Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Gaming Community (part 3)

There is a history of games being used to strengthen communities. One of the earliest mentions of gaming being used for community bonding is in the first book of Herodotus’s Histories, considered the founding work of history in Western literature (written in 440 BC!) During a severe 18-year famine, the ancient Lydians used games to keep their community together. To survive, they had to ration their food so that they were only able to eat once, every other day. On the days they did not eat, they played games! Considering that they were starving, it is likely that the games mentioned in Histories were tabletop games and not physical sports. Games are entertainment, and entertainment is often used as a distraction from reality. Even today in our stressful, fast-paced culture, we sometimes anesthetize ourselves against reality by escaping into a game.

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