New goat technology befuddles older generation

My boys are sharing a goat.

Let me explain.

The goat is virtual. It is a game app that allows the player to manipulate the activities of a standard goat.

It is really only Big Brother and Buster who are sharing this goat. I’m sure Big Man would be interested if it were a real goat – somebody he could pet or chase as the mood struck him. But he’s not really interested in screen goats, yet.

These flesh goats are so 2013.

These flesh goats are so 2013.

By sharing I mean they are constantly fighting over who gets to play the goat game. Big Brother is searching for some legal loophole or parents’ edict that will cause Buster to cease playing the game altogether. It’s not that he doesn’t want his little brother to have a happy childhood, but it seems as though you, or your goat, can build things in this game, and he lives in terror that the poorly trained, younger goatherd will somehow destroy all he, and his goat, have created.

This only makes Buster’s fire to play the game burn more brightly. I’m sure he understands as little as I do about how virtual goats build apartment complexes, but if Big Brother doesn’t want him playing, it must be an awesome game.

I don’t understand this fascination with the pixel goat. Sure, you can make him swim across a river and break things with his hooves, (Goats have hooves, right? I grew up with cows.) but I can’t figure out how that translates into an addicting game.

It’s not that I don’t like computer games. There are a handful of games I play. I even kind of get the appeal of Minecraft. In that game, you build up some kind of civilization (I think) while working toward some sort of goals (I think). And the best part is, you can create cats and dogs and then leave your tablet in the kitchen so your dad goes crazy trying to figure out where all the meowing and barking is coming from as he makes dinner. Who wouldn’t get a kick out of that?

But this goat I don’t understand. Every time I look at the game, the goat is just swimming or walking, or in the really exciting moments, sleeping. Who spends their time making a fake goat sleep? Okay, don’t answer that. The goat did build a house of some sort, so I guess there’s more to it than that.

How do you put a goat to sleep? Tap the sleep icon, of course.

How do you put a goat to sleep? Tap the sleep icon, of course.

I just can’t imagine my childhood revolving around virtual goats. I used to read, and play ball, and go swimming. My kids do that stuff too, and yet still find time for the goat. Maybe that’s the time I spent milking cows. Or maybe we had more innings in our ball games.

I’m trying to get Big Brother to read more and play games less. I wish I could get him to do so more willingly. Maybe he needs more interesting stories. Anybody know where I can find books about sleeping virtual goats?