A Very Creative Christmas – Day 9 – Holiday Gaming

It’s the ninth day of Later Levels’ Creative Christmas, a super fancy excellent collaboration of blogging excellence. All the details of this awesome event are here, so why not get involved?

Our question for today is…

‘The presents have been opened and dinner has been eaten, so you’ve got a bit of time for gaming while Gran is snoozing on the sofa. What’s the best video game to play during the holidays?’

I know the question specifies video games, and being a person who enjoys video games I might be expected to just run down some of my favourite games, but I think I’m going to take a slight detour instead.

Most of my solo gaming over Christmas was on mobile: I got a fair bit of Kingdom Hearts Unchained X in, as well as some little arty titles like Alto’s Adventure and of course the classic Candy Crushes and Papa Pear Sagas of the world. But when the family were here, it was all about the board games.

We have this little robot (unofficially named ‘Steve’) who helps us play a version of Uno that goes a bit off the rails. For those not in the know, regular Uno involves putting down cards of various colours and values; the next person just has to match either the colour or the value with their next card, and there are a few special/ wild cards in there too. Steve amps the game up a little bit by occasionally demanding that a player discard some of their cards, draw some, or even swap all their cards with someone else. It can get very competitive, and those who are getting close to a win shouldn’t relax because Steve will probably do something to mess them up.

We also played a bit of Cards Against Humanity, a little bit of the QI board game, some Cluedo – and everyone’s cringeworthy favourite, a DVD version of the old TV show Catchphrase, where winning netted us all a ‘virtual holiday’ (basically just a few pictures of a place in the world).

I have some friends who are big into tabletop/ card/ role-playing games, too, and I’d really like to get more involved with some of that. There are some really interesting-sounding ones: one in particular is very into a strategic card game called Legend of the 5 Rings, and has even won competitions for his cosplay at conventions. There’s also a role-playing game they’re playing at the moment called Masked, which is about teenage superheroes and which has some cool-sounding mechanics: instead of health, for example, the characters have values on sliding scales which can be manipulated to cause various effects. (You might get a character have an older and wiser hero telling them that they need to be more responsible, for example, which might lower their confidence but raise their awareness.)

As for what I’ll be playing in the near future, Hannah and I are going back to Crash Bandicoot: N-Sane Trilogy in an effort to hundred-percent (well, three-hundred-percent) the whole thing; I’m still on Horizon: Zero Dawn; for my birthday I know I’m getting WWE 2K18 and a SNES Classic, both of which I’m pretty stoked for, so I’m a happy feller!

Did you guys manage to squeeze in any games over the festive period? Or did you get the gift of a game that you’re looking forward to playing? Let me know!

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