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Put the Game Down and Step Away from the Xbox!

[UPDATE 10:02PM December 10th:] The competition has been closed; winners will be announced in a separate posting at 8 PM Australian Eastern Daylight Time, Sunday December 12th, 2004.

After showing some friends the “Busted!” image I whipped up, I came up with another caption (specifically, the one in the heading) – and started wondering, “What could the IMAGinES community come up with?” Immedately, an idea popped into my head: Why not actually run a caption competition and give the best caption a prize? Heck, the Penny Arcade guys give stuff out all the time!

So here it is: The first ever IMAGinES Caption Competition! Tell us what the Master Chief, zealously guarding the IMAGinES Xbox, is telling the mysterious interloper bearing a sneakily-procured copy of Halo 2!

Say What?

IMAGinES is giving away three prizes to the entrants with the three best captions:

  • First Prize: A Halo 2 Series 1 Puma – er, Warthog! This licensed toy from Joyride Studios is a detailed replica of the Gauss gun-equipped Warthog from Halo 2. It’s approximately 19 centimetres in length, and comes complete with scale miniature figures of the Master Chief and a UNSC Marine, both armed with Battle Rifles! Show your geek pride and run down Grunts* while making “Brm brmmm!” noises! (Retails for AU$29.95)
  • Second Prize: The Halo 2 Original Soundtrack, Volume One! The Official CD of the game includes mixes of Halo 2’s dynamic soundtrack created by Bungie composers Martin O’Donnell and Michael Salvatore, plus rock tracks from Breaking Benjamin, Incubus, Hoobastank, Nile Rodgers and Natara inspired by the game! (Retails for US$13.50 on Amazon.com)
  • Third Prize: Our Personal Collection of Spider Robinson Novels! Vickie and I have both bought significant chunks of SF author Spider Robinson’s works over time, and we’re giving the double-ups away! You’ll win a copy of:
    • The Callahan’s Crosstime Saloon Stories: The Callahan Chronicals, The Callahan Touch, Callahan’s Legacy and Callahan’s Key, the collected short stories and novels about the barflies, aliens, talking dogs, mad scientists and leprechauns of Callahan’s Place, a bar where shared pain is lessened and shared joy is increased.
    • Lifehouse, a story of two con-artists who stumble across a conspiracy that wipes people’s memories - and of two ultrapowered conspirators who’ll stop at nothing to keep their secret…
    • User Friendly, a collection of short stories and essays.

This competition is only open to entrants with an Australian mailing address. I’ll be paying enough for domestic parcel rates as it is; I won’t post the prizes overseas!

To enter, send me a single e-mail with “Halo 2 Caption Competition” in the subject line and one to three captions in the body text (as text please; no images either in or attached to the e-mail). Your e-mail must include a valid return address. The competition will close at 10 PM Australian Eastern Daylight Time, Friday, December the 10th, 2004.

Entries will be judged by Rob and Vickie Farquhar (hereafter “the Judges”) on the following conditions:

  • Wit. Captions will be judged on humour, cleverness and originality. (Note: If a caption is submitted subsequently to an entry to which it is identical or very similar, the subsequent entry will be disregard in favour of the prior entry.)
  • Appropriateness to the Image. Captions must make sense when placed within the Chief’s speech bubble on the photograph. Any caption that is or seems out of context will be disregarded.
  • Simplicity. Captions will be judged on brevity; a caption must fit inside the speech bubble and remain legible. Try for around ten words or less.
  • Absence of Profanity. While justifiably-appropriate swearing will be accepted in the running, it will be judged below entries that are witty without resorting to profanity. Entries consisting of profanity for its own sake will be disregarded.

One E-Mail per Person, One Prize per Person. Each e-mail can include up to three captions per entry; however, you will only win with the caption that the Judges consider the best. If you submit more than one e-mail, all e-mails after the first will be disregarded.

The Judges’ Decision is Subjective, Impartial and Final. Winners will be announced in an entry on this web log on Sunday, December 12th, 2004, and notified via e-mail. One you receive your notification, you will need to provide a valid postal delivery address. If we don’t receive your address within one week of notification, your entry will be disregarded and the prizes will be re-awarded.

The Judges ask that you respect the contest, the format, and your fellow entrants and not attempt to disguise your identity in order to submit multiple entries. If you do, and we discover it before prizes are sent, all your entries will be disregarded. If we discover it after prizes are sent, and you’ve won a prize (or even multiple prizes) – well, we can’t do much about it, but don’t be surprised if we don’t talk to you any more.

All prize prices are correct at time of writing.

* The Vickie Farquhar Society for the Protection from Cruelty of Grunts would like to inform readers that no Grunts were harmed in the making of this competition.

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Can I enter under both my names???

For that last comment, 'Graham' wishes it known that he is truely grateful, if sceptical.