We’ve decided to send some of your questions to our “resident Oprah” Dootsiebug. Here’s the first in what we hope becomes a series of “Ask Dootsie” advice posts…
My husband and I like to play games but we can’t seem to find much to play together. He’s into Magic the Gathering and Dungeons & Dragons; I’m more of a Trivial Pursuit kind of gal.
The real problem is, I’m a bit of a sore loser so we try to find two person, non-competitive games, such as Pandemic. And we don’t have a video game system, but we would consider investing in one if it will give us a shared past-time.
Do any Offbeat Homies have ideas on games we can try out while I work on my sportsmanship? -Heather
While I’ve gotten better about it in recent years, I can be a pretty sore loser. When I was a kid, I would flip over a game board and yell “You cheated” if I even thought that losing the game was a remote possibility.
I’m not much of a video game player (at least not with other people) because I can’t scale the learning curve of most video game controls. That usually puts me in the “going to lose my shit” mindset. I also find that the more adrenaline-pumping a game is, the more likely I am to want to throw my controller. That said, the Wii is my console. The controls are intuitive and I love the way some of the games utilize them. It’s definitely not for everybody — the games require physical movement and many of the games are a bit childish.
Generally speaking, I’d say that co-op games (games where you play alongside your partner rather than against) are ideal. You’re not competing — you’re playing together. I also suggest games with an element of whimsy — somehow, it’s harder to get mad if everything is cute. Whatever you choose, good luck! But here are my suggestions for Wii games for bad losers…
Imagine a game that’s Angry Birds meets Jenga for the Wii — designed by Steven Spielberg. You smash blocks using a variety of techniques, like chucking balls or throwing bombs. You can play in tandem, chipping away at the level in turns. Need to break some stuff if you lose? Move on to the next level and go to town! It’s a simple, silly game but it’s surprisingly fun.
Disney Epic Mickey 2: The Power of Two
This game is co-op. It’s a platform-style game featuring elements of Disney characters and design. You draw (and erase) elements in the world to move through. One of you plays as Mickey, one of you plays as Oswald, one of Walt Disney’s early characters.
Mario Kart Wii
This is a racing game with a field of Mario characters. I’ve never had a problem with losing at racing games; part of me just accepts that I’m a terrible driver in real life, so being a bad driver in video game world is okay. Some sore losers will hate this game, and that’s okay. My Mario Kart strategy is to hate one of the computer-controlled drivers — I usually pick Baby Peach, for no apparent reason — and gauge my success against her rather than the person I’m playing against. Just don’t race on Rainbow Road. Ever.
Mario Party 8
This one is also hotly contested by some sore losers — I’ve never had a problem with it. Mario Party is a bunch of mini games in a board game setting. Playing through all the smaller games, you get to take turns winning and losing with your fellow players (the game is designed for four players, but you can have up to three of them computer-controlled.) The game also throws curveballs to even the playing field. Part of this game is knowing that the game itself is going to screw you over in the end–the game cheats, not your fellow players! (You can lessen the crappiness by adjusting some settings.) I suggest 8 for a reason — I’m told Mario Party 9 is way more frustrating.
Pretty much any of the Sports Games
If you want to work on your sportsmanship… duh, sports! Bowling, table tennis, golf, baseball, archery, basketball. Whatever your game is, play it. And no, you don’t need the fancy racket Wiimote holders.
So, Homies, what kind of two-player games would YOU recommend for pouty losers?