The Best Part About Gaming
In the Here and Now we have many different forms of entertainment. There are video games, television, movies, plays, reading, etc. But there are really only two that promote a level of interaction that I deem worthwhile (I am excluding basic conversation and including interactions among friends). While those others can be very fun and live up to the name of entertainment, gaming is the pastime that I'm referring to. In this case, gaming stands for both board games and table top role-playing. For the purpose of my illustration I'm going to use RPGs, and in particular a piece of interaction that took place in one such game involving my table top gaming group consisting of my best friends and my two eldest children.
The resulting creativity that ensues once you have a group immerse themselves in the art of role-play can bring out some delightful and surprising wit, humor, and problem solving capabilities. You don't get that through modern entertainment despite the xBox Live chat (which is really just in place so you can talk smack without the fear of a much larger, more vengeful player kicking your trash for it). For example:
I had presented the party with the problem of finding a means to teleport the group back to a location where they could reproach an adventure that had trapped two of their members and chased the others out for fear of their lives. They were referred to an eccentric wizard who liked to rhyme and drink, and while drunkenly rhyming, had a difficult time discerning who his potential customers were from the wall behind them. I was in full character mode, acting out the drunken abstractness when one of the party suggested that they find a way to sober him up before allowing him to teleport them. When they couldn't come up with a magical method for sobering, and still under pressure to get back and rescue their companions so they couldn't wait for the alcohol to wear off, my son suggested the following.
"We could set him on fire a little...that'd sober me up real quick."
Now, I ask you: what other form of entertainment provides such an outlet for creative thinking? Not to mention situations that can result in so much genuine laughter!
posted by Bromern Sal on 4/23/2019 at 03:18:34 PM
Preach it like it is, brother!
posted by Sibelius Eos Owm on 10/24/2010 at 02:51:58 AM
I have a regular gaming group that meets up weekly to play Legend of Five Rings 4th edition. It's a good game and all, but sometimes real life gets in the way of people showing up. One of those times, two of my players told me on a forum we have that they couldn't make then next session. Since I knew the remaining three were interested in trying World of Darkness, I decided to prepare a single session Vampire game. I had about a day and a half to prepare. Originally I was planning on a mortal game, but the players were more interested in a Vampire game, so that half-a-day got wasted in finding that out. I printed out sheets, made up four characters real quick (so that I could use the one left to look as the skill-list), and prepared a simple, bare-boned plot. The players were going to be sent after a traitor as a way of testing them.
One part about gaming that I love is the improvisation, and that Vampire game offered nothing but. The players got characters they had never seen before, and they took them to places I never would have guessed while doing the bare minimum planning. Instead of going to the two bars like I suggested, they went to the traitor's home, looked around and talked to the neighbor. One of them asked very excited if the neighbor was an old woman. I rolled a die to decide (even numbers are yes, odd numbers are no), and said "Yes, it's an old, short, blind hag that walks with a pair of crutches." We laughed so much over that character, because the players either failed to intimidate her or forgot she was blind: "Have you seen anything out of the ordinary?" Eventually, they did bleed her dry, but she was so memorable that they suggested that she'd at least appear in every campaign that we'd play from now on. No other form of entertainment allows you (yourself) to create such memorable characters, and that is another reason why I love RPGs.
posted by Skari-dono on 2/25/2011 at 03:40:29 PM
WEll said. I too enjoy the creativity inherent in a good gaming session. Although putting together goo people isnt always the easiest of endeavors. It is good to hear there are groups of dedicated gamers that gravitate towards one another.
posted by Teancum on 11/21/2011 at 10:24:56 PM
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