It’s been a busy week. I’ve had classes, meetings, and deadlines to meet. And on top of that, I’ve been fighting zombies. I’ve dodged their attacks, watched as some of my students turned into zombies, and used icicles to defend myself.
I’ve been playing Twitter vs Zombies 2.0, a game first developed last November by Jesse Stommel and Pete Rorabaugh. My students and Pete’s students hijacked the game and have been running it for two days, a New York-Georgia collaboration that ended up pulling in about 130 players.
For many of my students, it’s their first time using twitter, and the game has taught them how. We’ve also learned something about collaboration: we’ve had to hash out rules with students in another state, mostly by typing at each other inside a google document, and we’ve held meetings through Google Hangout, a video chat that allows multiple people to chat at the same time.
The best part of the game for me, though, is the story-telling, the bits of narrative that players are constructing with their 140-character tweets. On twitter, you only get to write a sentence really, and your sentences get automatically mixed in with everyone else’s in the rolling stream of tweets. It’s very much like the campfire game where you go around the circle telling a story, each person adding a line. You never know what crazy twist the story might take.
The newest rule in the Twitter vs Zombies 2.0 game is that humans can create safezones by linking to a blog post. That’s why I began this post with a photo of a train. In my narrative, I’m on a train with some other humans, attempting to escape the zombies. Wish me luck.