It’s OK To Eat A Hamburger

Syncaine over at Hardcore Casual posted an interesting article comparing World of Warcraft to Disney Land and McDonalds. Aside from the connotation of poor quality by comparing WoW to McD’s (which is ironic as Warcraft is probably the most high quality MMORPG there is) I think he’s actually quite spot on with the analogy and I agree with his thought process behind it. Still, it made me want to say something to everyone. You see folks, contrary to what others may have you believe, it’s actually OK to eat a hamburger.

I’m not claiming I’m Indian Jones but I’ve done my fair share of globe trotting and one of the places in the world that I visit fairly frequently now is Japan. I love Japanese cuisine. I love suishi, sashimi, tonkatsu, shabu-shabu, teppanyaki, misu, udon, soba, gohan, gyoza (you get the picture) but even so, sometimes when I’m there, I still find my stomach growling and my mouth-watering for nothing other than a big ass hamburger. Evidence below (and yes, I’m fully aware of how much of a dork I look like… call it a sacrifice I’m willing to make for my trade):

Tucking into a hamburger at Kua'Aina, Tokyo

Tucking into a hamburger at Kua'Aina, Tokyo

The fact is no one in Japan (i.e. the Japanese) actually eats Japanese food 24/7/365. Even they love their hamburgers. So you see, there’s nothing wrong with eating a hamburger or going to Disney Land or even, shudder, getting a Grande Double Choc-Chip Skinny Extra Foam Double Shot Strawberry Frappuccino from Starbucks if that’s what you’re in to.

Just because someone likes hamburgers it doesn’t make them losers or drop-outs or hillbillies or trailer park trash, it just makes them human, like the rest of us.

Damn… I’m really hungry now.

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  1. ogrebear says:

    can i has cheezburger by the 12 pack….

  2. I don’t think anyone has ever said it’s not just fine to play WoW or eat a hamburger. We like our “comfort food”.

    The problem comes when you go against expectations. Eating a hamburger in Japan isn’t odd. Going to Japan then only eating hamburgers is odd. Why go to Japan if you are so afraid of change that you don’t want to try the food. Or, as Syncaine said, go to Paris and only eat at McD’s. This is why some people question the desire to solo in a online multiplayer game. Especially since as it seems to be encouraging Paris to ditch the cafés and bistros in favor of more hamburger joints.

    You also have problems when people have misplaced expectations. People complain about WoW being too static or not doing something unique. It’s like going to McD’s and wondering why they don’t have steakhouse steaks on the value menu. The whole point of fast food is to serve lots of people relatively inexpensive food. Steaks or Japanese food are expensive (especially Japanese food in Japan). People who expect steaks at McD’s pricing are frustrating to us who enjoy good steaks and are willing to pay appropriate prices for them.

    Again, nothing wrong with playing WoW, as long as you realize that it’s playing WoW and enforcing the status quo. Playing WoW while wishing for more hard-core PvP games or for games with ever-changing storylines is the path to frustration.

    • Gordon says:

      Very good point and I think you’re dead on. Following the analogy, I guess it’s the difference between seeing tourists who try to enjoy the culture their in and the ones who want to speak really LOUDLY and sslloowwllyy and only ever go to McD’s because they’re afraid to try the local cuisine :)

      I suppose my point was that it’s not natural to expect someone to only eat a certain type of cuisine and that actually it’s OK to indulge in some fast food once and a while. And that’s what WoW is – comfort, fast food :)

      Everything in moderation!

    • Tesh says:

      “This is why some people question the desire to solo in a online multiplayer game.”

      Not a good comparison. People question that more because they have preconceptions of what *they* want out of games rather than human psychology or the actual game design.

  3. Albyll says:

    Tokyo has just about every food you can think of. So in addition to the hamburgers, you can also be eating Italian, French, Chinese, Russian, Greek, etc.

    I never really know what people mean by “Japanese” anyway. I believe you can probably eat a completely different kind of indigenous food in Japan every day and not have the same thing twice for, what, a year? Ten years? I’d love to find out. :D

    • Gordon says:

      I think a hamburger in Japan is just as “Japanese” as a plate of suishi because usually you’re eating their version of a Western hamburger. For instance, the pasta there is totally different from the pasta here (i.e. fish egg spaghetti ugh). It’s all about trying everything there is :) Yup, I’m such a glutton!

  4. krizzlybear says:

    When I was in Japan, one of my favourite meals was actually at a chinese restaurant.

    My second favourite cuisine, served in the style of my first favourite. It was quite delicious.

    • Gordon says:

      I found Chinese cuisine in Japan to be very different from Chinese cuisine here in the UK. It was tasty though and one the best meals (and cheapest) I had when I was there in August was Chinese. It did give me diarrhoea for 2 days though.

      • The most hilarious international experience I had was when some developers from China visited the company in Germany I was working with a few years ago and we went to eat at the local Chinese restaurant. Luckily the developers could speak to the workers at the restaurant in Chinese. The peak of hilarity came when they developers said the server asked if they wanted “Chinese food or ‘German-Chinese’ food.”

  5. I just ate, but now I’m hungry again. Damn you! :D

  6. Genda says:

    Dang, I haven’t even had breakfast yet, now I have to find a burger.

    I agree wholeheartedly, WoW is for the masses which makes it passe to the MMO “intelligencia.” It’s like the music fans who only like bands that haven’t hit the big time yet, and the ones that do are “sellouts.”

    It is what it is, human nature-wise. It’s like the old Yogi Berra quote about a restaurant that he and a bunch of fellow Yankees used to go to but stopped; “No one goes there any more, it’s too crowded.”

  7. In the end, if a burger is delicious and we’re hungry we should eat it. The same goes for an MMO. If we’re bored and seek entertainment, then we should play the game that most sates whatever aspect of fun we’re looking for. WoW is a good game, though it’s growing a little long in the tooth for some of us. Cataclysm might help that; it might not. There are tons of games out there, very few of which are actually on the verge of being cancelled, and we can play any of them we want.

    If more went to a F2P system, we’d be able to have more variety, and I wish that were the case. But as it stands, most people play WoW for the same reasons most people eat hamburgers–readily accessible, delicious, and pretty damn filling.

    • Gordon says:

      “most people play WoW for the same reasons most people eat hamburgers–readily accessible, delicious, and pretty damn filling.”

      Dead on! :) Plus I bet even the most picky food critic really just desires a hamburger but they don’t want to admit it :)

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