Like many classic gamers, I have always been about having a game in physical format whenever possible. We all know the benefits-you always have it (until given/sold or when you die) and content wise it will be the same as the day you bought it. And that's the practice I typically follow.

On a typical weekday, my total "work" day doesn't end until maybe 7 PM. By day I'm a computer technician, solving the techie problems of my clients but then when I step through the front door of the house, I switch professions and become the house chef to solve the culinary problem of empty bellies and picky palates. So needless to say, it's quite the shift in gears. Usually, within maybe five minutes of walking in the door, the youngest members of my brood will bombard me asking play games/watch TV/etc. Yesterday was not typical.

My fourth oldest step son came up to me and said something normally one's wife would say (though my wife was at work already)-"Do you know what your son did today?" My full blood son, my second child that I unleashed to the world, is a young age of four. He's a stubborn boy whose influences come from his five and seven-year-old half brothers, who I have dubbed "The Noodle Brothers" as you could pick anyone of them up by the head and their body would wiggle like a noodle in the wind. My son, who I tried to teach how to handle DVDs and such properly (my daughter, from my previous marriage, got this down pat before that age), had attempted to remove disc of "The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild" from its case. Why he was trying, I don't know. The result was he snapped the disc clean in two.

Now, I was more disappointed than anything. He's four which gives him a bit of an out as he doesn't quite understand what happened. He might have cried earlier but when I spoke with him, he just shrugged about it. I was even more disappointed with his siblings as the issue of respecting personal property (and taking care of the stuff of mine I let them play with) has been going on for quite a while. The kids don't get the concept, even to a degree of the eldest, which turned twenty one today. As the family was always large, people would drop off clothes and toys (a lot of times broken in various ways -they figure a toy's a toy and as long as it's not in THEIR house anymore, it doesn't matter) that have accumulated over the years before I came around. So the house is pretty full with boxes of stuff here and there along with thirteen to fourteen people who live there at any given time. And toys and such get stepped on, shoved in places where they get lost, etc. This can include video game stuff where I've lost games which sometimes turn up in the most unlikely places. When you discuss how to take care of stuff, a child up to the age of fifteen just gives you this blank look like ground control is definitely NOT reaching Major Tom. It's frustrating as a parent, even more so when you're not really a "blood"parent.

While cooking, I thought of the headaches I'd not have I had downloaded the game instead. Heck, a couple years ago I ripped a bunch of "Baby Einstein" DVDs to my PS3 as the tapes and discs we had were getting beat up. That worked great. I like Steam on my PCs as my saves are saved in the Cloud and the software is always there to reinstall if need be. Though to be honest, PC and online downloads have never been a big deal to me since I first downloaded the shareware version of Doom over Prodigy years back. But I would never had gotten BOTW for the price I did if I downloaded.

In the end, I chalk it up as a lesson learned for me and hopefully for my kids. My rule is "if it breaks, I'm not replacing it" and I'm sticking to it, even though it's my game. And hopefully, this time, the lesson of taking care of other people's stuff (and maybe their own) will sink in.