Who are you guys & gals?
Just a bunch of people who live in New Jersey, who just so happen to spend way too much time talking about geeky things and playing video games for the website g33kWatch.
If you want to find out more information about the people behind the g33k glasses, then please take a look at our Players page.
Are you affiliated with any Video Game Company?
Most certainly NOT. Nope we are just normal guys who wanted to help out and entertain as many people as possible. We run a fan gaming website called g33kWatch but that isn’t affiliated with anyone either. So no, no affiliations at all.
Are you affiliated with Child’s Play?
No we are not. We are just huge fans of what Penny Arcade has been able to do for the last few years, and think Child’s Play is a very worthwhile charity. This is us simply giving back to those who need our help.
What is a Gaming Marathon?
A gaming marathon is a lot like a Charity Telethon. Essentially, we broadcasting a live playthrough of Mass Effect 1, 2 & 3 on TwitchTV that anyone can watch on their computers, laptop or mobile devices. The actual gameplay will be highlighted in the lower left hand corner, while the background of the video will be a camera that displays our team. To get a better idea on what that looks like, please refer to the image below. From there we will broadcast the event, interact with viewers via ChatAbout IRC chat, Twitter, and Facebook and will perform various stunts to entice people to donate to Child’s Play Charity.
What makes Mass Effect Marathon different?
When you think about it, at it’s core Mass Effect is a game about choices. On a simple level you can choose what class you are, what gender Commander Shepard will be, and decisions about your background. During the game you have moral questions of how you should act, how you solve a situation, and even who lives and dies. Here at Mass Effect Marathon, we give all the major choices that are in the games over to you, the viewers, through a series of voting polls that anyone who comes to the site can vote in. In addition, the more that you donate to the marathon will mean that we will keep certain characters alive in Mass Effect 2 during the ending Suicide Mission.
For more about what we do as a gaming group, and what is new for Mass Effect Marathon 2, check out this video from our MEM2 Q&A Livecast.
Do you have a press release or flyer I can distribute?
Surely, we have both! Thanks in advance! =)
Do you get a cut of the donations?
No! What kind of terrible people do you think we are?! Wait … don’t answer that. =P
No, as with the Mario Marathon, we are not even collecting the donations. Donations made through our web site go directly to Child’s Play. Our only goal is to help out those who need it.
Have you done this before?
Yes we have, we have actually run many other gaming marathons. In November of 2010 we ran Mass Effect Marathon, in June of 2011 we held the 24-Hour Slumber Party, in November 2011 we had Mass Effect Marathon 2 and for May 2012 we had Mass Effect Marathon 2.5. Between the events, we have raised over $47,000 for Child’s Play Charity and have been recognized as a Platinum sponsor.
- Mass Effect Marathon | November 2010 – $14,200
- 24-Hour g33kWatch Slumber Party | June 2011 – $7,000
- Mass Effect Marathon 2 | November 2011 – $20,630
- Mass Effect Marathon 2.5 | May 2012 – $6,010
Total raised for Child’s Play Charity: $47,840
Who came up with the idea?
Most certainly was not us. We’re not that innovative.
We were originally tuned into the idea when the fine folks at Mario Marathon and Desert Bus started a few years ago. Both of those sites really embodied what Child’s Play was all about. Gamer’s going out and playing games for a good cause. Seriously, that’s an unbelievable accomplishment.
What I was also amazed at, was just how much fun it was to watch at home, and how generous the community was when marathon’s like this sprouted up. There have been many other marathons that have started and we feel like it’s a great way to get the community involved. So since no one that we noticed had done a Mass Effect marathon, and given our love of Bioware’s RPG masterpiece, we felt like it was our duty to step up to the plate.
How will my donations get to Child’s Play?
Donations are made directly to Child’s Play via PayPal. We have created a custom script that takes you straight to PayPal, while at the same time allows you to sponsor specific characters, provide an alias, or even let us link to your website. It’s simple, easy to use, and super secure because it’s done via PayPal! All of the money that you donate goes directly to Child’s Play, we do not touch any of the money.
Also of note, Child’s Play is a registered charity, so if you live in the United States, your donations are tax deductible. You can get a tax receipt by contacting Child’s Play. We cannot give you a receipt because we do not actually handle the money. Child’s Play tax number is 20-3584556 when you are filling out your taxes.
What’s with all the Character Sponsorship?
Just like when someone would asked to be sponsored when walking/running in a marathon or doing any other charity event, we are encouraging our viewers to sponsor one of the memorable Mass Effect characters of their choice.
You can sponsor as many characters as you want, as many times as you want! You are in complete control of who you wish to show appreciation to. We will be using this system to figure out what kind of squad mates we use for major story missions during Mass Effect 1, 2 & 3, and in addition using it determine who wins our ultimate prize!
If you sponsor the character that raises the most donations, then you will be put into our very last raffle that will contain a box full of amazing prizes! So sponsor your favorite character to see them more often on the stream, and to even win the ultimate Mass Effect prize pack!
What versions of these games will be played?
We will be playing the XBOX versions of all three Mass Effect games. It probably would have been easier to stream the event while playing the PC version, but we really like the idea of us playing in the living room and having all of our friends there to see us up on our huge HD Television.
What’s with all the Polls?
What makes Mass Effect as a series so great, is how many different choices you have to make, and how those choices affect everything else in the storyline. To make this an interactive event, we want to give the power to the community and are asking them to fill out the polls and tell us how you want to see the game get played.
When will the Poll Results be final?
Depends greatly on what is being asked. For major decisions like what Class to play, or what Alignment to follow, those choices will be made right before we play the game in question. Therefore all major polls dealing with Mass Effect 1 will be closed right before we start playing. All the major polls dealing with Mass Effect 2 on the other hand, will stay open throughout the first game’s play-through.
For other decisions, ones that we only have to make at a specific part in time (Wrex’s confrontation, Rachni Queen, Illusive Man’s final offer, etc), those polls will be open right until we have to make those choices.
Why aren’t you playing on Insanity difficulty?
Truth be told, Insanity is insane. Also considering that the three games have about 90 hours of gameplay combined on just normal difficulty, I think we’ll have our hands full enough to be honest. Plus how much fun would it be to watch us die over and over again for 90+ hours? This way, you get the feeling you are watching an epic, action mini-series. That being said, if you make a generous donation, we can definitely play a section of the game on Insanity. =)
What will be Shepard’s gender during the marathon?
For the first marathon we used a Male Shepard. For the second marathon we used a Female Shepard. We usually didn’t give you the option on what gender to pick, as the website work to dynamically figure out what polls to show you, based on what gender you wanted, was very time consuming.
This time around we will be giving you completely control over what kind of gender we will use. If you vote for a Male Shepard, the rest of the polls you see will be specific to Male. If you choose Female, the polls will be geared towards that kind of gender. You will decide what kind of play through we have!
How are you going to be able to play so much?
Red Bull, friends cheering us on, and a good nap rotation for all of our players so that they can stay fresh.
How do you handle prizes?
Throughout the marathon, people will have the opportunity to win prizes by either spreading the word about the marathon or by donating. We have broken up our prizes so that you have many different ways to win. Some of them are below but please be sure to keep checking back to the Prizes page for more information and as we get more items in.
- Raffle Prizes – We will setup a schedule where every 4 hours or so, we will hold a raffle drawing. If you would like to get a raffle entry, you can Like Us on Facebook, Link to the site on Twitter using hastag #MEM3. or for every $5 you donate to Child’s Play Charity, you will receive an entry. Therefore you have the opportunity to receive two entries for absolutely free. We do this because we know that not everyone can donate, but spreading the word and getting people to watch us is very viable and should be rewarded. In addition if you can donate, the more money you donate the more entries you get for the entire marathon.
- Live Auctions – Certain items are a bit bigger and unique and will not be given away as raffles. Instead we will hold live auctions that you can only win if you are watching the broadcast and in the ChatAbout IRC chat room. The process is like other live auctions. You will bid in chat by saying “BID_” and then the amount you are willing to donate to Child’s Play Charity for that particular item. We will continue to do this until no one has bid anymore, and then the person with the highest bid will have 30 minutes to donate to Child’s Play Charity. Once they do that, they have won the item and it will be sent out to them. If they do not donate within an hour, or the payment fails for whatever reason, then we will give the item to the next highest bidder.
- Silent Auctions – There will be a dedicated page where items can be bid on. Here you will fill out a form with the absolute highest amount you are willing to donate to Child’s Play for that item. Bidding will then end at a preset time. Once we find out who gave the highest donation, they will then have 6 Hours to then donate to Child’s Play charity with that amount. If they are unable to for any reason, we will then take the next highest bidder.
- In addition to all of the above, you can win prizes by playing games with us live on the webcast, or you could enter our Fan Fiction / Fan Art Contests. Either way, there are plenty of items to win so keep checking back on how to enter!
Is there anything I can do to help?
There’s tons of stuff you can do! You can help spread the word on Forums, Twitter, Facebook, and any other social medium that you can think of.
Also, while we are giving away raffle prizes, if you would like to help us out and donate prizes to be raffled off, we would be greatly appreciative. Simply send us an e-mail.
Other than that, if you are in a situation where you can, the biggest help you can do is to donate to Child’s Play using the little widget on the right hand side.
How do you plan to webcast the video?
We have switched livestream providers, and now Twitch.TV will be used used to host our video stream. Please take note of this and be sure to register a new account over there, as Twitch gives us a lot better options for broadcasting in High Definition and less advertisements. You can check it out on the top navigation under Webcast.
How do I connect to the ChatAbout IRC chat servers?
Here is the vital information you should know.
- Server: irc.chatabout.net
- Room Name: #MEM
Won’t your XBOX overheat and Red Ring?
It’s a distinct possibility, though the main XBOX we are using just got serviced by Microsoft so we should be OK. Not to mention that our main XBOX went through the first annual Mass Effect Marathon with being on for 63 hours straight with only two freezes during Mass Effect 1, so it’s a really big trooper!
Just in case that does happen though, we have two additional XBOX’s (one older, one newer) that we can swap in.
I want to run my own gaming marathon, any suggestions?
We learned everything we needed to know from the fine folks hosting the Mario Marathon. They have a great walkthrough on how you can do this on their own site.
Got a question that hasn’t been answered?
Send us an e-mail and we’ll get back to you soon. Seriously, we have smart phones and internet access, we’ll get it in no time at all!