Games for the Casual Gamer: Games to Play With Your Other Half

Looking for a Valentine's Day date for your gamerfriend? We've got five suggestions for you!

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So, it’s February. Not only are we wondering how the hell the last month went by so quickly (just where did all that time go?) but alas, THAT day is coming up. You know: the fourteenth. OK, do I have to shout it out?

VALENTINES DAY.

I can sense the lack of enthusiasm (and eye-rolling) from here. Yep, that crappy day on which couples are meant to share the love and present each other with pink fluffy teddies and chocolates and hearts and roses and…blah. A day when the glossy mags boast “why being single is cool”. It makes even ME vomit, and I’m married. Luckily, however, I’m married to an avid gamer. So in my house? Everyone’s a winner.

But its not always like that. All ancient girl-gamer clichés aside (I’m talking to guys AND gals here), it’s time to use Valentines Day to your advantage. Forget the teddies and love-hearts; this month, it’s time to introduce your partner to gaming. If you haven’t already, of course!

So here I present you with “Games to Play With Your Girlfriend. Err…I mean, Other Half.” (Told you I don’t generalise…)*

1. SINGSTAR (PS2)

A couple of years back when this game first surfaced, my husband grabbed it excitedly and insisted we get it. Why? I still don’t know. But if you’re fond of bad karaoke, then this is just for you. Simply arm yourselves with two plastic microphones and belt out a song from a selection of well-loved tunes (and also look out for the various SingStar editions, ranging from anthems to ’80s) in an attempt to beat your dreary-voiced opponent. Stay in key and you’ll be well on your way to singing success. This game is one hell of a lot of fun (and probably even more so when drunk). Needless to say, I totally beat my husband, and we never played it again. The drama!

Note: Do not, under ANY circumstances, take SingStar pwnage as your cue to audition for American Idol. Trust me, it’ll all end in tears. SingStar holds no responsibility for lack of dignity should one be featured on the “worst auditionees ever” reel, so it is advised to keep all voice-related ambitions at bay for a minimum of two months after time of play.

2. WORLD OF WARCRAFT (PC)

Yeah, like THIS one wasn’t going to make the list! Blizzard’s World of Warcraft is a soul-consuming drug that’s rapidly on the increase, taking away loved ones across the globe. Warcraft widows wander aimlessly around, wondering how such a force could have stolen their much-loved other halves. On the plus side, it IS cheaper than cocaine, and there’s no danger of losing half your nose.

wow3

However, top MMORPG WoW is now one massive hit with BOTH sexes. So guys? You could possibly lose your wives and girlfriends, too. And no, that’s NOT a good thing. Gamer feminists are burning their bras in awe at such a game…well, creating Blood Elves, anyway, for after the recent release of Burning Crusade, everyone’s in a mad rush to get to level 70, explore new lands, and finally obtain a flying mount. Hurrah! So yes, this is one mighty game to introduce your partner to. The only problem is…you might not get him or her back.

Note: Whilst being a WoW widow is hardly fun in the slightest, it can have its advantages. Tip for the ladies: Wait until your partner heads into a difficult instance. Then, all you have to do is say, “Darling, do you mind if I use your credit card to buy those gorgeous $400 sandals?” Guaranteed, the reply of ‘”Instance *mumble* [censored] mobs, [censored]  *bleep* paladin!” can only be taken as a “yes”. In fact, it couldn’t be more clearly an agreement.

3. BURNOUT (various)

Burnout is brilliant. Not only does it teach you how to carefully construct one major pile-up on a busy road a la Final Destination 2, but it’s also fun to play. Killing as many people as possible and racking up God knows how much in damages takes just as much skill as it does luck, so this is one fabulous game to bond over. I mean, the whole concept is genius. Back when I used to play this, I absolutely LOVED it. And I got attached. TOO attached. Which is probably why I should never drive. Ever.

Note: After hours of playing this, don’t go out on the road. Or if you do, make sure you give Shelia’s Wheels a call first….

4. DEAD OR ALIVE: EXTREME BEACH VOLLEYBALL 2 (X360)

Us girls often love sports, but golf is too tedious, and football is just pants—so how about volleyball? Dead or Alive: Extreme Beach Volleyball 2 not only boasts a variety of activities and separate games, but you can also collect swimsuits and accessories. Which is pretty good, ’cause with a gravity-defying cleavage like THAT, you’d need to get those damn outfits custom-made. From Prada. Six months in advance.

beach

Needless to say, the majority of guys will take an instant liking to it.

5. TETRIS WORLDS (various)

Everyone loves those awfully addictive, arcade-type games, don’t they? Personally, I do. And Tetris is possibly THE most addictive game EVER. I must have wasted the equivalent of an entire year on that game as a kid back when everyone had a Game Boy. Its fast-paced yet oh-so-simple concept, coupled with that entrancing music that stuck in your head constantly, became a hit with practically everyone. Looking back, I’m glad I’m now clean of the drug that is Tetris.

Unfortunately, Tetris Worlds popped up right in front of my face whilst in Gamestation the other day.

“ARGH!” I yelled, and legged it out of that shop sharpish. Seriously, with MY busy schedule? I’d like to play Tetris as much as I’d like to share an elevator with ten razor-wielding emo kids. But if addictive is your thing, you’ll love it. Be prepared for hours—I mean HOURS—of fun together on this one.

Well, there you have it. Five delectable games for your playing pleasure. (That sounds dodgy. So I’ll leave it in.) In any case, there are plenty more, and I for one am interested. Got anything better than my suggestions? Feel free to comment. As you guys know, I’m only into the casual stuff…

*Contrary to popular belief and probable assumptions following this article, I am not a sexist pig. Honest.

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About the Contributor


From 2007 to 2007

Danielle Symonds-Yemm is a former staff member from GameCola's early days as a monthly email newsletter.

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