Written by Stegofreak; PSHG Guest Contributor
Last week I took the opportunity to celebrate the work done by a number of developers and publishers in nurturing Home into the service that it has become. However, in spite all of their efforts Home would not be the place we’ve come to enjoy without the input of the playing community itself. It is perhaps fitting then that this article is published in the week that The Spotlight has made its way onto Home’s EU servers. Just as with the gaming industry as a whole, Home is more exciting because we share it, enjoying that ‘unpredictable’ factor that comes with sharing an experience with other users.
Of course such community creativity isn’t unique to Home, for years the gaming industry has been home to innovators and experimenters, taking the tools provided by developers and turning them into something more. Games like Minecraft and Spore have shown that there is a wealth of creativity among the gaming community whilst the fact that Rooster Teeth’s excellent ‘Red vs. Blue’ series has just celebrated its 10th birthday shows that it has the legs to continue running well into the future. Only recently, with Blueprint: Home and Home Tycoon, have Home developers directly addressed this growing market. I must admit that I splashed out on both these services as soon as I could just to see what I could do with the tools provided.
The arrival of these services, however, marks not the emergence of creativity in Home but instead a bright future for it. For years Home apartments have offered us the chance to share our own individual creations with our friends, whilst the growing range of fashion items have allowed us to display our individuality to the community at large.
Just last week I was standing in the Bingo hall of the Casino space waiting for a friend when an avatar dressed as Kickass rode by on a cupcake. In what other situation would that line make any sense? What I love about Home is how the tiniest user-driven tweaks can change the experience you have.
While the advent of the PlayStation Network has brought about this wonderful unified Home community, the fact that you’re reading this article proves that it has spread beyond the bounds of the service itself. Last week I sang the praises of ‘Xi’ as an activity in and of itself, but it offered something more than a thing to do for a few weeks. It took Home users to forums by the hundreds to share information and solve puzzles;
doing wonders for the creation of a larger Home community. Now off-Home sites like here at PSHomeGazette, offer regular articles and hold events that just wouldn’t be possible without the input of the community (though I’d like to see more reference to Home in the mainstream gaming media.)
Sometimes we might get carried away with the bigger picture and miss out on the little things that make Home the unique and inviting place that it is. Take Home, make it yours and celebrate what we, as a community, have made of it.