by Max Barry

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by The Despotic Dictatorship of Despoticania. . 192 reads.

Popular Hobbies, Games and Pastime Activities

Wall Game

First emerging in the early 1900's, The Wall Game is one of the most popular games among Despoticanian children (and many adults). It is often the first game young Despoticanians learn in daycare or at school. The instructions of the Wall Game are really simple: Find a wall, stare at it, and think about how, eventually, both you and the wall will be infinitely dispersed and at absolute zero temperature in the heat death of the universe.

The Wall Game is popular among children an adults alike.

Suicide Game

Another popular game, the Suicide Game involves, like its name suggests, killing oneself. The suicide is performed with the standard autodoc found in most middle class and above households and includes a total cessation of all life functions, including measurable brain activity. The autodoc can almost always revive the dead person, provided this is done soon enough. The dead person is usually revived after a set period of time. The goal of the Suicide Game is to experience death and get a glimpse of - real or imagined - afterlife. High-risk suicide gamers may program the autodoc to wait for 10 minutes or more before starting the revival process.

Monster Hunting

Despoticania is infested by numerous horribly malformed mutants and monsters, which roam the sparsely populated, heavily polluted Arctic wastes between the walled settlements. Hunting these monsters, usually with intentionally underpowered weapons, is a traditional (and dangerous) hobby of many Despoticanians. It is also popular among tourists seeking thrills. In ancient times, Monster Hunting was used as a rite of passage for aspiring warlords and Warrior Priests of the Church of Transcendental Hatred.

Blood Sports

Blood sports, especially ones involving sapient participants, are extremely popular in Despoticania. The most popular domestic blood sport show is Mutant Mashers, where heavily modified and enhanced fighters take on the most deadly of Despoticanian mutants with melee weapons (or their bare hands) before facing each other in the final round. Another popular show is Convict Row from Lenspheria, which is watched by millions of Despoticanians, young and old, every week on their ultra-HD holo projectors.

Body Modification

Long before the emergence of modern medical technology, Despoticanians practiced extreme forms of body modification which many other cultures would have considered outright self-mutilation. The roots of this activity lie in the traditional Despoticanian mentality, which despises mortality and the innate weakness of the flesh to the point of self-loating. Ancient Despoticanians often chopped off their own limbs to replace them with crude prosthetics or crafted metal plates under their skin to gain a "natural" armor; thanks to modern medicine, body modification these days is far safer and much more refined, though it still often involves the replacement of limbs and other body parts with artificial equivalents. Most body modification is done for utilitarian purposes, but purely aesthetic reasons are quite common as well. Because of Despoticanians' tendency towards excess, many body modders tend to look rather freakish, at least to foreign eyes.

Extreme body modification can be done for both practical and aesthetic reasons.

Video Games

While the Heaven Simulation can be seen as the ultimate form of video gaming (although most of its residents would object, instead calling the Heaven an "alternate reality"), more traditional video games are very popular in Despoticania. Despoticania has one of the largest video game industries in the world and has been at the forefront in developing more immersive VR technologies.