— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) June 5, 2016
Everyone knows Elon Musk as the charismatic CEO of Tesla and SpaceX who is dead set on finding ways to improve humanity through technology and space exploration.
But what sets him apart from other well-known tech CEOs in Silicon Valley (excluding Min-Liang Tan of Razer) is that he is a massive video game fan.
Elon Musk Loves Overwatch Like Everyone Else
Late last year, Elon Musk was a guest on Y Combinator’s How to Build the Future series on YouTube where he talked about his daily life, his fears, all the different projects he has his hands on, and artificial intelligence.
In an outtake released just yesterday, it was revealed that aside from revolutionising electric cars and colonising Mars, Elon Musk is still pretty much a gamer at heart.
While closing off the session, interviewer Sam Altman asked Elon Musk for a video game recommendation. Almost instantly, Musk blurted out Overwatch, and continued to lavish praise for the game and its developer Blizzard.
If you are follower of all things Elon Musk, this would not come as a surprise to you.
Back in June last year shortly after the game’s release, Elon Musk clearly outed himself as one of the early adopters recommending the game to all of his followers on Twitter.
Gizmodo tried to dig a little deeper by asking the man himself which character is his favourite but their advances was rebuffed as Musk says that his go-to hero is “too embarrassing”.
Another Blizzard game which he highly recommends is Hearthstone, a game which his children play often.
He’s A Big Fan Of Shooter Games (With A Story)
Towards the end of the video, he also gushed over another of his favourite games, Deus Ex – a first-person shooter game set in a cyber punk dystopian future, and more specifically the original one. This was because it had a better story as compared to its sequels.
He goes on to agree that modern games lack great storytelling, as older game used to rely on that to compensate for less-than-stellar graphics.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) August 3, 2014
That’s not to say that he doesn’t enjoy more recent games too, albeit them being a few years old.
In 2014, he tweeted to a follower about how much he loved games such as Mass Effect 2, a role playing game, and Saints Row IV, a an open world action-adventure game.
In 2015, Elon Musk was the subject of a Reddit AMA (Ask Me Anything). As usual, he answered many questions regarding Tesla and SpaceX, but he also took some time to address some questions about his favourite video games.
Again the whole “shooter games with a story” theme makes a comeback here as Musk singles out games such as Mass Effect, Bioshock and Fallout. Interestingly enough (and somewhat expected) he also loves real-time strategy games, giving Civilization and Warcraft (another Blizzard classic) a mention.
According To Him, We May As Well Be Living In A Video Game
While he does love his video games, he also has some thoughts about the possibility of the world we living in being just a giant simulated video game.
At Code Conference 2016, he told the audience about what he thought of the probability that we are already living in a simulated reality.
“The strongest argument for us being in a simulation is the following: 40 years ago, we had Pong. Two rectangles and a dot. Now, 40 years later, we have photorealistic 3D with millions playing simultaneously. If you assume any rate of improvement at all, then the games will become indistinguishable from reality, even if that rate of advancement drops by 1000 from what it is now. It’s a given that we’re clearly on a trajectory that we’re going to have games that are indistinguishable from reality. It would seem to follow that the odds that we’re in base reality is 1 in millions.”
To break it down into laymen’s terms, in 40 years, games as entertainment has developed at such a rapid pace that it has started to skew our perception of what is real and what isn’t – especially with the introduction of virtual and augmented realities.
We wish more CEOs will come forward with their love for video games – enough with the boring exercise routines, diet plans and habits that famous bosses do.