This is the Midwest. Storms happen. Every home should be stocked with an emergency kit, according to FEMA. Three gallons of water per person per day, shelf stable food, batteries, flashlights, etc. But once the power is out and won’t be back for hours, or even worse, DAYS, what is a gamer to do?
As our options for technological entertainment have increased, so has our reliance on their existence. Ironically, as power outages have become more bearable due to laptops, smartphones, handheld systems, tablets and eReaders, our frustration with blackouts seems to have skyrocketed. Gamers have more ways than ever to occupy their time during an outage, yet the angst over when the TV-based systems and the PCs come back on is as strong as ever.
Having all of your devices fully charged at all times would help. Impractical, but it would buy some time until the electrons start flowing freely again.
You can run all your gadgets down to zero, squeezing whatever you have left on your laptop, Nintendo 3DS, Vita, phone, tablet or whatever you have lying around. The problem is, nothing eats batteries on a device quite like games (except maybe watching movies, another power outage pitfall). Eventually, the downed lines are going to outlast you unless you slink out of the house to find a working outlet to charge up.
Being a gamer and needing electricity for enjoyment aren’t really the same thing. The gamer’s mind is one that enjoys challenge, complexity, storytelling and interactivity. Those things can be achieved devoid of the presence of electricity, we’re just trained to think otherwise.
The best solution would be to make an addition to your FEMA approved emergency kit. Now may be a great time to finally investigate paper-and-pencil role playing games like “Dungeons and Dragons” or gather some people for an in-depth board game. A lot of the same things we love about video games are prevalent in these two suggestions. Pack away a complex and fun board game, perhaps Lord of the Rings edition Monopoly. Dig out your “Magic: The Gathering” cards. Save a game or two for play ONLY during times of emergency.
If all else fails, a good game of Scrabble INCLUDING a Scrabble player’s dictionary can always kill some time and perhaps stir up some good old-fashioned debate.