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By Jessica Ford

Arts & Life Editor

Ryerson students are following Halo 3’s Master Chief into battle sacrificing hours and sometimes assignments to the cause.

Dylan Jones, 18, a first-year film studies student, has played the X-Box game for around 30 hours since it was released at midnight on Sept. 25, for as much as seven hours in one day.

But he had to use his gaming smarts to trick his first opponent. “I didn’t have the money for it so I called my mom and asked for $100 and didn’t tell her what it was for,” he said. “The next day I really needed money and she asked where the money was she gave me the day before. I had to explain it to her and she was really mad.”

Jones lives on campus at the International Living/ Learning Centre (ILLC). The Halo playing community in residence is growing as people pick up their fix from friends. With the help of X-Box live, an online system where people can connect with players from around the world, on-campus gamers can easily play against each other. But Jones hopes that there will eventually be enough people to meet up and have a Halo 3 party. “Two guys that live in residence got into Halo 3 playing with me so they went out and bought X-Boxes and Halo 3.”

Scott Thompson, 19, second-year information technology management student, was just as enthusiastic to get playing Halo 3 at his house. “I brought the mini-fridge down to the basement with three energy drinks and played the game until 6 am,” he recalls.

He was lucky because he had the next two days off of school but that doesn’t mean his assignments didn’t feel the affect of Halo 3. “I had an assignment due on Friday for ITM 305 [Systems Analysis and Design],” he said, “I did it half-assed during my break on Thursday.”

At Best Buy, the collectors edition game cost $79.99 but scouts from Future Shop (owned by Best Buy) and HMV infiltrated the Best Buy line the night of the release to lure customers with their cheaper prices.

Thompson says the game is better than the last two because of the graphics and the new online-ranking system that pits people who have the same skill level against each other.

Jones enjoys that the game brings people together. “It’s just such a social game. The story is so heroic. It’s cool working with a team. I just like the game. I’m not a nerd — OK, I’m a nerd.”

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