25 year old Brandon Erickson of Portland, Oregon will attempt what few have achieved - a non-stop marathon play of the original Star Wars Arcade video game. From noon May 16th to the midnight screening of Episode III on May 18th, he hopes to break a 22 year old record standing since Return of the Jedi in 1983:
Brandon, who is “the world's premiere classic Star Wars competitor” according to videogame record keepers Twin Galaxies, says beating the 300 million point score is his most ambitious attempt yet. "The challenge is maintaining focus over such a long period of time. Letting go for even 30 seconds means ‘game over.’ There is very little room for letting my concentration flag."
With newer Star Wars games available, why play the first one? “It's a way to celebrate the original films, and the games of that era,” he says. “Aside from that, it's a heck of a lot of fun. It's hard to top playing Luke Skywalker as he blows up the Death Star.”
Brandon's dedication and endurance will mirror that of Star Wars fans standing in lines at movie theaters worldwide. "I feel a sense of solidarity and camaraderie," he says. “May the Force be with them. Hopefully someone will save me a seat!”
But his gameplay isn't just for the love of Star Wars and classic arcades: it will also benefit education. Brandon asks that supporters pledge a dollar amount for every hour he plays to The Portland Schools Foundation by contacting Amy Anderson at (503)234-5404, extension 28.
"If I complete this challenge, I hope George Lucas grants me the rank of Jedi Master," says Brandon. "That will look great on my resume."
So good luck to Brendan in his record attempt, not only in celebration of such an important occasion for Star Wars fans, but also for an even more important charity. Call the above number and support him in the challenge.