Let your gamer partner know that you do show some moderate interest in their hobbies by asking them some questions about their favourite games.
Last year, The Boy was into Starcraft II. My questions started off with silly observations such as:
“What’s that building that kinda looks like a shoe?”
(Image Source: Starcraft Wiki)
But after a while, and a whole lot of other questions, I eventually advanced to the more knowledgeable questions about the strategy of the game. You could tell how much enjoyed explaining to me, whether it be because I clearly cared enough to ask and listen, or that his epic game strategies were finally getting appreciated.
Don’t be embarrassed, have a go. Don’t worry if you don’t get the lingo right (chances are, your partner will find it adorable and endearing…). You can start with questions about the characters, objective of the game, why they prefer this game to others, etc. then as you learn about the game, you’ll naturally pick up on mote things to keep the questions flowing.
IMPORTANT NOTE: Ask questions, but not excessively. And ask at the right time. And don’t be too insulted if they doesn’t answer immediately. If you think I’m being silly, perhaps I can explain using a ridiculously girly example that I can relate to, that some of you may be able to also:
Imagine you were watching one of your favourite chick flicks with your gamer guy. Yeah, it’d be cool if he actually showed some interest. Yeah, it’d be nice if he actually asked a question or two to be able to understand exactly why Ryan Gosling thinks that he will win Rachel McAdams back by fixing up his house. However, it would NOT be quite as sweet if he asked for a blow-by-blow account of Noah and Allie’s relationship just as they’re about to kiss in the “…it wasn’t over, it still isn’t over” scene, right? And if you still had the patience to answer him after he ruined the greatest scene of the movie, you at least wouldn’t answer until the scene was over, right? Exactly.