Our new toy in the office this week is Call of Duty 4. We’ve divided the office into two teams – the Light Side and the Dark Side (a commentary not just on our evil natures, but also because the Dark Side of the office works with the lights shut off, and our side has them on). The whole day, we discuss team roles, weapons, and strategies.
Then comes 4:00 pm. The office becomes a battlefield. We have our traditional first few minutes of warmup, ensuring that everyone’s logged into the server, and when we’re all there, we restart the map – and start the war. Playing Domination mode, where each team tries to capture and defend as many flags as possible, our team commanders scream directives at us (“Luna, Popo, capture A! The rest, on me!”) and I end up screaming as well (“I need help on B! Sniper on rooftop!”). We announce UAVs and airstrikes through yells and not through chat, as chatting takes too much time. At 4:30, the war is over, and both sides go back to work (though there’s usually a few minutes of discussion as to why a side won or lost, what the best new weapons are, etc).
“Fun” to us is not just playing for the sake of winning. Just like our own games, we take it seriously. We play to improve, to learn, and alsto to win. Before I became a game developer, I played casually at home without any thought of competitiveness or bragging rights. Now, I have both of those.
(Was the top Light Side player today. Go Light Side!!!)