A few weeks ago I wrote an article about gaming in online lobbies versus online cooperatively with friends. I expressed a preference for gaming on a smaller scale, with friends who I could play with on weekends. I’m re-addressing the topic, because I feel like I left out another important factor: local gaming.
Local gaming, in this context, refers to gaming while in the same room with people. This can mean video games such as Rock Band or Guitar Hero which thrive on local multiplayer, but it can extend beyond computer games.
Tabletop games and board games offer the opportunity for a room full of people to play a game together. What I want to focus on is Dungeons and Dragons. I’ve played D&D for a few years now, and I’ve played both locally and online. To play a tabletop games through the computer is do-able, but I believe the game suffers for it. Using a website like Roll20 I can have a session with friends from highschool, who at this point are all over the country, but it’s not as fun as being in the same room with them.
It’s the little things, really. Moments like rolling the dice, and having people jump up and lean over the table to see what it rolled, followed by shouts of joy if someone rolled a natural 20. People can get more invested in the gameplay because everyone’s in the same room, not separated by screens. Ok, the DM is separated by a screen, but those are kind of the rules.
Also the food. Getting out pizza or people bringing in snacks and drinks makes things so much better. Food is good. I had to mention this at some point.
Anyways, boardgames and tabletop games deserve recognition. Nothing like playing a game with a bunch of your friends. It’s something I look forward to every weekend.
What do you think?