It’s 11 PM and I feel like writing something. I think tonight I’ll talk about gaming. Gaming brings to my mind several things; board games, video games, or my favorite, tabletop wargaming. In the latter, miniature representations, or models, are used to simulate a battlefield. There are many rules that govern how the game is played. But, ultimately, all a tabletop game is, is a glorified chess game.
Two players go head-to-head to achieve victory by satisfying certain victory conditions. Victory can be achieved by removing key pieces from the board, or occupying specific zones of the table with game pieces.
Tonight, I’d like to just write down my thoughts about why I think the game is so fun. The actual name of the game isn’t necessary.
It has to do with interaction within a new world. And that’s what it is, a new world. In this fantastical place there is a war. There is a contest between 2 different forces and I’m projected into this conflict. And to continue with the chess metaphor, there is also the relationship between the 2 players.
Rules govern how we live and interact with each other as people. Sometimes these rules are complicated and vague. These rules of etiquette, of politeness, can cause stress and anxiety. People are irrational and do not behave in a predictable fashion. Sometimes I don’t enjoy trying to figure out what these rules are and instead will withdraw and prefer to be alone. I think this is normal for everyone.
If you agree, then you’ll understand why gaming is so cool. There are rules, obviously, but there are agreed-upon by all the players involved. The rules are the only constant. Everything else within the game is the unknown. So gaming is life, but reversed.
Instead of having unknown rules, the game forces the rules on both players. The rules do not change and instead make the players’s decisions simple. While the outcome of the game is unknown, at least all the rules were followed.
Life has no set rules; hence, the confusion (and often despair?)
Gaming uses rules, they are constant, and all parties know them. The excitement, the discovery part (click here for more about discovery), is that the outcome of a game is unknown. But, whatever the ending, it is safe. Safe, as you can go at it again and again.
I like to play games, because then real life feels simple.