Norwich gamers take on 12-hour challenge for charity

A 12 hour game-a-thon held at One Life Left cafe in aid of Stand Up To Cancer. Byline: Sonya Duncan

A 12 hour game-a-thon held at One Life Left cafe in aid of Stand Up To Cancer. Byline: Sonya Duncan Copyright: Archant 2017 - Credit: Sonya Duncan

For some, video games are a hobby or a way to pass the time with friends.

A 12 hour game-a-thon held at One Life Left cafe in aid of Stand Up To Cancer. Byline: Sonya Duncan

A 12 hour game-a-thon held at One Life Left cafe in aid of Stand Up To Cancer. Byline: Sonya Duncan Copyright: Archant 2017 - Credit: Sonya Duncan

But one group of players have combined their love of gaming to raise money for charity by putting their playing skills to the test.

Organiser Mark Kirkwood, 32, had the idea to host a 12-hour game-a-thon after seeing the event suggested for the Stand Up to Cancer campaign.

The researcher from Cringleford wanted to expand the idea though and involve a larger part of the gaming community in Norwich.

He said: 'The idea was to play alone or to host it with a group of your friends but I thought, I could sit in my room playing games alone or I could it could make the event more sociable and more effective, it would be great if loads of us came together in a proper venue.'

A 12 hour game-a-thon held at One Life Left cafe in aid of Stand Up To Cancer. Byline: Sonya Duncan

A 12 hour game-a-thon held at One Life Left cafe in aid of Stand Up To Cancer. Byline: Sonya Duncan Copyright: Archant 2017 - Credit: Sonya Duncan


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The game-a-thon took place at recently opened One Life Left Cafe in St Benedict's Street from 9am-9pm on Sunday, November 5.

Mr Kirkwood added: 'I have been to the cafe before and I spoke with owner Jon Cage and he thought it would be a really good idea.

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'We have had more than 20 people on and off throughout the day but we have 15 hardcore gamers who are doing the full 12 hours.'

Mr Kirkwood hopes that the event will change the public's perception about video games.

A 12 hour game-a-thon held at One Life Left cafe in aid of Stand Up To Cancer. Byline: Sonya Duncan

A 12 hour game-a-thon held at One Life Left cafe in aid of Stand Up To Cancer. Byline: Sonya Duncan Copyright: Archant 2017 - Credit: Sonya Duncan

'I really hope that the event is another nail in the coffin in the gaming stereotype. Even now there is the idea that gamers may be loners or anti-social but with all the people who came out today, it really shows how gaming can do some good.'

Gamers were invited to dress up as their favourite characters and bring a selection of games to play.

'We have had all manner of games going on,' he added, 'we have had all sorts with everyone coming to play what they like, it has been amazing.

'Originally I just wanted to raise a couple of hundred pounds but with the help of Jon hosting the event, we are well on our way to raising £1,000.'

A 12 hour game-a-thon held at One Life Left cafe in aid of Stand Up To Cancer. Byline: Sonya Duncan

A 12 hour game-a-thon held at One Life Left cafe in aid of Stand Up To Cancer. Byline: Sonya Duncan Copyright: Archant 2017 - Credit: Sonya Duncan

As well as the many hours of gaming there was a raffle and a sales stand.

'I donated a part of my gaming collection as I'm coming to the end of my gaming time so I thought I would give them a last hurrah,' Mr Kirkwood added.

To donate go to fundraise.cancerresearchuk.org/page/marks-giving-page-31.

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