Games and Rules

When I was young I played baseball and football (wasn’t fast enough for basketball and couldn’t jump with a flip). Soccer hadn’t arrived in small town America yet, and rugby was just another word for football, we thought — and we didn’t even know that football was just another word for soccer. But I digress.

I played these two sports. I knew their rules and developed skills based on those rules — and played them for years. We also played Checkers, Go Fish, and hours and hours of Monopoly. We learned the rules and played the same rules for the duration of our childhoods. The rules didn’t change.

Fast forward to my children, the millennials. My son was telling me about a brand new video game he’s purchased. It is another immersive world game with its own set of rules, goals and game dynamics. This particular game is a sequel to another game whose rules he can only deduce since he’s never played it.

My point is this. I and my generation grew up playing a highly defined and culture-defining set of games, whose rules stayed constant and stayed with us. My children’s generation is growing up constantly learning new games, learning new rules, and achieving new goals. If this observation is correct, what are the implications. Does this contribute to some of the uniquenesses of this generation, both good and bad.

And I wonder if having to constantly cultivate new leaning schemes and communities to adjust to new information environments is exactly the kind of childhood necessary for inheriting a rapidly changing world.

7 thoughts on “Games and Rules”

  1. Mr. Warlick,
    I have noticed in your blog that you aren’t just talking about games in general, but about the whole aspect of life in general.Your life back then and life now are completely diverse. The”games” in your life had their own set of rules and goals that have always remained the same without changing. The “games” we see now of this age are different because they are always changing the rules and goals. I personally believe there is both good and bad in this change, but predominately more good shown This generation is able to adapt to more diverse situations. The are being able to do this by using what they have learned through the new rules and goals always changing. The process can be described as a building block this day and age as always adding new rules and challenges to achieve a goal.The world has grown into a drive-thru life style: cell phones, social networking, red box, and more technological advancements. It has made for a more efficient in life and situations. It keeps striving for a better solution to help better the needs of the people. People can be described as wanting supply and demand repetitive style. Which in reality now becomes more quintessential to our life styles. I have enjoyed reading your blog post and getting to put into terms my thoughts on the discussion. I can relate to your thinking on this subject and enjoyed sharing thoughts.

  2. David, reading your insights about the reasons and uses of technology in the classroom is inspiring. Have you thought, however, to really make it a point to schools to “appear” as a video conference, skype or such? I imagine most schools don’t have that technology, I understand that completely.
    I have never heard the term “digital native.” If the teens and kids today are natives, you then are the frontiersman blazing the trails for us who are still intimidated by fast pace of the global world.

  3. David,
    I’m from a similar Monopoly generation but I’m not sure you’re right (though I’m not sure you’re wrong either.)

    First, many modern Xbox/Playstation etc have more game products but not necessarily more types. The grammar for e.g. First Person Shoot em Ups is pretty similar from one game to the next.

    Second, marbles. My nephew has a box full of marbles, the type an old duffer like me recognizes. He also says that one of the things he loves about them is there are so many different games. (he has a book explaining 101 ways to play marbles and is busy making up his own).

    My comment is essentially this: yes there are more games now, but isn’t the big divide the type of game not the number? And don’t different games encourage different skills and abilities? (Monopoly/maths, Trivial pursuits/general knowledge)

  4. Mr. Warlick,

    I believe that my generation today will become adaptable to change. Just as you stated in your blog that we are constantly learning new games and rules which can have its pros and cons. One its positive results is that we will be able to learn more information than ever before. A negative is that we may forget how to do simple things.
    Just the other day I was at my job and I talked with one of my fellow coworkers about games that we used to play on a simple sheet of paper. The only game that we could remember was tick-tack-toe. This was a shame because the games we played as children were so much easier and like you said the rules always stayed the same. My coworker and I agreed that we have gotten so accustomed to technology through our phones, computers, televisions, and video games so much that we let them do the thinking for us.

  5. The point you raised is quite obvious. I agree that people use to play cricket, football or other games in the recent past but the new generation is very much addicted to video games. They are learning a lot new gaming rules due to the inclusion of many new types of video games. So I think it is really good because this innovative thought will make the chi9ldren more sharper.

  6. I think that it is ultimately a good thing that there are always new games and rules for people to learn nowadays. Makes people more well rounded instead of good at just a handful of things!

  7. I find it very interesting at how fast the world is changing because of technology. I did not grow up with nearly as much technology as compared to what children and students are using now. I totally agree with you that the current generation is constantly learning new games, learning new rules, and achieving new goals and I think that that is wonderful. They are more likely to adapt to change and are more diverse and open-minded to new situations and thoughts, which is necessary in today’s world. It is magnificent to see the impact technology and games have on how people’s minds develop.

    In response to your last paragraph, I honestly do believe that children constantly cultivating new learning schemes and communities is what is required to adjust to this rapidly changing world. For example, in order to process the amount of information thrown at young children nowadays, kids will need to use games like your son’s new purchase with its own set of rules, goals and game dynamics in order to adapt to different thoughts and technology used in the modern world.

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