Gamer Challenge for the week of March 19th

Learning to be silent when necessary is a virtue, but playing games silently is really hard!  But that was my challenge this week, play a game without talking.  For those who might not be aware, every week I take part in a Gamer Challenge that comes directly from that weeks page in the Board Game Calendar.  So what game did I choose to silently play?  Settlers of Catan.

This weeks challenge was to play a game without talking.

Well, actually, I didn’t personally choose to play that.  A challenge was issued, and a challenge was accepted.  A good friend of mine, Mario, had been playing SoC at home with his fiancee and a mutual friend.  He had won the last couple of games, and thus some smack talk was now being thrown around.  He announced on our game groups page that he would  “like to play someone more challenging“.  We couldn’t let that stand, silent or not, challenge accepted!

As my gang arrived for the evening, I made it clear to each of them what my challenge was for this week.  At which point most of them snickered and a few choice gestures were implemented on my behalf.  So the first thing to do was to implement some ground rules:  non verbal communication was OK, talking to people not playing the game about things outside of the game was OK (I’m the hostess, so when people asked questions like “Where are the plastic cups?”, I could answer), but in game talking was forbidden.

The first thing I should fess up to is that I took three years of American Sign Language in high school.  Granted, my retention of it is on par with a five year old’s retention of such a subject, but I did remember a little (mostly swearing, and the alphabet).  But this did give me a small leg up, as learning how to communicate in a non verbal manner is a skill, and you can do a lot with facial expressions and gestures.  Secondly, before the game started, we worked out a few hand signals for types such as “sheep” and “wood”.

The game started and my lips were sealed.  Of course this is the time that all of my friends choose to playfully poke fun at me (I can’t blame them, I would do the same), and except for some choice gestures, I was left with no way to retort.  Ya gotta love good friends!

The gaming went pretty good.  There were a few moments where what I was trying to communicate was lost in translation and took a few different attempts to convey my message, but on the whole the game functioned as normal.  I did notice one interesting thing though, that I don’t think I could have realized any other way…

A lot of the time, when we game we are playing new games and I end up teaching the rules.  But this also puts me in a position where I moderate the game.  I help walk people through the steps of their turns, I make sure everyone gets their resources, and often help solve rule disputes.  It’s a role that is important, and one I didn’t realize that I did to the extent that I do.  However, being silent I was stripped of that usual position (which in a way was nice because I could just sit back and enjoy the game, rather than herding the gamer cats).  But that position is one that is important to keep a game moving, and I was pleased to see that one of the other gamers at my table, Josh, took up that role.  It wasn’t till I saw someone step into those shoes that I realized that is a role I typically take.  Who knew that gaming challenges could be introspective!

Settlers of Catan is a resource management game that was originally published in 1995.  It won the Spiel Des Jahres (German game of the year) that year.  It is considered to be an excellent gateway game into the hobby of gaming.

Settlers of Catan is a resource management game that was originally published in 1995. It won the Spiel Des Jahres (German game of the year) that year. It is considered to be an excellent "gateway game" into the hobby of gaming.

In the end, I did not win, but I had a good time losing.  However, I can happily say that Mario was also defeated, by his fiancee no less.  She was pleased with herself, and I think all of us were pleased with her as well.  If there was a gamer’s set of ten commandments one of them would surely be “thou shall not let a gamer’s ego get too big”, and she kept that commandment spectacularly by crushing her significant other.

So this week was a difficult one.  I must say that I did have one slip up during the game, and answered “yes” verbally when I was asked if I had received my resources for the turn.   When you are so use to answering in one fashion, changing that pattern is incredibly difficult.  How did you do with this challenge this week?  Any slip ups?

Next weeks challenge is an easy one for us:  Play a game that was published within the last year.  We have a lot to choose from for this one.  If you don’t, perhaps it is time to visit your friendly local game store.

Until next time, Happy Gaming!

P.s. It is not too late to get in on a drawing to win a copy of Cards Against Humanity. Click here for details on how you can enter!

This entry was posted by The_Null_Entry on Friday, March 23rd, 2012 at 8:37 am and is filed under Events and Tournaments, Gamer Challenge's . You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.


  1. Thank you for the auspicious writeup. It in fact was a amusement account it.
    Look advanced to more added agreeable from you!
    By the way, how could we communicate?

  2. This is a topic which is near to my heart… Many thanks!
    Where are your contact details though?

  3. It’s going to be end of mine day, however before end I am reading this impressive paragraph to increase my

  4. Very good information. Lucky me I came across your blog
    by chance (stumbleupon). I have bookmarked it for later!

  5. For most recent news you have to visit world-wide-web and on web I found this web page as a finest web page
    for newest updates.

  6. Thanks for sharing your thoughts about hello. Regards

  7. Wow, this piece of writing is fastidious, my younger
    sister is analyzing such things, so I am going to
    let know her.

  8. Excellent post. I was checking constantly this blog and I’m impressed!

    Extremely useful info particularly the last part 🙂 I care
    for such information much. I was seeking this
    particular info for a long time. Thank you and best of luck.

  9. Danilo says:

    I’m not sure why but this weblog is loading incredibly slow for
    me. Is anyone else having this issue or is it a issue on my end?
    I’ll check back later on and see if the problem still exists.

  10. Itamar Serp says:

    I think this is among the such a lot vital info
    for me. And i’m happy reading your article.

    But wanna statement on some common issues, The website style is ideal, the articles is really nice :
    D. Good job, cheers

  11. WOW just what I was looking for. Came here by searching for hello

  12. I do believe all the ideas you’ve introduced to your post.
    They’re really convincing and can certainly work. Nonetheless, the posts are
    very short for novices. May just you please extend them a
    little from subsequent time? Thanks for the post.

  13. Hi there would you mind stating which blog platform you’re working
    with? I’m going to start my own blog soon but I’m having a tough
    time choosing between BlogEngine/Wordpress/B2evolution and Drupal.
    The reason I ask is because your layout seems different then most blogs and
    I’m looking for something unique. P.S My apologies for getting off-topic but I had to ask!

  14. I constantly spent my half an hour to read this web site’s posts every day along with a mug of

  15. Thank you for the auspicious writeup. It in reality was
    a entertainment account it. Look advanced to far brought agreeable
    from you! By the way, how could we communicate?

  16. It’s going to be end of mine day, but before finish I am reading this great post to improve my knowledge.

  17. Hey I know this is off topic but I was wondering if
    you knew of any widgets I could add to my blog that automatically tweet
    my newest twitter updates. I’ve been looking for a plug-in like this for quite
    some time and was hoping maybe you would have some experience with something like this.
    Please let me know if you run into anything. I truly enjoy reading your blog and I look forward to your
    new updates.

  18. This is a topic that’s close to my heart… Take care! Exactly where are your contact details though?

  19. Itamar Serp says:

    My partner and I stumbled over here coming from a different website and thought I should check things out.
    I like what I see so i am just following you. Look forward to checking out your
    web page yet again.

  20. I just couldn’t leave your site prior to suggesting that I really loved the standard information a person supply to your guests? Is gonna be back often to investigate cross-check new posts

  21. Greetings! Quick question that’s completely off topic.
    Do you know how to make your site mobile friendly? My web site looks weird when viewing
    from my iphone4. I’m trying to find a template or plugin that might be able to correct this issue.
    If you have any suggestions, please share. Thank you!

  22. Awesome issues here. I am very happy to look your post. Thank you a lot and I’m looking forward to touch you.

    Will you kindly drop me a e-mail?

  23. This post is worth everyone’s attention. How can I find out more?

  24. Hi, I do believe this is an excellent website. I stumbledupon it 😉 I may return yet
    again since I saved as a favorite it. Money and freedom is the best way to change, may you be rich and continue to guide other people.

  25. These two better settle their score now before everything ends up burnt!

  26. Study working at Energetic Tree Providers.

Leave a Reply