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The college eSports championships

Photo Courtesy of Blizzard Entertainment

Born with a comic book in one hand and a remote control in the other, Cory DLG is the talent of Conroe's very own Nerd Thug Radio, Sports and Wrestling. Check out the podcast replay of the FM radio show at www.nerdthugradio.com!

This weekend, a first of its kind happened. The Collegiate eSports Championships were combined and held in one place, the George R Brown Convention Center during Comicpalooza. For those who don't understand what that means, there are numerous college programs across America that have gotten into competitive gaming as another scholarship avenue for it's students as well as another great fun thing to get involved with. Most of these games are produced by one major company, Blizzard Entertainment and one major sports broadcaster has gotten heavily involved in the eSports movement, ESPN and this weekend was the two of them working together.

Each of the five games had national events going on starting in January and were eventually down to a total of 22 teams from 20 schools competing in Hearthstone, Overwatch, Starcraft 2, Street Fighter V and Heroes of the Storm.

There were some interesting upsets in some of the events, in the Overwatch event which follows the same scoring and formatting as the Overwatch League Blizzard has created so it's first to 3 match points wins the game, Harrisburg and Utah were equal seeds from opposite sides of the bracket but are vastly different programs. University of Utah has a full eSports program with coaching and school sponsored equipment while Harrisburg is a student funded club that entered the tournament. Another interesting facet of that match was that Utah played a very traditional, what's called tank or camp style where they play the choke points on a map and lay down heavy fire from big slow characters and force the opponent to grind through those killing fields, where as Harrisburg was playing a very unique style. They were specifically running tons of damage inducing, but low health characters that are fast and agile but not built for long protracted grindout battles. It's like if a ninja was fighting a dinosaur, one good hit from the dinosaur and the fights over but maybe the ninja can win, and that's what happened with Harrisburg actually overcoming an early deficit to win the championship.

Starcraft 2 had some interesting moments as well, as this was the only event to feature the fabled and storied UC Berkeley program. They are a legend in the college eSports program as they have long put money and focus into their efforts. Starcraft 2 is a fascinating game to watch happen because there is tons of data to process and decisions to make on the fly, with elite players averaging 350+ interactions/decisions a minute. It's a best of seven series and the matches were great fun to watch and with UC Berkeley pulling out the win.

Hearthstone, Street Fighter V and Heroes of the Storm also lived up to the hype with Georgia Tech winning the Hearthstone championship, RNJIT winning Street Fighter V and Rutgers winning Heroes of the Storm.

ESPN was streaming these events live on twitch but will also package and broadcast the events on ESPN2 May 22nd 6pm central time, so definitely go check that out.

Feel free to check out my digital short story The Wilson House or buy a shirt from Side Hustle Ts where some proceeds help fight cancer or listen to Nerd Thug Radio or support our Patreon Page. Thoughts, complaints, events and comments can be sent to corydlg@gmail.com.

ART BY JESUS RODRIGUEZ

Born with a comic book in one hand and a remote control in the other, Cory DLG is the talent of Conroe's very own Nerd Thug Radio, Sports and Wrestling. Check out the podcast replay of the FM radio show at www.nerdthugradio.com!

Hey Nerds!

We made it, it's the weekend, so get on out there and enjoy yourself!

GOOD DEED OF THE DAY

I don't know how many more ways I can say, eat crawfish, help people, it's a good deal. It's the Light of the Phoenix Charity All You Can Eat Crawfish Boil, and there's stuff for the kids to do too while you grub a dub dub. $25 buys your ticket now but $30 gets you in at the door. This is the kind of thing I live for, doing a good deed and eating a bunch of food as you do it. #NerdsUnite

WHILE YOU'RE OUT

So usually here is where I tell you about some new books this month and remind you to go buy them and get into your local comic book store. We're going to mix it up a little bit this week though; first, of course go see your local comic book shop, I just opened my pull box with The Adventure Begins, but specifically we're just going to talk comics in general. This is a super interesting time for comic books, lots of really talented people working on some great projects, Hickman coming to the X Men, Bendis is at DC and doing big things. Marvel is in the middle of the War of the Realms and DC is telling a big Justice League story and honestly, all of this is crazy exciting. There is always talk that this is the "end" of comic books but honestly, I don't think it is, I think this is an amazing time to be a comic fan and in comic books in general. Find one you love and jump in, they're awesome.

WHAT’S GOING ON WITH KING’S HAWAIIAN BREAD

I don't know if someone suddenly bought stock in King's Hawaiian bread or something but suddenly that stuff is everywhere. Sonic has a delicious chicken club with King's Hawaiian bread and Arby's has a sandwich I haven't tried yet also with King's Hawaiian. Seriously it's great bread, but all of a sudden it seems to be everywhere. Did they just make too much recently? Are restaurants just now figuring out how awesome it is? This is odd to me that everyone is slow to get on the King's Hawaiian train but I guess it's great because the bread is great. Seriously, I love some King's Hawaiian.

GAMER TROUBLES

As news broke that gamer "TFue" was suing his esports team Faze Clan initially public sentiment was against him and actually the owner of the team spoke out and stated that his contract was great and they had only collected $60K of his $300K in earnings. Then the contract leaked and suddenly the owner changed his position to nobody is disputing that his contract is bad, well actually he was disputing that only a few days ago. The contract essentially entitles the team to percentages of earnings they create for the player and that even the player creates for himself which is in violation of California law apparently. In Hollywood everyone tries to get points off of deals so they created an unlicensed agent law where if you aren't an agent you can't do that, well these teams would fall under these parameters which means this case got a whole lot more interesting all of a sudden.

NOT THAT YOU ASKED

I've been having lots of conversations with people about the "golden era" we live in of free media. At Comicpalooza it was a topic of a lot of conversations because it's something we talk about a ton on Nerd Thug Radio and it's something I firmly believe, that over the next ten years the pay walls will all change and the free access to get into all of these industries will be gone and suddenly everyone - content creator and consumer alike - will be a customer of Amazon and iHeart and others. Well I think the sea change is coming sooner and faster than even I originally predicted, I see so much content being generated and so many more high profile people with high profile support coming down to these lower levels that honestly, I'm not sure where the breathing room is for the little guys. I told someone the other day that I honestly wouldn't even make a podcast if I was starting from scratch today. I don't know what I would do, but honestly, it wouldn't be a podcast probably.

I'm going to jump out and wish you guys a great Friday and remind everyone to be kind to each other and try a little harder to have a great day! I'm coming back Monday and we'll be bringing more good times your way. Feel free to check out my digital short story The Wilson House or buy a shirt from Side Hustle Ts where some proceeds help fight cancer or listen to Nerd Thug Radio or support our Patreon Page. Thoughts, complaints, events and comments can be sent to corydlg@gmail.com.

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