Town Square

Any parents hear about the "Assassin game"?

Original post made by Anne on Apr 23, 2009

I've been hearing about a game that the area high school seniors "play" as a tradition. You "pay to participate" and you get "assigned someone to kill" with a nerf gun. They have certain "rules" to play by, but basically they have to stalk and kill their opponent. The last man "alive" wins the pot of money (over $1,200 I hear). Is any other parent horrified by this distasteful game? Or am I just an old fogey?


Posted by Been there, done that, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 23, 2009 at 6:44 pm

This game has been around forever, i played it in high school in the 80's. It's fun and harmless, and you get to meet new people. But I don't remember a pot, I think we just played for fun. But then again, I didn't win!

Posted by Brandon, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 23, 2009 at 6:48 pm

Sounds like a fun game to me...

Posted by unclehomerr.., a resident of Downtown
on Apr 23, 2009 at 7:04 pm

Learning survival skills and making a buck at the same time. Can I play too???


Posted by mom of 3, a resident of Pleasanton Valley
on Apr 23, 2009 at 7:46 pm

As a game, it sounds horrible, but all 3 of my children had a blast at it. Girls, as well as guys participated. They would find out where their target would be, plot to get him (or her) and then, while busy plotting and not looking, got "assinated" themselves. I never heard of any harm coming from it - just a lot of fun.

Posted by bobbi, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 23, 2009 at 8:18 pm

no different that going to play paint ball..... other than getting the stash of cash if you are the winner! I suppose this would hurt less too...

Posted by good times, a resident of Vineyard Avenue
on Apr 23, 2009 at 9:09 pm

I played it in the 90's in high school, it was a blast and the parents were supportive of it too, it's just for fun.

Posted by Kids these days!, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 23, 2009 at 9:32 pm

I definitely understand OP's perspective that this game seems to "condone" violence. BUT, if it is a game for Seniors, well, it should also be considered that they can go fight for our country within days of graduating from high school. I think parents need to relax, but be sure they are communicating with their own kids about who else will be there, and what to consider if there is behavior that is "crossing the line" (escalating, more violence, etc)to keep the kids safe...

That said, let them enjoy this last bit of "juvenile" a couple noted above, it is just fun (think of all the younger kids fun, like GI Joe, water guns, cowboys and indians, etc, etc.). When I was in high school we used to go ice-blocking...buying a solid block of ice at 7-11 and then go sneaking into golf courses or parks with grassy hills and race down. It was fun to get chased by security in golf carts and you could leave the evidence because it just melted!! :)

You are not an old fogey...just a parent doing their job...TO WORRY! :)

Posted by AV, a resident of Amador Valley High School
on Apr 23, 2009 at 9:34 pm

Let's see - Amador parents don't want gambling at grad night - don't want students to play gambling. We use a "non-school" event to stop the tradition. Now we have students playing assassin away from school - and this is okay. Play gambling for prizes is a problem, but play killing for money is fine. Not real logical are we. What a fine example we are. Now let's see if we will actually say no to our own kids rather than have someone else do it. This one is not on the school; it is on us.

Posted by Big Poppa, a resident of Del Prado
on Apr 24, 2009 at 3:42 am

As a real asassain I am appalled at this behavior. You people think it's a game to actually kill a human being. To see the life slowly disappear from a persons eyes after you put a knife in them or their realization that they are about to die as they desparately thrash their entire body trying to get away. Don't let your children become what I have become. I kill prefessionally for large sums of money and I live amongst you with my family. Yes I'm just like you. I take my kids to school, I even volunteer in their classes. So be careful the next time you flip someone off or give that man thecstink eye because it just might be me.

Posted by Timothy T, a resident of Downtown
on Apr 24, 2009 at 8:37 am

Haven't you seen the Anthony Edwards move "Gotcha" from the 80's! This could lead to international intrigue and spying! Stop this game now!


Posted by A Mom, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 24, 2009 at 8:40 am

Honestly...this game has been played since the 80's.....are we so rigid now that games and interaction are bad? It is fun and innocent. There are so many things they could be doing that are WORSE! Give them a break!

Posted by A, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 24, 2009 at 8:41 am

So glad to hear this is still around! It was a blast, about a hundred of us played 10 years ago when I was a senior. The guy that had me still hasn't gotten me!

Big Poppa, no one is making a mockery of your career, keep doing what you do ;)

Posted by Mom of Three, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 24, 2009 at 8:44 am

All three of my children played this game and really enjoyed it. We had many great laughs at the dinner table when they would share the stories of their quests.

I did not like the idea of this game when my first son played it, but I am glad I relented and let them participate.

Posted by Baddabing, a resident of Livermore
on Apr 24, 2009 at 8:45 am

They play a version of this in the Oakland schools, but they don't use Nerf guns.

Posted by Terri, a resident of Jensen Tract
on Apr 24, 2009 at 8:48 am

All of my kids have played this game. Each time I worry about them getting in trouble because of our overreactive community. I am glad others can put it into perspective as a game, but I still worry.

Posted by Cherry, a resident of Ruby Hill
on Apr 24, 2009 at 9:17 am

This is not a school sponsored game and the kids do not play on campus or at any school functions or any places of business. It is played with a silly nerf spongy dart and it's not worth getting all bent out of shape about!

Posted by You wish, a resident of Del Prado
on Apr 24, 2009 at 10:23 am

Someone has been watching too many movies(Big Poppa). A real asassian would never post what they do on a tracable source like a forum from pleasanton Weekly. By the way I am flipping you off and giving you the stink eye right now.

Posted by Dean, a resident of Vineyard Hills
on Apr 24, 2009 at 10:27 am

My son recently played this game. He had a great time, strategized with friends, met new people, and laughed a lot! Good clean fun...I'm all for it. The rules kept the game out of cars, homes, work, school...nice work.

Have fun...

Posted by AVHS Dad, a resident of Stoneridge Park
on Apr 24, 2009 at 10:32 am

AVHS Dad is a registered user.

I knew people that played this in the 70's in college. One kid climbed out a 5th floor dorm window to "shoot" his victim. At the worst it sounds kind of distracting. However, I think a $1,200 pot is too much for a kid's game.

@ Big Poppa

What's an Asassain?

*runs to hide*

Posted by Greg, a resident of Foothill Knolls
on Apr 24, 2009 at 10:42 am

Pleasanton PD hates this game. I think it is a fun, time honored tradition........with potential to get out of control. I think the PPD should sponsor an alternative. Students have been asking the PPD to do so for years.

Posted by AVHS Parent, a resident of Mohr Park
on Apr 24, 2009 at 10:55 am

We know about it. We heard it from our HS Senior. Let them have fun as long as it doesn't get out of hand. PPD shouldn't get bent out shape except they should maintain their cool if they see something. As for the prize, perhaps they should have 1st, 2nd and 3rd place.

Posted by Da Mama, a resident of Ruby Hill
on Apr 24, 2009 at 11:05 am

When I first heard the name "Assassin" I was uneasy. But after my daughter participated, I realized it was completely harmless. It's a nerf gun, for Pete's sake! Call it something else and let the kids have fun. Granted, it is distracting, but it's their senior year. Let them enjoy this time of their life.

Posted by Toni-parent and teacher, a resident of Amador Valley High School
on Apr 24, 2009 at 11:32 am

To our original poster-Anne:
Why do you ask? Was your child involved and had a negative experience? This is a harmless game that our Seniors take part in, no school involvement and all in good fun. The nerf guns are less violent than video games...

Posted by bel, a resident of Val Vista
on Apr 24, 2009 at 11:45 am

Rather kids go out shooting foam darts at each other than other crap they could be doing (like say, drinking, vandalizing or worse)

Posted by Parent of Two, a resident of Val Vista
on Apr 24, 2009 at 12:25 pm

Parent of Two is a registered user.

Big Poppa, I'd ask how much you charge, but the sense-of-humor-impaired might not approve of the joke.

Posted by Big Poppa, a resident of Del Prado
on Apr 24, 2009 at 1:03 pm

#1 - I'm using untracable technology
#2 - You can never watch to many movies
#3 - which eye are you giving me the stink eye with because it does matter.
#4 - You're not being Christian like if you're flipping me off. Repent you sinner.
#5 - Because of the economy business is done 75% do I'm waiting for my portion of the So called stimulas package from our Dear Leader.
#6 - Assassins need love too can someone give me a hug? I'll be nice.

Thank you for your cooperation during these tough times.

Posted by Past Amador Parent, a resident of Amador Valley High School
on Apr 24, 2009 at 1:14 pm

Both my girls were involved in playing this game and had a blast. Didn't hurt anyone, themselves or anyone's property. Sure beats them hanging out somewhere where parents condone drinking!

Posted by Pleasanton High School Grad, a resident of Harvest Park Middle School
on Apr 24, 2009 at 1:48 pm

we played this 20 years ago too---it was a great time! I didn't win either and I am still upset how I made an easy target for my assassin!! One of the rules was that you can't take out anyone during school or within the school boundaries------so administrators shouldn't have to worry about it--

Posted by You wish, a resident of Del Prado
on Apr 24, 2009 at 2:24 pm

Hey Big poppa,

#1 nothing is truly untraceable to big brother

#2 I am giving the stink eye with my left eye (which is the one that matters)

#3 never said I was Christian. (rather live like a sinner than die like a saint)

#4 I'll hug you.....(right around the neck with both hands)

LOL...have a good weekend and I will see you at the next daddy and me day!

Posted by FHS Grad, a resident of Pleasanton Valley
on Apr 24, 2009 at 3:58 pm

Anne- No need to worry about this game. I played it in the 90s while at Foothill and my friends and I still laugh at the memories of this game. I had older siblings play it when they were at FHS in the 80s. Nothing better than wasting hours waiting in someone's bushes in front of their house to shoot them with the plastic disc guns! Let your kids enjoy a great tradition!

Posted by AH, a resident of Del Prado
on Apr 24, 2009 at 5:38 pm

i think this is a pretty good game

Posted by More!!, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 25, 2009 at 9:46 am

Big Poppa and You Wish

C'mon...don't have fans!!!

Please??? :)

Posted by Patricia, a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Apr 25, 2009 at 3:04 pm

I get a kick out of everyone saying they played this five and ten years ago . . . like you young-uns invented it. My brothers and I played this WAY back. Except we didn't have nerf guns. Don't think they were invented yet. Sometimes we'd use over-ripe tomatos which were WAY jucier than your new-fangled paint ball guns. And sometime we'd use corn stalks with clods of dirt still attached as spears. Either way the neighborhood moms complained about it, but I recall it was more about laundry stains and 'putting an eye out' than about encouraging us to hunt and kill people. Probably because they played the same kinds of games as kids -- cops and robbers, cowboys & indians, army games, etc.

Posted by john Flack, a resident of Stoneridge
on Apr 25, 2009 at 5:51 pm

It's discouraged by the Amador HS staff, so the kids don't do anything on campus or at school functions. It doesn't fool the teachers, but they have named it "swimming" as in "Are you swimming?' as code for playing Assassin.

There is another game the high schoolers have played for years, politically incorrectly named "Border Patrol" Played at night the ids try to get from one house, maybe in Birdland to another in the Gates without being caught by the prowling BP (kids with cars.) Its genuinely fun, but I do worry about running around the streets at night and occasionally scaring a neighbor by jumping out f a bush and running.



Posted by Gen, a resident of Pleasanton Valley
on Apr 25, 2009 at 6:18 pm

Im just impressd that the kids can organize this and pull it off year after year! Lots of fun =)

Posted by Big Poppa, a resident of Del Prado
on Apr 26, 2009 at 3:00 am

[Post removed due to disrespectful comment or offensive language]

Posted by Tanner, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 28, 2009 at 11:29 pm

Tanner is a registered user.

Senioritis is setting in... perfect intro class for Las Positas!

Posted by Anonymous, a resident of Amador Valley High School
on Apr 30, 2009 at 11:47 pm

All of these parents who get bent out of shape because of a game like assassin or gambling at senior breakfast and grad night are ridiculous! Many of you know that when you were in high school you played these games and even had gambling at senior breakfast and grad night. Now that some of the parents don't want their kids to participate it takes the fun out of it for everyone else. Just because you try and take things away it gives your kids an even bigger opportunity to get into trouble by other means. Look at what's going on around you and ask yourself if a silly little game or a little fun "gambling" at senior breakfast and grad night is really harming you or your kids in the long run.

Posted by Sean's sweethearts, a resident of Castlewood
on Jan 27, 2010 at 10:20 am

This is a harmless game of stalking. It's kids having good, clean, fun. We are all getting to know each other and bond as a class. Each new target, all kids are given a chance to learn more about another student they did not know anything about before. Nobody has gotten hurt, more than they would in say a football practice or soccer team. Gambling is not the point of the game, it's simply a prize, similar to entering a contest or working and getting paid. What is the big deal? They are not real guns...they are foam toys...Instead of going out an partying, teens are staying home with their families to avoid "assassination." This game is harmless......