Gaming - the great stress reliever.
My life has been very stressful lately. I help take care of my mother, and she has been seriously ill. On top of that, I have my sister temporarily living with me. This has meant I've had to clear out my entire hobby room and move the entire contents to a room half its size.
Wednesday last (August 1st), I wasn't feeling at all like gaming. I'd had a hard day and could physically feel the stress on my shoulders. However, I'd agreed to give my friend Chris K (aka Admiral Drax) a game. Chris is such a genuinely nice guy and fun to play, this was not an opportunity to turn up. I'd even persuaded him to give Beyond the Gates of Antares a try...
Chris chose a Concord C3 force while I opted for the lower tech (but cool!) Algoryn. We had some nice Sarissa terrain to add to some of the club's scenery, and a Cigar Box battle mat. What was just a straight up elimination battle, soon turned into a fight for the Algoryn drop pod syphoning power from the Boromite mining vent.
Despite his lack of expertise with Antares, Chris soon got the hang of the game and started beating me! With the drop pod securely in his hands and my main vehicles destroyed, I shook his hand and claimed him the victor.
This Wednesday just gone (the 8th), I managed to get a game of Bolt Action with Ben, who was eager to try out his nicely painted US Paras. We played scenario 8, Manhunt. I had to capture his commander. The game turned into a 'Benny Hill'-style chase for his commander. Had he concntrated on wiping out my infantry squads (the only thing capable of taking his commander), the game would have been his. Even so, it was very close.
There is a moral to this story. While I was playing, I'd forgotten my worries, and when I had to return to the real world, I felt a lot less stressed. I'd enjoyed myself, even though I'd had to almost drag myself out of the house. So gaming with good opponents is definitely helpful when it comes to lowering your stress levels.