Seniors Play Water War Game to End Year


Media by Sam Shackelford

Senior Samantha Berger hides in the back of her target’s car, attempting to spray her target with a water gun to eliminate her. Berger succeeded in eliminating her target on Thursday, April 27.

On an otherwise normal Friday night in late April or early May, it is not uncommon to see seniors running around West County armed with water guns and pool floaties and goggles. 

But this unusual attire isn’t a fashion statement — it’s all part of the Class of 2023’s Senior Assassin game.

Senior Nia Ovcharova is in charge of organizing Senior Assassin. She took some ideas from the Class of 2022’s game, but also added her own twist to the rules. Ovcharova assigned targets, runs the Instagram and makes sure everyone participating adheres to the rules.

“It was tedious to organize,” Ovcharova said. “At times it was frustrating.”

Eventually, it all came together, and the game commenced on Sunday, April 23. 

The rules are simple: each player gets a target, who they have to eliminate by shooting with a water gun or spray bottle by the next deadline. For the first round, the deadline was 11:59 p.m. on Saturday, April 29.

From my perspective, I really just enjoy running it. I enjoy watching players get their targets.

— Nia Ovcharova

Assassins also have to record footage of themselves spraying their target, which is posted on Instagram for other participants to see who has been eliminated. Additionally, there is a spreadsheet that can be accessed through Instagram that shows whether each player is “active” or “eliminated.”

If players are wearing goggles or pool floaties, they are immune from being eliminated. If the assassin shoots a person wearing either of these items, the assassin is out.

All participants are also put into a Life360 Circle, which allows assassins to see their target’s location.

“From my perspective, I really just enjoy running it,” Ovcharova said. “I enjoy watching players get their targets.”

Samantha Berger, senior, stealthily hid in her friend’s garage with a water gun on Thursday, April 27, in an attempt to eliminate her from the game.

She succeeded. After spraying her friend with the water gun, Berger is able to move onto the next round.

“I felt excited and relieved that I got her before the deadline,” Berger said. “Now I’m not stressed.”

Berger said she could make it all the way to the final round with the assistance of her friends who have already been eliminated. But for now, she is anticipating round two.

With AP tests around the corner and then Prom, Senior Assassin’s is something to take my mind off all that stress

— Nate McKay

“I enjoy playing Senior Assassin because it brings together some people in our grade that wouldn’t normally do things together,” Berger said.

Nathan McKay, senior, has already been eliminated from the first round, but not because he was sprayed with a water gun. He was dismissed from the game on Tuesday, April 25, because he left his phone at home while he went on an attempt to get his target. 

While the rules do not explicitly state that McKay’s actions were in the wrong, they do say pausing a player’s location in the Life360 Circle will result in elimination. 

“I was kind of unhappy with how I was eliminated,” McKay said.

Fortunately for McKay, everyone who was eliminated in the first round before Wednesday, April 26, was put in a bracket called “the eliminated.” Players in this bracket are not assigned specific targets, and the three players who have sprayed the most people with their water guns within “the eliminated” group by 9 p.m. on Wednesday, May 3, will get to enter back into round two.

But if players in the “eliminated” bracket get sprayed by someone else in the bracket, they are permanently eliminated from Senior Assassin. McKay has eliminated three other players in this group so far.

While the game seems intense, McKay said it is actually a fun way to end senior year.

With AP tests around the corner and then Prom, Senior Assassin’s is something to take my mind off all that stress,” he said.