Spicy Gamer Vibes and the Banality of Karen – Level 2 : Corporate Madmen Grab the Useless Eleventh Coin in Mario Kart (Proposal to Humanity)

Do you know about my favorite tactical aspect of the Mario Kart series? One of things that sucked me back in after 10 years or so?

It’s the coins. You can grab coins on the road, lose coins when being hit, and take coins from other people.

The more coins you get, the faster your character gets.  It’s extremely obvious you should get as many coins as possible.

Choosing to go out of your way to acquire coins, rather than simply moving as quickly as you can, is a very satisfying element of the game. It makes your heart glow, really, making that kind of sacrifice, subjecting yourself to that awkwardness, just for a fragment of a chance at victory.

And even choosing not to do it can be satisfying.  Giving them up for an item box or hitting a boost. Figuring out when to go for coins adds value to the very act.

One of the less obvious aspects of coin acquisition is the ability to take more than you can hold.  If you have 10 coins, the eleventh does absolutely nothing.  Neither does the twelfth or thirteenth.

But it does prevent other people from getting that coin.  It eliminates so many winding possibilities on the road of fate.

I didn’t even realize I could do that after dozens of hours of playing Mario Kart 7 online!  I mean, if your inventory is full, going out of your way to get a coin is worth quite a bit less, since it has no function. But knowing someone else can’t get that coin is so fucking satisfying.  In a way, even more so than if you could use it. Big fucking hearted moment.

While the mechanics of driving in kart racers may be simple, for the most part, kart racers offer deep gratification many games barely provide, by allowing for tough choices in the very act of moving your funky little vehicle.

When you’re taking more than you need, more than you can use, hindering someone else’s progress, through small efforts, like the coin that’s right next to where you were going to drive, it feels kind of dark, kind of bright, kind of interesting, kind of glorious.

Shit, it’s exactly the type of thing that makes storytelling satisfying, that makes characters controversial, that makes the quest for victory itself so very spicy.

I don’t blame anyone for getting off on it. I don’t think anyone is an idiot for smiling like an idiot for those types of sweet little brilliance.

I’m tired of people making fun of greed.  I’m very tired of stereotypes about the ultra-rich.  I’m super tired of people acting like political corruption is done by humans in some other emotional universe. 

It’s never been like that, at least not recently.  We all guzzle the same popular culture.

You know your instincts about billionaires being fundamentally different types of people are wrong. You know this and you feel it every time a political cartoon fails to make the slightest dent in human behavior.

Not to downplay anyone’s temperance against greed, but I think the worst abusers of their own money are just kind of what happens….when ordinary people play hard at being human as much as others do, but with many more options available in their fate.

Being a bit nefarious with cash, credit, or capital feels like making a drift in the road more angular and risky and elegant than that of other people. Driving outside the lines you always thought you shouldn’t feels amazing.  Money is like a Power Mushroom that negates the grip of terrain.

Having the ability to bend the will of other people feels amazing. Sensing them aching to take from you feels exhilarating. 

When you become a rich bastard, the world becomes your race track. No matter how many people accuse you of treating the world like a toy box….you still feel like a go-karter in a wacky race. You’re still underdog-like. You’re totally still a contender and not the master of the game.

Everyone tells you you don’t give a shit about anything, but then you remember how seriously you take your own actions. How much you watch out for others’. How you align everything together in the little moves you make on the quest for even further speed and grace while driving down the road of a stellar human experience.

That deep and down-to-earth feeling in which you regard yourself positively, despite your pettiness, is exactly how you feel when playing multiplayer games. Giving yourself a bit more validation than you should reasonably require from a game, or money feels deliciously adult and well-developed.

People should be free to enjoy being so egregious when having fun. It’s right to want to do wild and bizarre things to reach the head of the pack.  It’s right to scramble for first place with all sorts of items. It’s right to be happy and determined and relieved and all sorts of things when playing games. Who could possibly blame you for experiencing those emotions?

“Who could possibly blame me?” is like a golden snitch that needs to be caught. Excuse me, it’s like a blue shell that nobody can stop.

It makes me want to laugh and cry seeing human beings spill over all the time. Over and over and over, a person’s determination rises. They then think about what a bad person is really made of, in response to their own conscience, and then, that feeling of holding a blue shell takes over.

“Who could possibly blame me for throwing this? For recouping my advantage, for bringing down the privileged, for improving my odds at making my life more bearable?”

You can’t write off insufferable human behavior as a matter of being upset or toxic.

It’s about the way you feel like a fucking rainbow road when you really really really win at being human.

People taking more than they need have the vibe of Wario and Peach at the same time. It’s as crude as it is dignified, and crudely dignified is all anyone ever seems to really want to be or capable of.

So keep it in the fucking game, okay?

Take that clear-headed, analytical, mischievous, innocent, competitive, peaceful feeling which causes cars to crash and bind it the fuck down.

Do not create a safe and peaceful place for your heart. The calamity and vigor of Toad’s Turnpike is where to go when overwhelmed with desire.

Go forth and walk restrained by the greatness of games, to help you actually make the boring, obvious, nigh pacifistic choices that powerful people have trouble making.

As you may already.


Published by commanderdoubledge

As strange as Willy Wonka, as sincere as Benjamin Franklin, I am the one who is going to bring purpose to the internet. I am Commander L1 Doubledge.

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