I (John, btw) have written previously of my love of tabletop gaming.
On Monday night, I had an especially memorable session. My DM(Dungeon Master), Cyrus, really showcased his craftiness, both as a DM and an artist. Take-away number one: Dry ice is cool as hell.
A lot of people, namely those who have no idea what they're talking about, say that tabletop games like D&D and Pathfinder are played by basement-dwelling mouth-breathers who don't know how to interact with normal people socially. The truth of that is, of course, more complicated. In order to play these games, you must have a fine understand of people and how they work. You have to know how to interact with them, otherwise the story, and the game, cannot progress.
Of course, a lot of the situations our made-up characters get into, can be little difficult to visualize, so props are used. Sometimes terrain models and minifigures. Just to help with our visualizations. I mean, even those of us with overactive imaginations need a little help now and then. This session was a great example of that.
We are playing a game, yes. We are with our friends, doing an activity we enjoy, and usually imbibing various beverages. This leads to quite a bit of chatter and non-game related conversations.
This shut us right up.
It captured not only our attention, but our imagination. these models, made by Cyrus's hands, styrofoam, real lichen, love, and care, made a normal game session extraordinary. Some of the newbies that we play with played their best games that night.
Yes, at the end of the day, we play pretend. These characters we make are not real, obviously, and this is taking place in a fantasy world that only exists in our minds. But damn, if it isn't fun. After a long day of working, I never feel better than when I'm going over to a friends house with a cold six-pack, my notebook, and my dice-bag. Yes, sometimes we'll play until midnight or later. Yes, sometimes we get a little loud, a little too invested. But no more so than a group of friends meeting up to watch a football game. The only difference is that we can exert control over what happens. Because it's OUR story.
You will see a lot more from Cyrus, hopefully I can even get him to post some stuff here. Maybe even star in some videos, I don't know. We'll see. But I'm excited for the future.