Go to college, play video. E-sports is a big ten.
On a line of computers, five Ohio state university students watched the screen intently as the keyboard and mouse clicked. They keep in shape – you can say that.
Like 11 other universities, Ohio state is one of the world’s most popular e-sports leagues. The partnership between the country’s oldest company and Riot Games, a maker of legends, shows that e-sports have become mainstream.
So far, Ohio state has a score of 2 to 0, but for their school, there’s a lot more to prove.
Although the Tuesday night game was a free-for-all, the team’s participation was not bad. The coach, the manager, and a small group of IT people watched the 52-inch TV set on the table.
“Varus is rising! One player said his headphones. “Hit this one,” another call, sending out a teammate’s signal.
In a competitive alliance game, two teams of five meet on a standard battlefield, trying to destroy each other’s bases first. Each player controls a “champion”, a fantasy figure with a specific ability and personality.
The league of legends currently holds 134 different titles and keeps changing their stats. Nicolas Re, a senior coach and team manager in Ohio, said it made the game difficult to perfect.
“It’s about mastering a champion and playing thousands of games on them,” ray said.
‘investing can also bring players back, not other e-sports,’ says Connor McDougall, who leads Michigan state university.
He said: “it took me a long time to get good grades, so I can never change another game.
Ohio has three hours of practice three times a week, and it takes about 40 minutes per game. The university of Michigan has a similar schedule in addition to the weekend games and what players do on their own time, Re says some members have spent more than 3,000 hours playing games.
To compete at home, players need to develop technical skills and reflections. Compare the best players who can be famous to basketball stars.
“Some people know how to throw a free throw, but they may not have a high free-throw percentage,” Re said. “they may only have 10 shots.” “We’re looking for someone who can shoot like nine free throws.”
Still, getting ready for the game requires more than just competition. The Ohio team scrutinized their game videos and broadcast other teams’ games to find out the weaknesses in their formation and to think strategically about their upcoming rivals.
“You need to build strong communication and feedback platforms to work with your team, so the cohesiveness of the team is very strong,” said Riot Games’ Michael Sherman.
“A lot of things are just finding people who aren’t scary,” McDougall said with a laugh.
At the end of the head-to-head final at Riot headquarters in Los Angeles, the Big Ten will live online and help Riot Games keep changing the league’s content. After all, the race doesn’t come from anywhere.
Big Ten Network and Riot Games have invited teams from Michigan and Ohio to launch an invitational tournament at the PAX conference in Boston in April 2016. Ohio won the game 2-1.
Last year, Riot and Big Ten organized an exhibition game between Ohio and Michigan, which attracted thousands of people to Ohio state university. In the past few years, the league has developed a dynamic, competitive university scene in addition to (usually lucrative) professional scenes.
“We want to build sustainability,” Sherman said. “sustainable development means that there needs to be a system that can help grow the space, so it’s not just some good players.
Although there is no other meeting in their league season, but uLoL campus series (including more than 200 other north American university) will have their own a winner, they will face the challenge of the top ten winners.
Although tournament finals or events can result in a crowd outside the station, there is room for growth in the spectator sports league. An ordinary game attracted thousands of people watch online – university of Michigan and indiana, close to 7000 people, the championship is more than 70000 people, is more than ten football match number.
Erin Harvego, vice President of marketing for Big Ten Network, says it’s unfair to take a more sophisticated pastime out of emerging e-sports. The network doesn’t want the match to match immediately.
“It’s a huge space for us,” Harvego said. “I think we’re just exploring it a little bit this year.
Riot and Big Ten say their goals are the same: build an infrastructure, raise awareness, and help schools invest.
Although Riot offered scholarships to the participating Big Ten teams, there was no bonus involved – $5,000 for each of the 72 players involved. Mr. McDougell said it was enough to pay for a semester’s tuition, although some of his team members had trouble explaining the situation to their parents.
“My family, I think they’re just happy for me,” McDougall said. “Obviously they were worried when they were in high school, and I was playing a lot of video games, but it looks like it’s paying off now, so I think they can.
More and more universities have stepped up their offer of rewards.
Robert morris university in Illinois became one of the first countries to offer a lottery scholarship in 2014, and then came second in the national league. The university of lourdes, in northwest Ohio, recently announced its own scholarship.
According to Re, Riot Games didn’t see the college league scene as a stepping stone to professional standards and won’t be quick. McDougall, a computer science major, and Re, a computer science and engineering major, said they appreciated the idea.
“The depth of strategy and understanding is so deep,” Re said. “What makes it a major competitive game, what makes it survive over the years.”
Not everyone can see the league of heroes. Among the top 10 schools, students are still working with convincing sports departments to promote e-sports.
Although two at Ohio state university and the university of Michigan in the top eight uLoL season last year, there is no official support of university, not only are they missing out on money, but also lost opportunities, meetings and parties competition all over the country.
Re said the Ohio state university wanted to win the national championship, and they thought it was the most important thing in their minds, in addition to “a lot of bragging rights.”
“They really want to be a team at that university,” ray said. “For them, it means a lot – more than many people think.”