Gamers Get Nostalgic Over Their First Ever System in 'Console Pathway' Trend

A nostalgic trend on social media has gamers sharing their "console pathways," revealing where they first got hooked on the pastime and how their tastes have changed over time.

Twitter users are posting a chronological breakdown of every gaming system they have ever owned. In doing so, they get to reflect on what first sparked their interest in the hobby and if there are any particular brands that they have stuck with over the decades.

One tweet from streamer James Buckley on the topic has amassed over 13,000 quote retweets and has been liked over 10,000 times.

For example, Kinda Funny's Parris Lily has shared a lengthy list that encompasses over 20 different consoles. His "pathway" spans all the way from the Atari 2600 in the 1980s, through to the Sega Dreamcast, the PlayStation 3 and most recently the Xbox Series X. It is almost a comprehensive overview of the entire history of gaming consoles.

What was your video game console pathway?

Atari 2600 -> Intellivison -> Vectrex -> NES -> Turbo Grafx 16 -> SNES -> Saturn -> N64 -> Dreamcast -> PS2 -> Xbox -> Gamecube -> Xbox 360 -> PS3 -> Wii -> PS4 -> Xbox One -> Switch -> PS5 -> Xbox Series X

— Parris (@vicious696) September 7, 2021

Of course, that is nothing compared to self-professed vintage collectors, who have managed to get their hands on obscurer systems like the handheld WonderSwan (which was never even released in Western territories).

I'm a collector so mine takes some weird detours:
NES > Game Boy > SNES > N64 > PS1 > Dreamcast > NGPC > Saturn > Gamecube > PS2 > Xbox > Wii > Xbox 360 > Virtual Boy > PS3 > Turbo-GrafX 16 > Wonderswan > Wii U > PS4 > Xbox One > Switch > Ouya > Xbox Series S > PS5

— Michael mained Link before it was cool | ACAB (@crotchmaster) September 7, 2021

On a related topic of niche consoles, @casulcr observed that not many people have mentioned the forgotten Nintendo Famicom in their pathways.

Meanwhile, some gamers have considerably shorter lists, like @HighQualityAdam, whose first console was the Xbox 360 back in 2005. Likewise, @Novationo cut their teeth on the Wii and @FriedPotatoes42 started out with the Nintendo DS handheld device.

@rockcock64 noted that tweets like these have made them feel prematurely old and that they do not want to look at anymore of them.

I’m not reading those “What was your video game console pathway?” Tweets because I don’t want to feel twice my age.

— rockcock64 (@rockcock64) September 6, 2021

Others Twitter users have primarily stuck to a single brand for their gaming life. According to their pathway, @TheVioletPrime has chosen an Xbox system for each console generation, only deviating once to get a PS2. On the opposite end of the spectrum, @richardllyodd88 confesses to being a staunch PlayStation loyalist.

Weighing in on this discussion, Twitch streamer Justin Chandler argues that PC gaming is the definitive experience instead.

The story of the real ones:

PS2 👉🏼 Xbox 360 👉🏼 PS4 👉🏼 PC

— Justin Chandler (@KOSDFF) September 5, 2021

@Common_Soul2 echoes this sentiment, revealing that he permanently switched to PC after the PS3 era, so that he did not have to pay subscription fees in order to play games online.

Finally, @DavetheCamel used this opportunity to take a shot at the availability of next-gen consoles like the PS5, noting that the worldwide supply issues have cut his pathway short.

What was your video game console pathway?

Atari 2600 -> NES -> SNES/Genesis -> PSX -> PS2 -> Wii -> PS3 -> PS4 -> Switch -> Unable to find a PS5 anywhere

— Stephen Randle (@DavetheCamel) September 7, 2021

As a result of this ongoing conversation, systems like the Xbox 360 and Nintendo GameCube have begun trending on Twitter, with people fondly reminiscing about nostalgic titles and their favorite gaming memories.

With the release of the Steam Deck on the horizon, it will certainly be interesting to see what these pathways look like in just a few months time.

Did you become a gamer in the era of the PS2, or did you get your start a little earlier? Let us know what your console pathway looks like in the comments.

The Xbox 360 Console
The Xbox 360 was especially prolific in many console pathways and is fondly remembered by gamers to this day. David Paul Morris/Getty Images