Wednesday, July 2

Fastest Thumbs in the West

A couple weeks ago while driving in Grand Junction we saw a sign for "The Fastest Thumbs in the West" video game tournament. The boys' ears instantly perked up, and tongues started panting. Maybe their ears didn't actually perk.... but they were panting. I wish I were kidding. Anyway, the game for the tournament was Halo 2, so we bought a used collectors edition copy of the game, and a huge strategy guide book. The boys were so excited to get home and start playing that we didn't even see the movie that we came all the way to town for, only to get home and discover they only have the special effects/bonus DVD and not the actual game.

We do the eighty mile round trip a few days later to get the game, and for our trouble they repair a couple of scratched Xbox games. After getting home, none of the games work. Another eighty mile round trip another few days later, they give us a new Halo 2 game, and clean the Xbox. Normally I would be really annoyed with these unnecessary trips but the guys that work at the Gamerz Planet in Grand Junction are the most professional and customer pleasing bunch of guys that we've come across in gaming stores...I just couldn't be mad at them.

After a week, and only six days until the tournament, they finally get to play and learn Halo 2, besides just reading about it in their book.
Playing with the Big Dogs
We get to the tournament and see all these big guys, and right away Jonas backs out. Jacob's unphased, and even ends up playing in the very first round.

The guy on the right won that round, and eventually the whole tournament, but Jacob did a fantastic job holding his own. He went on to take first in his next round, to getting knocked out by the top three finishers of the day, in the third round. The guys running the contest recognized Jake's talent and told us they wanted to give him some kind of award. (They didn't even know that he'd only been playing a week, and never online.)

After the tournament was over the organizers gave a special speech and announced The Sportman's Award for Jacob, for being such a good competitor and actually winning a round against guys two and three times his age, and size. Then he got to pick any used game he wanted in the store. He got Pokemon Fire Red for the DS (to replace the one stolen from him two years by a kid in a campground in Michigan.

It was a long day, longer than we planned, but it was so much fun. The turn out was great, they fed us pizza and pop, and Jacob(with Joey) got interviewed by the local paper:
Halo 2 Tournament talking with reporter
Best of all: Jacob has found his sport.

The next competition is in three weeks, it's a newish game, Super Smash Bros Brawl, which we've had for a while now, so it should be an even playing field next time. Go Jacob!

Link to article added: Video Games aren't just for Kids


Deanne said...

How awesome! I love how video games can be such a great "equalizer" among different people. I've enjoyed watching my 16yo and his friends playing Halo with my 8yo, and I especially love seeing my DH play with my boys!

Best wishes to Jacob in his future tournaments.

Heather said...

We are thinking of getting an XBox or PS of some sort. we have a gamecube. We may get a Wii at some point. Can't decide what we want yet.

I can't believe how far you drove to help accommodate your kids. That is wonderful you can do that for them.

karrie said...

He looks so cute sanding up next to the big guys.

Best of luck with the upcoming competition!

Amy said...

Fisher applauds Jacob -- literally, he's behind me now, clapping his hands in my ear! Great story -- thanks for sharing. I haven't been here in eons, but it's great to catch up!

Amy said...

Fisher also wants to pass this one, from one gamer to another -- "Great video game talent!" :)

Snavleys said...

Unschooling at its' best!! That's awesome!!

Boat Driver said...

vicki, This is my start at a blog. We haven't updated since June. We have been back to Fl, to NC back to FL and now CO since then.

Anonymous said...

Impressive. Sadly though, the customer service at this place has gone down the drain. They were VERY rude and unprofessional with my son and I. Both the employee and the owner when I phoned to speak with him about it. I am glad you did not have the experience we did. It was absolutely horrible. It was our first venture into this store, and most certainly our last as well.

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