World Cup 2006
This is the first World Cup that I've paid attention to; I've seen matches in the past, but I didn't care at all. The reason I care now is sort of weird and embarassingly speaks to how much games influence my life. I've developed interests in my life from topics of videogames I've enjoyed. I've read Theodore Doge's books about Alexander the Great, Hannibal, and Julius Ceasar from working on the expansion pack for Rise of Nations. Started looking at Wassily Kandinsky's art after being mesmerized by Rez. Now I'm watching the World Cup thanks to Winning Eleven.
The World Cup often has great matches. The lack of commercial breaks makes it a great viewing experience; games typically clock in only a few minutes later than the 90 minutes played. The level of enthusiasm of the crowd and the players on the field is nearly unmatched, even in the preliminary games. The tournament is quite short, so every game, every goal can have a drastic impact on how far a team gets in the tournament.
The tournament's already started, but there have been some excellent matches. The Germany - Costa Rica game had 6 goals. Both teams seemed to have thought defense was largely optional. (Frings's goal in the 87th minute is an early candidate for goal of the tournament.) The Argentina - Ivory Coast game showcased how incredibly talented Argentina is and how much Drogba alone could make a difference on the Ivory Coast team. The best team I've seen play thus far is Holland; cool, methodical team play, with brilliant outbursts by Robben. As with most of teams I've seen, their defense could be improved, but overall I think they will do well. I can't wait for the Argentina- Holland match on the 21st.