Sports. They seem like a really good way to work out. Rather than going to the gym every week and doing a bunch of exercises that feel horrible, in the company of a dozen or so strangers who are all calculating who can bench the most weight, people who get to play sports are awarded all of the benefits of physical exercise with the added bonus of camaraderie and play.
But just like going to the gym, I’m personally incapable of playing sports. I can’t run for longer than approximately nine seconds, Frisbees mysterious veer off in all directions when I toss them, and I once got an award for scoring the least amount of points in a bowling game (though, on second thought, maybe bowling is the best example of a traditional “sport”).
So, for me, sports usually mean “great attempts to make a fool of yourself while losing friends” and I know I’m not the only one. So for those of you who wake up on a rainy Wednesday morning with that primordial urge to move your body building up inside of you, without the actual drive to go outside, I give you a short list of simple, free, online games that will trick your brain into thinking you’re exercising.
If you grew up during the golden age of video games, you know what Pong is. The game, which combines simplicity with hair-tearing high stakes, is a classic. Curve Ball, which can be found over at Addictinggames.com, is essentially first person pong. It’s just your little rectangle against the computer’s little red rectangle. Things start simply enough, with you and the computer player parrying the ball back and forth like old friends. Before no time, however, the computer has seemingly become sentient and its skills vastly outrank yours. Feel your adrenaline pump as you contemplate the frailty of human logic in the face of even our most simple robotic overlords.
Free Running 2
But perhaps you dream of scaling buildings, jumping over rooftops, and sliding down pipes. Like those cool high school kids in Russian YouTube videos who wear bike gloves and perform death defying stunts of the skyscrapers of their home cities, maybe you just want to feel the rush of free running. Well, over at Miniclip.com, you can make your free running dreams come true. In this game, you play a hooded young man who runs—albeit much more slowly than most—over rooftops. You can jump and slide over pipes, collecting tiny glowing shoes and forgetting that you haven’t run a mile since you were twelve. Also, every time your little avatar falls to his digital end because you forgot to hit the X key in time, you can be thankful for how safe your computer feels.
You are tiny, faceless baseball player in a world of other tiny, faceless baseball players. Return to your youth—the one where you were terrible at baseball—with this game over at allstarsportsgames.com. The tasks are simple: get three home runs, or don’t strike out; but the game wastes no time in reminding you that, even in the digital realm, your ability to hit a baseball in abysmal. Luckily when you’re peering into your laptops glowing screen as 3AM, there is no one around to know it.
Sheldon is a senior creative writing major. This is his first year writing for The Spectator. He was once bitten by a duck in Palm Springs.