Sanity’s Other Side: Four Great Winter Holiday Ideas

Just don’t expect to explain moe in one night.

family playing some kind of console

It’s the winter holiday season yet again, and whether it’s Hanukkah, Christmas, Kwanza, or even just the solstice, there’s plenty of celebrations around and time to get friends and family together. But when you’re the only geek in the family, how can you connect to your relatives? The Inverseman has a few ideas you can use this break or on your vacation days.


1. Play a Game Without a Microphone

little big planet 2 screencaps

There’s something to be said for multiplayer games that do not require an internet connection; you get a much more personal feeling over belting over a microphone. So instead of retreating to a lonely office to solo queue on League of Legends, why not pop in Little Big Planet or dust off the Wii and play the (in) famous Wii Sports? If you do happen to have multiple computers available and the connection to support them, getting on a Minecraft server with cousins is another great option. Whatever game you choose, it’s always great if it’s one everyone can play together. Some relatives might even just enjoy watching the antics and hilarity that ensues, so go old-school and get you Player 2 controllers ready I’m sure there’s something in your library that will make even grandpa feel like a winner.


2. Make Mine Movie Night

Wolf Children poster

I know I weighed in last year about a gift list of fantastic anime and games you can recommend to non-geek-type friends and a movie night or marathon would be a great time to use that list! If you’re in the mood for a movie, Funimation recently released Mamoru Hosada’s Wolf Children on DVD  (check out our review here) and you can never go wrong with Hosada’s work. Now you might be asking, “But that’s too mainstream for me! I wanna marathon an anime, but I’m afraid of looking like a dork!” If you’re looking more outside the mainstream, you can bet your bottom dollar your family can relate to Lucy Yamagami’s shenanigans in Servant X Service if they have even one day’s experience in an office. Look not toward how inaccessible something is but how people can connect to the material. Whatever you choose, it’s always a plus when you can relate to it!


3. Play a Tabletop Game that Won’t Ruin Friendships

Lewis Jacobs Still Photographer 2010

Why play another game of boring old Monopoly this Christmas? There is a whole spectrum of tabletop gaming your family might be missing out on! Get a few EDH decks of Magic the Gahtering if you have relatives that play or used to play. You can also reach for less common tabletop games that don’t often show themselves on your mundane Walmart shelf like Bang! Or if you’re feeling very very adventurous, get a role-playing game like Dungeons and Dragons going on with you as the dungeon master. Just have a few characters pre-built to avoid any stalling and get straight to the gaming. This particular idea was inspired by a friend of mine who plays D&D with her family as their special brand of Family Game Night. If you want a more casual experience that is easier of navigate for some players, try the 4th Edition of D&D.


4. Have a Fantastic Feast (and you know where to find one!)

Matt Smith eats fish fingers
If all else fails, nothing brings a family together quite like hungry stomachs. Have a feast befitting whatever theme you have in mind. Game of Thrones cookbook? Cusine a la The Hobbit? Or the Doctor’s own fish fingers and custard? Moar Powah’s own Fenrir has lots of food-inspired posts so check those out too, but most importantly get creative with it! Food is an excellent outlet of expression that anyone can get behind and appreciate.

Whatever ideas you have, there’s plenty of ways to engage the whole family in what are stereotypically more reclusive interests, all you have to do is think a little bit outside the box and most importantly, have fun with it! Have a happy winter holiday season, readers. Join me next time when I track down copies of the Star Wars Christmas Special.

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The Inverseman is an evil overlord from an alternate dimension representing humanity's anti-existence who wound up becoming a modest civil servant.


The Inverseman is an evil overlord from an alternate dimension representing humanity's anti-existence who wound up becoming a modest civil servant.

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