This year, ENS held its annual freshmen orientation camp from the 11th to the 13th of July. The camp was centered around the theme : “Battle Royale”, and both freshmen and seniors alike were treated to a unique 3-day, 2-night experience, which captured entertaining elements from the Japanese movie, which inspired the selfsame theme.
The Japanese movie can be summarised in a single sentence:
42 students- isolated in an island, who are forced to kill each other until there is only one survivor left.
As such, incorporating the concept of a “battle” from the movie , the four OGs (Orientation Groups) were likewise forced to “fight” at station games, competing for supremacy in the form of game points and power-ups. The accumulation of points and power-up tokens would ultimately determine a single winner. Each day had different power ups, which was supposed to symbolise the different weapons allocated to the different students.
Of course, the OGs were named in accordance with the theme- Kamikaze, Bankai, Ninja, and Yakuza!
Day 1- registration, station games, and the pairing of SP (Secret-Pal) couples
One memorable aspect of the station games involved our very own NUS central library, with the librarians specially preparing a “missing-person mystery” for our freshmen to solve, aimed at familiarising them with our online and literary resources.
At night, the freshmen were paired into couples, and in some cases, triplets- (as the demand for male freshmen exceeded supply for male freshmen, with regards to the allocation of couples), and they were treated to a night “mystery forest/graveyard walk” in their respective pairs/triplets. Snakes (toys), Rain (water from water guns) Rustling branches (operated by the councilors) and wild animals (the seniors) were several “obstacles” encountered by the freshmen as they walked through the “forest” to get to their final destination. After all the excitement, everyone went to bed in anticipation for the next day.
Day 2- Amazing Race, Beach Day and SP games
The second day started off officially at the end of the sponsorship talks, when the Publicity Head put on an impromptu skit with several of the other OGLS (Orientation Group Leaders). The OGs were soon sent off on an amazing race taking place around Haw Par Villa, with each OG finding hidden clues, doing group actions, and taking photographs together. This concluded at Sentosa’s Palawan Beach, the location of our Beach games.
The sand, the sun, the sea- elements needed for a perfect Summer day-, was present in full force as each OG shuffled between stations, playing games to earn points and power-ups. The freshmen played versions of volley-ball, dog-and-bone, and took part in a mini obstacle course, which culminated in a mass water bomb battle. Chaos reigned supreme as the Organising Committee was pitted against the four OGs, with water bombs flying everywhere. There was no official winner (of this battle), but good memories- as the entire Camp sang the camp song together, swaying in tune to the music at the final segment.
At night, the freshmen were treated to a round of SP games, as they were blindfolded in their respective pairs/triplets. Facilitators walked among them, giving instructions as they were treated to a variety of exciting games- identifying “mystery sauces” by taste, dancing to music, styling each other’s hair, drawing each other’s portrait, and answering questions posed to each other while armed with water guns.
Day 3- Checking out, West Coast Park Games, SP revelation
The last day started off on a rather hectic note, as the freshmen were shuttled off to West Coast Park immediately after checking out from Kent Ridge Hall. Despite the activities of the previous two days, the games planned were comparatively more demanding, ranging from a 45-minute game of Frisbee, Football (where the freshmen were divided similarly to the formation found in table soccer, with each trio/quadruplet holding a pole behind their backs, and forced to move in unison), to an extended game of tag. The highlight- the Battle Royale Cup finale, where Kamikaze and Bankai fought it out in a game of Captain’s Ball, which eventually became a melee of sorts.
As it was the last day, lunch was a scrumptious buffet spread, with the cold drinks served as a thirst quencher for many tired and hot freshmen.
The day culminated with the SP revelation- as each pair/trio took off their blindfolds, and were given quality time to interact, surrounded by lush greenery, the sweet sounds of the waves, a cool breeze (considering that It was in the late afternoon).. and one another. It was rather heartening to see each couple/triplet talking to each other earnestly, despite the short span of three days. Hopefully, long-lasting friendships were formed.