Tuesday, September 19, 2006

I Enjoy Games

What makes your life exciting? You know, what are your enjoyments?

One of my greatest enjoyments has to be playing games, especially board games and roleplaying games. Just ask my brothers and sisters, they could tell you.

I remember when I was about 10 years old I purchased a boxed set of Basic Dungeons & Dragons. It had a player's rulebook and a Dungeon Master's guide full of monsters and treasures. It also had these really cool dice - a 20 sided, 12 sided, 10 sided (for percentage rolls), 8 sided, 6 sided, and a really neat 4 sided triangle die. I spent hours playing that game with myself and my brothers.

Then, I started creating games. At first it was just dice games, like Baseball dice, where I created charts to roll on. After that, I created a professional wrestling roleplaying game. I still have it. Actually, when I was a youth pastor in New Jersey, I played it with my students and it was a big hit. Then, I started taking my board games, like RISK, and making alternate sets of rules and optional rules (I haven't stopped doing that!).

I have a card game that Upper Deck made based on Survivor, the TV series. It is what they call a TCG or Trading Card Game. Basically, you buy a starter set which has all the basic cards in the game and you purchase booster packs, which contain uncommon and rare cards to add to the starter set. Kind of like collecting baseball cards. You never know what you'll get in a pack. They only made two card sets based on the first two seasons of Survivor.

I have a very rare autographed card of Elizabeth Filarski (now Elizabeth Hesselbeck of The View). That has to be worth something outrageous now! Anyway, the game rules were okay and it didn't really catch on that well. I created an alternate set of rules and actually sent them to Upper Deck Entertainment. They emailed me back and said they liked them. Unfortunately they canceled all future expansions of the game after the second season. I still play it with my youth group with my rules.

Well, I could go on and on all night about my games and ideas, but I want to just tell you about one last one. My birthday is coming up very soon and I already got some money from my wife's grandma. So, I was in Gamemaster Games the other day and saw "Conquest of the Empire." I remember playing that game in Ancient History Class in 11th grade. It was an old Milton Bradley game that was out of print for many years and now being reproduced by Eagle Games. The object is to get other players to declare you Caesar of the Roman Empire.

As I was talking with a saleswoman in the store, she told me that she owned the game, had only played it once, found that it wasn't her cup of tea and that she would sell it to me for $40 ($20 less than brand new). I took her up on it and I am sure glad I did. It is very fun.

It kind of plays like RISK, but with more strategy. And it is the easiest epic board game to set up and begin playing that I have seen. Also, it is a relatively fast game for its kind. All pluses in my book.

So, if you ever want to visit me, nothing would make me happier than to sit down at my kitchen table and play a game. I just want to praise God for all the game designers and manufacturers out there. They sure make my life fun!

So, what's your favorite game?


Anonymous Tim said...

Dana and I are tied in our Stratego battles. I guess we should stop keeping count of wins and losses as soon as I'm ahead. ;-)

8:48 AM  
Anonymous Kevin Holt said...

Hey James! Great to hear from you! Glad to hear things are going great for your family! How do you like living in the west? I'm sure its somewhat different from life in the northeast. We're doing great as well! We're staying busy with the youth at our church and raising the little one! anyway, our favorite games are the trivial pursuits and especially euchre! Take it easy and we'll catch ya later!

3:37 PM  
Blogger JimmyBob said...

Good to hear from you Kevin!

9:29 PM  
Blogger JimmyBob said...

Ahh, so mad at Blogger right this second. I just lost my longer response to Kevin and now have to try it again.

Anyway, Kevin, we love it out here in Arizona. The weather is truly beautiful, especially this time of the year.

My favorite Trivial Pursuit is Star Wars Saga DVD. It is so much fun. I thought I knew a lot about Star Wars until I played with a couple of my teens. They weren't even born when Return of the Jedi hit the theaters and they know more about it than I do!

I haven't given up on ping pong either. I'll never forget all those hours of playing against your brother in the student center at college. We have a nice table in our youth hall and some of our kids have gotten pretty good at it.

The XBox 360 has a game called Rockstar Table Tennis. Have you played it? I think it is pretty lifelike.

Anyway, great to reconnect. I'll touch base with you again soon!

9:34 PM  
Blogger ruthrap said...

I'm not much of a game player. I've played lots of card games tho. My oldest brother taught me a lot of card games such as casino, 21blackjack, poker and so on...but my most favorite card game is pitch...love it. Haven't played in a long time and I miss it.

3:55 AM  
Anonymous sandytrif said...

I fall in with Ruthrap. I am not into board games. We used to play Guesstures with out adult Bible study and had a hoot of a time. Also pictionary. Becky and Matt (daughter/son in law) love board games and had us playing Crainium, which is a combination of a lot of games. It was fun. My favorite as a kid was Masterpiece (I still have it) where you place pictures of paintings in one pile and monetary amounts face down in another pile. You go around a circular board and aquire paintings, have bank auctions, personal auctions etc until the paintings are all gone. There are different monetary amounts-$1,000,000.00 all the way to forgery. It is a fun game that changes all the time. Matt likes Clue-he has every edition ever made!

1:12 PM  
Blogger JimmyBob said...

Great responses! I played a game of Conquest of the Empire today with a student of mine. It was his birthday, so we went out to eat and then back to his house. The only thing is, I feel bad that I beat him. Well, not really. It was a sweet victory. "Hail Caesar!"

7:15 PM  

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