Wednesday, October 3, 2007


Depending on your genre, this acronym may mean Rocket Propelled Grenades or, in this case, Role Playing Games. Many, many moons ago when I was but a wee 8-bit sprite (so, back in the late 70s...), my friends at school would occasionally indulge in a game of Dungeons and Dragons, which was pretty new back then. Of course, these were played at a table - computer games were sort of limited to 8-colour PacMan (in a pub) and primitive versions of snake and Pong (on our Microbee Z-80, where they had to be loaded into the machine's memory from a casette tape :-) - and our family was unusual because we had a computer at home...) Mum used to game with the folks at work - their choice was a game called 'Diplomacy', and while not strictly speaking an RPG in the modern sense, it involved 'being' the country (and they occasionally dressed up to look the part - her costume one time as 'Turkey' was incredible!) I never really got into RPGs myself, but associating with gamers from an early age gave me a kind of understanding of them if not actual appreciation.

So I felt considerable glee when I came across that Oldie-But-Goodie on YouTube recently, Summoner Geeks. I first saw this clip after a mate had played through the Summoner game on the playstation - "Get a load of this!" It was screamingly funny back then, because although neither of us played RPGs, most of our friends did - and it wasn't that far off real life, we both knew people like that...

Now, 30-odd years later, the RPG thingy has come home to roost again as the Eldest Daughter is heavily involved in (table top!) D&D and has managed to snare the interest of the Youngest Daughter. The Middle Daughter is much more interested in FPS (First Person Shooter) games, in which RPG takes on a totally different meaning... And then we have the Guild Wars and WoW addictions... Yes, I have three TTBs (that's Tech-Talking Babes for the uninitiated).

My kids are all geeks: computer-literate, pale-skinned beings with incredible hand-eye coordination, who can carry amazingly complicated maps and storylines in their heads, and talk about characters in the games they're playing like they're old friends; the real friends they've made through the games that they play, whether face-to-face or online, are almost like war buddies - I mean, they've been on campaigns together, faced incredible odds, and lived through it. And they've probably learned more about human communication, relationships and negotiations through these interactions that they would have learnt in the real world in 10 years, because the games are intensified vignettes of life.

My kids are geeks... and so am I, and so were my parents before me... Ain't it grand!

(And while I can still outrun them, I have to put a link to this!)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

You'd better be wearing YOUR boots of escaping, coz I have a +3 crossbow with Seeking bolts with your name on 'em ;)