Voice of Real Australia: Old-school games help conquer loneliness | Lithgow Mercury

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Voice of Real Australia is a regular ACM newsletter, which has reporters in every state and territory. Sign up here to receive it by email, or here to forward it to a friend. Monopoly, Trival Pursuit, Cranium, Snakes and Ladders, Mouse Trap, Boggle, Cluedo – if it’s a board game name it and I can pretty much guarantee I played it. As an avowed nerd, I spent many weekends playing games with friends. But my nerdness hit a whole new level about two years ago when my partner (who is also an avowed nerd) asked me to participate in a game of Dungeons and Dragons (D&D) with him and his friends. Now, as a kid of the 90s, my knowledge of the game was based on things I had seen in TV shows and movies, most notably Netflix’s Stranger Things. I thought this was a game for the kids or the weird 40 year old men who still lived at home with their parents, but boy, was I completely wrong. It is in this fantastic world that I have met some of the most wonderful people. We all come from different backgrounds with different genders, ages, cultures and beliefs. A mix of professionals, traders, retail staff and students. But none of those differences matter when we get together around the table every week. For a few hours, we can embrace our characters (mine is a dragon wizard with a heart of gold – just in case you were wondering) and escape the stress of the real world. Escape is the perfect word for it really, because even if you worry about bills, work, family pressure; anyway, it all vanishes and you can play in a medieval world. As a child, I imagined my Barbie as a princess and Ken as the saving prince – now I’m part of a happy group of adventurers who take on feats this stupid prince never even could have dreamed of. You might be thinking ‘this is ridiculous Kayla, you are an adult’, but let me assure you that I am playing alongside people far smarter and more accomplished than I could ever be. Some even have children of their own. I think the main attraction of these games is human company. Throughout the lockdown, many of us have been deprived of that human interaction that we all yearn for. And for my D&D team, online gaming sessions on a Tuesday night got us through it. For three hours there were no kids at home school, no stress at work, no financial stress and most importantly there was no loneliness – there were only these bad guys. fictitious to kill and these good guys to save. In my opinion, anything that brings people together in a positive way can only be a good thing, even if it’s based on fictional characters in a fantasy world. So maybe, if you haven’t already, dust off your favorite board game, turn off the TV, and get your favorite people together for a fun night out. You never know where it might take you … In case you want to filter all the latest information until a late afternoon read, why not sign up for The Informer newsletter? MORE THINGS HAPPEN IN AUSTRALIA:

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THE REAL AUSTRALIA

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About Johanna Gooding

Johanna Gooding

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