On December 13th I attended the Child’s Play dinner auction with my brother. Child’s Play is the fundraising arm of the guys behind the popular gaming comic strip Penny Arcade. Each year they raise money for Childrens Hospitals across the world. This year alone they raised over one million dollars including $210K at the dinner auction. I went to the event with one item in the live auction on my mind. Imagine if you could having the opportunity to bid on a minor role in Star Wars knowing in advance that it was going to be one of the largest grossing (and most popular) movies of all time. In this case the auction item was for a voice over role in the upcomming Microsoft XBOX 360 game Halo3, along with a visit to the place where they develope the game — even many people that work at Microsoft have not been into their building. Halo2 sold millions of copies and the third game is expected to exceed the second. In fact Halo2 had the largest grossing launch beating any movie to ever come out of Hollywood on an opening weekend. Many famous people have had voice roles in the games including actor/comedian David Cross or actor Orlando Jones. Quickly everyone in the room at out of the bidding except for me and a table across the room. With over 300 people at the auction I could not see who I was bidding against. The bidding went back and forth and I have to say that I quickly exceeded my planned budget. Instead of jumping in $100 increaments I started to push it $500. I think by last bid was $8600 and that was topped to $9000 and that point enought was way too much. The Penny Arcade guys did something fun and as the losing bidder in an auction I was given a USB "Terminator Snowman" or Snowbot from ThinkGeek. At this point I also found out I lost to the guys from Red vs. Blue. Red vs. Blue is based out of Austin and they create small movies (machinima) based off of the characters and the looks of the Halo video games. Basically I was bidding against a company whose livelyhood is all based on the game. I never had a chance. When the auction was over they all game over in the tuxes with red or blue cumberbuns to shake my hand. I also had a sketch take of me by Luke McKay who does the comic strip work on their site. He actually lives outside of Vancouver, BC.
During the auction they were filming and it turns out that it was being filmed by the team at GameTrailers.com who actually raise a bunch of money for Child’s Play. You can see a few seconds of my brother and myself in one of their videos. If you want to take a look you have to wait through a small comerical and then they show us bidding but they edited to make it look like we were bidding on another item in the auction.