E-Sports are a Big Deal: An Op/Ed

Ryan Fredrick, Reporter

Sitting down and playing video-games on the computer may not be what is pictured when thinking of “traditional” sports. However, with the intense competition and immense talent that players have on stage, Electronic Sports should be considered as a sport. 

It may not seem like the most athletic activity, but the metaphorical chess game and raw talent make E-Sports viable and acceptable. After all, football is not just athletic men ramming into each other – it takes planning, teamwork and strategy to win. 

The first video game competition can be traced back to October 19, 1972, at Stanford University’s Artificial Intelligence Laboratory in which about two dozen students competed playing Spacewar, according to the Sports Journal. 

More recently, “Overwatch” has taken the competitive gaming scene by storm with its six versus six tactical shooting mechanics. The teams have to change their team composition to counter the enemy team, they have to predict where the enemy is going to be and what they will do, and they have to have raw mechanical talent at the game to be able to make it into Overwatch League, the competitive “Overwatch” league. 

Nearly 1 million people tuned in to the Stage 1 finale of the Overwatch League, according to Twitch. The teams consist of coaches and managers who help the players, there are analysts who predict the outcome of games, each game has two announcers who commentate over the games, and each game has a full audience. 

It is sufficient to say that competitive gaming is no small deal. And with a 1 million dollar prize pool for the “Overwatch” finals and recently a 3 million dollar prize for the best “Fortnite” player in the world, E-Sports should not be taken lightly, and recently it has gained a lot of traction.