You may remember last year we did a small piece about Desert Bus for Hope, a fundraising marathon for the Child’s Play Charity. Well, the madness will soon be returning to our computer screens and we wanted to once again hype up this wonderful event. For those unclear on exactly what Desert Bus is, it’s the world’s longest running internet-based fundraiser and it has raised more than $1.8 million for Child’s Play over its seven-year history. Viewers direct the action via live chat and money is raised both through donation and by auctioning off items created by the fans. You can check out the official website right here. This year we were lucky enough to be to able to ask the DB crew a few questions, and this is what they had to say:
HBHUD: Who had the original idea to play the game and broadcast it online?
DB: Paul and James of LoadingReadyRun forged the idea. Paul wanted to do something funny with the game Desert Bus, maybe some kind of marathon, and James wanted to do a Child’s Play fundraiser. So here we are!
HBHUD: Desert Bus 7 was amazing!! It was bigger and better than past years in every way. What standout moments do you remember from DB7?
DB: It’s very hard to remember anything from Desert Bus. Truthfully, on many occasions people will be watching a replay and not remember a given moment, only to see from the video that they were IN the room at the time. That said, Notch (creator of Minecraft) bidding $10,000 on a packet of silica gel—which we were auctioning as a joke—was probably the best moment of the run. Also, when we broke a lifetime fundraising total of $1.5 million, that was pretty special.
HBHUD: And how do you plan to top the delicious internet-cake that was DB7?
DB: I don’t want to spoil any surprises, but we definitely have some exciting stuff planned to make it more fun for the viewers, and to make it easier to watch and participate. Look forward to… The Device™.
HBHUD: Any chance we can get any hints for DB8 prizing/what you think gamers will most respond to?
DB: Personally, I’m pretty excited for the Ghost Edition of Destiny, signed by the fine team at Bungie. If you’re into Magic (as we are) we have one of the all-black Comic Con Planewalker sets… those are very rare. It’s gonna be great.
HBHUD: Outside of bidding on prizes, how can people help DB?
DB: Watch! Be involved! Tell your friends! Donate if you can, but just jump in the chat, say hi, hang out, and spread the word. The more people who know about Desert Bus, the more money we can raise.
HBHUD: How do you feel about how more and more charity gaming events are popping up? It must be pretty impressive to see something that you have been at the forefront of grow so much.
DB: According to a website that used to track these things, we’re the first charity gaming marathon, and we have or at one point had a Guiness record for fundraising gaming marathons. That said, we stake no claim to the concept, and it’s thrilling to see how amazing it’s become. From The Mario Marathon, to Awesome Games Done Quick, to all of Extra Life, gaming for charity is one of the best things ever.
HBHUD: Lastly, as fellow BC gamers, how would you describe the gaming culture of the Pacific Northwest? Both the Canadian and American sides of the border have a lot of awesome folks.
DB: The Pacific Northwest is an amazing place to be a gamer. Between Victoria, Vancouver, and Seattle, you’ve got so many studios and so many players. There are gaming bars, gaming cafes, and some of the best just straight-up gaming stores I’ve ever visited. You should really come visit.
So be sure to join them on November 14th, 10AM PST for another year of fun and mayhem in the name of children everywhere! Join their chat, submit challenges, and have a good time while supporting a good cause.