Even in a year of pandemic, there was gaming. I probably played as often as I did in normal times, but fewer titles and with fewer people. I did not attend any conventions; I tried, signed up for online cons, but it didn’t pan out for me.
I played a total of 20 different titles, the lowest number in six years; this included only 3 board games, 14 role-playing games, and 3 story games. Only 6 of these (30%) were new to me, i.e., I had never played them before, including one playtest. The board games were sadly curtailed because my husband has been wrestling with vision problems that made it frustrating for him to deal with small writing and game components.
But I still played at least once weekly thanks to a variety of recurring RPG campaigns conducted online. Frankly, I had not had this much satisfying long-term role-playing in years: with few options for leisure and social activities, many more people could be counted on to meet regularly.
With six years of data, here is what the game type breakdown looks like:
For the last five years I’ve also been keeping track of who I play with. It looks like this:
Player diversity was disappointing in 2020, particularly when I was a player in other people’s games. The majority of players who were not cis men were players in games I or my husband ran, and somehow I did not play with any people of colour (that I am aware of), a sad performance. Despite this, I think it’s not too bad that I played with 41 different people.
Here is what my list of games looked like in 2020:
The last two months have not improved the bubble status, on the contrary. As before, the position of the bubble shows how high the incidence rate is, and the diameter of the bubble shows you how deadly it has been, and I highlighted China and Canada for reference.
Again, the United States’ bubble is far higher up (i.e., more cases proportionally to its population than any other reported country) and far larger than any other country (i.e., more deaths). In laymen’s terms, American exceptionalism at its most conspicuous: the richest and largest under-developed country. We are so screwed.
I just had my daily tour of COVID-19 data visualizations. Playing with the WHO data explorer shows what a dire lack of preparation the US demonstrated. In this screen cap, the x-axis is the population, the y-axis is the cumulative number of cases and the size of the bubble indicate the number of cumulative deaths for all reporting countries.
So the position of the bubble shows how high the incidence rate is, with the US floating waaaayyyy above everyone else and the diameter of the bubble shows you how deadly it has been , with the US waaaayyyy larger than even the big bubbles for Italy, Spain, France, Iran, or the UK. And I highlighted China and Canada for reference.
For added horror, clicking the “Play” button on the WHO site lets you visualize this over time, where you can see the US balloon inflating and rising.
I’ve been neglecting my blog for all sorts of reasons I don’t want to get into right now, but it’s a new year and time for a fresh start. It’s time to once again look at the games I played in the year that just ended, and see if I accomplished some of my goals.
I played a total of 36, up from last year’s low of 29; this included 14 tactical and strategic games (board, card, and miniatures games), and 22 narrative game (role-playing games, story games, live-action role-playing). Some 23 of these (64%) were new to me, i.e., I had never played them before, including 7 playtests (19% of the total). But there were several repeat games thanks to a few recurring campaigns, particularly 13th Age, Agon 2e (playtest), Dragon Age, Journey Away, and Paladin, as well as perennial favourite Spirit Island.
With five years of data, here is what the breakdown looks like:
For the last four years I’ve also been keeping track of who I play with. It looks like this:
I have been trying to play with more new and diverse people, and that seems to be working, although there is room for improvement.
Here is what my list of games looked like in 2019:
[Updated to add the names of some women and enby game designers I had somehow failed to copy-paste from my spreadsheet.]
Once again, I review the list of games I played during the year we just said goodbye and good riddance to.
Despite having fewer health problems in 2018, the number of different games once again dropped, to only 28, down from 62 in 2015, 47 in 2016, and 44 in 2017. I had a lot of challenges this year again, plus little money to attend conventions (only Big Bad Con and one day at KublaCon), and no space to play at home.
As a result, I played only 7(!) different tactical and strategic games (board, card, and miniatures games), from 30 in 2015, 26 in 2016, and 18 in 2017. That makes up 25% of the titles I played.
On the narrative game front (role-playing games, story games, and live-action role-playing), I played 21 or 75% of my titles, compared to 32 in 2015, 21 in 2016, and 26 in 2017. Of these 21 games, I ran 7, or 33%: At the Stroke of Midnight, Blue Rose RPG, Fate of the Inquisitor, Misspent Youth, The Quiet Year, Threadbare RPG, and Turn. Continue reading “My 2018 in gaming”→
Despite having somewhat fewer health problems in 2017 than the previous year, the number of different games was down to only 44, from 62 in in 2015 and 47 in 2016.
The primary difference was in fewer different tactical and strategic games (board, card, and miniatures games), from 30 and 26 in previous years to 18 in 2017. And for this I blame: Gloomhaven. We played that game so much since we got it in February 2017! If I tracked hours spent per game instead of just game titles, we would see a very different pie chart. Continue reading “My 2017 in gaming”→
Edmund and I have been re-watching the Doctor Who reboot from the beginning, and I wrote mini-reviews; having just finished the series, this is a little summary and analysis.
The scores I used go thus:
This is embarrassing. Go away.
Weak. I’m not going to try convincing my friends to watch the show based on this.
Average for a Doctor Who episode.
That was a good one!
One of the best ever.
I assigned the scores as I watched on a completely subjective basis; at no point until tonight did I check my math to look for trends. But now it’s time; did some seasons rank much better than others for me? I recall Series 1, 3, and 6 most fondly. Did the scores reflect this? And when I assigned my scores, did I indeed grade on the normal curve, or did I bias high or low? Let’s find out.
First, some simple statistics:
This is not too bad; it means I assigned a mean score of 3.15 ± 0.80, pretty close to the target average of 3. Yay me. In fact, it means that I slightly over-scored, but not too wildly.
Putting it on a chart, it looks like my favourite eras were the year of the Ninth Doctor (Christopher Eccleston), the second half of the Tenth Doctor’s career (David Tennant), and the first half of the Eleventh Doctor’s tenure (Matt Smith.)