Mercer’s Video Game Club is an alternative source of fun on Friday and Saturday nights for the casual gamer. The Video Game Club (VG club) started in the spring of 2011. The club meets every Friday and Saturday night at five o’clock in Sherwood Hall’s lounge.
Kirkland Dent, VG club’s president, said, “[VG club is] for anyone who likes to play video games, wants to take a break, relax.” Dent admits that while some of the competitive games can get “a little serious,” VG club is more about the social experience than anything else. “Games are a great way to break the ice,” said Dent as he played Super Smash Bros. on Sherwood’s big screen TV.”
VG club uses money provided by Mercer and member dues to buy technology such as consoles, extension cords, controllers, games, projectors, and even novelty board games. Dent stresses that you do not have to be a serious gamer to have fun.
When Sherwood lounge is too small or otherwise occupied, the group moves to room 314 in the Connell Student Center. The bigger room has more than enough space to hold 50 people and has several TVs, a surround sound system for ambient music and stores the club’s projectors.
VG Club’s access to projectors and consoles makes them an asset to other campus organizations. According to Dent, other clubs, RA from others dorms, sororities and fraternities request the use of their equipments on a regular basis.
Despite its name, VG club is not limited to electronic games. Board games and turn based trading card games like Yu-gi-oh! are also very popular within the club. One board game, Settlers of Catan is essentially a more complex version of Monopoly with a board that changes every game.
The group uses Facebook to plan, organize and coordinate meetings. Currently, their Facebook group has 66 members. According to Dent there are roughly 40 regularly attending members. “Our officers are friendly, kind, and willing to help out,” said Dent.
VG club regularly hosts events and is planing a super bros. tournament in early February. In the Fall, VG club coordinated with Blockbuster to host a release party for the game Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3.
Members of the VG club were some of the first people in the nation to play the brand new game. VG club also plans to host an “old school” game night using a classic 90’s console, the Nintendo 64. On Halloween nearly a dozen people gathered around a lone player of Amnesia, a horror game notorious for its campaign. If a single player campaign Uncharted, is engaging enough, members will even make popcorn and watch others play like a showing of a movie.
An ultimate goal of VG club is to encourage video game clubs to be formally recognized at other colleges and universities across the state. VG club hopes to coordinate with the other clubs and host cross university video game tournaments.
Members of VG club must maintain a decent GPA in order to remain in the club. This serves to prevent the obviously negative effects of games: neglecting school work.
Members with too low of a GPA get a warning for their first time infraction and then are kicked out of the club until their GPA improves.