4/10/12

UNPLUGGED

An essential part of the game, for me, lies in its social aspect: you meet people face to face and spend hours and hours with them, you get involved into clubs, flyers printing, and all the activities required by the fact that you're actually fostering a social event of sorts. Think about a campaign: that's a night a week, or every other week maybe, for months. And during this night, you meet the same people again and again. One day, they're bound to become friends for good, or to leave the game table.

There are those moments in the early morning where you laugh and talk together about what's happened during the play and the bewildered looks upon the face of innocent bystanders. There's Steph shouting « backstab, backstab » in the bus, Fred and I fighting a lightsaber duel with neon lights, there was this day where I played ZZ Top loud during the game, and the first day I've started smoking pipe, and it was with them, my fellow adventurer friends.

I've made a few of my lifelong friends with Dungeons & Dragons, I've met them at the local shop, at the club or in the wider roleplayers community, friends of friends and the like. To me, that's a whole part of what Dungeons & Dragons is: you risk yourself socially, you get to meet people out of the snug comfort of your boundaries, and you're going to share your passion with them.

There's none of this all online, whether you play with Google+, speak over Teamspeak or Ventrilo, and use tools or not to get your mapping and notes done. None of this all. While I quite like the fun of playing online with a headset, for a World of Warcraft raid maybe, it's quite a different experience from your good old Dungeon in the basement because it basically rips the social need off the game, and thus, rids the game of one of its major benefit. It's like « I'm blogger this and that, hello » and of course, you'll remain blogger this and that forever because nobody will really challenge you over Google+ or maybe D&DI with NEXT, how could they? So, gentlemen, I'm saying, you're taking no risks anymore and take the tiny really useful and good parts of this game out of the scenery, and that's bad.

I know, it's probably the way our western societies go anyway, lonely people everywhere pretending friends with other people they never met, never will, and to be honest, never want to meet. Well, that's not enough for my game.

2 comments:

  1. A great post. In addition to hosting my "real faces at the table" RPG sessions every other week, I went a step further and began hosting a monthly dinner party where my wife and I invite random friends, including usually someone from the gaming table, over for a dinner of lasagna and a game of "Apples to Apples."

    When you do that enough times, you begin to realize that the "social media" is just feeding a rubber bone to a hungry dog.

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  2. Indeed. Good move on your part to make the social hangout happen quicker through your monthly dinners, you're actually re-creating what spontaneously happened in the old days. Times being what they are, zeitgeist and all, we may need such moves, yeah.

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