Video gaming around the clock, for the kids

The Horrible Night staff engaged in Level 50 of Horde mode.

The masterminds behind local website Horrible Night aren't merely interested in intelligently discussing the best and worst of the video gaming world. They also care about the outside world. Proof of their altruistic endeavors comes in the form of their non-profit off-shoot, A Call to Gamers.

Founded by Justin Lacey and the rest of the Horrible Night staff, the organization's goal is to "bring together video gamers to positively impact their society through charity," while also "helping parents encourage positive video game habits." They kicked off the new endeavor with a 24-hour gaming marathon at Carmel hangout NetHeads this past weekend. Their goal for the night was to raise $1,000 for Child's Play Charity, which provides toys, movies and - of course - video games for hospitalized children.

The guys met their fundraising goal, but in their way stood many self-made challenges. These included beating 50 levels of Gears of War 3 Horde mode (accomplished with 12 hours of gaming with few breaks), outpacing each other in The Binding of Isaac without accumulating power-ups, and earning the highest score through the first three levels of Castlevania (the game that lends Horrible Night its name). Much of the action was captured via Horrible Night's webcast, which allowed visitors to the site to watch and comment from the comfort of their own home.

The crew backed off any promises of another 24-hour Gaming Challenge anytime soon. But there are already plans to host a different type of charity fundraiser in the spring.

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