Anyone that follows the blog, or knows me, is aware of my ‘healthy’ obsession with Starcraft II lately. I’ve been working to be a better player, a better competitor, and enjoying myself. Learning is fun, and watching high level players that have learned more than myself is more entertaining than I would have guessed. Watching these players, and some of their tournament games has broadened my view on the concept of eSports. I knew gaming has been struggling as a competitive sport here in the United States, and I know it’s crazy popular in South Korea. Upon seeing a recent Google Tech Talk by HD and Painuser; a popular SCII commentator, and amazing Terran player respectively, I believe Starcraft II could push the concept of eSports in the US into the mainstream. Mostly because it’s a very entertaining game to watch. There are all kinds of things going on, and getting just a taste of the depth of strategy involved is like crack. I don’t have much experience with crack, so my analogy may be a bit off, but you can substitute crack with any addictive substance you want and I feel it’s still pretty accurate.
So, what exactly are these eSports I speak of?
If you don’t want to watch the video, here’s my awesome summary. Think of professional sports like Football here in the United States. Players have sponsors, teams, and fans. Audiences come to stadiums to watch, eat, drink, and support their favorite player or team. They may also watch it on TV, or on their computer from the comfort of their own home. The whole experience can either be very relaxing, and entertaining, or intense and nerve racking.
eSports relates to this same experience, but is based around competitive video gaming. Several games have grown enough in popularity that tournaments and rewards are handed out to the victor, but these competitions rarely expand outside that gaming community. Some exceptions are Counter-Strike, Warcraft, and Starcraft, which have been popular eSports titles in the United States. South Korea on the other hand revers their eSports masters, and it has become just as big as any professional sport here in the United States.
So I have thrown together a little survey seeded solely in my own curiosity. It can be found HERE!
Leave some comments in the survey, below, all over the place. It’s really fun typing stuff, and submitting it onto the web tubes.