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Topic ClosedIllyriad is taking part in Extra Life!

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GM Luna View Drop Down
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Direct Link To This Post Topic: Illyriad is taking part in Extra Life!
    Posted: 08 Sep 2012 at 00:21
For the past 4 years, thousands of gamers have taken part in Extra Life, a 24 hour gaming marathon charity fundraiser. On October 20, gamers from all over the world, including GMs Luna and Cerberus from your intrepid Illyriad dev team, will be playing games for 24 hours straight to raise money to help sick kids. All proceeds raised will go directly to Children’s Miracle Network hospitals to provide comfort and treatment for kids facing all sorts of challenges, all the way from asthma to cancer.

But we can’t do it alone. We need your help. You can take part in 2 ways!

Sponsor Us:
Visit our team’s fundraising page, choose a member from the team to sponsor, click on their name and choose “support me” to sponsor them with your donations. 100% of the money you donate goes directly to the Children’s Miracle Network hospital that the gamer chose to support. Help us meet our initial team-wide goal of $5000 raised!

Join Our Team:
Visit our team’s fundraising page and choose “join this team” to sign up to participate in Extra Life. Once you sign up and join our team, you can help us raise even more money by getting sponsors for yourself to benefit the hospital of your choice. Then, join us on October 20 to play games for 24 hours. Keep in mind, that if you’d like to sign up to play but cannot play on the specified day, or cannot play for 24 hours straight, for any reason, that is OK. You can split the time up however you need that works best for you.

And all IIlyriad players that join our team and earn $100 in sponsorships will receive special prizes both in game and out. You will receive 200 free prestige for your Illyriad account and your choice of a t-shirt from the Illyriad store*.

Illyriad Leveling Contest

Leveling Contest:
On the day of the event, GMs Luna and Cerberus will be creating brand new Illyriad accounts and holding a day-long leveling contest. Whichever GM has the highest population at the end of the 24 hour period on their new account wins. Rules include: no special GM powers and no prestige usage (past the initial 25 that comes with the account). Outside resources can be accepted however, so pick your favorite GM and care-a-van away! At the end of the day we will both suspend the accounts and they will be open to any player who wishes to siege them to keep or destroy, your choice.

Livestream:
Throughout the day we will be holding livestream videos on our Twitch.tv channel with updates on our progress with the leveling contest, funds raised and impending exhaustion toward the end of the day. A schedule will be posted on the forums nearer to the event with more details.

We look forward to an exciting year and thank everyone for their support in our participation in Extra Life!


*Prizes require an active Illyriad account and valid mailing address. Contact GM Luna in email, pm or IGM after you’ve signed up to confirm your spot on the team and connect your fundraising page with an Illyriad account. Extra Life is not created by, sponsored by or in any way affiliated with Illyriad Games, Ltd. All donations go directly to the charity involved and are in no way the responsibility of Illyriad Games, Ltd.


Edited by GM Luna - 08 Sep 2012 at 00:22
GM Luna | Illyriad Community Manager | community@illyriad.co.uk

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Myr View Drop Down
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 Sep 2012 at 01:04
Great idea for a fundraiser, it sounds like fun! I will be supporting your team.

If anyone wants to bet on the dev who wins the leveling contest, contact me! LOL
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 Sep 2012 at 01:38
I'm totally open to betting on the winner and possibly taking some suggestions on what each of us should do if we lose. ;)

Luna
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Rill View Drop Down
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 Sep 2012 at 01:47
Great job supporting the kids!
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GM Cerberus View Drop Down
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 Sep 2012 at 02:45
Well it doesn't matter though regardless, I'm going to win.
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 Sep 2012 at 04:10
If each contestant had a large sum of prestige to use it would make the contest more inclusive to the entire server.  With only 25 prestige you guys wont be able to use that many resources.  If you had 5000 prestige you would be able to speed up incoming vans from the entire map and have enough options to make the exercise pretty interesting.

Without a settler to expand (or the pop), it may quickly become boring waiting for that 3 hour storehouse build in one new town.

If you had the prestige to speed up vans, I could see Global chat taking sides and seeing who could deliver the most basic resources to help out their hero.  Of course players could speed up their out going vans with the original settings, but with no prestige to spend by the contestant they would all just spill anyway.

Look forward to checking in on the the live streams either way.

R.




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John View Drop Down
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 Sep 2012 at 22:18
Hi, I play Illyriad (this is not my game name, it's my real name) and I also have a son who was (and hopefully will be) saved by a Children's Miracle Network Hospital.  We participate in several fundraising events a year and have done so for about 6-7 years (my son is almost 10).  One thing every major event organizer has always said is that patients stories are helpful.  This is our story.  I'm sorry it's so long, I honestly wish it were shorter.  I hope it helps personalize what this is about.

My son was born with a Congenital Heart Defect called Pulmonary Atresia with a Ventral Septal Defect (in med speak it's PA w/ VSD).  Without surgery, it's nearly always fatal.

He was diagnosed in utero.  We feel lucky, we knew what would happen when he was born.  Many parents have no time to adjust.  They find out when their child is born or when the child has a medical emergency.

That "w/ VSD" part of his problem is important, that part of the story comes a bit later.  The heart pumps blood to two important places, the lungs and the entire body (brain, other organs, muscles, etc...).  The Aorta caries blood from the heart to the body.  The Main Pulmonary Artery carries blood from the heart and splits into Branch Pulmonary Arteries that carry blood to each lung.  Pulmonary Atresia means that either the Main or Branch Pulmonary Arteries do not fully develop.  In my son's case, what should have been a rather significant Main Pulmonary Artery was simply a string of tissue.  There was no artery, no path for blood to flow from heart to lungs.  No way to get oxygen shortly after birth.  The shortly part is because there is a path for blood to flow from the Aorta to the Branch Pulmonary arteries called a ductus (wiki has pictures here http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ductus_arteriosus) but it closes within 24 hours of birth.

When my son was born, we didn't hold him.  We didn't spend time with him.  He was placed on a very powerful medicine that would keep his ductus open long enough for him to live so they could operate.  Sadly, a common "side effect" of that medicine is children stop breathing.  He was born around 7pm and stopped breathing later that night.  The hospital knew this might happen and were watching for it, he was intubated (breathing tube).  When not breathing is the better alternative, that's serious.  When he was 4 days old, he had his first open chest surgery.  This operation place an artificial ductus in place of the natural one.  This procedure was performed adjacent to his strawberry sized heart, his surgeon is excellent.  The artificial ductus wouldn't close and would give his body a path to receive oxygenated blood until his heart could grow big enough to withstand surgery.  The w/VSD part is what allowed this to happen, it seems like an added complication to his PA, but it probably saved his life.

My son was in the cardiac intensive care unit (CICU) for 5 days.  I spent most of that time with him.  He was born on Nov 21, we spent Thanksgiving together in the CICU.  I talked to every night nurse (they have small rooms with dorm cots for the parents to grab naps) and every day nurse.  I can't tell you how wonderful the people working in these hospitals are, and I truly hope you never have to meet them there.  For many parents, this situation is a surprise.  Many families can't aford to have the breadwinner leave their job at a moments notice.  Many families don't have the means to leave their other children on a moments notice.  Sadly, the CICU is a bit lonely, especialy at night.  The nurses are there 24/7 for the children.  They don't just change medicines and dressings, they provide human contact, comfort and they really, really care about their patients.

With this fix, my son was alive and stable, but not normal.  His oxygen saturation levels were around 75% to 80%.  Normal people have oxygen saturation at 100%.  There's a good chance normal people will die if their oxygen saturation fell below 80%.  My son spent 11 months lower than that.  The doctors believe that the children's bodies adapt to these much lower levels.  Certainly he grew, and that is what the doctors wanted to happen so they could operate again and perform a more functional fix of his heart.

Very recently doctors are becoming aware of other complications exhibited by these children.  Many congenital birth defects result from chromosome defects.  Many times chromosome defects result in mental impairment.  What doctors have now noticed is that mental impairment patterns shown in studies of children with congenital birth defect are not just related to chromosome defects.  My son's congenital heart defect is not related to any known chromosomal defect but he exhibits deficiencies in something called Executive Function.  Executive Function is described as "an umbrella term for the neurologically-based skills involving mental control and self-regulation".  Executive Function deficiencies are sometimes labelled as ADD.  Interestingly, adults with hypoxia (lack of oxygen to the brain) commonly exhibit Executive Function deficiencies.  Clearly, there's a lot more to research and explore in this area and that is one of the many continuing missions of these hospitals.  We noticed this deficiency early in our son's development and have taken many steps to address it.  In the future, it's hopeful that more encompassing care will be available for these children that addesses mental issues earlier and more rigorously.

When my son was 11 months old, they performed a full repair of his circulatory system.  The doctors replaced his missing Main Pulmonary Artery and Pulmonary Valve with naturally functioning replacements.  This surgery allowed him to have 100% oxygen saturation and normal blood circulation.  This operation was his first open heart surgery.  Open Heart means they shut down the heart, lungs, most brain function, etc... and then over the course of several days try to get everything functioning again.  It's probably a lot closer to being dead than anyone in their right mind would feel comfortable being.  Sadly, with current technology these replacments do not grow and do not hold up very well in the body.  When my son was almost 5, he had outgrown the tiny parts they could fit in his 11 months old body and he needed a third major surgery.  This one also open heart.  We were so lucky every time.  My son and I were in the CICU for a few days after each open heart surgery and home in about a week.  He's had excellent recovery.  This is the goal!

Kids and parents do not always come away from these experiences emotionally unaffected.  Until my son was 7, he could not stand any sort of sticky stuff on his skin.  He had memories stretching back to birth of medical tapes, bandages, leads, attachments, band-aids, etc... getting pulled off.  It's one thing when you're older and can realize what is going on but to a tiny baby it's just pain and that was the association he'd grown up with.  When your child has a heart problem he needs to get regular EKGs and an EKG requires 12 little stickers on your skin.  He didn't like that!

One thing I couldn't stand was IVs.  Children with congenital birth defects are often small and small kids have small veins.  Small veins are hard to hit with a needle.  You can only try so many places in one hand or arm.  I can clearly recall nurses (very, very good nurses) moving from arm to hand to the other arm to the other hand to a foot etc... trying to hit a vein.  Numbing cream, doesn't make the pain go away and someone had to hold my son still for each stick.  I couldn't let a stranger do that, but I hated holding him still while they hurt him.  I know in my head it had to be done but I know in his head it felt like we were torturing him.  I only hoped that by holding him myself he would somehow know it would be alright.

If you hadn't read this and met my son you wouldn't guess any of this.  He's a normal (if slightly small) 4th grader.  He does normal things, plays sports, gets good grades, dances, sings, etc...  He's even been "engaged" but that was 2nd grade, he was just a kid then. ;)  Thanks to the hospital he can be so much more of what he's capable of.  I hope he's able to continues with that and I hope all the child patients have the same.  Sadly, I've met several people through events that did not have as positive an outcome for their children.  Every single one of those people have nothing but the best to say about the hospital.  To me, that says something.

Doctors, researchers and nurses at Children's Miracle Network Hospitals work on the immediate problem, they keep the kids alive.  They work on ways to make this less painful (short term and long term) and more durable (they don't want you to come back).  They work on the mental complications of correcting the immediate problem.  One thing I haven't talked about is how they work on reducing the emotional stress of this care.  The Chilren's Miracle Hospitals I have seen are small kid wonderlands.  They have lots of pretty colored lights.  They have funny mirrors on the walls.  They have fish tanks, and moving displays and all sorts of things to make the place visually interesting and fun.  For kids at the hospital long term, they have game rooms with puzzles and games and toys.  They have electronic game carts.  For the little kids they have stuffed animals.  I have fond memories of the little red carts they have to pull the kids around in.  There's even clowns from the local circus that make the rounds and put on shows for the kids.  Children's Miracle Hospitals work very hard to heal, fix and prepare children and families to overcome their problems.  But the neat thing is, they really want to see the kids smile too.

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GM Luna View Drop Down
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 Sep 2012 at 22:29
John, thank you so much for sharing your story. My heart is with you and your family and we'll be thinking of you as we play. :)

Luna
GM Luna | Illyriad Community Manager | community@illyriad.co.uk

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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 Sep 2012 at 22:36
Your all what a father should be John, fair play's to ya. Wish you's all the best for the future.
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 Sep 2012 at 23:21
Ozymandius posted a great idea in GC today. The loser of the leveling contest should have to wear an embarrassing medal designed by the winner for a week. :)

(Posting here so I don't forget.)

Luna
GM Luna | Illyriad Community Manager | community@illyriad.co.uk

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