Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Playing "Dread".

I've been avoiding this blog like the plague so I have enough energy to hit my word count goals each day for NaNoWriMo, and I am happy to announce that I am currently exactly on track, hovering around 15,000 words on day 9. Today I am feeling a little bit burnt out on my novel though, so even though I've only written about a thousand words today, I am taking some time off to work on.... other writing projects, all evening. I hate myself.

I wanted to write up a little review of the game I played last night with my friends Tara, Alexander, Forest, Justin and Liz. The game was called "Dread", and was run by our other friend Michael. It was essentially a tabletop role-playing game, but instead of using dice to determine our actions, we used a Jenga set. Depending on what your character wanted to do, you had to pull Jenga pieces. If the tower collapsed while you were up, your character died. It definitely made for a much more intense, pressure-filled game.

Before we played, Michael sent out a series of different questions to each of us to help us build our characters. He made sure to add that instead of creating characters designed to win, we should just create really interesting, dynamic characters. This is how I ended up on a survival based camping trip as a spoiled, rich sorority girl who hates mud. I went into the game thinking my character was going to be the absolute least likely to survive, regardless of where the campaign led us.

The funny thing about role-playing games, though, is that you really never can predict where it's going to go. Despite my character's lack of survival skills, the fact that she slept with their guide (which pissed off a lot of the other campers), and her main concern being that she get home in time for a big frat party, somehow she managed to be the one who pulled off a majority of the most badass things that happened.

She was the one who doused the woods in moonshine to start a forest fire to make a signal to try and contact nearby planes. She was the one who thought to get the crazy werewolf conspiracy theorist to fashion one of her gaudy silver rings into a makeshift knuckle-knife. She was the one who noticed the oncoming wolf in the first place, having to flash everyone (in game) to get their attention (because they were all fighting over some stupid drama). She was the one who ended up mostly defenseless, on the opposite side of the wolf as everyone else, deciding to run forward and stab the wolf in the eye to try and catch it off guard. And in the end, she was one of the only three characters who survived, having killed the wolf and proven better in Jenga than the three losing players.

In the end, it doesn't really matter if you live or die, because everyone got to experience the whole game and it was fun either way. There's something extremely satisfying, though, being a relatively "stupid" character and proving to be the most useful, despite what people assumed by stereotyping at the beginning of the game.

Some highlights from the game include:
-Alexander playing a character that spent most of the game drinking the moonshine that had been smuggled along by Justin's character, and after awhile starting to hallucinate. At one point, he thought he was killing the wolf in a valiant act to save everyone, but in fact was repeatedly stabbing a tree.

-Liz playing a socially awkward character who had met our camping guide online and had lied about her appearance, saying she was tall and blonde. When we got on the trip, the guide mistook his online lover for MY character, since her fake description fit what my character looked like, which is why she in turn ended up sleeping with the guide.

-The body of the guide mysteriously disappearing in the night, and Tara and Liz's characters being upset that the boy's characters weren't keeping good enough watch. Finding out later the boys were the ones who actually dumped the body in the river, for fear of him turning into a werewolf.

We had such a blast playing Dread; I am super lucky that my friends are all such creative and fun people as well, or else a game like this wouldn't be nearly as exciting. Not to mention we went all out, eating hot dogs and making microwave s'mores to really get in the camping mindset. I can't wait to play again. :)

Flights taken: 26


Courtney said...

I'm a bit confused as to how the game works, but it sounds really neat!

Danielle said...

Ahaha awww that sounds so fun! I love your detailed character descriptions! LOL. I wish I had the time and friends to do that sort of thing! Perhaps when winter break rolls around and i'm back gome! :)

The Teacup Monster said...

I don't really understand the game but it sounds really fun! I recently saw your Halloween video and it freaked the pudding out of me! I don't hate you though because my Halloween was scareless, so thank you. Have you read Eragon? As a nerd I say that if you haven't you need to. I have the final book and am LOVING it. Just a suggestion. Anyway, game sounds SUPER fun.

kira902k said...

That sounds so freaking awesome. I still don't completely understand how non-videogame RPGs work, but they sound amazing. I'm hoping one day I'll find the right friends who'd be willing to play one with me. It seems you also need to be with someone who really GETS how it works, to be sort of the game-master?
One day, one day I will do this. :P

Also, I'm happy you took the time to blog! Everyone I follow on blogger is doing NaNoWriMo, so there have been no blogs to read this month. So thanks. xD


Anonymous said...

Hey, I'm not doing NaNo this year (I couldn't write good fiction if my life depended on it), but I built this tool for one of my friends and thought you might find it useful:


Julianna Blake said...

So this will probably get buried but I'm just reading old blog posts in my procrastination and thought about something... Since you and Alex are friends now I think it's okay to mention this. When you went to visit Alex it was like you visiting Harry Potter land, when Alex came to visit you it was like him visiting Twilight land. made me lol

Katherine said...

This sounds so interesting! haha I love your character description.

PhredofMars said...

Ha! You really are Buffy!