Cards, Video Games, and Laughter: Moravian Students Celebrate Game Night

Photo courtesy of Evan Yandrisovitz

Photo courtesy of Evan Yandrisovitz

Cards flicking through the hands of the dealer, groups huddled together like moths to a flame shouting at each other in a friendly, yet competitive tone, ice and fire ninjas kicking each other on a television screen, and a device that transports you to another virtual world. Is this some science fiction story set in a strange world far, far away? Not quite.

This is just what 13 Moravian University students experienced during Game Night in the Air Products room in the Haupert Union Building on Wed, Feb. 9. Game Night is an event that invites all Moravian students to participate in-game activities like cards and video games to get more involved on campus and meet new people.

When students first arrived into the fairly small room, they were met with three tables set up with two decks of playing cards used for two games of Gin rummy and a large group game of UNO. To the back of the room towards the windows that overlook Makuvek Field sat a PlayStation 4 hooked up to a television running the fighting game Mortal Kombat X, the 10th installment in the franchise where fighters from Earth and other realms gather to battle to the death. On a table next to the gaming setup was an Oculus Quest 2 virtual reality gaming headset that some students played around with during the event. All throughout Game Night, a MacBook Pro played a Spotify rap playlist to add some background noise to the room.

While the large group of 10 students played UNO and filled the room with laughter and cheers, a group of three students played Gin rummy, a card game in which players work to have three or four cards with the same rank, or sequences of three or more cards in a suit. After this game, which lasted about 30 minutes, the group of three moved on to try Mortal Kombat X.

English major Gianna Tully, 24’, played a few rounds of Mortal Kombat and a successful round of Gin rummy.

Abigail Schoepple, 23’, (right) teaches Gianna Tully, 24’, how to navigate the menus after finishing a fight in Mortal Kombat X during Game Night. Photo courtesy of Evan Yandrisovitz
Abigail Schoepple, 23’, (right) teaches Gianna Tully, 24’, how to navigate the menus after finishing a fight in Mortal Kombat X during Game Night. Photo courtesy of Evan Yandrisovitz

“I had never played Mortal Kombat before but I really liked it,” Tully said. “I think video games are a super cool addition to Game Night and should be included more in the future. I enjoyed Game Night because it was nice to get out of the house, hang out with good people and play fun games. I think my favorite part was playing cards.”

As the night went on, students left gradually after hanging out for a while, making this a fairly casual event with no set rules or rewards for the games played.

The T.I.A.R.A.S. of Mu Sigma Upsilon, a freshman sorority, hosted the event mainly for new students so they can get a feel of college life and the drive to participate more. The T.I.A.R.A.S. promotes itself as the first multicultural sorority in the nation that embraced multicultural ideas and used its sorority to educate the campus community about diversity.

“[We held game night] to get more people involved and meet new people,” said biology major, T.I.A.R.A.S. member, and organizer of Game Night, Chanelle Fredericks, 25’. “I’m satisfied [with the turnout]. If everyone enjoys it, maybe every couple of months [we will hold another Game Night, it depends on how much people really want it.”

Psychology major and member of T.I.A.R.A.S. Jamaris Salinas, 23’ said, “The process of setting up Game Night was super easy. We all went through who had [to do] what and what everyone was willing to bring. Reserving the room was also easy. All we had to do was request it via 25Live. I was at Game Night, and I did really enjoy the experience. Seeing people laugh and enjoy themselves because of an event we put together was refreshing. The main purpose of this event is to have people want to get to know more about the T.I.A.R.A.S. I really loved playing UNO and seeing one of my peers constantly having to pick up cards.”

“I personally love strategy board games and they had a lot of cards which are still fun but not my favorite kind of game,” Tully said, “I think that they succeeded in their intention [to get students more involved on campus] but should advertise it better to get even more people active and involved. I would definitely recommend this event to friends in the future because who doesn’t like games and getting to meet new people?”