Saturday's livestream had us playing World of Tanks. I certainly hope you enjoyed it! It was fun to get back to an admittedly better version/port of WoT after so long spent away. I've always been a history buff, with military history being of singular interest to me. I wouldn't say I was an armchair general, but i definitely theorized my way through a great many campaigns. With all of the RTS and Grand strategy games I played in the early days of PC gaming that interest was certainly intensified. Everything from the old Grid/hex based titles with their UN box symbols and sheets of stats similar to Hearts of Iron, to fantasy and sci-fi games like Starcraft I conquered or lost the world (and galaxy) many times over.
In my opinion you can almost track the progression of warfare over the last hundred years through videogames and with that progression in theaters and time-spans came a switching of genres. World War Two certainly had its' fair share of coverage in gaming, and with good reason. It was the last conflict which lent itself to a 'big picture' view for titles like Hearts of Iron. Meanwhile Medal of Honor and Call of Duty started to make inroads to providing us gamers with a 'boots on the ground' perspective and added human drama to the mass destruction and devastation. We as gamers were granted a fictionalized perspective of the many sides and stories World War 2 had to offer.
As weird as it may sound I have come to miss those experiences. Recent shooters and war games have either been in space (Mass effect, the Dawn of War franchise), a take on current events and the mess that is anything set in the current "war on terror" (Medal of Honor: Warfighter, Battlefield 2-4), or something in the near or distant future/apocalypse(Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare, Tom Clancy's: The division). I have enjoyed all of these but unlike those WW2 games of old they lack the comfort of knowing what the narrative was before you launched. Of knowing that what you were taking part in may be a fiction, but something close did once happen.
Neither World of Tanks or Sniper Elite 3 provided that exact feeling, but they did hit all the right nostalgia points. They were familiar from my study of history. I know what those vehicles are and can identify them at range, might even be able to tell you some interesting facts about them without needing to look at the descriptions or fluff. I know what the capabilities of some of those rifles and weapons are, and what the troops I shot from great distance were carrying and had gone through or would be going on to do. It felt good to revisit the era.
My question for you all would be this; What genre do you miss? is there a particular subject or period you 'know' well enough to get a feeling of satisfaction from when you see them take a leading role in games? Or is there one that you get frustrated about when you can spot the inaccuracies in a game or universe?