Who Says Video Games Aren’t Educational?

, , , , , | Related | April 1, 2020

I am a fifteen-year-old with autism so my mind works differently from others. I’m absolutely rubbish at maths and spend more time playing video games, reading, and watching “Harry Potter” and anime than I do studying or doing homework.

Me: “Last night, I got the Master Sword in Zelda!”

Mum: “Does the Master Sword help you with maths?”

Me: “Well… you need at least thirteen hearts to get the Master Sword without dying. You need four Spirit Orbs to get one Heart Container. You get one Spirit Orb per Shrine. Four times thirteen is fifty-two. I would need fifty-two Shrines to get the Master Sword.”

Later, I relay this story to one of my longest and closest friends who also has autism.

Friend: “I will never get your mind.”

Me: “One, I don’t think they were expecting that. Two, I didn’t even factor in the Heart Containers I got from Divine Beast Vah Ruta, Divine Beast Vah Naboris, and Divine Beast Vah Medoh. Zelda is educational for me.”

Friend: “I can see.”

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, , , , , | Related | March 9, 2020

I am playing the board game “Secret Hitler” with my wife and friends. It’s similar to “Werewolf,” in that you are assigned a role and have to keep it secret whether you are a good guy or a bad guy. The point of the game is to try to kill Hitler or get Hitler elected, and nobody is supposed to let on who their assigned role is.

It’s our first time playing this game. I have been dealt the card for Hitler, and my wife is reading out the instructions.

“Everybody close your eyes. Hitler and the fascist should open their eyes and acknowledge each other.”

We do so, and then there is a long pause while the other fascist and I wait for the next instruction. It takes a while to come and I get impatient. 

“And then we close our eyes again?” 

A disbelieving silence comes from the rest of the table, and then I speak again.


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A Pathway To Parenting Some Would Consider Unnatural

, , , , , , | Related | February 4, 2020

(When my daughter is very young — around two years old or so — she sometimes has trouble sleeping. Her dad will hold her in one arm, rocking her gently, while using his other hand to play a computer game — “Knights of the Old Republic” is a favorite at the time. She usually goes off to sleep fairly quickly… but not always. One night, my husband has just encountered an enemy in his game. As he prepares to act, a little voice suddenly pipes up:)

Daughter: *with bloodthirsty enthusiasm* “Kill it, Daddy, kill it!”

(My husband switched to reading while rocking her to sleep after that.)

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The World War On Piracy

, , , , , | Right | January 30, 2020

(I helped write a WWII flight sim that allows multiplayer action. One night, I am online flying with a few of our loyal customers who I have conversed with on the message boards, plus a random person who has joined us. As the random person signs off, he gives me his chat ID and asks me to chat with him after I finish flying. I finish a few minutes later and fire up the chat program.)

Me: “Hi, this is [My Callsign] from the game. How are you?”

User: “Great. I’m burning a copy of the game right now.”

Me: “Why are you doing that?”

User: “Because I think the game is great.”

Me: “Why are you burning a copy if you already have it?”

User: “Oh, I just rented it, so now I’m going to burn a copy to keep. I do it all the time!”

Me: “In case you’re not aware of it, I helped write this game.”

User: “No, you didn’t!”

Me: “Sure did. My name is in the credits. I’m [First Name] ‘[My Callsign]’ [Last Name].”

User: “Well, I’m going to finish burning the copy anyway, and there’s nothing you can do about it!” *laughs*

Me: *speechless*

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Well, What Else Did You Expect From Pirates?

, , , , , , | Friendly | January 29, 2020

(I’m playing an online pirate game with three friends; only four people can fit in a crew. One of my friends finds a girl on an empty ship and is about to leave the game for the night. This is good news. Room for all of us and a fully-stocked ship? H*** yeah! She invites three of my crew to her ship but refuses to invite the fourth, me. I am also a girl.)

Me: “Send me an invite? I can’t join until you invite me.”

Girl: “My friend is actually going to play.”

Me: “Uh…”

Crewmate: “She’s part of our crew. Can’t your friend play with someone else?”

Girl: “No, I want my friend to play on this ship.”

Crewmate: “Why does it matter? We’ll be strangers to her anyway. It would be no different than any other crew she will join. Let our crewmate join, please.”

Girl: “No. I’m the captain and what I say goes.”

(While the game has natural leaders that shine through during the game, nobody has more authority than another. Everyone is on an equal level.) 

Crewmate: “Wow. That’s pretty rude.”

Girl: “I don’t care. This is my ship and I get to decide who plays.”

(At this point, we all could leave and find our own ship, but we don’t feel like being friendly anymore.)

Crewmates: “MUTINY! B****! LOCK HER IN THE BRIG!”

Girl: “Don’t you dare! I invited you to this ship. It’s mine!”

Crewmate: “It’s three against one; this is our ship now.”

(They lock her in the brig.)

Girl: “You motherf*****s! I’m going to make sure I’m on as long as possible so your fourth can’t get on!”

(She presumably put a rubber band on her controller as her character spun in circles for ten minutes and then got kicked from the game for inactivity. Never saw her again.)

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