Teen Tech Week @ Aurora Public Library, Colorado

Teens from both Central and Hoffman Heights branches of Aurora Public Library competed in our first collaborative Runescape tournament! The teens started with brand new avatars on Tutorial Island and had one hour to collect as many points as possible. We used cell phones to determine the start and the finish of the battle at the two branches.

Both winners won a $25 gift certificate donated by Nickel-A-Play Arcade in Aurora. Mark was awarded an additional $15 gift certificate to Anthony’s Pizza and Pasta for being the Grand Champion!

Librarians Lisa Cole and Crystal Niedzwiadek and Library Clerk Antwoine Chapman coordinated the event with the input of teens at a planning meeting. We started by getting familiar with Runescape and creating our own avatars. Admittedly, we only made it partly through the Tutorial Island before we began to feel overwhelmed. We decided to keep it simple for the tournament and had our teens start from the beginning with a new avatar. This proved to be a mistake—several of the teens at both branches were disappointed that they could not use their own avatars for the battle. In fact, two teens at Central decided to boycott the event until their friend convinced them that it would be fun.

During the competition we kept in touch with our cell phones to determine who was in the lead. The teens at Hoffman Heights began to get bored when they realized that Donny was well in the lead. So, one by one they logged off and started to play with their own avatars. Crystal had to calm two teens down who got into a bit of a verbal scuffle. Apparently, there are egos involved with some gamers.

After the winners were announced, pizza and soda was served and we talked about how we could make the tournament better. The teens suggested that we let them use their own avatars and that we have Bounty Hunter, Clan Wars and Duel Arena battles. We are really not sure what this means, but we hope to find out. There was also the issue of some teens being members and others being non-members. All and all, we were pleased with our attempt at doing something fun for the 14 teens that attended our TTW event!

Crystal Niedzwiadek

Youth Programming Specialist
Aurora Public Library, Colorado

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