Living Life By Playing The Game

My father views board games as a critical tool for learning concepts such as tactics, probability, and the importance of having flexible plans.  This is why he had to beat me at every game of Risk for two years, he claims.  “I couldn’t just let you win.  The game would have been pointless if you just win.”  I didn’t win my first game against him until I was nearly thirteen years old, at which point I asked him if there were any other games we could play.  He went to the massive double door cabinets that held all his dusty games and brought to the table a box much smaller than that of Risk, which admittedly had me disappointed and suspicious.  It simply read Stratego.  That’s not even a real word!  At least Sorry and Trouble are real words, I thought to myself.  He explained the basic rules of the game and then we began to set up our pieces.  He went first.

Table top gaming is an art form to me.  I know some people just see it as a way to pay homage to their fandom, others see it as a tool for hanging out with friends, and some just enjoy the competition of it all.  But I can never see a game as something quite that simple; rather, they provide me with inspiration, laughs, enlightenment, satisfaction, debate, creation, goals, wit, and mass quantities of joy.  Gaming isn’t a hobby for me, but rather a section of my life that I carry with me everywhere I go.

Now that my love and adoration of gaming has been established, you should probably know that I’m extremely critical of the medium.  If I’m to invest my funds, time, and friends’ time in a product, then I want high quality.  I believe in quality over quantity and don’t want to wake up to see that my board games and role playing books are all the same thing just painted differently.  With prices often matching or exceeding a new video game, the board game companies must remain making the best possible games they can and avoid at all cost the mediocre.  I want to be impressed when I play a new game, not simply accepting of it.

Like anybody, though, I have preferences.

Horror is delightfully deliciously delectable in every sense.  I am practically a cultist when it comes to H.P. Lovecraft and the Cthulhu Mythos because for me it’s not enough to just read the stories. I like the board games, video games, comics, movies, clothing, toys; all of it.  Does this make me a mindless consumer? I ponder at times.  No.  Why not?  Because I still have quality control over this encroaching Lovecraftian madness.  In honesty I would be far angrier should I play a bad game that’s steeped in the Cthulhu Mythos than if I played a poorly-built Civil War game.  Don’t just start trying to prod me with tentacles; I demand some crazy chanting first and a minimum of at least four hooded cultists.  Oh, and my favorite story by him is The Rats in the Walls; yes, it’s somewhat outside of the Cthulhu Mythos, but it just grips you.  Plus it was the first story by Lovecraft I ever read.

I also enjoy movies a great deal and am planning on presenting you with a variety of sci-fi films that are must-see’s while potentially stumbling across the occasional dud that must be avoided at all cost.  I often tend to blur the lines of sci-fi and horror, though, so I’ll try my best to limit it to sci-fi and sci-fi horror films.

I’m pretty sure it’s self-evident that I enjoy writing, otherwise I wouldn’t be doing this.  Other interests include comics, cartoons, investigating geek culture (stumbling about online looking for cool things so I can go “Oh, that’s cool.”), video games, and the outdoors.

While this is the first time I’ll have my writings read by others I’m hoping to continue this trend and have my short stories published and eventually work up to writing a series of books and comics, because when it comes to writing I honestly love nearly every medium, as is the same with gaming.

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