Over the last couple weeks, there’s been talk about an epic and wonderful challenge. A challenge that took the ordinary to extraordinary. A challenge that connected over 15 countries and 100 Xbox Ambassadors and gamers together under two common passions—gaming and community.
We’re proud to showcase an Xbox Ambassador who went above and beyond the normal day-to-day activities of not only an Xbox gamer but a leader in the Xbox community. choppyseize took on the monumental and challenged himself with connecting and playing video games with 100 Xbox Ambassadors in 100 days. Not only did he epically succeed, he singlehandedly changed gamer’s experiences all over the globe in our Ambassador community.
What sparked this idea? What made you want to take on this initiative to connect with more fellow Ambassadors?
The main reason I started the challenge was to help create some positive vibes for Ambassadors in a time when morale was low. The launch of the new website had its ups and downs, and I wanted to help steer things back into a positive direction. I saw a cool way to help shift the focus back into what the Ambassadors are truly about—an awesome community.
How did you manage the challenge? Did you write down names of Ambassadors, the games you played with them, and which days?
To manage the challenge, I tagged people on Twitter and wrote down each person’s GT. Keeping track of who was who became a bit confusing at times since some people have different Discord, GT, and Twitter handles.
Xbox puts a huge emphasis on inclusion and diversity, tell us about the gamers you played with from all over the globe. What were some of the farthest countries you connected with? Where there ever any language barriers, and if so, how did you overcome that?
One of the coolest parts of the challenge was getting an inside perspective on countries I knew nothing about. I loved hearing stories about the lives or what day-to-day activities are really like for Ambassadors all over the world. I met and played with gamers from Iraq, New Zealand, Scotland, Australia, Belgium, London, France, Holland, Egypt, Mexico, Brazil, Japan, Iran, United States and, of course, Canada. Language barriers were not as much of an issue as I’d expected. Just like when traveling, you alter your way of speaking, slowing it down, keeping it simple, and being clear. Thankfully, gaming is a universal language and you can usually find ways to communicate. Time zones were the hardest part. Some people were in a completely opposite time zone from me—my summer is their winter, my 6 PM is their 7 AM. Being stuck in a small town for as long as I have, this was an effective way to mentally escape the daily drudgery. It was a great, positive reminder that the world is still out there, the far away beaches and the unfamiliar cultures. Having not taken a vacation in a long time, it was nice to know I could travel anywhere and I’m sure at least a few of these people would meet me at the airport.
Sometimes it can be difficult putting yourself out there to make new friends. Did you come across any pleasant surprises along the way?
I was pleasantly surprised by the number of Ambassadors who reached out to me personally. All the Xbox Playdates groups stepped up to help and really made me feel welcomed. Popular streamers also took time to schedule me in.
Is there a desire to do another challenge like this again, and if so, would it be the same or a little different?
I would love to do this challenge again. If I did, I would rather stick to the one Ambassador a day and spend more time getting to know each person.
What was your favorite part of this whole challenge?
My favorite part of this challenge was the people. Hands down they made it great and obviously it wouldn’t have been done without them. Watching it come to life, getting support from everyone, and meeting so many awesome people from across the globe was my favorite part.
What is your favorite part about being an Xbox Ambassador and an Xbox gamer?
I have FASD (Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder), so for me, finding the Ambassador community and Xbox gaming community has been life altering. In a traditional office setting, I would have been fired for not making eye contact with people, walking away while they talk to me, or appearing to not be paying attention. Having to communicate this way, via a headset from the comfort of my own home, is perfectly tailored to the way my brain is wired. It’s hard to explain my disability to people, and in the past, I didn’t bother. I wasn’t even aware of how my disability was being misinterpreted by people. I don’t look disabled and, in some settings, I come across as “normal”, which has worked against me for my entire life. Until now. I’ve found something I LOVE doing, something that I’m good at and the best part is I don’t have to be a heartbreaking statistic. There are very few success stories within the world of FASD and I intend to be one of those.
choppyseize, from all of us to you, you are a success story in our eyes. ❤️
What would you say to other Xbox gamers who would want to do the same thing?
It’s awesome to know I’ve inspired others. The goal for me was to connect with the community in a way that doesn’t require help from the Xbox Ambassador Team. I would love to see other people create their own community challenge or enhance mine. Be prepared to download a lot of games and make yourself flexible to scheduling!
What type of impact were you looking to have on the gaming community? Do you think you achieved that?
Overall, I wanted people to feel included. I just wanted my impact to be positive. There can be a lot of negativity within the gaming community, but you don’t have to get sucked into it. I feel like I did what I set out to do, which is a good feeling.
What are some other ways you think Xbox Ambassadors can do to follow this example of inclusion?
Everyone is capable of living life with an open mind. For us to be more inclusive means we need to focus on what unites us as opposed to what separates us. The very nature of the Xbox Ambassador Program is people helping people. Yes, there are rewards, prizes, and other incentives, but there is much to be said for just being helpful.
How do you define community and what makes it important to you?
Community is a place where you feel accepted. I’ve made some real friends here, people I talk to almost every day. They “get” me. They laugh at my jokes and make me feel like I’m on the right track. When you find something that gives you a sense of purpose and accomplishment as well as a group of people you genuinely like, that is community. I’m very happy to say I found that, and I look forward to meeting some of these people in the real world. Especially my buddies who live in places my wife and I want to visit, like Italy and New Orleans.
The Ambassador Program is working on a plan that gives Ambassadors a chance to help make gaming fun for everyone. Does this interest you as an Ambassador?
Gaming for everyone initiatives sound similar to my company called Synchronicity Gaming. I started this shortly before joining the Xbox Ambassador Program—interesting since the definition of synchronicity is a “meaningful coincidence”. I was looking for a way to do what I love doing and had a feeling that would lead me to the right people and the right places, which it has. Synchronicity Gaming was intended to bring a little peace to the world of competitive gaming. It’s a place where women could play without being harassed constantly, a platform for other people with FASD to feel safe, and more! There are millions of people worldwide who have FASD who would love to feel like they were part of something that provides friendship, acceptance, and employment. This is a whole new world for people who have been discounted for far too long. I would be honored to contribute in any way to this effort.
choppyseize was so nice, and the stream was so fun to play with him! This was my first time playing with him overall, but I’ve been following him on social media for a little while and he’s always supportive of everyone. I thought his challenge of playing with 100 Ambassadors in 100 days was actually pretty cool, and I’d really love to see things like this because it gave me the opportunity to meet and know others in the Xbox Ambassador Program who also streamed. I’d really like to see more things like this and community involvement.
Before this challenge, I actually never played with anyone in the Xbox Ambassador Program before and I have choppyseize to thank for changing that. I’ve made a lot of friends, you may know some—Wolf Boy Pete, WoWDontPanic, and of course choppyseize. I now consider these people my good friends. In the beginning, the challenge seemed impossible to me because most of us are focused on connecting to other gamers for XP, but choppyseize made it possible. I want to thank choppyseize for letting me part of this awesome challenge, and I look forward to others doing the same thing. I hope the Ambassador community does a lot more of these kinds of things in the future, just like the ACEs doing LFG sessions each week. I think it was a huge step forward in making the Ambassador community greater. Also, it’s a great source in meeting fellow Ambassadors and connecting with one another no matter the language barriers or geographic locations. For example, I’m from Kurdistan and English is my fourth language and yet it wasn’t going to stop me from participating in this challenge, and I had a great time!
I approached choppy on Twitter when he was a little over the halfway mark of his challenge. He was incredibly inviting and fun to chat and play with. I hadn’t connected with any other Ambassadors during my time with him, but I enjoy the concept of our community playing together, like the ACE LFG sessions, which have been a success in my opinion. Online gaming is all about bridging the gap between physical distances and given that our Ambassadors are all over the world we should continue to showcase that in the form of playdates.
This was my first time playing with other Ambassador’s and I absolutely loved the experience. I got to meet some new people I had only previously seen on our Discord chat. I think choppyseize had an amazing idea and I would love to see a monthly ambassador challenge done. I would love to see the community be more active gaming together.
The initiative was such a great idea—as a streamer some of the most memorable times you can have is bringing new people from different walks of life together to enjoy something social like a video game. I think this community needs to do this more, building a stronger bond with the thing we all lover—the Xbox gaming community. We were able to get him on a stream and it was great for my viewers to hear his story and listen to us both dialogue about the Xbox Ambassadors and better understand that we are here to help and have fun with.
When I saw choppyseize trying to play with 100 Ambassadors in 100 days I knew I wanted in from the start. Though an ambitious goal, I believed it was for a good cause, to bring people together. It reminded me of when I started streaming for the Ambassadors back when Spartan Academy, my weekly Halo Adventures, was still around. Bringing Ambassadors together to play and collaborate is a big part of what made me feel welcome here. Nowadays it seems to be few and far between.
The first thing to figure out was timing, being in different time zones made it hard, but not impossible to find a time to play together. I reached out to choppyeize and once we figured out a good time we went back and forth trying to find games that both of us had to play. We settled on one of my favorites, Rocket League. That night when we hopped on, we joined and open lobby where one of my college buddies hopped in and we spent the next few hours playing ranked matches yelling at the opponents for beating up on us.
I would love to see more people take initiative in the community like this. While playing with new comers is nothing new to me, I loved that choppyseize was able to bring people at of their comfort zone to help further his goal. I am sure that there are plenty of people that played with another Ambassador for the first time, and hopefully even allowed some of them to feel a bit more part of the family. Ambassadors are a global phenomenon; time zones, language, and even favorite genres do not stop us from playing together and having fun. choppyseize only further proved that.
We will say it over and over again, THIS is what Xbox Ambassadors are all about, and it warms our hearts that people from all over the globe can connect with one other in such a genuine and meaningful way. This is what makes Xbox the best place to play, and it all starts with passionate and amazing Ambassadors like you and choppyseize.
Thank you, choppyseize, and thank you to the Ambassadors who played with him.
Give some love in the comments to choppyseize and your fellow Ambassadors. You rock!