What to Play During Quarantine

by Tim Keefe '20

Free time. Boredom. Those are words that have been looming during this unprecedented time. With both the Governors of Virginia and Maryland issuing stay-at-home orders for the time being, time to do things has opened up. Social distancing is now a reality. With these orders from the local state governments, people are looking for things to do to take up time. What a better way to spend time than playing games, whether it be board games or video games or both. The games, whether played alone or with family or friends, are a great way to spend time doing something. 

With the increase in free time, it is true that video game traffic on the internet has gone up. According to Verizon Analytics, from the time before the stay at home orders to now, overall video game internet traffic has gone up by 75%. The amount of people who have played video games during this social distancing period has also gone up. Based upon a poll sent out to the entire Upper School student body, 58 responded. Of those 58 people,  58 % of them responded saying that they had played video games with only 15% saying that they had played board games. Some of the video games included Modern Warfare, Fortnite, and Animal Crossing. While people have played video games, others have likely spent more time watching TV or movies on the numerous streaming platforms. 

From a board game perspective, the large amounts of free time and spending it with family have increased the use of board games that were likely before just things to look at on a shelf. One respondent said that her family had started to play Scrabble and Monopoly more to pass time with each other. Laetitia Haddad, a senior, said in an interview that she has been playing a lot of Scrabble. “I do it everyday with my mom and it is a part of my routine now.” She has also played Trivial Pursuit with her family. 

A game that I have been playing a lot recently is Mouse Trap. This board game is easy and can be played by people of all ages. I am playing this game with my siblings who are all older than the age of 17. Even Ms. McElroy is playing this game with her kids who are in the Lower School. Needless to say, Mouse Trap is a fun and enjoyable game for all ages. Another game that is a Keefe household favorite is Monopoly. This board game consists of buying and selling property has been a favorite since I can remember. The competition between the family really shows during the long Monopoly games, and what a better way to fill the time. 

Based upon the poll, people in our own Saints community have played board games such as Yatzhee, Othello, backgammon, checkers, and chess. Needless to say during these weird and sometimes chaotic times when days seem to repeat themselves, getting lost in a video game or board game is just the solution to the problem. Please everyone, stay safe and play more games!