Ahah. I've just finished watching Angel Beats. The last episode, episode 13 was just aired 2 days ago. It was sure entertaining, although the background is probably based on Japanese culture that believe in reincarnation.
Another sad story by Key.
It was how people who died without fulfilling their dream are gathered together at one place(a school apparently) and given chance to fulfill their dream with their memory still intact before going to their next life. The main conflict was, they don't know about that. They thought they must fight to stay at that school instead. So the main character arrives from his life, learned the true purpose of being at that place, and help the other to find peace, allowing them to disappear to their next life.
Throughout the story I do find one thing interesting though, that is how the rebels call people other than them as NPC. The naming is not stressed that much in the story so it just made me, the viewer to wonder why did the producer used the term NPC. I probably missed something in the episodes since I just had one run on the series.
As someone who is among the target audience, I believe that refers to Non-Playable Character which is a must-know term for any RPG game. Coincidentally, as a gamer who love RPGs, I do sometimes think of myself as a Playable Character, and other people around me as NPC. In fact, it is very fun to think that way. The concept is also the same indeed.
You can go to them, do actions, and they reply with some actions. The only difference here is the number of things they can reply back in which in many games, those are limited.
In games, we interact with NPC to obtain items, information. Many of these are required to complete quests and tasks in the game.
Don't you think the same kind of interactions are required in real life? Haha. You talk everyday with your friends, your teachers, parents. (With the exception information is stored in your brain instead of memory chips) It is SIMILAR in the way that only with that you can advance forward in life, getting promoted, making new friends, getting new skills and so on.
I'm sure I'm not the only RPG gamer who ever thought of that. However, there is one BIG motivation factor here. In RPG, as we follow the story, we often hinted of an acquire-able great things ahead in the story, and we (surprisingly) KNOW that it is quite near/far ahead and we have to do a number of things to get it. Be it, the strongest weapon, unlockable characters, you name it. Then you start to do research on how to get it. ...
Our goals in life is achieved the same way!! WTF! <--- exaggerate attempt
Everything comes with pre-requisite. You have to do something before achieving something.
To talk about karma, you do something good, you get back something good.
To talk in geek, "cin doesn't wait for input".
Some people may think that you have lost your life when you get into RPG. But hell no, if you really get into the game, and enjoy achieving things, you have owned yourself a mindset that can help you in real life.
Be the person with the name of your name living in a world with your condition as a starter.
Then think about your goal. Oh wait? Do you even have a goal?
Let's talk a bit of goals here...
In playing RPG, I can find 3 kind of goals that I commonly have to achieve. Of course we have the one and ULTIMATE GOAL of the game that is either save the planet/universe, eliminate the villain bosses, catch all pokemon(lol), create a perfect civilization/city, etc.
Then to make the game interesting, various level of difficulties is added by adding smaller tasks that you have to do such as doing certain errand, rescue and recruit people to be made ally, find key to get to certain places, doing a sequence of quests, etc. Completing these can be considered as MINI-GOALS of the game. Can't disagree on that.
Then the best thing about RPG game is, there are plenty of SATISFACTION GOALS. This is not tasks determined by the game, but the player itself. You often find yourself wanting to do the hardship so that you can overlevel the game, or you want to know-em-all or you want to perfectly have certain combinations of items at your disposal for use, defeat everything ever made in the game.. too many to be listed.
It is simply similar to the real life. I believe you can connect all of the above with your life. We have things that we get satisfied by getting into them. We also know that everyday we have to do various errand just to keep us alive, and do alot of stuff, at school, and at work. But wait, does that covers everything already?
One thing that we often forget is our ultimate goal in this life.
As a Muslim believer, I am to serve my god, Allah. For some unbeliever out there, perhaps their ultimate goal is to find happiness or be of help for the next generation.
But then, once and a while, you might say life is unfair, things went unexpectedly wrong, and you failed the biggest thing you ever wanted to do. So there is no where role-playing myself works you say. For me, that's where my belief as a muslim help me. I am grateful and always feel motivated because Allah mentioned in the Quran that:
Hence I find that RPG and real life are similar. Everything bad that comes to you has its hiqmah(benefits from ill). If you can just think of the hardship that you get in life is just a challenge, or pre-requisite of something, they are all overcomeable, you can just achieve your goals.
[p/s: Enjoying my holiday ^^. Weeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee]