Game On

Posted on 21 October 2014 by admin

Students battle each other on ‘Super Smash Bros.’ and ‘Borderlands’ computer games

Students gather in the Humanities East building to play video and computer games between classes. PHOTO | KAYLA CACCIATORE

Students gather in the Humanities East building to play video and computer games between classes. PHOTO | KAYLA CACCIATORE

Staff Illustrator

A stroll through the second floor of the Art Department will likely find a gaming group of seven or eight in the hallway at almost any time of day during the week. Controllers in hand and laptops spread out on the table in Humanities East, they play “Super Smash Bros,” a game by Nintendo, 24/7.

A few of the regular gamers are Meramec students Kirsten Frederick, Tyler Leiwecke, Nella Donati and Mike Dempsey.

It was not until the Spring 2014 semester when the group began getting together at a table in the hall. Leiwecke said playing games openly in the hall is easier on a college campus than in high school.

“We’ve all known each other somehow in some form,” Leiwecke said. “It makes it easier because you are around friends and college is a more relaxed environment.”

Frederick said he agrees.

“I think it helps that a lot of us knew each other from high school,” Frederick said. “The rest of us know each other from classes we’ve had here at school [STLCC-Meramec].”

The gamers are mostly art students. Frederick said some students are taking classes in other departments as well.

“My boyfriend has gotten some of his friends over here when we started sitting here, who are from all over campus. We even have a computer science major. But for the most part we are all art majors,” Frederick said.

Leiwecke, Donati and Frederick are in their third year at Meramec but not everyone in the group is the same age, Leiwecke said. It is generally a welcoming group considering many members are younger than the three, he said.

“Usually we’ll have at least one extra controller. Some people will ask, ‘Can I join?’ I don’t think we’ve ever said no to anybody,” Frederick said.

As students spot the group playing “Super Smash Bros” in the hallway, Donati said they would slow down, stop and just stare at the screen.

Many other game titles illuminate their computer monitors and hand-held devices.

“We play ‘Pokémon’ we also play stuff like ‘Animal Crossing’ as well,” Leiwecke said. “If you can come up with a game to play or if you say ‘I’ve got this game, it has multiplayer, let’s all try it,’ we are willing to try a new game.”

However, “Super Smash Bros.” is one of the most played games in the hallway, Frederick said.

“It doesn’t really get old unless you are playing it like five days a week,” Frederick said. “We played ‘Pokémon’ when that came out. I’m sure we will be playing it when the new one comes out. Now that the [DS] version of Smash is out I think we will be playing that, too.”

Outside of Humanities East, other gamers congregate in various locations around campus, toting consoles and flatscreens as opposed to laptops and handheld systems, said Frederick.

“There were some people who brought an Xbox and a TV and were playing ‘Halo’ in the cafeteria. We came here because we were bogged down by how loud it is,” Frederick said.


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