There is a famous excuse that has been used time and again at schools across the country when students forgot to do their homework, it goes something like this:
“THE DOG ATE MY HOMEWORK!”
While I can’t vouch for how often teachers buy that excuse, I can vouch for rumors that google has brought that excuse into the 21st century. Yes! “Zerg rush” is essentially your “free pass” to tell the teacher “google ate your homework search results”.
There is little doubt that google as a company has a very liberating and fun office environment to work in.
Testimonials given by employees to Forbes magazine would make any prospective employee drool over the opportunity to get hired at the world’s leading tech giant, not for a paycheck but the feeling of belonging to an active supportive community.
The perks listed by smallbiztrends.com alone make it a chance only a fool would pass up.
Google’s strong office community does come at a price though. Where there is a group of fast friends hanging out there is bound to be some horseplay. Google is such a fun company does have its share of class clowns.
Programmers at google have a tradition of pranking one another with clever programs hidden within the Google search engine called “Easter Eggs”.
Normal Google users were never meant to find these Easter Eggs as they were meant for fellow colleagues to make them confused, and amused and have a laugh about it later.
But by sheer chance, Easter Eggs fell into the lap everyday users who were bewildered at these events at first but soon grew curious and started flocking to the search engine in hopes of finding more fun little tidbits hidden within the codes of the search engine.
It is natural to assume that a company with a stellar reputation to uphold would not find such shenanigans by their employees tolerable much less amusing. But “Google” being GOOGLE decided to unleash these rogue pieces of codes into the world for the masses to hunt or discover at their leisure.
The outcome may have just been an accidental stroke of brilliance on the part of google as it made their search engine swarmed by frenzied users Every time someone stumbled upon one of these codes and declared it to the world.
So what is “Zerg rush”? To explain that I would have to go back to 1998 when a seemingly unknown game developer “Blizzard Entertainment” now a subsidiary of Game Publisher “Activision” released a real-time strategy game by the name of “Star-Craft”.
From its humble beginnings, this game was propelled to meteoric fame by the emerging online gaming community in the Far-East most Notably South Korea where gamers had become addicted to its captivating graphics and flawless game mechanics.
What truly drew people to this game including myself was the combat system that allowed players to take command of one of three unique species with their own strengths and weaknesses.
The goal was to build an army of various specialized units and then proceed to decimate the enemy player’s army through various military field tactics.
Among the three species in the game was one that was most notably every Star-Craft fan’s favorite “The Zerg”. The zergs in the game represented as parasitic organisms that were far weaker in durability compared to the other two species.
What endeared this particular species to the hardcore players was its ability to multiply in number, faster than the other two species, very much like cockroaches! Skilled players, as well as cheaters, took advantage of this unique Zerg species characteristic to quickly build a massive army of weak yet fast-moving swarms of zerg units then overwhelm the opponent’s entire military base with the swarm of Zergs attacking all at once and laying waste to everything.
The term “Zerg Rush” as many who have read so far surmised was coined for this effective battle strategy that could not be countered by most casual Star-Craft players. Just like the game became a global phenomenon, so did any popular references related to it.
The phrase “Zerg Rush” was first used during an online Star-Craft match when a player responded on the chat to a surprise Zerg attack by exclaiming “OMG ZERG RUSH”, and the rest is history!
This phrase went on to become a viral meme on the internet social sites for a very long time. Even becoming an official online slang phrase defined in urban dictionaries as “overwhelming an opponent with sheer numbers”.
In April of 2012, Google published the “Zerg Rush” Easter egg as an homage to the famous meme and the cult-classic game. The Easter egg activates when a user types in zerg rush on the google search bar and hovers the mouse cursor over the first search result.
Once Easter egg activates the screen on the browser is swarmed with a multitude of the letter “O” that erase everything in their path occasionally stopping to drain a green health bar that appears at random. Users can interact with the Easter egg by clicking on the moving O’s to eliminate them.
But as the name of the Easter egg suggests users will eventually get overwhelmed and the O’s will clear the screen and spell out “GG”, another online slang abbreviation for “Good Game”.
Google has made many more Easter eggs since “Zerg Rush” that are equally amusing to loyal customers, essentially making this another part of Google culture that they share with the world. I certainly feel entertained by Google’s antics, if nothing else I can use this Easter egg as proof of google eating my assignments.