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Task 1: The Million Dollar Question

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  Play has been an intrinsic part of human society since prehistory. Playing cards were invented in China during the Tang dynasty, the Greeks began the Olympics and a Roman soldier stationed on Hadrian’s Wall was just as likely to relax with a board game as we are now.

 

  But why? What’s the attraction of something with set rules and a finite number of outcomes? Let us know what you think. Why do we like playing games so much? Why do we come back to the same ones over and over?

 

  Share your thoughts below in 50 words or more to earn 10 rubies. If you’d be more comfortable sending your ideas to us via PM, you can (use the conversation you should already have open with us).

 

Once you've participated in the discussion, we'll send you 3 cards to choose from. All responses are due by 11.59 PM HOL-time on August 18th.

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I do believe that the attraction lies in seeing how one can win a game based off the rules given. I play a lot of games with friends. I think the first part of that is the fun in being with friends, at least to me. The rules while some exist for a reason, some could be bent or changed. Or even challenged. We come back to these familiar things are they are comfortable. We know them and there for we enjoy this. UNO is one that comes to mind. It's easy to understand, fun to play and comfortable to play over and over.

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Part of the attraction of playing a game is simply the thrill of winning:  victory is - by itself - a very satisfying feeling.  And as for playing the same game over and over, you get the added bonus of improving over time and seeing your progress!  For most games that have a skill factor, you likely aren't going to do great the first time you play... but as you play more, you learn the ropes and get better until - maybe - you have a solid shot at winning!

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A lot of board games started out not as 'games' per se, but as training exercises in war-fare.  They would be a way to learn how to defeat opposing forces without having the actual bloodshed which so often accompanies combat. Chess was allegedly one way of a ruler to show another ruler that it would not be a good idea to go into battle with them.  Some say that playing cards - many of them - started as tools for divination. The Egyptian Tarot was originally of Major Arcana only, and used for occult philosophy. Then the Minor Arcana was added, and then somehow a change was made to use the cards for card 'games'. They were, in effect, for those playing the games, repurposed for the use of entertainment.

 

So, now, why do people play games - board games and card games? I think that much of it is that playing the games still poses the challenges of strategy, of interaction with others and ... sheer fun.

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I have always loved games but as I have gotten older I have noticed that what games used to mean to me have changed.  When I was growing up, games were all about competition for me.  I enjoyed being the best and if I lost to someone I had to play again until I finally beat them. 

 

While I still like the competition in games now, I don't enjoy it as much so I now tend to play games more as a way to continue to exercise my mind and as a way to relax after a long day.  Games are great at teaching strategy and improving your reasoning by making you think.  I also enjoy playing games with my family which is how I am able to relax now. Now, it isn't about me having to win but more about me enjoying those moments with my family. 

 

As to playing the same games over and over again, I like to play games that make me happy so if it's not broke don't fix it.  Also, playing the same games over and over again gives me plenty of time to improve and learn better strategies.  No matter how many times I play a game, I always learn something new. 

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I feel we play games to get out of our boring lives and try a game, they give us a feeling of accomplishment and success. I don't exactly know why we play the games again and again but i feel that we get sucked into the game’s world and forget about everything around us. We love the game and we play the game trying to do something more and achieving more and more. They encourage or discourage violence, inspire creativity, or nurture laziness which is what we love and are attatched to.Some people just find games that they love and stick to them.

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I agree with what's already been stated in that I think human beings are motivated by both competition and victory. They can build ego and make you feel good about yourself for sure! Competition can also look very different within games. I would generally say that I dislike competition because of fear of failure, but games can make competition fun and not so intimidating. When that Jenga tower falls over, I laugh instead of beating myself up for choosing a 'wrong' piece. I think another appeal to games is that they're made for all ages and they grow with you. When you're a kid and you play Clue, you perspective differs greatly from when you play as an adult. But those games are still fun for adults. There are memories and nostalgia attached to many games we play, and we just get a break to have some fun and relaxation. Games bring people together from all walks of life and create new friendships. There are so many different types of games that there is something for anyone and everyone to enjoy!

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I believe that there are many reasons that someone might enjoy and continue to participate in games. The first could be the thrill of the competition, many people enjoy claiming victory and flaunting it to others. Some people prefer the experience of the game, to bond and joke around with friends and family. Others might enjoy learning strategy or new ideas that the games could inspire. Many people might see games as a way to relax and enjoy the day, while others might see it as a way to prepare, plan, strategize, and learn.
In some cases, playing games competitively can result in fame, money, and notoriety. Playing those games is all about practicing for them, learning new strategies to beat their opponents, and maintaining or improving the level of play they currently have. Competing in those competitions are a job for them. Some examples are Chess, card games such as Magic The Gathering, Yu-Gi-Oh, and Pokemon, and also online games such as League of Legends, Dota, and Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (CS:GO).

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A game (wether it's sport, a boardgame....) is like a  world in itself. In a way it is set apart from ordinary life; it has its own rules and its own (absolute) order. I believe this distinction from everyday life is the footing of what makes games so appealing.  People can play games to take a break from real life, just to do something different or to take their mind of things. Others might play games to get a sense of achievement, which is usually tougher to get in everyday life.  It is also possible to see games as a place where you can safely learn skills useful in real life, like strategic thinking, deductive reasoning and working in a team. 

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A game in my opinion is filled with entertainment and helps people to get away from their stressful life by having a bit of fun just by participating. As well as they help us to meet new people and also let us get to know about various new things genuinely that can be interesting.  People engage in games to try something different or to try something new, to have exercise, to enjoy moments with their families and friends, to relaxation and multitude of others. From games people develop their skills of creativeness and imagination throughly throughout the game. It can be also a challenge that boost our self esteem or something that simply let us gather up memorable moments. 

I believe people play the games many times over because they have their own tastes and according for this point, the games are played to their likenesses such as to learn to new things or to gather up information. Let alone when people are interested to know others and to have a great time in their life, they play the game they know over and over again. 

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I would say that the main purpose of any game is to bring enjoyment, excitement and an escape from the real world, where you can be whoever you want. Games also help in discovering hidden talents one might have, and they also help bring people together and maybe even find out certain characteristics about one another. One example is the party game called Mafia where each person playing has a unique role, and to basically sum it up, the person who is the mafia has to convince the other people in the game that they are not the mafia. Here is where analysis of people really come into play. You have to look at how the person acts when they are lying/telling the truth, and try to make informed decisions. The reason we love to play this game is that there needs to be at least 6 people, meaning we get to interact with friends for extended periods of time without looking at our phones, and that each game is always different than the previous one. 

 

Another reason why people love games are because of bragging rights, and that is very evident in Monopoly. As frustrating as this game can get, it forces us to make decisions based on what properties you have versus what the other person has and you need to analyse the situation properly in order to not let someone have the easy route of organizing their monopoly over the others, and so, each game is vastly different from one another. Even though there is an element of luck in Monopoly, a major part of it is your ability to bargain and try to get the best deal for yourself and not being afraid to take risks, because at the end of the day, it's just a game! 

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This might be the designer in me speaking, but one thing I've come to appreciate with boardgames (or any other form of play for that matter), is that you're working to achieve a particular outcome within a set of defined constraints. Yet in spite of having those constraints, there's still a whole world of possibility in which to do so. Also, each time you play a game or sport, there's still varying outcomes in terms of the final result and how the players arrived there.

 

The other thing I enjoy about games is that they're simulations to an extent (or rather give a taste of what something might be like). Though I'll probably never set foot in space, there's plenty of games that give a feel for different elements of space travel, whether it's trying to launch rockets and probes into space (Leaving Earth; boardgame) or working towards galactic peace (Mass Effect; videogame).

 

Though I personally love variety and would generally opt for playing a new boardgame as against a more familiar one, what often brings me back to the latter is one of several reasons. Sometimes it could be a case of positive memories from previous playthroughs and wanting to replicate them. Or it could be the opportunity to improve on strategies or even try out new ones. Other times, it might be wanting to share that game with someone new to it. Also after a long day, it can be nice to unwind with something familiar rather than trying to learn new rules or styles of playing. Again this is probably the designer in me, but I enjoy seeing how different variables impact on a particular game, whether it's the number of players, focusing on this element instead of that, and so on.

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Winning a game gives you a feeling of satisfaction and accomplishment. It also gives you something to do that relaxes you and challenges your mind at the same time. Playing a game with other peoplee is a great way to bond. You can talk and get to know each other. I especially like card games. They are so simple, and seem so easy, but really they are not. Games can challenge you, which is probably why people have played them for so long, as a way of challenging your mind. 

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Everyone has a little competitive spirit in them and playing a game is a fun, usually harmless way to satisfy that need for competition. Winning makes people happy. But sometimes simply the effort put into playing a game can be just as enjoyable as winning. Games are great for social interaction. It is possible to have fun playing games with complete strangers as well as your best friends. Everyone is on the same playing field as soon as the rules are established. Part of the reason why I go back to the same games is because it can be a real headache to learn the rules to a new game. I also know that I will like a game that I've played before rather than spending time to learn a new game that I might not even enjoy.

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