Southbound and Down: My Legendary Weekend as a Game Trucker

Recently I posted about the Global Game Jam here at Academy of Interactive Entertainment Adelaide. It was my first solo outing after my relocation to this glorious ocean city down under. It was there that I was introduced to who would become my newest boss, Chad Habel, proprietor of Game Truck Australia. After talking to him about the totally awesome tournaments and game scene that Salt Lake City is growing (per the dedication and hard work of everyone at GameTyrant and GeekTyrant HQ), and about all the cool stuff that Chad’s mobile console gaming company does, we exchanged business cards.

A couple weeks went by with rejections from various local establishments. If anyone has relocated and is looking for work, you may understand what a bummer it can be when you don’t have it. You’re excited about your new surroundings, but you also get the sense that you’re the new dork in town that moved in halfway through the school year. Haigh’s Chocolates! I could work for those guys, I can handle finer detail-oriented chocolatey artwork and salesmanship! REJECTED. A local painting company! I could work for those guys, I painted houses for nearly a decade, for a third of what they pay down here even after currency conversion! REJECTED. The local movie theater! I could work for those guys, people who like American cinema might like having an American janitor! REJECTED

I feared that soon I would become this guy in Back to the Future.

I feared that soon I would become this guy in Back to the Future.

As the sirens of the video game world came calling to me once again, I experienced a revelation that could only manifest after a ceremony of $4 a bottle Slippery Fish Cab Merlot (it’s actually not bad at all for $2.94 USD) and some Facebook mobile scrolling while waiting for a Fallout 4 loading screen. Only then did it hit me: I should message that Chad guy and see if he can use any part time work. After we texted for a bit, he asked the golden question, “Can you tow a trailer?” Suddenly, the bitter memories of my construction career entered a new light. Holy shit, all those drives to Denver, Colorado, Jackson, Wyoming and Boise, Idaho with a trailer in tow finally amounted to something that was actually exciting. 

Game Truck Australia had a birthday party scheduled for the day, but a last minute booking came in from an activities coordinator at Flinders University. It was Hallies Night, where all the college kids get together outside for many drinks, neon body paint, blacklights, EDM, good times, and they wanted us there too. Only problem: my trainer and boss couldn’t make it. It was now time for me to shine. 

After getting the keys, I set out for my half hour drive. After taking a few wrong turns, stumbling into backed up Clipsel traffic as well as a popular soccer event, I made it to Flinders University 20 minutes late. “No worries,” being a frequently used Aussie phrase, no one seemed to care.

The kids loved the Game Truck. Absolutely loved it. While the sun was still up, a few couples had come in to chill with some Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 and FIFA 15, and the atmosphere was pretty mellow to start off. But eventually the sun went down, the music turned up, the neon paint got slapped on, the drinks were drank, and the weather got chilly. It was the perfect cocktail of Game Truck awesomeness as people came in to take a break from dancing as well as have a good laugh to the ridiculous over the top content of Mortal Kombat X. At one point I counted 15 students piled in for mobile living room gaming awesomeness. “You’re a legend, mate!” I heard more than a few times throughout the night.

As you can see in the pictures, Chad pulled no punches when designing it. With plenty of headroom, Air Conditioning, 50” LED 1080p TVs, and full upholstery, it’s like bringing all the good times of living room LAN parties anywhere you go. With a selection of games from Minecraft to FIFA to Mortal Kombat X, choices are available for all age groups and tastes.  All consoles are linked together for all that LAN party goodness of competitive multiplayer games. 

So when I’m not at home working on GameTyrant/GeekTyrant material, music and sound design for games and films, this is my weekend gig. I can’t believe that I’m towing a trailer on the weekends now to go and do something I actually enjoy. For the birthday parties, the kids have a totally memorable experience that takes the stress off the parents worrying about the house. For the college kids, they have a portable living room that they can hang out and play in. The idea is genius, and I give Game Truck Australia a huge salute for one of the coolest gigs I’ve ever had!

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