Post-COVID Gaming

It has definitely been a long year.

As mentioned in my 4-year anniversary post on Monday, this year has been especially hard for me, personally but also as a gamer (this is not to diminish how hard it’s been to so many people, especially those who have lost family members…my heart aches for you).

We’ve all gone through anxiety this year, even if we haven’t been personally affected by this disease.

As a social person, even though I don’t always demonstrate it, this year of isolation has been hard. I went from having a weekly game day plus fairly regular conventions to being at home all of the time. My wife willingly played some games with me and that did help (and I love her for it), but it’s still not quite the same.

However, things appear to be looking up, as long as you’re willing to look into the future a bit.

Here in British Columbia, they have now approved public gatherings outside as long as they are ten people or less and they are socially distanced. The ten people should really be part of your bubble.

This is from earlier in the pandemic, but it still applies

Vaccinations are going very fast and may even ramp up faster. We’re still not out of the woods yet (new COVID cases in BC have plateaued but at a fairly high level) but we can actually see the light at the end of the tunnel.

Maybe we’ll actually be able to get together for games by September! Or even July!

Or maybe not. We’ll have to see.

(they are talking about us probably going back to work in the office by September, which would be 18 months after we first started working from home).

The idea of playing with my gaming buddies is very appealing, and to know that it’s just months away (hopefully) is really helping.

You know what else really helped? In addition to actually prompting this blog post?

OrcaCon 2022 just announced that hotel reservations are open for the January 2022 convention.

I booked my room for a convention!

Yes, it’s 10 months away.

But I literally booked my room! For a convention!

It’s a concrete thing to hold on to that this COVID thing will eventually end and we will be seeing people in person again.

That’s what has kept me going. The thought that this, too, will end at some point.

Will SHUX in Vancouver happen this year? It’s in October and vaccinations will be done (or should be) by then, so maybe? Who knows what international travel will be like, and maybe they can’t make enough money for it to run this year without those coming from the States and elsewhere.

It’s still all up in the air.

Some of the really local conventions may happen as they aren’t reliant on international folks. Bottoscon in November, for example, could happen. It’s very small but it was a lot of fun the one time I attended.

But I’m most looking forward to just getting back together with my friends and playing boardgames every Sunday.

Not all of us have kept in touch during this trying time, so who knows whether everybody will be coming back. I hope so, but you never know.

Maybe they’ve found somebody else to hang out with?

I have come to the realization that, when things do get more back to normal, I do need to broaden my horizons a little bit.

I can’t rely on conventions and the Sunday group. I need to go to some other groups as well. I have missed the more complicated board games so much. I’ve missed playing 10-12 games a month.

As I’ve said before, I’m sure one of the first games we will be playing when we finally meet is Terraforming Mars. As long as those who have the game actually come back to our group.

Maybe they won’t?

Maybe we will just have a small core of people come back and we’ll have to try and recruit others?

It’s all still so much up in the air.

I look forward to the days where we can go to the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra again and actually enjoy a live show.

I look forward to meeting up with people face to face, sitting down at a table, and chucking some dice.

I look forward to being able to have a meal without having to worry about whether or not I’ve been exposed to this insidious disease.

Some people will still be wearing masks, at least in crowded places like Costco. It’s hard to argue, considering how one benefit of the COVID restrictions has been a severe decline in colds and flu this year. Why not keep that up when masks are no longer necessary to prevent COVID transmission?

But the whole thing will be less. You won’t see masks like they are now. You will be able to see people actually congregate and enjoy themselves.

Just a few more months.

We can do this.

Until then, wear your masks. Keep your distance from people.

Let’s beat this thing while the vaccinations ramp up.

And hey, let’s plan to meet up at OrcaCon next year!

I have a room booked, so I can’t imagine I’m not going (unless due to COVID still, I can’t).

Let’s play a game. Let’s sit in the bar and chat. Let’s go out to dinner and talk boardgames.

That will be nice.

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