Skip to main content

Behind the Controller: Alex Orona

How long have you been involved in Extra Life/Extra Life Chicago?

5 Years

What is your lifetime total fundraised?


What is your favorite game/favorite type of game and why?

When we begin, we start at midnight and do four hours of scary games. It keeps you on your toes. Also, party games, games that get us yelling or competing are a ton of fun.

How did you find out about Extra Life?

From a video game website, they would do 72 hours in rotating shifts and it was something I always looked forward to. They also had an open team for their community to join and I had toyed with the idea but one year I finally did it.

What does Game Day look like for you?

Oof, a lot of prep honestly. I try to have a pretty heavy setup with 3 cameras in the living room and two mics on the coffee table. This year I added a part of the room strictly for a green screen and that was pretty fun. Then during the actual game day, it’s a lot of Redbull and water, with tons of snacks, candy, and finger foods in between. As far as gaming, we have specific segments, from Spooky nighttime scares, dating simulator hour, indie game showcase and finishing with Just dance close out. It keeps us fresh but also makes it, so we have very little downtime for game shuffling when it’s scheduled like that.

Tell us about your podcast!

Well, the first year I started, I did it by myself. People would visit me at my house, but I was the sole person doing the full 24 hours. Throughout the stream though, 3 friends of mine pretty much stayed up and watched the stream and were commenting the entire way. These were my best college and grade school friends and it led to us starting a podcast together. Now, we’ve been doing the podcast for four years, we’re part of NPR of Illinois, we host panels at conventions and do a lot of games media coverage, all because of Extra Life. The Extra Life event is still a pivotal event in our year. We start planning in August for the November stream and do a lot of work together to raise money, put together a good show and brainstorm new ideas. It’s really advanced our friendships and created something bigger in all our lives.


Podcast: and all podcast services





Anything else that you’d like to share!

Extra life is such a special event. It means a lot to every one of us, now our families are involved. All our spouses are friends and are included in the event. Our parents are chatting on the twitch stream, it’s really something we’re all proud of and love to be a part of.