Though gamers complain bitterly about the amount of party games circulating family homes, they’re actually a much better invention than we give credit for. Today, we take a look at just why these games are such a vital addition to the party train. All aboard?
It proves that gaming isn’t all that bad.
Years ago, when party games weren’t really a thing, many parents believed that videogames spawned out of the devil’s backside and were teaching children horrific values. Even now that belief exists, with numerous murders and crimes being linked back to videogames because the suspect saw it in the shop window when passing. However, the increase of party games released (and extraordinary sales of such) show that games are much more than that. They teach values of sharing and working together as well as a bit of friendly competition, complete with bright colours and overly-cheerful music. Perhaps someday, with the help of party games, the industry won’t be the latest scapegoat for society.
They introduce games as a very social aspect of family life.
Another stereotype a couple of years ago was that anyone who played games sat in dark rooms smelling of body odour, greasy hair masking their scalps and had food tucked carefully into their rolls of fat. Okay, so maybe some people are still like that, but much like Schrödinger’s Cat, we don’t know whether these people are still living as they never emerge and we’re too scared to peer inside the abyss to observe them. Now, families will gather around the TV, stick a disc into their console and enjoy hours worth of virtual butt-kicking. It’s no longer something you do because you have no friends but instead builds up your relationships. That and there’s nothing better than seeing granny dance around the living room because she managed to run through a herd of sheep quicker than you. Oh the hilarity.
They beat Mouse Trap.
Remember back to when you were young; it’s Christmas time and you’re surrounded by board games. Excitement builds as you take the lid off your favourite one and immediately turns to despair when you realise there’s no dice. In fact, none of the board games have any dice in them. Not to mention the loss of hundreds of little houses and the colourful mice that inhabit them. The holiday period may as well be over. But wait, it’s no longer the early 90s – these games are all virtual now, with no fiddly parts for your cat to nibble – one disc holds everything. Smile on little child! But what’s the betting that darn cage still won’t fall on your opponent?
There’s a great variety.
Many party games now hold a large handful of smaller activities, letting the player accumulate points before crowning an overall winner. So if hopping over an extremely busy road doesn’t take your fancy but running rings around massive flames does, you’re in for a treat. Developers of these games understand that your interests aren’t the same as your granddad’s or your little sister’s and so make sure that there’s something for everyone. At least that saves on arguments during family meets. Sort of… for a little while at least.
It’s not completely skill based.
Have you ever sat down, ready for a nice game of Trivial Pursuit and realised that your opponent is really Stephen Fry? Or that you’re playing Scrabble with Oscar Wilde? Probably not, but I’m sure you’ve at least sat opposite someone who is much more skilled at the game than you are. It’s just not fun, is it? Well party games remove this skill jump and offer games that just about anyone can grasp within seconds. Most people are able to bash some buttons and wiggle their limbs about and so you all begin playing on a very similar level. This means more laughs, more fun and even longer sessions before someone rage-quits. And even if you are losing, throwing a controller at someone’s face is much more satisfying than a wad of pretend money.
Have party games been important in your household? Whether they’re an exciting part of the week or an extremely shiny coaster, we’d love to hear from you.