Lessons From Board Games

March 10th, 2011

You remember all those wonderful board games that you grew up with, so simple and fun? Did you ever stop to think about the lessons that children were being taught by these plastic and cardboard extrapolations of life? Let’s take a look.

Risk or Megalomania 101

Summary: Everyone starts with their own little corner of the world, and each turn you get more troops to bolster your army to carry on the fight against the other players.

Curriculum: All your troops (a.k.a. pawns) come from around the world and from different walks of life (infantry, cavalry, artillery), but that doesn’t matter, they all look the same to you. No matter how many people get killed, there will always be more pawns… er, people. The only solution is to kill everyone else. Kill them all.

The Game of Life or Be a Sheeple

Summary: Spin the wheel and move over the board, passing through all the “important” stages of life.

Curriculum: If you don’t get married, you fail at Life. If you don’t have kids, you fail at Life. Money is the most important thing in Life. Life is over when you retire.

Sorry! or So You Want to be a Politician

Summary: Move around the board, try to get your pieces from their starting point to the end point, knocking other players out of your way if you can.

Curriculum: Do whatever you want, just publicly apologize for it and everyone will leave you alone. Getting your friends into places you want them to be will make you a winner. Anyone that isn’t on the same track you are isn’t important enough to care about.

Battleship or War is Beautiful

Summary: Use a grid to call out coordinates, trying to guess where your opponent’s ships are.

Curriculum: Once people start firing, NOBODY MOVES. Every military air strike is always 100% accurate all the time. In the Navy, you don’t move diagonally. Ever. That’s for bishops. Also, join the Navy if you wanna have fun.

Monopoly or How To Be A Pimp

Summary: Wander around the board, pay the other players rent to stay on their property, get paid by other players to let them stay on your property, eventually somebody owns everything.

Curriculum: If you hang out on the wrong corner, you will go to jail. Parking lots are places you can grab easy money from honest taxpayers. Spending the night somewhere can cost as little as $6 if you don’t mind there not being a building around you. The nicer the hood, the more you can charge for services rendered. You have to own a neighbourhood before you can establish crackhouses. The more crackhouses you control in a neighbourhood the better a chokehold you have on the locals and higher fees for services.

Now go forth and be good people, just like you were taught.