From Beyblades to Bakugan, popular schoolyard toys were an inescapable fixture of being a 2000’s kid. 12 year-olds dueling for playground superiority by hurling cheap, plastic toys at each other was a rather common sight during those simpler, happier times. And for any who long for the return of those days, I have good news. Recent events have shown us that growing up doesn’t have to mean aging out.
Introducing the ‘Carolina Combat’ Trading Card Game: UofSC’s new campus-wide craze. Students are still battling using cheap plastic trash, but here’s the catch: that trash is their Carolina Card.
The rules are somewhat similar to the Pokémon Trading Card Game. Each card has stats and abilities, except now, they’re calculated based on the USCID on the back of the card. Players battle these cards until the last one standing is declared the victor. There’s even a rock-paper-scissors style typing system and limited edition cards based on some of the different populations of students on campus.
“Carolina Combat is the most important thing in my life right now,” says freshman Kyle Mogerton. “I nicked my suitemates’ cards, made a seriously sick deck, and now I won’t stop ’till I reach the very top: Carolina Combat League Champion!”
Kyle isn’t alone. Thousands of UofSC students just like him are also training to be the best like no one ever was. The popularity of the game has forced the conversion of several campus P.E. centers into Carolina Combat gyms.
However, Carolina Combat isn’t always in good fun. Students have reported being accosted after stepping in the tall grass off the sidewalks and forced into battles after having locked eyes with other students on the way to class. Additionally, it is common practice to put cards up as bets for the winner to take after a high-stakes duel. This has created a class of students who have bet away their last Carolina Card and rendered themselves effectively dead to this school. Steven Flermburger is one such moron.
“I used to have a pretty solid deck until I challenged Alexis Mimsy, the Blatt Gym Leader. When she whipped out the holographic, limited edition, Student Government Series Alex Harrel card, I knew my ass was grass.”
Steven relied solely on meal plan food and campus housing to survive. He hasn’t been able to eat since the incident and currently resides in the Blossom St. Parking Garage.
University staff has expressed concern over the card game phenomenon. In an emailed statement to students, Chelsea Blarber, head of UofSC’s Carolina Card office, had this to say:
“Battling and betting away your Carolina Card is probably the stupidest thing you could do with it. I honestly don’t think any of you nitwits would last a single day without it.” You use it to eat and sleep here and I literally can’t think of any better incentive to take care of your card than those two things right there.”
However, it seems like the only thing these students hunger for is combat and their home is on the battlefield. Despite the resistance from the school, these kids have gotta catch ’em all.