Wanda DaviesUnited States
One of the reasons I got into this hobby is that the greater world of humans is often difficult for me to stomach. I bury my head in cardboard, wood, and plastic because listening to the news or going out among others is to become part of a large body over which I have no control- or it feels that way.
Leaving the house is to be barraged by things I don't agree with- the decisions other people make whether they know they're making them or not. I am not better than other people. I make decisions that I don't believe to be the moral choice. Certain choices I make, I make because they seem easier. If I feel bad about that, I can read a rule book.
To leave the house is to be in a state of wariness and perpetual self defense. There is beauty in the world, and I must leave to see these things. There is also signage and other means which other people use to try to effect my mind. People want me to think a certain way. People want me to do what they want me to do. They may do this because they may profit. They may do this because they must convince others of their world-view to vindicate it. I think this is happening to everybody, whether they notice it or not. I think people either fight or accept it, resist stubbornly or grow tired and get swept away.
Or they hide. Or...
There are more options. There must be more options, some of which I can think about but do not want to list and some which I likely do not know. Does the Tao Te Ching teach me not to see these things? Or does it teach the way to see and pass through the salesmanship like a ghost?
There is always some escape in gaming. If there weren't a need for escape, people would play their life and find joy or contentment there. To game is to be somewhere else. To game is to succeed without risk. To game is to have control. But games are in the world and, thus, are part of the world. There is no escape from the world in the world.
The culture of contained gaming is smaller than the cultures that contain it. It is a culture in which one can communicate with the producers of the product one is consuming. It is a culture in which thought is rewarded and intelligence is valued. It is a culture that draws individuals who are not satisfied with more accessible activities. People game for a reason. It is not something one falls into like the world of television.
That is how I want to see games. That is how I see contained gamingdom at its best. I wonder if I'm squinting. I wonder if I'm seeing the reflection of light from the past and my mind hasn't caught up to what is here now and what is yet to come. I watch video reviews that glorify qualities that seem to belong to the larger culture- flash, buttoned-up professionalism (which seems like a denial of the self for the purpose of benefiting the self- to be professional is to remove oneself and place it in some temple of the unhuman, on a pedestal designed to hold the bust they'll make of your head after you die) material over idea; the holding of some tangible mockery of a dream versus the opportunity to touch the elusive feeling I am looking for- a wholeness of dimension, the fullness that is felt when the experience feels like it is a part of life rather than an image on a screen of four dudes taking turns rolling the dice. I hear designers talk about designing based on the next-big-thing in the industry and I wonder what will become of the hobby.
Not knowing what will transpire, each post will chronicle my attempts to use a first time reading of the Tao Te Ching to inform my decisions during solo plays of Antoine Bauza's Ghost Stories. I shall read a little of the book each week and juxtapose its passages with a sort of session report. I will not read or heed any other advice on how to play the game well. I shall attempt to play on Thursday nights and post the following Friday.
15 Aug 2011
- [+] Dice rolls