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by Ian Fortey
Ever since Donkey Kong first assaulted a carpenter with a barrel for his poor animal husbandry skills, the world has been really into gaming. Or maybe even prior to that, when our elders got sick of passing the time by counting their own regrets in the dark. Thankfully, somewhere along the way, an enterprising individual thought, “Hey, let’s take our minds off of starvation and getting horribly mutilated by wild animals with an activity that has an arbitrary set of rules!” Thus, the game was born.
And while games were intentionally designed for the “fun” factor, some people take things to an entirely new level.
A Woman Travels 4,000 Miles To Continue A Game Of Tag
You remember Tag -- it’s basically the most rudimentary game in existence, and one of the more common methods parents use to shove their kids outside so they can have some sexy alone time. At its core, you just try to touch another person and not get touched back. Sort of like MMA, but with way less gambling and unconsciousness. Well, depending on your friends, we guess.
When you adapt this childhood whimsy into adulthood, however, it can get more involved. For example, a North Carolinian named Georgina Wilkinson had met up with some random folks in China while on vacation, and they decided to initiate a game of Tag. Unfortunately, when it came time to part ways, Wilkinson was tagged last, making her the dreaded, disgusting, disreputable “It.”
While most of us would have let it be, cherishing the memories of new friends and a fun, childhood game played abroad, Wilkinson wasn’t most people. Instead, she hopped on a plane and flew 4,000 miles to Scotland, with not being “It” on her mind. She was no quitter.
Four years after their initial encounter, Wilkinson contacted the family of her friend, Drew McEwan, to help her set up an elaborate ruse. She posed as a gardener where McEwan’s family was holding a christening for his niece, poised like a pruning ninja, ready to strike when her target was in proximity. During the photo shoot, McEwan was asked to go request that the gardener step out of the picture, and that’s when Wilkinson tagged him, laughed at his hilarious, surprised reaction, then just grabbed her stuff and left.
That’s dedication on a horror film level.
That’s literally all that happened -- they didn’t visit or catch up. She just tagged him then fled and went back home. That’s some hardcore commitment. And now, the world waits, watching with our bowl of popcorn to see if McEwan has the effort and the cash to continue. C’mon, Drew. You’ve got this!
Someone Embezzles A Bunch Of Money, Spends $1 Million Of It On Game Of War
Way back in 2013, a mobile game called Game of War was unleashed upon the masses. You may remember its release, what with the advertisements consisting of supermodel Kate Upton looking at tiny people while riding on horseback and making them scuffle beneath her cleavage. If there was any more to it than that, the advertising failed to convey the message.
Regardless, it was a colossal success. The company who developed it, Machine Zone, Inc., was raking in over $500 million per year and was valued at a cool $3 billion. A not so tiny fraction of that, however, was courtesy of one Kevin Lee Co, who spent $1 million on the game by himself. In real cash -- not virtual currency.
“Who is this independently wealthy idiot?” you might rightfully be asking. The truth is he embezzled money from his employer to the tune of almost $5 million. Of course, he did other things like getting plastic surgery and buying cars, too, but at least 20 percent of that thievery was devoted to a mobile phone game. Man, we hope he at least kicked some ass. Because it might help pass the time while sitting behind bars to reminisce about that one day you took over a cartoon kingdom.
Someone Keeps An SNES Going For 20 Years To Save His Game
Modern gamers have no idea how soft their world is. With checkpoint saves, unlimited respawns and consoles with built-in storage, you can pretty much just pick up where you left off no matter what you’re playing. And that’s a good thing, because it lets you actually enjoy the game instead of angrily launching your copy of Battletoads against the wall because screw that level.
But there was a time when game progress was as hard to hold onto as an errant mouse fart, and saving a game meant everything. For one Japanese gamer, that meant two full decades of dedication and consistent electricity.
A Twitter user by the name of Wanikun shared the tale and pictures back in 2016 of his quest to preserve progress in a game called Umihara Kawase. He had put a fair amount of time into it, and was not about to let the unreliable storage abilities of an SNES cartridge ruin all of that. So he left the game on, continuously, beginning in 1995. The only time it was unplugged, during the 180,000 or so hours it was running, was when he actually had to move to a new house. But luckily the Super Famicom (the Japanese version of the Super Nintendo) had some back up battery power that kept it alive until it was plugged in at the new location, ensuring no damage to his shrine of stationary video game achievement.
Some of our readers haven’t even spent 180,000 hours breathing.
How do you even do that? Blow some fans on it so it doesn’t overheat? Build a canopy over it so it doesn’t suffer the wrath of your spilled beverages? Literally never let anybody inside your home because if you accidentally bump that power button I will murder you? It’s a mystery. And awesome.
This Giant Minecraft City Took Eight Months to Build
Minecraft is a game about boxes making more boxes into different boxes, at least as far as we can tell. We’re not quite sure, since we spend most of our time doing other things. But still, it’s a freaking marathon.
It’s actually far more complex than we’re making it sound. Some people have used Minecraft to build other games inside of the game, like a mighty Nerdception scenario, which is both cool and perplexing at the same time. But most people simply like the challenge of constructing things in general, and Minecraft essentially gives you an endless supply of building materials and unlimited space in which to use them. And that’s why, sometimes, certain dedicated individuals take it to the next level.
You know damn well you want to drop a lava block right in the middle of that.
One group of gamers who call themselves Octovon spent eight months working together to create eight babies at the same time. Wait ... no, that was Octomom. Octovon made a city, but it’s a massive 2,000 block by 2,000 block city created in the Minecraft universe. The buildings have detailed interiors and are flawlessly designed architectural works on the outside as well. Ten members spent eight months putting the whole thing together, piece by piece. It’s actually one of several structures the crew have made, and they’re willing to do commission work should you ever feel the need to lord over your own universe.
Now populate it with creepers.
This Guy Has Been Playing A 35-Year Game Of Dungeons & Dragons
Gary Gygax, who was not a glam rocker or second-string Star Trek: Voyager villain, despite his name, created Dungeons & Dragons with Dave Arneson back in 1974 at a time when the world of fantasy consisted entirely of Led Zeppelin’s “Ramble On” and the movie Zardoz. A couple of years after its launch, Robert Wardhaugh started playing and has been doing so ever since. And we don’t mean he’s played a ton of campaigns over the years -- he’s been playing the same damn game he started back in 1982. It’s one long, incredibly detailed campaign that never, ever ends.
The basement of Wardaugh’s house is a shrine to his nerd obsession, decked out in miniatures and not so mini-miniatures, replica weapons, terrain, castles, dragons and hopefully one or two reminders that gaming has advanced since the early 1980s. How many miniatures? Wardhaugh reckons about 20,000 or so.
The craziest thing about his game isn’t even how old it is, but how popular. People actually fly across the country to join in on the dice-rolling. Those who aren’t quite so dedicated (like people who play Tag) can join the game via Skype with a setup in the game room.
While D&D has spent a large portion of its existence as the poster child for socially maladjusted nerds and evil witchcraft practitioners, it probably says something that this game is so awesome that people will actually fly thousands of miles to play it. You probably only ever hop in a plane for vacation, or when someone is born or dying, so Wardhaugh must be one hell of a Dungeon Master.
Like this article? Check out “5 Awesome Ways Video Games Are Saving The Real World” and “6 Boring Sports That People Made Badass”.