What can we discover about the game? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.
Imagine a large table with a big jigsaw puzzle on it, except the puzzle is broken apart. No two pieces are together. You also don’t have a picture of the box, so there’s no telling at the start what the picture is. However, you are intrigued and sit down and do what most people do, start working on the edge first and the corners, and bit by bit, you piece it together. Slowly it dawns on you as you continue what the picture is and when you put the final piece in eventually, you see how it all fit together.
That is fun.
You also know it’s fun because you keep doing it even though there is no force external to you compelling you. There’s no seeming reward to the puzzle beyond just doing the puzzle. No one is forcing you or even bribing you to do this.
This is akin to the world we are in.
We are thrust in a world that there are some things that we can’t change about the world, such as laws of math, but there are things we can change, such as ourselves, and to an extent, the world around us. Everything we can do you can say is a power that we have. We are here in this world and we are on a quest to discover who we are an why we are here.
That’s also fun.
In looking at the book Life Is A Game, Castronova argues that this way the world is is fun. From a design perspective, this is good game design. Discovery is something we tend to really enjoy. How much of it is in our popular media? We watch a TV series or movie intrigued by the plot wondering what will happen next. When we play games, even after beating a video game, there’s still talk about how exciting it is to discover new things in games. It has been talked about on the web that years after Super Mario World came out, now it is being found you can defeat a Big Boo on a castle by sliding, or how years later in The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker, you can beat the first boss, an evil plant, by bringing pure forest water.
Discovery is fun.
How do we know this? We do it on our world! What is science but the constant process of discovery? What was philosophy at the start but man thinking about the world and learning about it? How much of religion is seeking to understand the divine and relate to it properly?
There are things that are certain for us, such as the laws of math will hold and the sun will rise in the East tomorrow, but there are many uncertainties. Some of those we don’t like, but some we do. We wake up in the morning and none of us knows exactly what will happen that day. We can have a general idea, but we don’t know. For all I know, I could meet today for the first time a girl I will wind up marrying. I mean, if I do remarry, which I hope, I have to meet her some day. Right? Maybe I already have, but if I haven’t, maybe today is the day.
Maybe today you’ll get a big promotion at your job. On the other hand, maybe you’ll learn you have cancer today. Anything can happen possibly, good or bad. We don’t know. We can live in terror or in curiosity. This game is not simple that we are in. It is full of constant surprises and new challenges thrown at us regularly.
It is also a lot more enjoyable to see life as an adventure, which works well with theism. This life is not an accident. We are here purposefully and for a reason. Our questing does have a purpose. We are automatically in a game much bigger than ourselves.
As we continue on, hopefully, we will learn how to do the adventure well.
(And I affirm the virgin birth)