My next door neighbours’s 13 year old son (for those on Twitter I’m talking about the nice ones, not the noisy new ones) has been coming round lately to borrow games. He’d borrowed a few PS3 games in the past but he must have remembered that I have a house full of games. This time round he’s mostly a 360 gamer.

So far I’ve lent him 6 games. Orginally he came round to request Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood. Very politely too. He simply asked if he could give it a quick play to see if it was his sort of thing then he’d bring it back. I told him he could play through it and just bring it back when he was done. So he did.

Since then he’s come round roughly every week to swap games. He loved Brotherhood so then he asked for Fable III. Loved that too and wanted Dragon Age 2 but having traded it in, I gave him Dragon Age: Origins instead. Again he enjoyed that, although didn’t like the fact that he couldn’t keep playing it after finishing the main questline. Then I felt briefly like a drug dealer when I was asked for a recommendation. I thought he might like Crysis 2. He didn’t. He played a fair bit of it but then politely told me that it wasn’t really his kind of thing.

So I appeared with a pile of games – Bayonetta, BioShock 1 and 2, Final Fantasy III and Fable II. He went with Fable II. That came back within a day as he didn’t like it much compared to Fable III. I really must be the only fan of Fable II 🙁

Somewhat surprisingly he requested Civilization Revolution next. I didn’t think he’d be keen on strategy gaming but it turns out he is.

I’ve no idea what to recommend if he wants a suggestion next. Maybe Lost Odyssey?

While a couple of times it’s been a little inconvenient when he shows up (he’s only here for five minutes but a couple of times, I’ve been in the middle of eating dinner), I’m quite happy to lend him plenty of games. I like to think I’ve become the neighbour that I always wished I had as a kid. Games might be a lot cheaper than they were then but they’re still a little inaccessible when you’re a kid. I remember all the opportunities I had to play games that I wouldn’t have at home, such as my babysitter’s brother letting me play on his NES (Super Mario Bros of course!) when I was about 7 or the time I played Wolfenstein 3D on my Dad’s work colleague’s PC. Those memories are as much a part of me as everything else.

Plus his parents have been good to us, particularly since my Dad died so it seems like a good way of returning the favour.

Lending Games