Living In The Future: Computer Games Are Sports

Today I was once again struck by the thought “I am living in the future. This is Awesome.”

The evidence this time was that computer games are sports. They have professional players. This isn’t new, but I came across some reminders today, courtesy of the Internet.

First up, a StarCraft match in South Korea. Check out the crowd. There are hundreds of people watching this. I’m not aware of this happening in Australia, but we only have 20 million odd people, and it’s a big country. We don’t have this many people show up for a game of basketball. StarCraft is a big deal in South Korea. A computer game is a spectator sport! How cool is that?!

Second, an epic fight in StreetFighter II. My approach to these sorts of games is to mash buttons wildly in the hope that something might work. I have no skill, or finesse, unlike these players. The final round is what a truly skilled player can achieve. The person playing Ken manages to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat with some really tricky moves. Parrying is hard work. Blocking wouldn’t have worked, because you still take some damage, but parrying means you don’t take any damage. It’s really hard, though, because you have to get the timing just right. The atmosphere in that room at the end must have been epic.

Now I want to break out my collector’s edition of Red Alert 2 and enjoy some retro-gaming joy. I wonder if it’ll run ok under VMware?

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