Every Thursday night, I get together with some friends to sit down and play this game called Apocalypse World, which is a table-top RPG.
The general premise is that there's been some kind of apocalypse (and you're pretty free to determine what that apocalypse might have been) and now you and the other characters are trying to survive. Whether that means you're trying to broker power or level up the size of your cult following is open ended and is usually discovered through narrative.
Collaborative narrative at that -- because the point of Apocalypse World is character interaction: people developing histories and relationships with one another. A friend of mine says it's basically a soap opera and he's not wrong.
But sometimes it's impossible to get everyone together -- or we just don't have the mental energy to pretend to be other people. When that happens, it's time to break out the board games.
If you remember the online game Pandemic (and its sequels -- Pandemic 2 and Pandemic 3), which was an online game in which you tried to infect the entire world with a sickness you designed, the Pandemic board game might have a familiar feel.
However, in this version, the tables have turned and now you are racing against four diseases before they hit plague status and wipe out humanity.
There are several different ways to lose, including having too many outbreaks, running out of the tokens that indicate general pockets of infection, and running out of player cards.
There is only one way to win: curing all the diseases.
Pandemic is collaborative, though there are hacks that make it more competitive. Each player has a different role, chosen randomly at the beginning, and some roles make it extra important to strategize with each other.
I'll be honest -- I've never won this game. The friend who introduced me to it said he and his girlfriend had to play about 15 times before they won. But it's such a great time that losing just made me want to play the game again.
And again and again.
To that end, I've downloaded the version for iPad as well. It's super fun but less collaborative because you're playing all the characters.
Have you played the board game version of Pandemic? What do you think of it?
And what's your favorite board game in general?
While you ponder that, let's admire this bright and shiny comment of the week, from Jen, which is on the Unpopular Opinion piece "UNPOPULAR OPINION: I DON’T HAVE STUDENT LOANS AND I DON’T FEEL BAD FOR PEOPLE WHO DO":
That's a whoooooooole lotta upvotes for Jen.
In less-upvoted but relevant-to-my-interests comments, there is this exchange, between necroromantic and Claire Lower, from Claire's piece about sandwiches, "IT'S SANDWICH MONTH SO I AM INGESTING ALL THE XOEDITORS WEIRDEST SANDWICH FAVORITES":
I don't know what a waffle chicken tender is but I am for sure going to find out. Publix chicken tender subs are one of the only sandwiches I truly love.
As y'all's prize, please enjoy this picture of my dog wearing a tiara.