The Island of Misfits

By John C. Ardussi, President of Game Mechanics LLC

“Toys galore scattered on the floor.” So go the words to a song sung by the misfit toys from the 1964 Christmas special “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” as our meandering travelers find themselves on the Island of Misfit Toys. This is a place where toys that are not quite right can hang out with other toys that are not quite right and cry themselves to sleep imagining that they would be wanted if only they were a little better. If you are thinking I am now going to compare the people in PlayStation Home to the misfit toys, you are partially right. Actually I see the entire population of the planet as the misfit toys and PS Home as an island – The Island of Misfits.

To stay on the Island of Misfit Toys in Rudolph’s story, you have to get permission from King Moonracer. Home’s island resides on the PS3, so in our story King Moonracer is played by Sony. While you do not have to get permission to stay, you can be asked to leave. Those who are asked to leave can be described as too misfit to fit in with the misfits.

charlie

Charlie In A Box

In the story, it is easy to see that the toys are not quite right – a Charlie in the box, a polka dot elephant, a bird that swims, and a boat that does not float. The implication of such “flaws” is that the creator made a simple mistake that they easily did not have to. But because of that mistake, the toys were now separated from the rest of the world to spend the rest of their days reminded by their separation that they are not quite right.

My conjecture is that we are all “flawed” in some way that can make us feel like we are misfits. I remember high school as the awkward time where girls always rejected me. At a high school reunion the same girls admitted rejecting me because they thought they were “flawed” and were intimidated by this guy who had his stuff together asking them out. That was me they were talking about. I was always confused because when I saw who they ended up going out with, I could never figure out why they would say “no” to me and “yes” to them. This added to my belief that I was “flawed” even more than I realized. I mean, some of these guys were nasty enough that the word “jerk” was not strong enough to describe how awful they were. And if they said “no” to me and “yes” to them, I must be worse. Right?

hibachi

Massive hibachi skills

My feeling from being in Home for a few years is that the community is completely accepting of everyone who is a positive influence. They have no idea of your name, where you are from, what you look like, your skills at hibachi cooking — these things are left as gaps that can be but do not have to be revealed to become a part of the community. With many of my Facebook friends who are from Home, I do not even know their real first name. But they are good people, so I like to converse with them.

Do you remember in school when there were people who sat at the back of your class and never got it? Even the easy stuff seemed out of reach for them. They would often disrupt your class until they got thrown out. When in school, I asked them why they would show up at class if their goal was to get thrown out. They said their goal was not to get thrown out, but to disrupt the class until the rest of us realized how stupid it was.

Sound familiar? They are grown up now and have become Trolls. They are the misfits among misfits trying to disrupt things they do not understand.

This is how we roll in PS Home

This is how we roll in PS Home

For lots of us, Home has become a way to live and spend time in places that if we ever got to in reality would be a blip on the timeline of our life. I can spend the afternoon at the beach, then pop over to my big city penthouse, take a helicopter ride to my mansion, then finish my day in the hot tub at my ski chalet. And I often do. That makes Home for me an island paradise in my living room.

Home is truly a place where toys galore are scattered on the floor. It is a free playground where there are even more experiences you can buy if you choose to do so.

But what are we to think about all these misfits that populate Home? In the Rudolph story, the misfit toys at the end get delivered by Santa to kids and the kids love them. What is interesting about it is one thing I think they got really right – there is someone for everyone, even the misfit toys. Never assume you are unwanted.

So forget whatever reason you think you are a misfit, and join the rest of us misfits out on our island! Cheers!

July 5th, 2013 by | 10 comments
John C. Ardussi (deuce_for2) is a developer for PS Home and other platforms. He recently started a new company, Game Mechanics who is now making items and games. Be sure and tell him what you think of what he is doing. He truly listens and adjusts based on input from the community.

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10 Responses to “The Island of Misfits”

  1. Jersquall says:

    Positive I am a misfit. One that plans to live forever ;)

    I used to think I was the only one who thinks like I do. Be kind, play life cool and enjoy what you have. No time for trolls unless they rack up experience points for me in Final Fantasy. my friends? They think pretty much the same.

    Good read here. Appreciated.

    Jers

  2. KrazyFace says:

    Yeah, I liked that. I’d say I was less than a misfit in school, more of an outcast heh. I had a small circle of friends that trusted each other implicitly and from what I could see from there was that the “cool people” lived in a constant kind of paranoia and fear; they’d always be worried about doing something that was deemed unacceptable and would be eaten alive by their “friends” -- not laterally of course! But I was safe in my trustworthy, lovely little group.

    Weirdly, I found myself having a drink with some of those “popular” people from those years in my school a few months ago and one in particular told me how uh, fond she had been of me. When I asked why she’d never acted on it she was polite enough to say she just didn’t think I felt the same; which is just ridiculous, she’s gorgeous. I knew what she meant was that if she had, her entire “popular” status would be ruined.

    It’s an unfortunate position to put yourself in; to go without something you’d like because the people around you wouldn’t accept you for, well, being YOU!

    In Home, things are much more fast-paced and I suppose can be less personal if you’ve only known someone for a few months and therefore easier to terminate or discard friendships. Although, there are people in there now that I’ve known for years and will always welcome if and when I see them again.

    And now I’m yammerin’ like a foggie…

    Where’s mah rockin’ chair…

  3. SealWyf_ says:

    One of the concepts that my Beloved and I like to play with is “the group of loners.” We’ve both been part of such groups, and still are to some extent, though our Internet and Home connections. I think the Homeling Collective is the quintessential group of loners. Those who gravitate to the group tend to be a little odd and solitary, and are attracted by finding similar people in it.

    By the same token, it’s a common observation that those who get along best in Home, the ones who really “get it”, tend to be those who are somewhat damaged — the misfits, in other words. But perhaps there are more of us out there than we realize. Those who go through life un-scarred and perfectly well-adjusted are a very rare breed.

  4. ted2112 says:

    I’m a misfit and proud of it! Who wants to be a sheep in a crowd of sheep? If someone doesn’t like you on Home it’s meaningless. It literally has no weight whatsoever.

    With all the toys on the floor, who has time to be negative to others. In fact to be negative in such a place like Home says to me you are a truly miserable person and probably nothing could change that.

    To be seeking approval from fellow players in Home is like seeking approval from a pack of gum, it’s looking in the wrong place. However if you are just being your own flawed self and enjoying everything Home has to offer, that’s when it all works!

    You mad hibachi skills got me thinking, great article John!

    • deuce_for2 says:

      I have been appealing to a pack of gum all day and nothing. You are right. Gum does not give back.

  5. Jeff_Psn says:

    I really enjoyed reading this and the timing is also good.Thank you! ^_^

  6. Dr Edward Barnaby says:

    I’ve been asked to leave the island a few times…

  7. Danger_Dad says:

    ;^) Great article, John.

    As for my case, I do not misfit the world, the world misfits me.

  8. Gary160974 says:

    I suppose for a lot of people it’s a way of making they own happy story, in the case of some it’s about revenge of something that’s happened earlier in they lives. For others its about finding people to adore you or people to adore. For others it’s about the rewards of success and the ability to show those rewards. For me it’s about having people around me I adore. It’s what’s missing in my real life a large circle of friends. Having to fulfil parts of your real life with a virtual life doesnt make anyone a misfit though, there’s very few people out there that have any different lives to anyone on home. In reality it’s what we consider the perfect life to be that’s the misfit more than our lives which are really all too normal

  9. In high school or before (or after) I’m not sure people wanted to be in an in crowd. They wanted to be themselves and were more secure. To be with a group of friends or acquaintances we could feel comfortable with was the thing. Maybe there was a leader but maybe not.
    The same for Home or any place else on the internet where there is some sort of society. To belong.

    I liked Dobie Gray’s The In Crowd but I didn’t really agree with the vibes I got from the song. But it said something. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Uv2wFPGJ4Y Dobie Gray

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4w-YrigOwPo Marilyn Monroe pics from The Misfit set to classical music. Beauty.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LBllqVm1aJA Is it real or Only Make Believe. The Misfits sing.

    People find their own way, their road to travel whether it’s the right or wrong one only time will tell.
    Join a club? Or maybe a family? Hang out with friends made? Or walk the road alone. Whatever way, just be yourself.

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