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The Top 10 Gaming Colleges 66

Pluvius writes "The top-ten list of party schools published by the Princeton Review every year has always been a popular metric among prospective American college students for determining the 'most compatible' university to attend. Because of this, the Global Gaming League has come up with a more geek-oriented list: The First Annual Top Gaming Colleges Survey. The entries were selected based on such factors as proximity to gamer meccas such as Southern California, the frequency of LAN parties, and the existence and strength of a game design curriculum. Here's an excerpt from the number one entry, UT/Austin: 'Last, if you don't feel like leaving your dorm, there's nothing to worry about. A blistering Internet connection will give you LAN pings inside Texas, 30 milliseconds of latency to the East coast and 40 to the West coast. "The Internet connection at the dorms is ****ing amazing. I was [on it] freshman year; I miss that part about moving out of the dorms."'"
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The Top 10 Gaming Colleges

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  • Uh yeah. (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Skynet ( 37427 ) on Thursday August 31, 2006 @11:33AM (#16016148) Homepage
    University of Virginia - Charlottesville, Virginia

    Upside: Utterly ridiculous Internet connection. One former 'Quake 3' player from UVA had a single-digit ping all along the East coast. UVA also has some LAN parties.
    Downside: Not a terrific location. The odds are that you won't have time for gaming because of a highly-competitive academic schedule.

    So this is a reason I shouldn't go to UVA? Because I "won't have time to game?" What a trite article. Maybe you should go to a university because it will give you a competitive education, not because you can ping 9ms to your favorite server?
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by iced_773 ( 857608 )
      I go to UVA. I have plenty of time to game, but there's so much fun stuff going on in the real world that I don't want to game. WoW may be great and everything, but in the end, you will have a much better time at a real party school than at a LAN party school.
      • i'll disagree.

        real party schools tend to be composed of different types of people than gamers. oil and water just doesn't want to mix sometimes.

        i'm a softcore gamer who graduated from a party school and i found msyelf gaming a lot more often than partying, just becuase i didn't feel like being around 90% of the kids there. not because i didn't want to go out. (not that i didn't hit my fair share of parties and bars)

        i would've probably been more inclined to party with people more similar to myself, which
        • I have to agree with you. I went to RIT because it seemed like a 'smart' campus that would have a lot of people I'd get a long with. Had I gone to something like Kutstown, I think I would have hated college, because I never really cared for the joke type people, and it seemed like socially that college would have been much more like HS.
        • That's a good point. I'm also a softcore gamer, but I live in the dorms with the Rodman and Echols scholars, and they really are my type of people, so I'm more likely to party outside the computer. That's not to say I've abandoned gaming completely, though. :P

          However, I can't help but feel sorry for the people I sat next to in a lecture the other day. They were talking about doing a raid the night before, while I had been hanging out in a sort of de facto block party with the coolest people I know.
      • It really depends on what you call a party school. I know schools where the partiers are the ones who are either drunk or high 75% of the time, and don't go to class, and basically waste all their student loan money on partying. Most of them consider it a good time, but after they drop out and have been working crap jobs for a while, they don't think it was such a good idea. I'm all for having fun at university, but people should know where to draw the line.
    • Re:Uh yeah. (Score:5, Insightful)

      by GundamFan ( 848341 ) on Thursday August 31, 2006 @11:44AM (#16016252)
      "So this is the reason I shouldn't [read the games section of slashdot]? What a trite [post]. Maybe you should [read the games section of slashdot for entertanment], not because you [are trying to pick a college].

      The article is not about higher education... it is about exspensive goofing off. There are plenty of people who find extra curicular activity and fitting in at a college important, these kind of metrics may be of value to them.

      Lose the stick, it makes you walk funny.
    • Uhm, yeah. The entire point of the article was colleges that gamers would like to go to. I'd think it would be a downside to that if you can't play games in the first place...
      • Uh yeah-Placeholders (Score:1, Interesting)

        by Anonymous Coward
        Well let's see. Between school itself (and the associated homework)*, plus the job you'll need to pay for it all. Were does one find the time to game?

        *And let's mention the fact that the student population is getting older and have family responsabilities.
        • I had a ton of free time in college. I didn't have a job (other than during the summers), as I paid for college with a mix of grants, loans and scholarships (my parents couldn't afford to pay for anything for me). I made the decision not to get a job during college, as I didn't want it interfering with my curriculum. Turns out I could've taken on a job easily.

          I typically took about 15-16 credits a semester. Which translated to 2-3 hours of lecture a day, and probably an average of 2-3 hours of homework a ni
    • So this is a reason I shouldn't go to UVA?

      no, you shouldn't go to UVA simply because it is UVA. And no this isn't a biased opinion. GO Hokies!

    • As a UVA student, I think it depends on how much time to game you want. There's easily enough time for casual gaming (a few hours a week) on like a Tuesday or Wednesday night when there's less partying. However, I knew a guy first year (last year) who literally played Warcraft Three Battle Net (that Defenders of the Alliance map or whatever) in excess of 20 hours a week.
    • There are plenty worse reasons to pick a school, like perhaps the performance of their varsity sports teams.
    • UVA? I'm posting right now from this "ridiculous" internet. Max of about 75KBps downloads, and for a game it's generally 50+ ping, sometimes triple digits. Now perhaps gaming in the CS lab is different, but the internet connections in the dorms suck. 120 people share 100mbps bandwidth, with the ethernet connection to the rooms being 10mbps. Pah.
  • by achacha ( 139424 ) on Thursday August 31, 2006 @11:34AM (#16016163) Homepage
    It is already a top 10 party school and has a great football team and about 50,000 students. Since all the non-techies can just get drunk, the techies can start their anti-scial isolation training right in college by never leaving their dorn rooms. Wonder if they offer a degree in slashdotting?
  • by WidescreenFreak ( 830043 ) on Thursday August 31, 2006 @11:36AM (#16016179) Homepage Journal
    Why, sonny, I remember back in my days when deciding on a college was a balance between how much it cost and how good the college was for the field of study you wanted. You went to college with a priority on learning. We didn't have none of these newfangled college decision making thingys that were all about partying and maybe getting a token diploma after spending four years and thousands of dollars, dagnabbit!

    What's that? You're joining Delta Tau Chi? Well, that makes a bit more sense.
    • I can only thank God that I'm not in college in this day and age. When I went to college ('81) nobody on my floor had a computer freshman year. One guy had an Apple II+ my sophomore year (and a couple of guys had TI-99's after the fire sales in the spring of '83). There is no way I would be able to survive today. Games, music, video, pR0n...

      Thank heavens those distractions were all precious and expensive luxuries in my day. I wouldn't have had the mental discipline to study knowing that at the click of
    • by lowe0 ( 136140 )
      Because no /. college story is complete without some snide remark about the greek system.

      Thanks for doing your part.
      • Because no /. college story is complete without some snide remark about the greek system.

        Wow. Total cluelessness reigns supreme. You need to start watching some classic, frat house comedies.

        It's a reference to the Delta House in the movie Animal House. Looks like my statement about "how long ago it seems" was more accurate than I thought.

        Sheesh. { roll eyes }
        • by lowe0 ( 136140 )
          Holy shit, my brain is fried - thank god it's a long weekend. I thought Animal House was DTD.

          I done fucked this one up. My apologies.
      • The Delta Tau Chi house is the "party frat" that was the basis for the movie "Animal House". You're a college student and you didn't at least know THAT? I would have thought by now that universities would make that movie required viewing for how NOT to behave on campus. :)
        • by lowe0 ( 136140 )
          Wow, holy shit. I thought Animal House was Delta Tau Delta.

          I now officially have egg on my face, and will be posting my apology.
  • by garylian ( 870843 ) on Thursday August 31, 2006 @11:43AM (#16016245)
    I can see really intelligent parents getting a hold of this list and starting to shift kids away from campuses where gaming is a little too friendly. Don't give them information they don't need to see!

    Though, I'd rather have my kid at a school where gaming was damn easy, as opposed to a school where drinking was the only thing to do every day.
    • Though, I'd rather have my kid at a school where gaming was damn easy, as opposed to a school where drinking was the only thing to do every day.

      Someone didn't get their American culture memo.

      Partying is what college kids are SUPPOSED to do. College kids are SUPPOSED to go out and have promiscuous sex while too fucked up to remember it.

      Gaming leaves them in their rooms, sober (well, maybe) and with few friends, not at parties, probably disliked by other people. That's not how the American College Experienc
      • You haven't seen kids who attended smaller party schools, and how their lives are afterwards.

        Friends of mine that attended places like Frostburg, or Salsbury over in MD came out of school with very few social skills other than getting drunk with random people. And the friends they made? Gone within 6 months of graduation as they spread out over the state and region.

        Maybe it's somewhat different than when I went to college, but being known as "a real party animal that got crabs, herpes, and the clap while
  • by kannibal_klown ( 531544 ) on Thursday August 31, 2006 @11:44AM (#16016254)
    When I was in college, we had a very nice tub... pipe to the Internet :) Back in 98-99 I believe we leased part of a T3.

    What stunk is we were blocked from playing games on the Internet. This was back during Half-Life, Unreal Tournament, Counter Strike, Quake III, days. They blocked ports, UDP, you name it. It really stunk.

    The LAN Gaming was great, particularly since you often knew the person you were playing against so I didn't mind THAT much. However, after I moved offcampus my senior year I found out that they took things a step further. They started blocking traffic between each dorm, meaning you could only play against people in your own dorm. When I asked what their reasons were, my friends just shrugged.

    I don't know what the state of affairs is there now, for all I know they've opened up Internet gaming again. But it was a shame that a school ranked so highly for "being wired" that they took such steps. I know, I know... I wasn't going there to play games. But I did pretty well in school (later got my Masters) so it's not like I was a complete slacker.
    • Where I was had a similar thing, and every dorm was on a firewalled subnet so there was no inter-dorm gaming either which sucked. In the end we had to make do with consoles in the community areas of the dorms which had nice big TVs so it was not a total loss and was more of a monkey ball party vibe than a serious LAN session vibe.
  • The top-ten list of party schools published by the Princeton Review every year has always been a popular metric among prospective American college students for determining the 'most compatible' university to attend.

    Any correlation with the decline of the sciences in the USA?

    "The Internet connection at the dorms is ****ing amazing."

    Nice to see college is really enhancing his vocabulary.

    Don't mind me. I've become and old curmudgeon.

    • by Chaffar ( 670874 )
      Don't mind me. I've become an old curmudgeon.
      curmudgeon: a crusty irascible cantankerous old person full of stubborn idea
      ... At least we young losers having massive LAN parties can still spot an oxymoron when we see one :D
  • Actually RIT is great for general geekery. For a while though we nearly had 2 different groups almost competing for who could hold the best campus LAN. One of them ended up having a LAN party about every 2 weeks for most of the year, giving out insane prizes, until it ran their budget into the ground. So now electronic gaming society only has LANs once in a while, and we have RITfest twice a year which has been consistently pretty big and usually pretty fun. EGS still meets once a week (with an occasional s
    • I agree. I loved my time at RIT. The five years went all too quickly. Alas, I was off campus and graduated before they moved to the OC3.

      FWIW, as long as you do keep your grades up, you shouldn't have problems landing a job (well, assuming CS anyway). I never heard of RIT before my friend told me about it, but plenty of people know the name and it has a good reputation... pretty much every interviewer I've talked to is aware of it.
  • Well, just look at this... Didn't I tell you? []
  • I would've tested the ping time, but I had other weird interests taking most of my time; crazy stuff like classes, studying and trying to get girls! ha ha.
  • They rated geography as important, and gave RIT a one. Then they slam Rochester, saying there's nothing to do? Not true.. there's plenty of things to do in Rochester. Even better, its not far from Geneseo. Some of us actually prefer Rochester's climate over Austins or Tampas!
    • People that don't know the area will only think it snows here (Rochester and Buffalo). What they don't realize is how great this area is. Granted, you can get 7 feet of snow in 24 hours, but you can also have winters like the last 2 where we didn't get 7 feet total.

      Plus, bars are open til 4am in some locales.
      • Thanks for backing me up on that one. The other side is that even when it does get 7 feet of snow, they're actually really damn good at removing it, and life goes on more or less unaffected.
  • by nfsilkey ( 652484 ) on Thursday August 31, 2006 @12:32PM (#16016713) Homepage

    To the best of my knowledge, the pipe for UT-Austin is a couple of 'commodity-Internet' OC3s leased from a lone carrier (Qwest). Using the 95th percentile on UTNet's 'busy days', inbound traffic hits around ~350 Mbps. Another thing to note is that the Internet2 [] uplink for UT-Austin is a Qwest OC12 (either it is or will be a GigE connection to I2 in the near future). Commodity-Internet is somewhat saturated, but decent. The big win is the I2 uplink being blazing (fast and fairly not saturated).

    One of the things I experienced as a student in the dorms at UT-Austin (2000-2001) was the leveraging of a throughput quota on ResNet ports. I believe they alotted activated-for-pay ports six gigs of throughput in a given calendar week. Today, things have changed slightly []:

    • $20 per month / 4 GB per week
    • $30 per month / 8 GB per week
    • $40 per month / 12 GB per week

    So thats a big negative for all the 18-year old network gobblers out there who play GAMEZ and swap FILEZ.

    So we are National Champions [] _and_ Gaming Gods? Sweet. ;)

    • Everything about UT-Austin is sweet. I did my undergrad there, and unfortunately had to leave for law school. I'd sell my soul to get a job with an Austin firm, or to spend the rest of my life teaching at UT Law.
  • They obviously didn't try very hard to get their results. I'm president of a Student Organization [] at Vanderbilt University []. We have a gaming culture on campus, including 1 large (120+) person LAN per semester and weekly gaming nights. We're just about to bring a 64-man Counter-strike server on campus that the university is officially sponsoring. But I wasn't even CONTACTED by the people who wrote the article.
    • Re: (Score:1, Troll)

      by hal2814 ( 725639 )
      And your school mascot is the Commodores for crying out loud. Oh, the humanity.

      Ok, now that I'm done with that, leave it to Vandy to cry about being left out. Sorry if nobody is staring in awe at a 120+ LAN for gaming. 120? That's not even very impressive. An upcoming Counter-strike server sponsored by campus? What is this, the year 2000?

      Hey everybody, the university bought us two cans and a string but nobody has contacted me about our campus' telecommunications abilities. I'll cry about it to Slashd
      • by ionpro ( 34327 )
        Fair enough, but looking through the article, only two LANs are mentioned that are bigger. The majority seem to be smaller then our LAN. I've also -never- seen another school officially sponsor (e.g. provide free bandwidth, hosting, and administration) for a dedicated gaming server before. This isn't a 12 man server put up on a left-over box sitting in a closet somewhere. This is a dedicated box, with an Athlon 64 FX-55, 2GB of RAM, and dual hard disks and power supplies, rack mounted in the same location a
        • by hal2814 ( 725639 )
          "only two LANs are mentioned that are bigger."

          Only two LANs mention how big they are. And even if you're right, the size of your LAN gaming infrastructure is only one consideration they look at.

          "I've also -never- seen another school officially sponsor (e.g. provide free bandwidth, hosting, and administration) for a dedicated gaming server before."

          I've never seen a school need to officially sponsor a dedicated gaming server before. I've seen planty of schools provide physical space to set up gaming servers
          • by ionpro ( 34327 )
            "Only two LANs mention how big they are. And even if you're right, the size of your LAN gaming infrastructure is only one consideration they look at."

            OK, but why wasn't I contacted to even ask a question about our gaming community? The point was they didn't look very hard. If they can't even cover the tier 1 universities (those ranked 1-25) or universities with more then 5000 students, their list is obviously not very accurate.

            "Game servers aren't that hard to come by and they don't require anything along t
  • I was surprised to see that this school was not on the list and not even an honorable mention. Arizona State, which is in the same city, even got an honorable mention.

    I went to the University of Advancing Technology (UAT) for several years and during that whole time they were focused on their new "Gaming" program. Basically it boiled down to a "Degree of This with an emphasis in Game Design." The emphasis, of course, was basic gaming classes related to making and designing a game or the most part. If moti

  • by ClassicG ( 138845 ) on Thursday August 31, 2006 @12:46PM (#16016845) Homepage
    I realize that NBCC-Miramichi [] might be a little on the obscure side, since it's both quite small and located in Atlantic Canada, but I understand that their Electronic Game Design [] was one of the very first gaming-specific programs offered anywhere, and was a little disappointed to see no mention of it at all in the article. It's short (two year) and very focused, with a high dropout rate (~50%), but for those willing to seriously dedicate themselves (which is a requirement for getting into the game industry anyway!), it is a very rewarding experience. Graduates of the program have been scooped up right after graduation (sometimes even before) by some fairly well-known companies, and others have gone on to create their own successful (if small) development studios. As a graduate who has gone on to a have a fairly successful career in the gaming industry, I can definately recommend the program, especially considering that it's also quite affordable as far as education goes.
  • ...since the early 90's when I would get booted out of Moria on the VAX at 8am when the professor's started loggin in to check email.
  • Huh, And here I thought it was going to be an article on top schools to learn how to make games. This article just seems silly when you are expecting something like that.

    Well that article will have to show up eventually.

  • I've seen the gaming scene here enough to KNOW it rocks. ^_^
  • So not only is UT the #1 Party school according to the Princeton Review, it's also the #1 Gaming school, how amusing.
  • 1) We've got some of the most gorgeous women on the planet.
    2) 5th drunkest city in the USA
    3) Live music capital of the USA (possibly the world)
    4) South by Southwest Festival(s)
    5) We have a homeless celebrity dragqueen who runs for mayor as often as possible.
    And now we can add #6: Best gaming college in the nation.

    I love this city.

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