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LMC Gamespot: Where Robot Unicorns Live

LMC Gamespot: Where Robot Unicorns Live

A student rushes to the library, worried that his Chemistry PowerPoint didn’t post to his Y-Drive. To his dismay, every computer is taken – not only by hardworking students, but also by online gamers.

A May 3 Inklings poll of 112 random Staples students showed that 33 percent play computer games in the library, the most common reason being that the games are a refreshing way to break away from constant schoolwork.

Garrett Jordan ’13 says if there’s minimal time left in a period and he has no work to do, there’s no reason why he shouldn’t be allowed to play games.

Marquell Washington ’12 finds games difficult to resist.

“They’re very addicting,” he admitted. “It’s like a small rebellion for fun.”

Even students who don’t play games in the library understand the urge.

“Students don’t always want to work straight through the day,” Caley Beretta ’10, who uses a personal laptop and does not work in the library, said. “Sometimes kids need to blow off steam, relax and have fun.”

The poll also showed that the most popular game played in the library is Robot Unicorn Attack, where players take on the role of a robot unicorn performing charge attacks to break star barriers traveling through a vibrant land.

According to Chris Johnston, Senior Games Producer of Adult Swim, and a creator of Robot Unicorn Attack, “Once we got our hands on an early version of the game, we definitely had an inkling it was going to be a huge hit.”

One of the most memorable aspects of the game is its music.

“The developer initially put Erasure’s “Always” in as a placeholder music track and planned to replace it later, but we found it wasn’t as enjoyable with a different song,” Johnston said.

Despite the allure of the games, 66 percent of students feel they should not be played in the library, the most common reason being that they feel there are more productive ways to use the library facility.

“[Gamers] think they can do whatever they want, or that librarians won’t punish them any further than a mere warning,” Kelly Chang ’13 said.

“I think you should do as much work as you can in school, and do whatever’s left at home,” Chang concluded.

Emily Ashken ’12 also thinks that the library is not the proper place to play online games.

“I only go to the library to study and get homework done,” Ashken said.

Staples librarian Robin Stiles sympathizes with students who are unable to work on school computers because of gamers, emphasizing that gamers compound the space issue in the library.

“The library has 29 desktops and 16 laptops for 17 or 18 hundred students,” said Stiles. “When a student needs a computer, that’s it,” she said.

“If I see someone playing a game on a [school] computer that I need to work on, I just kick them off,” Peter Molesworth ’11 said. “I’ve never had someone refuse to get off the computer.” Sammy Key ’12, on the other hand, has had trouble at times.

“It’s awkward to ask them to stop, but at the same time, they need to move because I need it for school,” said Key.

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