Monday, December 19, 2005

Monopoly It's Not

GAME means different things to different folks - but here at Dwelling, it involves phrases like "Pimp My Elf" and "I'm attacking the Darkness" and chants of "Meat! Meat! Meat!". We do play board games (like Killer Bunnies, San Juan, Catan, and Star Munchkin) but that's playing games, not GAME. GAME is all about the mind, man! (Well, the mind and a few props - like this strange orb/claw thing on a staff that is in the corner of my library. The Troll Boys have not offered an explanation and it's likely better not to know <---voice of experience speaking.)

More than one RPG (=Role Playing Game) is played at this house. The kids (our five plus a few of their geekier friends) play a d20 Star Wars RPG most Wednesday nights. Sweet Hubby has been involved in Feng Shui and Shadowrun games before, but currently The Troll Boys are back to the tried and true, hack and slash: Dungeons and Dragons (version 3.5). If you know even a teensy, tiny, little bit about D&D then you should check out the online comic The Order of the Stick. It totally cracks me up.
On the serious side, there are all kinds of valuable lessons to be learned from RPG's and other assorted geeky pursuits. My kids have learned teamwork, attention to detail, index/research skills, how to solve logic puzzles, several versions of the Badger Song and the lyrics to "I Like the Moon". They have also heard the cautionary tale told by my friend E. One of the fellows in E's husband's gaming group moved to California. This is no impediment to participating in GAME. Not with cell phones and conference call technology. He is a mobile gamer. So mobile in fact, that he went to the grocery to pick up a few things right in the middle of a battle with Ogres. Naturally the gaming group defeated all the Evil Ogres and this is what the nice folks at the grocery store heard:
"Is he dead? Well, make sure before you loot the body. Nah, I don't think we need to waste time moving the corpses around. No one will find them in that cave."
Yep - nothing that a ride downtown with some nice men in blue and several MORE phone calls couldn't clear up in a few hours.
Ahhh GAME. What's not to love?

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