Poor old Sticky Man.  He's been trapped in this Lego jail for the last month or two - this arch-enemy of Toyworld has been doing it tough. That's because the phenomena of Toyworld, a whole universe which has taken over our various houses for the last 4 years, has slowed down (for a comprehensive description of Toyworld, see this post).  Oh, there's still battle between bad and good, and King Toby still occasionally comes out to decree a truce or a treaty or a war or something, but developments in Toyworld happen less often - because a new game has started.

It's called "Legend", and it has been talk of the town for the last three months or so.  I'm not quite sure what the stimulus was - it's basically like dungeons and dragons, but cooler, totally mobile, and made up by Tiss.  Its an imaginary world or tale, which Tiss describes to the players, and lets them interact with the surroundings and go on quests.  Mikus is one of the main players, as well as the boys' friend "Mark" (not his real name), and another few grade-four friends.

The players get to make their own imagined persona - choosing their age (this seems to be the most important thing), profession, and super animal powers.  The characters then interact, move through the landscape, find various weapons (of course), meet various goodies and baddies, and fight the baddies (naturally).  The players work together to form various alliances, get into scrapes, build themselves buildings, collect money and treasure  and so on.  

What amazes me is that the game is totally and absolutely language-based, and the longevity of the game - and the levels of excitement it causes.  When school started back in September the boys would meet their mate Mark on the tram and immediately pull out their mobile phones, and play them avidly during the 20 minute ride into school.  Now, they get together and discuss the latest developments in "Legend" and I am forever having to "shush" them as they get overly excited arguing about battle tactics or amounts of TNT or making explosion sound affects to accompany the play.  Tram passengers get up and clear a space around the boys when they get a chance, because the play and noise levels are way too hyped.

Mikus and Mark didn't speak for a whole week once, because Mark had exploded their plane accidentally when Mikus was still in class and unable to press the "eject" button. Mikus is very proud of himself, because in the game he is 12 YEARS OLD, and has super wolf powers, and he can do back flips.  This combination of elements is apparently pretty cool.

I keep wondering if my kids seem so desperate to imagine parallel universes because their real lives seem too dull.  Or maybe its because I've been such a harridan and banned them from watching too much tv.  Whatever it is - I don't know how long it will last, and I have no idea at what stage my sons will be classified as role-playing geeks by the rest of their class mates, but for now, it works for me, and the dudes. I just hope that some evil henchman remembers to release Sticky Man at some point, so that he can return to cooking up some more dastardly plots against the rest of humanity...

Just this week there was a frenzy of activity after I suggested that the goings on in Legend could possibly be captured in a comic.  Breakfast banter was replaced by feverish pencil-sketching both for Tiss (drawings above) and Mik (front cover, below).

One Response so far.

  1. Wow, oh my goodness if this is what happens when you ban Tv think what they could be creating with no access to screens! Love every second of this, want to join in myself. Personally I would want to have a red hooded cape, wings, invisibility, collect crystals and be 9 years old, can you ask if I can join? Unless girls are banned of course! mel x

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