Now here’s the thing, wherever you look nowadays when it comes to technology (unless you are looking at iPhones that is), the main goal seems to be making things as small as possible. And, it isn’t just about the looks – making a chip smaller make it possible to store proportionally more information in the same space than before, and with all the advancements in the gaming industry that sure does require a lot of data to be stored somewhere, we get to the point of understanding why does this miniaturizing trend affect gamers as well.
But, that doesn’t explain all the craze regarding miniature character models, portable consoles, and similar trends, right? Well, in order to dive into the topic of tiny things and their connection to gamers, we need to assess all these topics separately, so, let’s get to it.
The Origin of Modern Gaming – Tabletop Games
Let’s go back to the times where not everyone even had access to gaming in regard to consoles and computers. It is a known fact that monopoly, as a form of a tabletop game, has existed for a very long time, dating to times before world war. As computers and gaming industries progressed, so did tabletop games, and at some point around 40 years ago, these two sectors started merging, which has resulted in a lot of tabletop games being an inspiration to much-loved gaming franchises even today, and vice versa.
This cross-section between the gaming industry and tabletops is where we want to draw in our focus in order to understand the craze regarding miniatures.
Understanding the Appeal of Miniatures
Basically, when it comes to tabletop games, there are such vast worlds, stories, and ideas – and all of them composed in such a, objectively speaking, small physical set of dices, a guide, the board and, well – the miniatures themselves.
Back in the earlier days, these miniatures are what brought life to the story behind the game, and gamers were relying on them as a physical representation of everything else that they had to imagine, but those days are long gone. These days, gamers are able to get a printer for gaming miniatures, hence having all the creativity in the world in order to bring life both to their tabletop games, but also to games they play on their modern consoles! And probably, this exact aspect of being able to take something great that comes from visualization in our mind, and condense this great idea into something small and physical is the greatest appeal of having a miniature collection.
Gameboy – the Revolution of Gaming
Let’s explore a different aspect of tiny things connected to gaming – portable consoles. Consider the fact that in the early gaming world, gamers had to rely on arcades in order to get their daily dose of video games, but that all changed when consoles were released, enabling gamers to bring the world of video games into their homes. But that wasn’t the end of it – as we have already concluded, things in gaming always tend to go smaller, and the revolution happened when the GameBoy was introduced. Now, not only people were able to enjoy your video games at home, they were able to bring them anywhere they wanted!
So, in this case, going small wasn’t just due to the aesthetics and imagination, instead – it was for practicality and convenience.
Going Retro Isn’t Just a Trend
Nowadays, many people still tend to idolize GameBoys, some still enjoying them and using them, while others opt for more modern versions like Nintendo switch, for instance. Someone who’s not into games might ask such people – you have so many options to play on a bigger screen and enjoy your game in better resolution, why choose that tiny thing?
And as we have concluded over and over in this article, the answer is always complex. Some say, it’s due to the fact that GameBoy revolutionized gaming, so it’s sort of due to its historical importance and impact that people gravitate towards such consoles.
On the other hand, many people had a GameBoy while growing up, and playing it brings back not only gaming memories, but that whole era.
Whatever the case may be, the point is – it’s not just that such consoles are tiny that makes them interesting and pleasing, there are many layers behind it. In the end, after all the things brought up, it still seems like we don’t have a clear answer to the initial question, and the thing is – that’s fine.
Whether we are talking about aesthetics, imagination, practicality, or convenience, it all comes down to the fact that there are so many different aspects when it comes to gaming, and, well, when it comes to people in general. Just as one might find a kitten insanely cuter than a grown-up cat, one might find the physical representation of their favorite, mighty character in a condensed, small, tabletop version extremely appealing and interesting.
So, the conclusion here is – small things are interesting for many different reasons, and while we might not entirely understand why, we are surely going to continue enjoying them!