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(Board) Gaming: The Lost Entertainment

Why don’t we play board games more often? It seems like board games are becoming yet another thing of the past, collecting dust in closets around the world, next to plastic sleeves of holographic Pokemon cards, demonic Furbies that have been harvested for batteries, and that pair of acid-wash jeans that somehow never makes it into the collection bin at the Salvation Army. It’s a mystery to me. A mystery that unfortunately can’t be solved with “Professor Plum with the candlestick in the billiards room.”A few friends and I decided to break out the neglected games the other night, and let me tell you– moving a little piece of plastic along a pre-made path on a colorful cardboard surface is quite fun. We realized board games aren’t just something that you have to play with your family in your basement, or take out because you’ve been stuck with babysitting your 6-year-old cousin.Why Board Games Are Good

  • They require thinking. Whether you are getting your brain probed with a game of Trivial Pursuit or Cranium, or if you’re just trying to figure out how your left hand is going to go on red without collapsing or tearing something.
  • Board games provide a good old fashioned form of entertainment that are rare in today’s society. In most cases, it needs not a plug, and you don’t have to funnel hundreds of more dollars into it buying upgrades and memory cards, after you’ve bought the initial game.
  • They bring people together. You’d be surprised at how many laughs a simple old board game will bring. Actually interacting with people in a good board game is much different than sharing a room with them, eyes glued to a screen.
  • There is such diversity in board games. From putting random nouns into categories (it’s a lot more fun than I’ve described it) in Apples to Apples to identifying a movie from a short clip in Scene It?, to bluffing answers to interesting questions in Malarky, there is something out there for everyone.

The (small insignificant) negatives of board games

  • They bring out the worst in some people. But you’ll just have to ignore your super competitive friend who keeps challenging every freaking word you spell in Scrabble. You know in your heart that “gruntled” is a word.
  • Small, easy to lose pieces. But who needs the little metal thimble, when it can be replaced with a real lifesize one?
  • They get old after a while. So after 5 hours of Monopoly and still no winner, sometimes it gets to be a little boring, but just switch it up. Have your friends each bring their favorite board games and once your ADD has decided it can’t buy any more properties, move on to a different game.
  • Sometimes you lose the English instructions and are only left with the Spanish, rendering you unable to play the game. I may or may not be speaking from experience in this one, but instrucciones? Wtf?

In a world where convenience and good old fashioned family fun is heralded, board games provide everything you need for a good time packaged into a box.