Thursday, September 15, 2011

Speak Out With Your Geek Out: Role Playing Games

Speak Out With Your Geek Out is a week long effort for geeks everywhere to share their love of all things geeky, to demolish stereotypes, and to inspire and uplift the geek community.  The web site puts it this way: "Take a stance against baiting nerd rage and stereotypes of geeks.  Post about how much you love your geeky hobbies or vocation from Monday, September 12th, 2011 to Friday, September 16th on your blog, website, social media account or in a forum somewhere." As a geeky preacher's wife, I'm all about demolishing stereotypes so how could I not participate?

The only question is, which geeky hobby to choose? I've already shared photos of cosplay (costume play) from a steampunk convention (and probably will again soon, as we are attending one this coming weekend). So should I talk about my geeky TV love? Doctor Who, Firefly, Buffy, Babylon 5, Stargate (just started this epic series!), Star Trek (grew up on the original), etc. All loved. Or my former WoW guild that I miss terribly (time and finances currently keeping me from Azeroth)? Or how about the role playing games (RPG) that I enjoy playing with friends many Friday nights?  Okay, I think I'll land on that last one.

We don't usually play in steampunk gear.
This just happened to be at a steampunk con.
Most Friday nights find us getting together with a group of geeky friends to play some kind of game. Sometimes we play Muchkin or Gloom or Shadows Over Camelot, but most of the time we play a role playing game.  Now before you start thinking we're all crazy, let me assure that role playing games are not as weird as they may sound.  They're just like any other game, with rules and an order of gameplay, but there is more freedom in determining the direction of the game and more creativity to be had in making choices.  The story element involved is a lot of fun and helping to decide which way the story goes kicks it up a notch from your typical board game. Usually dice rolls will determine whether or not you are successful in your chosen action and consequences are determined based on that.  You work together with your group to complete various quests or challenges.  The opportunities for critical thinking and creativity abound.


One of the games we play is based on the movie, Serenity. In this game, we play a group of rag tag space cowboys trying to make our way in a civilization many of us have fought against in the previous war. My character is based on River, a young girl who is a genius but who has been experimented on by the government and so is...well...a little leaky in the brain pan. While I don't play River, I do play a character who is a genius but also has a leaky brain pan.  She's a lot of fun.

Now before you start thinking I pretend to be this character, let me assure that's not the case.  I play the game as if I were this character. This means I don't always make the best decision for game play, I make the one I think the character would make.  I love this part of role playing because sometimes what she would do is not the best for the group, or even for her, but it sure does keep things exciting!  As someone who has a love for story, role playing games fit right in with my passions. I'm glad I have great friends who appreciate them as well!
 

How about you?  Do you have a geeky pleasure? If you don't really "get" the geek, do you find it helpful to read about these various interests from such a wide variety of people? Or are you shaking your head right now thinking, "Wow, she's crazy."?  I'd love to hear from you in the comment section!




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