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This question came from Facebook friend Shawn Leisure, during one of my “give me ideas to blog about” pleas over there.
“Will there be gaming after the apocalypse?”
Short answer: of course there will be gaming after the apocalypse.
Gaming in its simplest form is escape: escape from problems, from bullies, even from your own loved ones. Escapism provides a safety valve, allowing us to blow off steam in a fun, productive way. After an apocalypse, people will need an escape more than ever. No doubt the search for food and other necessities will be paramount, but some kind of escape — storytelling, daydreaming, telling jokes — will be vital to help people keep their sanity. Escape helps us deal with the frustrations, the deprivation, the injustice, and the horror of everyday life. Gaming make take a different form — storytelling rather than role-playing games, simple abstract games like Checkers or Mankala instead of Settlers of Catan or Caracssonne — but gaming will still be there.
Looking at the current tire fire in the United States, I fully expect escapism to be one of the more sought-after states of mind in the coming year. It’s impossible to say what will happen next, but the omens are there, and they are dire indeed. We will need an escape valve if we are to continue to fight for freedom and justice for all. Fighting — even metaphorically — is tiring, soul-draining work. Having a fun way to recharge your batteries will be essential.
So go out and play a game, learn a new skill, try out something new, visit a favorite restaurant, read a book. We’re all going to need something to help us get through the next year, no matter what side of the debate we find ourselves. Remember when caring for others that caring for self is just as important. Ignoring it is a sure-fire way to burn out your own brain, and nobody needs that, especially now.
Good luck — to us all.