Extra Life 2012: Play Games. Heal Kids.

Extra Life 2012 Wide Banner

I’ve never had much interest in the whole “charity” thing. I don’t particularly enjoy helping people I know, much less complete and total strangers. However, one thing that does interest me is finding new ways to validate the unreasonable amount of time I spend playing video games. Also, as a father of two, I have managed to develop some level of fondness for children. I realize how fortunate I have been that my son and daughter are growing up strong and healthy, but I also realize that many families are not always so lucky.

That’s why I’ve decided this year to participate in Extra Life, an annual event where participants engage in a 24-hour video gaming marathon for charity. The donations raised support the Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals, which treat thousands of sick and injured children each year. Last year, Extra Life raised more than $1.2 million dollars to help children with life-threatening conditions like cancer and cystic fibrosis, and this year they’re aiming to raise even more.

On Saturday, October 20th, 2012, I’ll start playing video games at 8:00 AM, and won’t stop for 24 hours. In exchange for me doing… well, basically the same thing I did during every spring break in college, I’m asking people to donate to help me reach my goal of raising $1,000 for the Boston Children’s Hospital. Your donation is tax-deductible and all proceeds go directly to the hospital.

Here’s the link to my donation page: http://www.extra-life.org/participant/appliedgaming.

Of course, the big question is what game(s) should I play during a single 24-hour sitting? Maybe a big, open-world fantasy like Skyrim, or something punishingly difficult like Dark Souls? Perhaps I should play something recently released, like the new XCOM or Dishonored? Or, maybe I could play a different game each hour for 24 hours? Should I go retro? NES? SNES? Maybe I should try a speed run? (Final Fantasy VII in 24 hours?) Maybe I should just try to play the most terrible games I can find, like this one.

The point is, I’m open to suggestions. Regardless of what game or games I choose, be sure to check back with the site on Saturday, October 20th, where I’ll be live-blogging during the full 24 hours I’ll be parked in front of my Xbox. Thank you in advance for your donation!

What game or games do you think I should play? Let me know in the comments!

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