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2013 Nominees For Hobby Gaming's Top Prize 29

An anonymous reader writes "The thirteenth annual Diana Jones Award for Excellence in Gaming has five contenders: Wil Wheaton's "Tabletop" YouTube video series; the massive history of gaming book Playing at the World ; the Metatopia gaming convention where designers pay for access to alpha gamers; the romance-genre card game Love Letter ; and the RPG Dog Eat Dog in which players explore the dynamics of colonialism. When it comes to this award, typically all of the nominees are worth checking out."
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2013 Nominees For Hobby Gaming's Top Prize

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  • "Hobby Gaming" -- I understand the desire to make the distinction between video games and games that are not video games, but "Hobby Gaming" sounds like a futures market for hedging bets against folks with hobbies... Gaming their Hobbies.

    I've always considered them all to just be games. I mean, I frequently paper mock-up the video games to see if they'll be fun and work out some logic kinks before creating an actual digital prototype. Many turn based strategy games start their lives resembling "Hobby Gaming", even in a playable state before being implemented in cardstock & pewter, or digitally with a video game engine. When I was a kid I would dream up new enemies and levels for Mario and tape together dozens of sheets of graph paper on my wall... I would take a paper cutout and "play" the levels -- "You put the string on where his feet are, then you can only jump as high as the string is long" Some of these paper levels had "teleporters" (go to page 4 [13,42] ), or rules that listed you couldn't go backwards... That was when PC game making was somewhat of a black art. Learning the the voodoo coding rituals without any instruction was hard (before the Internet), and I guess I didn't learn about how other folks came up with "game designs" so I used a paper based rapid prototyping system (and still do). In a FPS, each room can be "rendered" as a top-down 3rd person game on paper, and a string used to determine a "line of sight", or a grenade throw distance. You can get a good handle on approximately how the movement will flow through the level in about 5 minutes rather than spending hours in a 3D modeling suite... Need to reconfigure part of the map? Scissors and tape are faster than redrawing the lines.

    What some call "Hobby Games" or "Video Games" are all just "Games" to me. Here's a GDC video about the action platformer Shadow Complex [gdcvault.com], Skip to 10:40 to see how the first "build" of the game was basically just made with digital graph paper, and just like a table top game they manually had to move the pieces to play it in that state... and it was fun! (so they say; I can only vouch for the end results, which are pretty fun). Computers can just move the pieces for you and keep track of more rules than a non-digital game can typically afford. That's the way I see it, anyway.

    I think Table Top series should win. It's great to see what some of the various games are, and how they're played before picking them for game night. It's gotten some of my digital only gamer friends to broaden their horizons a bit too.

  • by Osgeld ( 1900440 ) on Sunday June 02, 2013 @04:03AM (#43887523)

    "Hobby Gaming" its gaming, its a freaking hobby, your not getting up at 6am to drive an hour to game every single day for years on end ... you game to relax with your buddies as a fucking hobby!

Don't tell me how hard you work. Tell me how much you get done. -- James J. Ling