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Published: Friday July 25, 2014 MYT 12:00:00 AM
Updated: Friday July 25, 2014 MYT 7:36:26 AM

A great game plan

AT A recent buka puasa family dinner, my younger brother said one of the main reasons why married couples fought was because husbands spend too much time playing video games.

When we heard this, all of us glared at our older brother, a video game junkie.

I was a little shocked by his statement and quickly whipped out my tablet and googled, “Husbands and wives fight because of video games”.

The number of pages that came up was absolutely jaw-dropping. Not because of the results churned out by Google, but mainly because of the personal blogs written by some wives.

In these blogs, the wives wrote that they were thinking of leaving their spouses because they had not gotten enough attention from their husbands who were addicted to video games.

When I read the blogs further, I learned that some wives found the most irritating part about playing video games was that they did not involve them.

Even if a wife did participate, she was not able to interact with her husband because both of them would be focusing on the screen.

If you think this problem occurs only among young couples, then you would be gravely mistaken.

According to the Entertainment Software Association of America, the average age of an American video game player is 30.

A total 36% of video game players are aged 36 years and above, and this is just in the United States.

Most guys say they play video games because they want to escape from the realities of day-to-day life. But based on how our other halves view the addiction to video games, I think we blokes need to find a game that both spouses can play.

Play video games by all means, but men need to open their minds and find other games that can be enjoyed by their partners too.

In my opinion, nothing beats board games because your focus is not just on the game, but also on the human interaction and reaction that takes place.

Monopoly and checkers are ones that most of my friends, young and old, talk about and love playing.

But one game that always catches my attention and I quite enjoy playing, even for a short time, is Subbuteo.

Subbeteo is a tabletop simulated football game. It is one of the world’s most iconic sports games, bringing the fun and competitiveness of football to your home. And you don’t even have to put on a pair of boots.

The game comes complete with 22 figure players. Each team has 11 players wearing your favourite team colours, like those worn by Manchester United, Liverpool, Argentina and Germany teams.

You may think the game is complicated and as difficult as chess, but it is actually quite simple.

The goal of the game is just like an ordinary football game — to score as many goals as possible. A game consists of two 15-minute halves, with two players.

Each player will take turns to flick their figure players to push the ball down the field in order to score a goal.

But football is not just about scoring goals, it is also about stopping goals. Just ask the Italians. If the opposing team is in a goal-scoring position, you may choose to flick your player to a goal-stopping position.

When playing Subbuteo, not only will your competitive spirit come to the fore, it will also bring out elements like camaraderie, friendship and fun. In most cases, you will be laughing and crying at the same time.

I am sure Subbuteo is something our other half can appreciate. Most of our wives are always complaining that they don’t understand football. Subbuteo is great at educating players about football.

The game may look simple but trust me, it is good fun.

But I take no responsibility if your wife beats you. Let’s not forget some of the best tacticians are women.

If you want to know more about the game, check out www.facebook.com/SubbuteoWorldMalaysia.

I would also like to take this opportunity to wish my fellow Muslims a Selamat Hari Raya. Maaf zahir dan batin.

Tags / Keywords: Community, Central Region, ben ibrahim, subbuteo

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A great game plan

25 July 2014

AT A recent buka puasa family dinner, my younger brother said one of the main reasons why married couples fought was because husbands spend too much time playing video games.

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