One of the most amusing features of this industry is the fanboys. On every forum they strut their stuff as the world experts on everything. Yet in reality they know very little, just what they glean secondhand from the internet. And they all want to grow up to be game designers, yet they have no idea just how few game designers there are in the world and how much dedication and sheer hard work it takes to get there. They don’t even know what a game designer actually does.


A feature of the fanboy is their irrational love for a brand of game console. An unconditional love that will suffer no criticism, no matter how fair and how slight. A blinding love that prevents them seeing any virtue in any other brand, no matter how much it is deserved. A part of this love comes from their emotional and financial investment in their console and the games for it. This represents the bulk of their income and the bulk of their leisure hours. Another part of this love comes from the fact that they haven’t discovered girls yet. When they do, and this can happen as late as their 20s or even 30s, they desert their console overnight for a new love that is even more demanding and even more expensive.


Another feature of fanboys is that they are keyboard warriors with unbounded aggression and disdain. This is all down to hormones and adolescence. Their bodies are telling them that they are men yet society tells them that they are still children. So they strut their stuff online, where they can’t be seen, like they are on some tribal rites of passage. Not realising how ridiculous they appear to those who are older and wiser.


There is much fun to be had from fanboy baiting. When the slightest insinuation will start a flame war imagine what a deliberate, well placed insult will do. They take the bait hook, line and sinker. In fact it is so much fun that I am sure that a good percentage of what appear to be fanboys aren’t fanboys at all. Just wind up merchants having some good sport.


But these fanboys serve an important function. They spend every penny they can on this industry. They are also the self appointed schoolyard experts who inspire many of their peers also to invest in gaming. And they are the people who create the online buzz that is so exciting and which helps to make this industry so dynamic. So don’t mock them too much.



  1. I think that you covered that one pretty well. I think that a lot of gamers start out as fanboys until maybe they can cover larger ground.

    I think that everyone is biased though and that is one thing that is more evident than fanboys on the internet. I always am frustrated with the bias that I read on internet forums.

    I’m not sure what to think about your comment on fanboys not finding girls. I don’t think that mixing with girls correlates to fanboyness. The two are related but they don’t influence each other (well very much anyways). Seems like a bit of a low blow to me though Bruce.

  2. After reading the article I found myself what kind of bigot would even post something like this. I am not really sure if you intended this to be satirical or a really low-blow- but you failed at both.

    Gamers, “geeks” and several other groups are cool now man- you need to understand this. I have been an avid fan of gaming for over 20 years now… I own several consoles ranging from a Famicon all the way up to a PS3, yet contrary to your close-minded opinion I know a lot about every one of them. So a person can not be affluent on one subject (gaming) and be a generally well-rounded person?

    Unlike a “Game Industry Marketer” (not even sure if thats a real job) I have a well-paying upper management position, children and a wife. I STILL find time in my week to enjoy all the games I possibly can, I even attend conventions and other functions. I guess that makes me the absolute picture perfect version of your little stereotype.

    Your blog is useless- and it’s my opinion that you should focus more on your own life rather than scratching up some idiocy about how fanboys are all idiots with no social life. The pitiful attempt at redeeming any saving qualities you may have had near the end of the post is ridiculous- it seems to me you enjoy poking fun at an individual or company based on some hearsay you might glean from your hours of “research” (UK resistance is almost word for word blatant plagiarism readers)

    I don’t even really know why I got so angry at reading this drivel- I really don’t care how you see people, just don’t try to generalize a group of individuals based on what little facts you may have thought up while surfing the internet.

  3. The fact that lots of gamers are fanboys for a particular console is often irritating, but hardly surprising given the demographics. And fanboys are easy to ignore because they wear their biases on their sleeves.

    Much more surprising to me is how much bias there seems to be among industry pundits and “experts”. It is often difficult to get thoughtful and objective analysis from the pundits covering this industry — many appear to be more interested in advocating for a particular console or viewpoint than in providing solid analysis. In some ways, biased pundits are more harmful than fanboys because gamers often think the pundits are providing objective information even when they are not.

  4. Poted by Gamingisfornerds on N4G.
    Wikipedia: “Fanboy is a term used to describe an individual (usually male, though the feminine version fangirl may be used for females) who is utterly devoted to a single fannish subject, or to a single point of view within that subject, often to the point where it is considered an obsession.”

    “Fanboys remain loyal to their particular obsession, disregarding any factors that differ from their point of view.”

    “Fanboys are noted for a very emotional attachment to their chosen subject, often taking negative remarks about it as a personal attack. They will readily engage in debates, but will fall back on emotional responses when challenged on facts.”

    “For example, a fanboy may go out of his way to point out negative and often untrue statements about their obsession’s rivals. Fanboys are often hostile towards critical review of their chosen subject.”

    “The stereotypical image of the fanboy is as an unkempt, socially awkward young man who may be perceived as a loud mouthed pseudo-intellectual. Fanboys are also typically aggressive and hateful towards the opposing brand or competition of their obsession regardless of its merits or achievements.”

  5. I feel offended by that text.

  6. 360rulz=crybaby

    i think the article was great, but i can also see i lot of fanboyism in myself, though i think there are great games on the 360 (gears, bioshock, mass effect), i would never own one, i already have a wii, and a ps3, and i favoritize my ps3, because my favorit games comes to the that…..and deep deep deep down i want the xbox to lose.. i know i’m more like a semi-fanboy than a real one

  7. Well said, Bruce. I think this one hit a little too close to home for ol’ Jeff up there. My thing is, it’s OK to be passionate about one particular product, but when you start saying things that are irrational or illogical to make “your system” appear to be far superior, you have a slight problem.

  8. Excellent article. Anyone who is pissed off about it is just a Sony fanboy who didn’t like the cartoon (which is very true btw).

  9. I’m not really offended by the article, but is this supposed to be some sort of new revelation? It just doesn’t make much sense as to why you wrote it. Is your next new blog going to be about how humans need oxygen to live?

    It’s not a rant, it’s not especially informative, it’s not a new look on the nature of fanboys, it’s just pretty pointless. You’d get more information reading the wiki/UrbanDictionary/ED articles on fanboys.

  10. I don’t even know why anyone would be offended by this article… it’s just to poke some fun, right? I’m sure as hell tired of seeing showdowns between sony and 360 fanboys on forums and game sites.. it’s 1) stupid, 2) annoying, 3) ridiculous, 4) embarassing, and 5) stupid.

  11. If anyone is a crybaby it’s Jeff. It’s sad really to find such fault with this article even if it doesn’t apply to you. I myself find myself in love with all consoles, because there is always a positive. Jeff seems to think that this blog is calling all gamers fanboys, which it is not. It’s just a blog about fanboys and their place in the world for people that either talk down on them, or are them.
    People like Jeff need to stop being so self absorbed and look at the article for what it is, not how it can apply to them.
    And yes, geek now equals cool, but people who shave console names into their hair and don’t bathe because they spend every free minute on WoW is still not. This tends to envelop the “fanboy” category. Those who are so devoted and closed minded that they obsess over their console of choice are still considered lame.
    Great post, by the way.

  12. That was pretty funny, fanboys tick me off, always have, always will. Fact is, there are both good and bad things about any console. All fanboys do is exploit the good of their favorite and the bad of the rest.
    Being a fanboy can hurt, I almost made a sony fanboy cry when I told him the PS3 he waited overnight in line for, and paid $600 for was now $400, when it hadn’t even been a year, and he hardly even played it.

    What I hate most, is when they hire fanboy’s as game reviewers, I recently read a review for Devil May Cry 4, where they gave the PS3 version a higher score, simply because the controller just “felt right” for the game. well, yeah, to him, what about everyone else?

    Oh, and watch out for some fanboys, some aren’t even fanboys at all. Remember Micheal & Jeremy? Thats right, company reps. It’s called “Viral Advertising” and it’s getting quite popular. So if a fanboy brags about his console, consider him a reason NOT to buy that console.

  13. i had an xbox 360, sold it because the games dont inerest me, and i was fraid of the rrod. then i bought a ps3 and i love it and cant w8 for the games to come out.

    i previously owned a ps1 and still have a psp and ps2. does that make me a fanboy, even though i wish i could have both a 360 and ps3 so i can play gears and halo, but i want 360 to lose?

  14. I in no way meant to insinuate I felt he was attacking me- he is attacking a generalized group of people. There is no reason for this other than to get page hits… he made a blatantly false statement(s) about a lot of people.

    Sure- I would call my self a fanboy. I have a room in my house that I love to collect old memorabilia- along with the theater I play games on. I am just saying this article is really quite shallow.. why is it wrong to find a fault in an article that does not directly apply to me? what about all the other individuals out there that might come across this crap?

    I could care less what the dudes opinions are. He looks to be about 90 and obviously has no idea what to think when he sees a person who dedicates time and money to a HOBBY. I could care less that he tries to make another group of people feel insignificant to heighten his own self esteem- I am just pointing out that he is no better than a racist, summarizing an entire group of people into one mass and pinning his little cartoon on them.

  15. Jeff,
    My article is not aimed at gamers. Not even incredibly keen gamers. I have been totally dedicated to hobbies myself in the past.
    It is aimed at those who display sociopathic behaviour because of a lump of plastic. And who go to war on the internet against a legion of imagined enemies.
    And my article is not racist. It is humour. Fanboys are there to be laughed at. Because they are very funny.

  16. I knew when I saw this post it would get a lot of comments. I think the problem some people have comes from it being based on a specific definition of fanboy. Some people differentiate between a ‘fanboy’ and a so called ‘fanboi’ (although I dislike such deliberately misspelled words).

    Many games elicit strong positive emotional responses in me because some of my fondest memories growing up were playing them. People who know me call me a Halo fanboy (and I agree) because I love the game and love to talk about it at every opportunity, but I am able to see its faults and discuss it reasonably.

    The last paragraph in particular seems to equate the highly negative fanboy concept with normal core/hardcore/gamers-gamers. I think there are many people who aren’t fanboys who are described by this section.

    A part of me didn’t want to post here and become a ‘keyboard warrior’ but I think I can justify it since I have read every article posted here and it’s not the first time I’ve commented.

  17. Jeff you still don’t understand what a fanboy is do you? You can have all the consoles in the world, walk around in a mario outfit and have inflateable Sonic in your bed. It still wouldn’t mean you’re a fanboy…

  18. I see the american “freedom of speech” aplies here as well.

  19. I vet all the comments and approve or delete them as I see fit. My tendancy is to approve wherever possible. However this thread has received a lot of typical fanboy comments which are totally unsuitable for the target audience of industry professionals. These obviously have not been approved. Who would want to read such rubbish?

  20. Great article, and it looks like it hit a little close to home for some people. It is annoying how every discussion about a particular game turns into a “console war. The foot soldiers for each console carry their flags onto their forum-posting battlefields. It gets old and tired for the normal, rational, objective people to read day in and day out.

  21. I liked the article and take it for what it is…An accurate assessment of fanboys described in a humourous manner. Great pictures too.

    As for Jeff’s comparison of this viewpoint to racism, he clearly doesn’t understand racism, or incredibly sensitive to all forms of critisism.

  22. Actually I don’t think that fanboys are even real gamers. They spend far too much time online engaged in keyboard warfare against the enemy.

  23. But as a fact, PS3 is most powerful gaming system ever and there’s coming plenty of good games for it soon so i believe that it will going to be #1 gameconsole after this year.

  24. Anonymous cw that is a typical fanboy statement, it is not a fact.
    In the real world the PS3 has a more powerful CPU and the 360 has a more powerful GPU so for gaming they are pretty matched.
    However the design of the PS3 makes it difficult to develop for (hence the delays in many PS3 games) whereas the 360 is far easier to write for. So games developed for both systems tend to look better on the 360.
    Now those are the facts.

  25. Great article Bruce- speaking as a self-confessed Star Wars and Nintendo fanboy (“the first step is to admit that you have a problem…”), you hit the nail on the head. But my favourite part was the commenter who took the lead from your paragraph about fanboy baiting.

    But I’m not sure if the follow up post was continuing the joke, trying to bait someone into violating good old Godwins Law, or just inadvertantly revealing that actually it wasn’t a joke at all though…

  26. Excellent blog, though somewhat biased in opinion. Yes, there are a lot of crazy people who try and make their console of choice seem better than the others by using made up information and nasty comments (Jeff), but not all of them do.

    Fanboy’s (and fangirl’s) lives often don’t revolve around the console/game/other object of choice. Some fanboys even have two systems in their house, I know lot’s of people who have both a Wii and a PS3, yet are still very powerful SONY fanboys. It sounds weird, but it’s true.

    Never trust a fanboy, they’re probably lying.

  27. I’m a gamer gal who likes xbox AND sony.
    AND wii
    AND pc
    And guess what! The world doesn’t end when you like more than one brand!

    Haha, personally, I think the fanboys/girls are slightly disturbed and are missing out on a lot by just sticking to one system and ignoring the existance of all the rest.

  28. Excellent piece Bruce. I however would like to argue two points.

    1. Fanboys are actually harmful to the industry, as their lack of objectivity is the equivalent to a mass consumer “yes-man”. If only fanboys purchased games there would be no need for improvement.
    2. Fanboyism, sadly, does not disappear with age, marital status or sexual activity. Getting laid won’t stop a PSP fanboy from accusing all DS owners of being “kids” or being “too poor to afford a PSP”. It takes a conscious effort to accept that what one likes isn’t always “best” and does not have to be and that video game criticism isn’t directed at oneself.

    Jeff wrote –
    “I could care less what the dudes opinions are. He looks to be about 90 and obviously has no idea what to think when he sees a person who dedicates time and money to a HOBBY. I could care less that he tries to make another group of people feel insignificant to heighten his own self esteem- I am just pointing out that he is no better than a racist, summarizing an entire group of people into one mass and pinning his little cartoon on them.”

    1. No one believes you don’t care. If you did you wouldn’t have posted, TWICE.
    2. Attacking his age/appearance? Good job.
    Apparently desperate ad homonym insults > generalizations.

    Again, you have no idea what you are talking about. You want to be the self righteous hero even when you don’t understand who you are defending.

    If you like a game lot and devote a ton of time to it? Guess what? That doesn’t make you a fanboy.

    Fanboys spend all their time online invading forums, chatrooms and blogs preaching about whatever currently is believed to be the “best”.
    Any criticism toward that affection, no matter how constructive, is viewed as a personal slight and met with insults and ad homonym attacks (kinda like your own posts!)
    Fanboys devote themselves to corporations that don’t care about them. They only care about forcing their own skewed, biased and unyielding opinions on others as fact and bully people into either agreeing or leaving.

    Fanboys often refuse to admit ANY flaws inherent in their obsession. They use circular logic, hyperbole and hypocrisy to win arguments in their own minds.

    Fanboys make big money purchases based entirely on empty loyalty and berate anyone who thinks objectively.

    Fanboys would rather fight.

    Sony fanboys last generation claimed that power wasn’t everything. (Which is true) XBox had a more powerful system but less games. Power made XBox better claimed the MS fanboys.
    Now that things are reversed, fanboys on both ends have literally taken up the others’ previous stance.
    PS3 is technically more powerful but 360 has more games.
    That is “fanboy mentality” (or, I’m always better than you no matter what.)

    The thing is, the only people offended by this are people who it applies to. Most of the members of GameFAQS or Gamespot for example.

    Go visit Gamespot’s ‘Console Wars’ section to understand fanboys.

  29. Very intresting, if I had money I would be one of these guys, but I would probably have anime, 4chan, modern geek stuff everywhere..perhaps even a computer! XD (joke)

  30. How could apple not be mentioned once yet? There are no fanboys more pathetic than an iTard.

  31. You poke fun at fanboys for having no life yet you (seemingly) spend a hell of alot of time blogging stuff?

    Yes they can be annoying but this is pretty much as low as they are. It’s pretty much a gigantic waste of time.

    as for your facts…
    “So games developed for both systems tend to look better on the 360.
    Now those are the facts.”

    i think you will find, although you are correct about the 360 being easier to code for, the PS3 still has the SLIGHT graphical advantage and if anything, the ps3 looks a little better. Take mercenaries 2 for example, theres about a billion fanboy and comparison videos, although as i said the improvements only slight if at all so really its just another line for fanboys to spout.

    in truth i think you need to just enjoy whichever console brings out whichever games you like, and stop blogging about fanboys. 😉

  32. To the contra mister jeff I found the article perfect! See the 360 in the head? Did that offend you? See the wait until next year? See the Marios on the wall? ROFL! I think he touched on a personal subject because you snapped back like someone just talked about your mother….badly! OUCH! It was Funny thing is I used to be a mild Genesis, then ps1 fantoy. Now I just have favorites but love all systems because NONE WILL EVER HAVE ALL THE TOP GAMES. Unless the article Bruce made about one system ends up coming true one day.

  33. I thought the pics were funny. But no gaming system is superior. They just have better qualities than the others. XBOX 360 has XBOX Live, PS3 has a bigger Hard Drive and the Wii is appealing to all ages. But I’m a Playstation guy.

  34. hmmm,
    i’m digging up an old subject here , and i think i’m sticking my head in the noose as well, so i’m going to tread lightly here, if i may.

    To begin, i own a PC and several consoles, and have played PC online MMO’s for aprox 8 years now, and have read more forums than i care to recall. i’ve seen many fanboys and trolls post across a range of forums, seen how games can (and do) become esqued by ranting and shouting matched between fanboys and trolls. even between people who play the same game on the same format. ( class’ist arguements and balancing issues tend to bring both out in droves)…

    …something i refer to as the ” cry NERF and unleash the trolls of war ” effect

    in effect, one class in a game believes it’s underpowered compared to another, …usually to the forum cry of ” so and so a class is OVERPOWERED / imbalanced / better than my class…NERF IT!!!!!”

    NERF = to fix/reduce the overall effectiveness of a class so as to bring it in line ( in the eyes of the other player) so as to be of a level playing field.

    little or no consideration is given by the offending party to such aspects of gaming or possibilitys such as …the other person may have a better specification of machine, or be better at playing his/her class than the offended person is at playing theirs.

    this leaves the game provider with a difficult position
    ( highly simplified here, by myself)

    do they …
    A) leave things as they are , and risk alienating a percentage of the paying fanbase

    B) “fix /nerf” the mentioned class by lowering it’s stats and risk alienating a (different class)percentage of the paying fanbase

    c) lock down any offending part of the game forum and hope the issue goes away….

    these being the 3 most common answers.. ( and also ” to my mind” kneejerk reactions)

    when what they should be doing is

    1) investigating the class in question and seeing if it is
    ” comparible” with the abilities of the other class’s
    2) taking the findings of point 1 , and seeing how this reflects vis-a-vis on the other class’s , AND ALSO the overall balance of the game
    and 3) balancing the other class’s up , if need be , to the level of the aformentioned class. (and maybe even the PvE world /npc mobs as well)

    comparing B) to 3)

    B) if you nerf the class , some will be happy , but the whole of the class that is nerf’d gets up in arms and itself cry’s nerf …most aimed at the class that cried nerf on it , but some will also cry nerf on the other class’s as well.

    this rapidly becomes a viscious cycle with class after class hit by the “nerfbat” until the whole game becomes a pile of bovine excrement.
    (i wont mention the name of any online game so as not to offend anyone , and more precisely so that i dont get sued for liable)
    suffice to say that most of you will probably be able to name 2-3 in the privacy of your own minds.

    3) the game dev’s balance the other class’s in the game UPWARDS. this tends to have the following
    (again i’ve simplified) effect.
    all the other class’s get to “feel the love” as it were, and the (players of the) class that got the cry of nerf called against it tend to (generally)think…
    ” they all got the love…we didn’t , but at least we wern’t nerf’d… maybe we were a little overpowered afterall”….

    they ( the entire gamer/fan/paying customer base) are then either happy to be stronger in their class , or content that their class wasn’t nerf’d.

    and generally the entire community is happier for the balance that has been made.
    ( or at least until the next patch or X-pac )

    so whats this got to do with fanboys ?
    or trolls for that matter?
    well… it’s the fanboy nature to call nerf on anything they percieve to be better than themselves for SELFISH reasons,
    and the nature of trolls to stir things up to cause the most chaos they can for their own SELFISH ammusement.

    between them, and with the (unwitting) help of any games company willing to give an expedient , rather than a considered responce,
    they break games, gaming communities, and end up driving the very game they enjoy, into the ground…and destroying it forever.

    this is just one way an established and well loved game can fail, there are many other ways it can fail too. most can be considered in part or in total to be in responce to the game company not getting a handle on the wants/needs and preferences of it’s paying customers, and/or a failure to upkeep and provide the gaming experience this customer base desires.

    one possible example of this.

    so, whats the definition of a fanboy?
    well, to be honest , i’m not going to point the finger here.
    reason? well , i’m hardly whiter than white or holier than thou. i’ve had my share of /rants on forums and can hardly go pointing the finger without feeling some sence of hypocracy.

    suffice to say, fanboys can be likened to religious fundamentalists. if you dont share their point of view, or make comment that they take offence to , then you are , or become, THE ENEMY.
    it’s another form of mental extremism, and in time , i’m sure , some psyciatrist will label it as some form of obsessive/compulsive behaviour.

    me ? well, i had a boyhood dream, it was long, long ago, and in a galaxy far away. someone broke that dream, and i have NEVER forgiven them, and i’m ashamed to say , that i think i never will.

    suffice to say, i have not brought any form of sony product in the last 6 years, and i doubt i ever will.

  35. @Steve

    You play too much WoW.

  36. Fanboys are the unpaid slaves of websites.With all the traffic they generate for a site because of the trolling, spamming and flaming they do, there will be no need for search engine optimization or other methods to get a site to top 10 on google. More money for a site through paid ads means more profits.

    Fanboys are not confined to a certain age group. Some are in their late 40’s. They are not overburdened by logic, correct reasoning and common sense and will use colorful words about homosexuality, sexual/anal intercourse and oral sex to aptly describe anyone who slightly disagrees with them.

    And what is a fanboy’s favorite tagline? ” I am NOT a ( insert console name here ) fanboy but I think……”.

    Lastly, only a fanboy will be offended by this site. Obviously, Jeff is one of them.

  37. Bruce,
    Kudos to you. I love, love, love this article. It is obvious that you touched a bone in a few fanboys here, upset that you put the square peg in the square hole. I have a friend whom got very upset when I unknowingly spelled mac as MAC. Instead of saying let me correct you there guy, he blasted me with, “Not MAC, its Mac or mac. This is a thing that really bothers me.” I thought classic example of a FANBOY (please excuse the caps). Just like a multitude of misspelled words in posts from Jeff and others.

    And how is it racism by diagnosing a fanboy as one whom is obsessed by a lump of plastic?

    Keep up the good work. Seems pretty accurate to me.

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