Raised on a diet of Tetris and Super Mario Bros, there has since been something of a hiatus in my gaming career.
But the release of Rugby World Cup 2011, coupled with a neighbour's penchant for his PlayStation3, got me flexing my thumbs again.
Unlike football (of the association variety), tranferring rugby to the games console is no easy task. With football, you need to kick, tackle and head. With rugby, you need to pass, ruck, maul, scrummage, punt, chip, nudge a grubber, take a lineout... The task for programmers is not easy.
Getting your head around the controls of Rugby World Cup 2011 takes a game or two - particularly for the modern gaming novice like me - but before too long you get the knack, and the result is a heap of fun.
With 20 teams to choose from, you can take charge of everyone from the All Blacks to Namibia. My recommendation is to avoid selecting France - I had three hot-headed players sin-binned in one half for dangerous tackles. No stereotyping from the programmers, then!
Rather like the Wrigleys chewing gum I used to munch on while playing Tetris all those years ago, Rugby World Cup 2011 is better when you share it with some one. This game comes into its own when you go head-to-head - and with a couple of beers on ice, it's a belting way to continue the World Cup atmosphere when there's no game on the box.
In an effort to recreate the vibe of a live televised match, there is even commentary from Stuart Barnes, Miles Harrison et al. Their repertoire of remarks seemed a little repetitive during my first stab at the game, but that probably reflected my narrow abilities rather than limited programming.
An ideal sideorder to the Rugby World Cup itself, this game is a tasty accompaniment to the real-life action in New Zealand. I'm glad I came out of gaming retirement for this one.
Enjoy a taste of the game here.
Rugby World Cup 2011, by 505 Games and HB Studios, is available for the Xbox 360 and PlayStation3 2011. For more information, visit www.rwc2011game.com and facebook.com\rwc2011game