By: Zachary Rankin
“I wish they had this when I was going here,” said Lydia Peever, an Algonquin teaching assistant and 2011 Algonquin graduate, while admiring the TVs, video gaming systems, and specially-designed vibrating gaming chairs.
They had been set up as part of the free We Got Game event held Sept 25 in the Student Commons.
“This is exactly what the Student Commons should be used for, bringing the feeling of being at home to the campus, I love it,” said Peever.
Roughly 100 students throughout the day sat down to enjoy a session of gaming. Fifteen game titles were available including perennial favourites Streetfighter, FIFA and Call of Duty.
Students were glued to the screens as they battled each other for the knockout blow, winning goal and final frag. “That was fun, what a great idea.” said Algonquin student Kyle Erik after finishing a game of FIFA against his friend.
Dave Miller, CEO of We Got Game told the Times that his company puts on similar events at several Ontario colleges and universities.
“It’s a great stress reliever and is especially popular around exam time,” said Miller.
While the company has held over 50 such events, this was their first time in Ottawa. In addition to Algonquin, they held similar events during the same week at Carleton University and the University of Ottawa.
Plans are in the works for We Got Game to host an online video game competition between the two universities.
Despite Peever’s enthusiasm, the absence of women was very noticeable at the Algonquin event. After five hours of gaming only a few females joined in.
As James Lucas, a student in the library and information technician program said: “This is a real sausage fest.”
Miller said the company tries to make their events attractive to women by including games that involve more than just pushing buttons such as racing games complete with wheel controllers and Kinect games for Xbox 360. He said “the female turnout was much better at Carleton.”