The Kotaku Community Unites At The Melbourne Meat!

This weekend the Melbourne branch of the Kotaku community met up. Kotaku regular, and man-god-king, Chuloopa attended the meet-up and survived. This is his story.

Take it away Fruit Loops!

THE MEAT We already know that Kotaku Australia has a strong community presence, but what exactly does that mean? Is it just a word we seem to fling around willy-nilly on this site?

I asked Wikipedia:

"Community is an American television commedy series created by Dan Harmon that airs on NBC. The series is about a group of students at a community college in the fictional locale of Greendale, Colorado. The series heavily uses meta-humor and pop-culture references, often parodying film and television clichés and tropes."

Obviously Wikipedia is stupid.

So I asked dictionary.com:

com•mu•ni•ty   [kuh-myoo-ni-tee] –noun, plural -ties. 1. a social group of any size whose members reside in a specific locality, share government, and often have a common cultural and historical heritage. 2. a locality inhabited by such a group. 3. a social, religious, occupational, or other group sharing common characteristics or interests and perceived or perceiving itself as distinct in some respect from the larger society within which it exists (usually preceded by the ): the business community; the community of scholars.

I think #3 probably fits best.

Where am I going with this?

Well before I get into specifics of any Melbourne Meat-up, I first want to stress the importance of the fact that Kotaku AU isn't just another game related news blog, but rather a community. More so, it is a fantastic community with a diverse range of genders, races, ages, backgrounds, shape, sizes and whatever else. I don't know - blood types?

What makes Kotaku AU not just a community, but a fantastic one, is the people. The people that run it, the people that inhabit it and yes, even the people that lurk. While we have doubtlessly had the occasional visit from the not-so-friendly neighborhood Troll, those visits are still few and far in-between.

Everyone gets along, no matter what their preferences are in life or games. We aren't a group of 'gamers', we are a community of people who play games. I think it's very important to disguish ourselves between those two separate definitions of "us", of "Kotaku AU".

The Sydney community have already had several meats with great success and people forging new friendships. The same can be said of the Brisbane branch of the community, whom even opened their own houses to each other. To people they had never physically met before, but merely exchanged quips and banter on this very site and Twitter. It takes a special sort of people to be able to even consider doing such a thing, especially in this "age of fear" that we seem to live in, where most people seem to live in their own social bubbles and the people who run the country can't stress to us enough how dangerous the big wide world is.

Before I go further, into the details of the Melbourne Meat, people who might not be 'down with the speak' might be saying to themselves "why is this idiot spelling 'meet' as 'meat'?" Well it's just how we do things around these parts. It's all in the name of fun. So fear not, I have not had a minor stroke that has caused me to spell only the word 'meet' incorrectly.

So, yes, now that all of that blithering is out of the way, let's get into the juicy stuff.

THE MELBOURNE MEAT With the Mana Bar finally opening in Melbourne this past weekend, i thought now was as good a time as any to get off our lazy behinds and show those from Sydney and Brisbane that we could meat just as hard as them, if not harder.

So on went the thinking cap, which seemed not to work quite so well as I only had the final details for the meat on the day before we were due to meet for the meat. Not a good sign of things to come, is exactly what I was thinking.

I had chosen our initial meeting place to be The Provincial Hotel on the corner of Brunswick and Johnson street, a mere block or two from the newly opened Mana Bar. The problem? I'd only had a drink on the outside of the pub on an afternoon once before, so I have no idea of what to expect the place to be like on a cold Melbourne Saturday night. If the place was packed to the rafters, it would make getting to know each other insanely difficult to say the least. Bit still, it was an easy place to find, therefore a fine meeting place.

The initial plan was to have a few drinks, a yarn and then mosey on over to the Mana Bar for some bright blue cocktails and gaming goodness.

How did those plans unfold? Well, we got it half right.

I arrived at the Provincial at around 7.35, making a call to Mr. Explody whom was already getting acquainted with his first drink at the pub. He moseyed on out and spotted me using the wise skill of "look for the guy with the soul-patch". Apparently that's a good way to remember me.

To my embarrassment I walked straight past Q-bo and Klutar. Why my embarrassment? Well as anyone who knows Q-bo would realise, he has a wheelchair, which is a pretty tell-tale accessory for any person.

So why did I walk past him?

I expected him to look much older, being a father of two lovely girls. So I guess my ignorance would be somewhat of a compliment.

So we all sat at one of the old wooded tables outside whilst Mr. Explody finished off his smoke (naughty boy), which is about when Tech Knight arrived. We officially had the beginnings of a posse.

Inside we went for a few drinks and thankfully we even got a table inside for everyone to sit around. It would seem my choice of venue wasn't that bad after all.

Shortly after we were in Puppylicks sat down and joined us, and last (but not least) to arrive was syvRaen.

So the official line up was: Chuloopa (that's me!) Qumylys (pronounced Cumulus, for those playing at home - this was the cause of much conversation) Mr. Explody Tech Knight Puppylicks Klutar syvRaen

Talk about an all star line-up!

So anyway, we regaled each other with tales for quite some time and proverbially "shot the shit", for lack of a better term. TV shows and games, strangely enough, we the topic of the night. Who'da thunk it?

We discovered that Tech Knight might actually not be a robot, as he appeared human and refused to cut his arm open "Terminator 2 style" to show us his inner workings. We learnt how to pronounce q-bo's name, so we don't have to call him q-bo anymore, and most importantly I discovered that Klutar may actually be a bending unit, as he seemed to be fueled by liquor yet showed little to no effects of its influence. An impressive feat.

Our initial chat was enlightening and hell-fun, to say the least. We lost 2 hours in there as time flew by, so it came that we had to make the decision as to whether we should try to get into the Mana Bar or not.

Klutar and Puppylicks had been in earlier, after a 2 hour wait in line, only to have the entire bar ejected after 45 minutes to let the next 50 people in, so it was with a somewhat heavy heart that we all said "sod it, lets go to galactic circus".

I was a machine at air hockey, until syvRaen tore me apart in 2 successive rounds. Mr. Explody and Tech Knight scored a whopping 10 free games on House of the Dead 4, of which Explody played half of then gave his gun to Tech Knight to turn into a Duel-Wielding force of nature. He actually beat the game. Not bad at all. Qumylys whooped me good at basketball and Puppylicks seemed quite settled in on Street Fighter 4. Tech Knight and syvRaen didn't share my enthusiasm for the ball drop machine. Jokes on them, i've now got 5400 tickets, just 400 tickets shy of getting the limited edition Donkey Kong Jenga set.

We did lose each other on numerous occasions, as you do in a place so large, but used our awesome skills of "wandering around until we bump into someone we know" to find each other again.

To say we had a blast, for me, would be an understatement. These guys were not only fun, but genuinely good people. People part of our awesome community.

I had a slight cold that day, and by the time i got home at around 1.30am my throat was agonizing and every part of me ached, and still does today. But hell, it was worth it!

What about the Mana Bar? Well i think it should be safe to say that give it a couple of weeks for the hype to die down, and the crew will be assembled again, like The Avengers of Kotaku, for another shot at the glory.

Here are some pictures of the night provided by the lovely Mr. Explody. I'll have some more shortly from my phone, i just couldn't get it to connect to my computer yesterday, so for that i apologize.

Q-bo and Tech Knight soaking up the atmosphere

My first and only bevvy for the night, a Fat Yak, was quite delicious

From left to right: Mr. Explody, Tech Knight, Me, Klutar and Puppylicks

Puppylicks demonstrates his skillz

I use my one-hand-ninja technique against Tech Knight

Tech Knight dual-wielding like a boss

It was a fantastic night and great to be able to put faces to the handles that I have for so long known. You were all far less hideous that that I had imagined you to be in my nightmares leading up to the even. In fact, I'd say we were a pretty sexy bunch of fellas!

All in all, the night was a success and I was admittedly amazed we all pulled it off so well.

But, then again, we are the most awesome gaming community on the net.


Comments

    How dare you blaspheme against community wikipedia was genius in directing you there :P

    Oh yeah that's a good shot of me with the uzis hehehe :D

    Meat 3 pic has a pretty awesome photo-bomber.

    Also. Jelly.

      Our Sydney Meats are far superior!!
      *shakes fists*

      haha yes, that is Dave - he was quite proud of that.
      Bee had her own retinue of friends with her too :)

    Awesome night. Thanks Loops for organising it!

    Also, Tech Night, swap you Ghost Trick for Pokemon White?

      Welcome. :)

      I'm playing through Ghost Trick at the moment - great game

      As much as I would've liked to be rid of pokemon forever, I still kinda want to try it again... dunno why... but if there is no chance of Charmander I am going to be so pissed...

    Lol, great write up! Yeah, luckily I don't show the inside wrinkles of a man with 2 daughters (10,12), each hell bent on getting boyfriends.... So I am glad! There were also some of klutars mates that tagged along who were also a nice lot! And you forgot B, who is every bit as sweet, polite, kind, cute and lucky to have you!

    p.s. I got laser eyes, pew pew.

      Eek! Your 10-year-old is hell-bent on obtaining a boyfriend?! I'm thinking I'm lucky with mine who still calls me "Mummy" and thinks boys suck then!
      Also, why is the only shot of you one with demon eyes?!

        There's also my knees in shot 3. Ninja styles.

      haha yeah they were a good bunch... i think the laser eyes suit you.

      I got a couple of great shots of you playing pool too

    Indeed, Wikipedia is not being stupid. Community is an awesome show and the most important, and correct, definition of the word "Community".

      Remember when Joel McHale hosted the Ubisoft conference?

      Though I guess nothing tops DOODLY DOODLY DOO guy.

    Shame that I was working, or I would have loved to come an join you guys.

    Sunday wasn't the greatest day though, not as young as I used to be.
    I'm keen for more nights out with hopefully a few more!

      These things happen, my friend. lol

    Nice one!
    I actually worked at Galatic Circus for a while a few years back :)

    Looks like you guys had fun, and a great write-up Chuloopsipoop.

    It's always weird seeing all these people who I've talked to, and chatted with for so long.

    Anyway, good work guys, but I hope you know that that was probably nowhere near as fun as the Canberra Meat I hosted the other day in my basement, starring me, and only me...

    Looks like an awesome time was had by all! So wish I could have been there to meet you guys :) One day perhaps!

    What a crew! Kotaku sure has a good-looking community.

    Also, Pupplicks could totally pass as Jeeves!!

      But look at that unruly, wild hair that cannot be tamed!
      I imagine Jeeves wouldn't stand for it one bit.

      Those are some pretty good mutton chops melding into the beard though.

      Surely you do not include me in the "good-looking" category... :P

        I want to see someone getting married through Kotaku.

        Then I'll gatecrash the wedding wearing this hat.

        http://wizbangpop.com/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2011/05/Princess_Beatrice_Wedding_Hat.jpg

          I completely approve of this Beatrice-hat.

      I like to walk the line between classy and scruffy.
      I lapse into the latter category way too easily though :)

    Freaking great write up man. Flat out at work today but had to read it all mate. Funny and spot on.

    Glad you lads had a great time.

    That was a very nice write-up!
    Also, Sydney peeps, this reminds me:
    are we meeting up in early August for that expo thingy Jamie posted a while back? :D

    I tried to get into Mana Bar on friday night dueing the press thingo. But when asked for my name I just could't get "...Mark Serrels?" out, and instead folded and walked back into the darkness.

    I still wonder if it would've worked.

      Do you have a Scottish accent and a ginger beard?

        It's strawberry blonde!!!!!

          ...That doesn't make it sound any better... in fact possibly worse.. lol

        I have both these things! Am.. Am I Mark Serrels?

          "No! I must kill the journalist" he shouted. The radio said "No, Jamie. You are the journalist" And then Jamie was Mark Serrels.

    Will definitely try and make it to the next one, looks like you guys had fun.

    Also, Tech Knight's human disguise is impeccable!

      I still can't believe he wouldn't let them cut him open.

        Because human women would get grossed out with all the fake blood squirting out. And do you know how much work that takes to put all that flesh back together without making it look all deformed and greenish?

        We had all the proof we needed, no mortal man can dual-wield uzis with such accuracy.

    Great write-up Loop-the-loop!
    I'm wondering what the guy in the background of the third picture down is doing though....

    BTW, sorry for the bad photos all. My phone isn't very good in low light. I took a video of the guy playing 2 player DDR by himself and the quality of the video is terrible.

    Great writeup Loops,
    It was an awesome night and it was great to meet all of you.
    I haven't run rampant around an arcade like that in so long :)

    Sign me up for the next meat for sure.

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