Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Simulated Super Bowl a sign of the times


It says a lot about where we're at culturally and technologically that the results of a video game simulation of the Super Bowl are being reported as a legitimate story in the sports media.
If you haven't heard, the Giants beat the Patriots 27-24 in the annual EA SPORTS Madden NFL Super Bowl. The outcome was of some interest to my 12 year old son, who regularly plays the Madden NFL game, but left me wondering why Strato-Matic football didn't simulate Super Bowl V between the Colts and Cowboys when I was 12. The answer to that lies partly in savvy 21st century corporate marketing, and in the fact that in 1971, we were pretending we were Roger Staubach and Johnny Unitas while actually playing football in the snow, as opposed to today's couch-bound adolescent Eli Manning and Tom Brady wannabes.
As a sign of the times, the simulated Super Bowl reminds me of Dennis Miller's joke about spending quality time with his son by playing a video game of a father and son having a catch. I'm not criticizing the kids today. It is what it is, as they themselves are wont to say. In a world where real-life death and destruction are delivered by unmanned military drones being controlled by virtual pilots thousands of miles from the front lines, there are worse things than a computer mock-up of a football game.
The good news is I took the Giants to cover the point spread in the simulated Super Bowl, meaning my bookie owes me 200 Monopoly dollars.

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