was crazy. Can't we just play at home?
No kid, we can't. This style of Pac-Man is very special. When I was a little girl, I use to play games this way. We can share this experience. So try it.
And try it he did. And enjoyed it.
And I had another moment. This time one that was more sweet then bitter. Now my son knows what an arcade place is. But more important now we both have this shared experience. I can only hope Pac-Man will continue to be around for a few more years. Then my son can share it with his child when he's a gaming parent.