Teacher becomes the student

Playing games with others is fun. Research even shows that this is one of the reasons why we play at all. But are there different kinds of fun? Yes. People who say that games are for winning, clearly don’t get it. In a socially-connected game, games are often for teaching, and, more yet, for losing. 

Teaching someone a game can be stressful, but extremely satisfying when you see that someone finally gets it. Basically, teaching a game becomes a game in itself. In the industry this joy from teaching is called Vicarious Pride. It doesn’t just come from teaching, but more so from watching others succeed and become better at what they are doing because of you. 

But, when pupils become too good at something, suddenly the teacher becomes the student. If games were all about winning, this would potentially ruin all games. Luckily, games are a lot about losing. More, even about failing in such an extreme way it becomes funny again. It is the moment where your mom beats you in your favourite game or when someone has incredible ‘bad luck’ when throwing dice. Rather than finding this annoying, people actually seem to enjoy this failure with Happy Embarrassment.

It becomes clear that whilst winning is great, to teach and to fail are equally important in games; especially if you want to end up crying with laughter.