This post was written as part of the Bloggy XMAS event hosted by Syl. Every day other bloggers post their community centered blog as a countdown to Christmas. Check out the complete calendar for more awesomeness.
I started playing games when I was three. Still fooling around in DOS and later Windows 3.1. I played with my brother, but after a while we stopped playing together. He thought I cheated. After that I played mostly single player games by myself. Roller Coaster Tycoon, Settlers 3, Black & White. And just a bit after Black & White I started playing Diablo 2. That’s when my online adventure began.
I’ve heard and/or experienced all types of harassment online. As a 14 year old girl, it’s an eye opener. I heard things I shouldn’t be hearing about at that age. But that didn’t stop me from gaming. I liked it and no one could make me not like it. I liked it so much that when a class mate told me about his gaming weekend with a few friends (about 20) I wanted to take a look.
That was my first LAN party.
One of the older guys managed to get his house to himself. Twenty people from different classes and years came to his place with their PCs and played for three days straight during a vacation. I had seen pictures from LANs before, but to be there was great. That was the first time I played a shooter. My now boyfriend killed me within seconds of the start of the game. I hated it so much that I stopped playing Counter Strike after that.
The next LAN a different guy hosted it and my parents allowed me to go after a friend convinced them it was ok and he would watch out for me. It was epic. Forty guys, two girls (not counting the visiting girlfriends who never played a game in their life). We played games, held an UT classic clan tournament (I always ended last), watched anime and leeched games, movies and music from each other.
We held these LAN parties once or twice a year until the hosts left for college. I’ll never forget these guys and the moments we shared. I made more friends there, then I did elsewhere.
Years later, I’m still gaming, but no LANs. I missed it though. I heard from others going and I wished I could go again. About two years ago I decided it was time that I shouldn’t be a closet gamer. I should be proud of the gamer I am and do the things I like. So I asked if I could come next time.
This is a compilation video of the first LAN since ages. Guess which girl is me ;) They rented some bungalows on a park (very common vacation accommodation in Europe). It was ten to twelve people per bungalow. Usually groups of people rent one bungalow together. Gaming is always more fun with friends.
Video games aren’t the only games played at Copynite, the name of the LANs. You can play board games, console games, RP games, whatever you want. You don’t have to do anything. If you just want to watch movies, that’s fine too.
The LANs we go to now are in a four star hotel, all-in. This year we had 112 people, while the max is around 130. About twenty of them are girls. This makes me really happy. I don’t care if the people I play with a male or female, but seeing that gaming is embraced by girls, and they don’t think they have to hide that they like gaming, it’s great. We don’t have jerks who talk someone down because they suck (they’re banned from future events), unless it’s in a friendly competitive manner. It also helps that all their events are invite only. No random people are allowed in.
Copynite isn’t just about gaming, but it brings people together with a shared interest. I think Copynite is one of the best things about gaming for me. It proves to me that gaming has a huge social aspect. Everyone is friends with each other, happy to see each other after so long, hugs are shared, new friends are made and the bar is always a favorite hang out spot. Some people are rarely behind their PC and choose to hang out and do other stuff with their friends.
Have you ever been to a LAN Party? What are your experiences?