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    PlanetQuake | Features | Articles | Post-Apocalyptic Beatdown!
   

Post-Apocalyptic Beatdown!
Hunkered down amidst hundreds of computers, inflatable Sumo wrestling costumes, and a gigantic Q, Hellchick and the rest of the Beatdown crew await the end of the world with round-the-clock Quaking.
  — by Hellchick

Vapor (right) to Bastard: "Man, you throw th' besht parties, man...I juss' (hic) wanna say...I love you, man..."

Water, cheese and crackers, and a deck of playing cards. These were what we received when we entered the bunker -- well, okay, the new GameSpy offices -- in preparation for the end of the millenium. If the apocalyptic predictions were right and all hell broke loose when the clock struck midnight, at least we'd have a few provisions. As we signed in, we were handed a very official-looking packet containing the Y2K Beatdown Survival Procedures. In the event of total Armageddonal annihiliation, following these careful procedures would insure my survival, I was told, into the next millenium. Welcome to Beatdown 2000.

Past Beatdowns had always been held (with the exception of BD19) at the GameSpy offices, but it seems these days like there's more attendees at a Beatdown than Baywatch viewers after Pamela Anderson Lee's surgery. Consequently, we used the new, huge offices for the event, and they were decked out appropriately -- camouflage netting, GameSpy employees in militia gear, and the giant Q we bought from V@por to grace the new offices. If you ask me -- and I'll tell you even though you didn't -- you just can't have enough giant Q's.

I started setting up right in the middle of the event, snagging myself a spot near some of the other GameSpy guys as well as a few other people I'd never met. Once I'd plugged in and made sure I was set up right, it was time to jump into one of the many pick-up going on -- Q3A DM, Q3A CTF, or some variation in Unreal Tournament. Naturally, I chose a Q3A deathmatch game; CTF is fun, but I was one of those kids who always got the "doesn't play well with others" comment on her kindergarten report card. Pure carnage is more my speed.

Bastard gets funky with a few of the Beatdown attendees

Since I shared my computer with my husband, Sludge_666, I forced myself to give it up for a while so he could have some fun, having never played on a LAN before. I wandered the event and took stock of what we had set up. Across the building from the main LAN room we had table tennis set up, and for most of the event crt and Kornelia could be found trying to one-up each other at it. Next to that were some strange inflatable things I couldn't quite identify just then. I moved on before I became too disturbed by them.

As I walked upstairs, I heard the familiar sounds of Soul Calibur, the game that's sucked the will, it seems, from every GameSpy employee, save myself (although I admit that once I pick up that controller, it's a little hard to put it down). People ensconced in beanbag chairs were practicing up for the Soul Calibur tourney being held later that night.

In the room across from that was a big screen TV with more beanbags in front of it for people to take a break in when the gaming became too much. When I poked my head in, a few people were watching the news to see which cities were going to succumb to the crazed herd mentality of paranoid survivalists first (sadly, none did).

Caution: this man is drunk!

We were lucky enough to have a wireless T1 connection at BD2K, so naturally yours truly thought it would be a great idea to broadcast our usual Friday Frag shoutcast show from the Beatdown this week. shaithis managed to break away from his crowded schedule to come down and help out, so at 7 pm, we fired up the mic, threw on some music, and just generally goofed off. shaithis played poker against himself, cheated, and lost (he complained that he dealt himself crappy hands), and I told the listeners what was going on at Beatdown.

As the the time drew nearer to midnight, the Beatdown crew put up a giant countdown clock on the huge screen at the back of the room. Every hour on the hour Fargo would get on the bullhorn and announce which time zone has just been annihilated in the arrival of the year 2000. The crowd cheered on as we neared our own imminent doom with every rollover.

Next: Oh god, 2000 frags, inflatable Sumo wrestlers, and the Q3A 1 on 1 tourney!


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