The screeching of power tools is long gone in the renovated Campus Center, but one room still remains unfinished: the game room. The game room was located at the top floor of the old Campus Center. It was a hot spot for commuter students featuring several classic arcade games and pool and ping-pong tables with lots of room around them. The new game room is located on the lowest level of the building and contains a ping pong table, which is crowded by billiards tables, a TV and a pinball machine that is tucked away behind the bar.
“Compared to what it used to be it sucks,” senior Zack Wiessner said. “You used to go out and open big sliding windows and it was so wide open, not like a prison. You’re not staring at people’s feet.”
Wiessner reminisced about the smell of fresh popcorn from the machine that was in the old game room and described how bright and welcoming it used to be with the windows and the Vincent van Gogh mural painted on the wall.
But does that mean the new game room is a lost cause? Laura Thomas, the Student Government Association official in charge of the game room, doesn’t think so.
“I think it has come a long way since I was a freshman,” she said via e-mail. “I am still working on bringing more to the game room. We are trying to make it look more like a pub, and in doing so, I am in the process of putting our sport teams’ pictures on the wall, varsity and club.”
Even more changes are on the way according to Victoria Angis, the Castleton administrator in charge of the game room.
“We have a dart board waiting to be installed,” she said, with a non-assured chuckle, as she rested her head on her hand.
Things are moving slowly for Angis and Thomas, who are also working on installing a large magnetic poetry board for students to be able express themselves on, as well as trying to make the pinball machine free.
“The two other things in the works are a neon sign and a huge chalk board, you know, to keep score,” Angis said. “Oh, and a mural.”
Senior Daniel Gardner felt that adding a dart board was a step in the right direction, although, he would still like to see more entertainment in the room.
“I’d like different kinds of games in there,” Gardner said. “Like more to do, like an air hockey table.”
But Thomas cautioned that more games require more room.
“I wish we had a bigger space to work with so we could have more games down there,” Thomas said. “But I think we can make it more than it was before.”
As for how much use the game room currently receives, it’s sporadic. One can walk to the mail room on a typical Monday, check their mail, and leave without hearing a sound coming from downstairs. If they peaked in, they’d find a dark room with lonely pool sticks randomly dispersed throughout the room, and ping pong paddles resting quietly on the table.
However, if that same person walked by to check their mail on a Tuesday, they could hear the crack of a cue ball hitting the eight-ball into a pocket. They’d see a few people standing around with pool sticks, some waiting for their turn, others watching the newest Taio Cruz music video.
Ultimately, it’s the students who can help change the game room if they are unsatisfied, Thomas said.
“This year I have more say on what goes into the game room and it is a little easier to get what the students want faster,” Thomas said. “I have been asking students around campus what they would like to see and those answers are what I try to get.