Bounden: dance, play, love

bounden
Two people. One SmartThing (you know, iPod, iPhone, Galaxy). Each partner (player/dancer) is holding on to one end of the SmartThing, thumb on the little “place your thumb here” circle. You center the cursor in the midscreen circle. A large ball appears. A cursor-like object in the center. You hear music. You tilt. The ball seems to turn with your tilt, revealing a trail of rings and things. You commencez your personal Pas de Deux.

Through careful and cunning tilting and twisting of the SmartThing and your personal bodies, you do what you can to keep the cursor aligned with the apparently endless parade of circles and almost-circles that appear to float around the ball. Do well enough, and you will both, ensemble, level up.

Watch, for example, this:

[vimeo]https://vimeo.com/95726417[/vimeo]

It’s a unique game, an “invitation to the dance” if there ever was one. There are subtleties and complexities, o yes. For example, the almost-circles written about above: well, once you get your cursor into one of them you have to then turn your Thing so that it is aligned with the opening of the aforesaid almost-circle – causing you to initiate yet another kind of dance-like movement.

But, for me, given my ever-sharpening focus on the play/love connection, Bounden is a lesson in love.

It’s all about sharing control.

As far as the game goes, it really doesn’t matter what you do with your bodies. It’s all about keeping the stream of circles and near-circles centered on the cross-hair-cursor in the middle of the screen. And to do that, it doesn’t really help if you’re the “better” player, or if you have a more intuitive, shall we say, “grasp” on the game and how to tilt the Thing. All that really matters is how you and your partner play together, understand together, move together, help each other, teach each other, give each other control. Which seems to me what love is, what playing together is, what makes this game so praiseworthy, so valuable, so fun, so profoundly challenging.

It’s an important game, evolution-of-gaming-wise-speaking. It’s a first: cooperative, musical, artistic even. But for couples, even long-married couples, it’s a lesson in love, and the importance – the crucial importance – of playfulness. Holding on, yes, but letting go, too.

01 Award
More about Bounden here.

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