Video game marathon planning
October 21, 2010 7:17 PM   Subscribe

My dorm is interested in doing a video game marathon for charity. Advice?

Factors to consider:
- equipment
- streaming
- managing the event
- game choice

What games would be best to run? I worry that Mario and Zelda are overdone. Better question: What would get you watching and donating?
posted by LSK to Grab Bag (12 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
 
Shadow of the Colossus. you could run normal, then normal-2, then hard, then hard-2. should take a good long while. it would be exciting for the audience basically the whole way through, as well.
posted by radiosilents at 7:27 PM on October 21, 2010


or play through all the sonics
or all of the castlevanias
posted by radiosilents at 7:30 PM on October 21, 2010


Start off with bandaids on your thumbs, to avoid friction burn.
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 7:49 PM on October 21, 2010


Nethack. Ideally played by people who have never played before. I would make a pledge for the first ascension.
posted by 256 at 8:42 PM on October 21, 2010


Hell, I'd make a pledge for the first time someone survived to minetown.
posted by 256 at 8:44 PM on October 21, 2010


Any one of Sid Meier's Civilization games (the "proper" games are on PC/Mac but I understand there are "lite" console and iphone versions). Interesting enough for the casual audience to watch and talk about, and it also has the benefit of seeming "educational" (learn about history! and politics! and culture! and geography! kinda. plus, it's exercises the mind, it's just like chess! right.) rather than being a mindless/scary violent shootemup/slasher. It's also like pure heroin for addictiveness and time-distortion even for non-gamers. My sister who never played computer games once tried the original Civ just one time on my computer on her own when I was a kid and 6 hours blew by for her just like that, much to her shock (and she didn't even really know what she was meant to be doing in the game)
posted by Bwithh at 9:38 PM on October 21, 2010


Since you're doing this for a dorm and you asked about motivating people to watch and donate...
You could run an online multiplayer Civilization game (not sure which versions allow this but some certainly do ) with each civilization being represented by a team of people in the dorm who can vote on decisions or even have specific government minister roles (there is precedent for this - some people have actually tried long-term Civ games with real voting amongst teams or set minister roles).

Also, check out Freeciv which is free, opensource multiplayer game based on Civilization:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Freeciv
posted by Bwithh at 9:46 PM on October 21, 2010


I would suggest that you do not do Civilization. It won't be very much fun to watch except to big fans, and even then it'd be hard to start watching the stream mid-marathon.

The reasons games like Mario and Zelda are popular are that lots of people are familiar with them, they're comparatively accessible and they are fun to watch (though there are exceptions, of course). Overdone as they are, I think one of the triple-A super-popular franchises is your best bet. How about Final Fantasy?
posted by danb at 5:26 AM on October 22, 2010


Better question: What would get you watching and donating?

I have a shameful secret addiction: watching commentated replays of Starcraft 2 matches on youtube. I think I like them because: they're fast-paced, but not so fast-paced that you can't usually tell what's going on; they last long enough to build tension but not long enough to get boring; there's a vast range of strategies, so that each game is a little bit different; and with a good commentator (I like Husky for his comical overexciteability) they can be really entertaining even for someone who's never played SC 2.

Why not make it a competitive event rather than just a marathon? Maybe a competitive marathon, with several people all playing the same game at once? Get some funny people to commentate, but only if they're genuinely funny, not just dorm funny.

Having said all that, I'm not sure about game choice. Starcraft 2 is way too technical and anyway Blizzard are being dicks about LAN play. SotC and Civ are awesome but are pretty slow-paced and may not be comprehensible to anyone who isn't already a gamer. Um... Mario Kart? Everyone knows Mario Kart. Or a Street Fighter retrospective? Even a Sims 3 marathon could be fun to watch with the right atmosphere around it.
posted by A Thousand Baited Hooks at 6:33 AM on October 22, 2010


Minecraft?
posted by PenDevil at 6:42 AM on October 22, 2010


Maybe you could pick a ludicrously boring game and do fun stuff in the background for donations? In other words, a la Desert Bus for Hope?
posted by TrishaLynn at 8:07 AM on October 22, 2010


Mortal Kombat... played on Dance Dance Revolution controllers.
posted by hishtafel at 11:37 AM on October 22, 2010 [1 favorite]


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