Utne Blogs > Arts and Culture

Color Wars: the Internet’s Summer Camp

by Jake Mohan 


Tags: arts, creativity, games, photography, developers, contests,

Inspired by the elaborate competitions between color-coded teams at summer camps, Color Wars is a diverting repository of ingenious games and artistic challenges created by web developers Ze Frank and Erik Kastner. “It’s just like summer camp,” the site’s banner reads, “but not really.”

Either way, Color Wars appeals to the playful, creative preadolescent we hope isn’t buried too far inside all of us. Among other curiosities, there’s an audio library documenting a nerd rap battle, the results of a 600-person bingo game played “live inside of Twitter,” and a reverse-caption contest where contributors stage photos to accompany a predetermined caption.

The site closed the first round of games in May, but its wild success (nearly three million page views) all but ensures another round soon. My personal favorite category is Young Me Now Me, where contributors recreate childhood photos of themselves:

ymnm

Even though the competition is over, this is such a good rainy-day activity that I might still do a Young Me Now Me of my own the next time I’m bored and want to indulge my inner summer camper.

Image by Paul Downey, licensed by Creative Commons.