Solid Snake, in the beginning of the game Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots, stated that “War has changed”. What he meant at that time was clearly explained in the game. PMC, money war, war economy, all the gears were connected and you could see battle as profit in the near future, according to the game.
To me, life has changed. And quite.
I changed my job, I changed my country, I changed my language, I changed my lifestyle, I’m still getting the hang on a lot of things, but so many aspects of my life has indeed changed.
I always had a child-like fascination for video-games. Ever since I was 6 or 7, maybe, when my father hooked up the Atari in the TV. It was like a magical moment sparking somewhere in my mind that would dominate my underlying thinking for years to come. I need to know more of this magical machines, I need to understand what they do, how they work, where all that comes from.
I spent years already knowing what I wanted for Christmas, either a new game, or a new system. Whatever I could afford, whatever I was more interested. Even with very limited sources, I was able to play the classics, and learn about them as well.
I chose my systems. I asked for a Master System, and got one in exchange for excellent grades in school. I wanted to upgrade to a Super Nintendo a few years later, but money was tight. Saved up money grandma gave me, saved up change doing errands for mama, scrapped every coin I could find, but it was not enough. I settled for a Sega Genesis and was really happy with it. My next system would be paid by my own means, and I could buy a Playstation on my own terms, and the 3D games rolled in. It was one of the most prolific times in games, considering how easy and simple it was to develop for the PS. After that, Playstation 2 and 3 also came along, and I never left the idea to work on games behind.
But fate had other plans for me, and I agreed to them at the time. There was no way I could be successful in a field that barely exist today in my homeland, so I trailed another path. Choose engineering. Dedicated time and energy to it. Graduated. Got hired in a big oil company. Enjoyed my job and grew bigger with it. I lived abroad in New Orleans, and earned the recognition of colleagues in the US. I went back home with the sense of mission accomplished. But games were always there, either on my free time, either on my dreams.
Starting in January 20th, 2015, everything would be shaken and out of place. Combining the devastating powers of a worldwide economical crisis, the plummeting of the oil prices, and a very old oilfield that would not yield profit anymore, my former company decided to put the asset for sale. At this point, the most important decision in my life (so far) showed its true colors. Either I take this exit on the highway of life, or see myself dragging another number of years in the same place, waiting for something new to show up.
At this point, my wife was the voice of reason for me. It was her exact words that made me awake. “You always wanted to work with video games! Why not now?”. I communicated my decision to my bosses, and they agreed to part ways with me, sad for my departure, but happy for my new challenges ahead.
Application was made, acceptance letters were received, and on January 20th, 2016, exactly 365 days after everything starting to shake, the new puzzle was laid out in front of me. I’d be attending a new Bachelor’s Degree, in the field I always dreamt to belong, in a city that is proving to be fantastic day by day, with more maturity and understanding of what I’m expected to provide in this new course.
War has changed. My life has changed. But changes can be for a greater good too.