Paranoia Seizes the Lick Student Body

Recently, students at Lick Wilmerding have become obsessed with a new game called Paranoia. The game demands a highly strategic and methodical approach to tag your target. In the game, each participant is assigned one person to find and tag by clipping a clothespin on their clothing. Each student also has one person targeting them, and when they stealthily stick a clothespin on their target, they inherit that person’s target so the game can continue. Eventually, the game ends in a duel, in which the two final participants face off to determine the winner.
Paranoia evolved from Assassins. Co-creator Zack Katz ’15 has described it as community building, stating that it requires “a cross-grade and cross-clique collaboration” to realize the mission. The point of the game now, is to make friends with people across different grades who you might have never gotten to know otherwise.
Paranoia is different from its predeccesor, Assassins, because it is less aggressive, more disciplined, and with a kinder mission. Assassins used to promote and encourage violence throughout the student body. Some examples of the disruption on Lick’s campus during Assassins were various instances of students screaming and chasing each other across campus which disrupted classes and participants hiding in lockers and under tables.
Because the game was called Assassins, co-creators Zack Katz and Bijan Karrobi ’15 felt the emphasis of the game was killing. “Assassins” they said, “is a name which promotes violence and aggression, which is not the intent of the game, nor is it something that is respected on campus.” They stated that the new name “will capture the spirit of the game more effectively, by describing the acute fear of being targeted, without the connotation of violence.”
Karrobi and Katz made very clear and conscious efforts to reorganize the way in which Paranoia is played. It is now more lijw high end tag. Through careful deliberation with the administration, as well as meticulous reconstruction of the rules of the game, Paranoia has been recreated as less distracting and more worthwhile.
Now the ultimate goal of the game is bringing the community closer together. “Most students will both be a target and receive a target that is from a different grade, challenging each participant to learn about others students of Lick-Wilmerding” And so far it seems like the plan is working.
James Rich ’15, a participant in the game, described it as “a fun way to bring people together and introduce you to kids younger and older.
James also said he had to collaborate heavily with various freshman to stealthily pin his target.
To entice students to participate, Bijan and Zack created multiple prizes. The winner of the game, as well as the runner-up, will receive a sweatshirt with “Paranoia” scrawled across the front in large cursive writing. The creators also considered it important to create prizes for those who tag the most people by the end of the game.
Both Bijan and Zack are optimistic that the community building side of Paranoia will live on, and are hopeful that the Lick community will continue to embrace the game as a way of encouraging cross grade and cross clique collaboration.

Leave a Reply