With Further Ado #197: Winner of the Third Annual Guest Columnist Contest 2022 – Reece Clausen

I have reached the end of this year’s Ithacon season. The class of Ithaca College students that promote, plan, and execute the convention have come to the end of their tasks. As has become a tradition, this column has become a venue to host the winner of the “guest columnist” assignment that the students complete.

Last week, we published the runner-up Tyler Haraden’s piece. This week we are publishing the winner’s column. Reece Clausen combined some new pop culture news with a bit of opinion and some genuine fanboy emotion while discussing the Lego Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga video game. Those are the three things we strive for in this column.

I look forward to bringing next year’s winners to you and hope that they are as wonderful as this year’s.

The Urge to Purchase Lego Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga is Destroying Me

by Reece Clausen, Ithaca College

The balance of the force has been shaken. The draw towards the dark side of the force is consuming me faster than Anakin Skywalker being told that he can save his wife from certain death. In case you somehow did not read the title of this article, I’m talking about Lego Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga that just released. Now, I’m a 21 year old college student and I have fond memories of playing Lego Star Wars: The Complete Saga when it released in 2007. Now, I and many other people my age can tell you that this game was our childhood. I have so many fond memories, from starting fights in the cantina hub, smashing my controller over the podracing level, and constantly killing my friends for no reason other than it was funny to see them fall apart into many Lego bricks. Like I said, good times.

Now when I found out back in 2019 that there was going to be a new Lego Star Wars game that would include levels based on all nine films, my hype levels were through the roof! Fast forward three years and delays, and the game has finally arrived! The gaming community has been giving nothing but praise for this game and all the new things it has brought to the table. Over 300 characters, open world environments, expansive levels, and all the humor you would expect from a Lego game, this masterpiece has it all! It even has Obi-Wan saying “Hello there.”, and multiple jokes about Anakin Skywalker not liking sand! What more could I want? The world is falling in love with this game, and I’ve waited so long for it. Except there is just one problem. I am a broke college student.

Now I’m a guy who usually constrains himself from making “useless” purchases. I like to spend my money on the important things in life, mostly take-out orders. I also like to conserve my money for my girlfriend. We are currently in a long-distance relationship and don’t see each other very often. Recently, I did spend some cash on us. We booked an Airbnb for a weekend getaway and helped her pay for an expensive plane ticket for the end of April (thanks Vladimir Putin). That purchase was necessary, but makes it all the more difficult to add to my April expenses by forking over $60 for a video game.

I am usually hesitant to buy games at full price. I find it to be increasingly frustrating when I buy a full price game only to see it go on sale three months later. However, this $60 will allow me to feel like a child all over again. On top of that, everyone is talking about it. Everywhere I go on the internet I keep seeing footage and praise for the game. I swear my for you page on TikTok is nothing but Lego Star Wars content. Heck, it managed to get people to finally shut up about Elden Ring! People are calling it game of the year, the humor is laugh out loud, and looks like the most fun I will have with a video game for a long time! I want to relive the joy of building and smashing my way through my favorite movie franchise. Besides, I’d be able to play it with my girlfriend when she visits. After all we did play the original Lego Star Wars game together. Why shouldn’t I experience this game with my Player Two?

I have been pacing back and forth like a lost droid on Tatooine. I have consulted the Jedi Council (aka my roommates) on if I should buy the game. Half have said yes, half have said wait for a sale. Like I said, the dark side is calling to me. I shouldn’t, but I swear I am hearing someone whisper “do it” in my ear.

My destiny is in my hands. I should probably save my money. Lego Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga looks like a ton of fun, and I have no doubt that I will experience it eventually. The force is strong with me.

Update: By the time I finished writing this article. I purchased the game. Wallet: -$60. Regrets: Zero.

Just a reminder the first year we did this, there were two columns published Anthony Hernandez and Tyler JennesLast year we published three winners: Jordan Green, Maya Lewis, and Caleigh Clarke.