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My new hero photo
My new hero

Mark Cuban: League of Legends is 'a real sport'

If anyone knows sports, it's him
Nov 22
// Jed Whitaker
If you're like me, you know the name and face of Mark Cuban, but you probably don't know a whole lot about him. I put on my detective coat and hat and did some digging (read: Wikipedia) and found that he is a businessman...
MMO PvP photo

Blade & Soul opens $35,000 world championship to the West

Open to an Evo appearance, too
Nov 19
// Steven Hansen
As announced earlier, Blade & Soul has a firm January 19, 2016 release date for North America and Europe, several years after being promised for release in those territories. Well, NC Soft wants to make it up to you. To s...
Halo 5 photo
Halo 5

Halo 5's World Championship starts early next month, prize continues to grow

REQ packs payin' off
Nov 19
// Brett Makedonski
The best of the best Halo 5 players face off against each other in March 2016 at the Halo World Championship. Getting there is a long and arduous process though, and the road starts on December 6. That's when ladder...

I wanted to be The Wizard

Oct 31 // Nic Rowen
Anyone else remember the movie The Wizard? You know, that piece of shameless Nintendo product placement released to the public under the guise of entertainment? The film where we learned to “love the glove?” Well I do. Frankly, it was a real piece of shit of a movie, but I saw at an impressionable time and it will always hold a small special place in my heart. The Wizard was a weird movie. It was a cynical exercise in co-marketing that waffled between cheesy narm and uncomfortable self-seriousness. It told the story of a traumatized autistic child but also featured a pubescent Fred Savage uncomfortably flirting with some poor 13-year-old girl.  At the time though, the only message I took away from The Wizard was about being wicked sick at video games. About being so unbelievably good that people would stand up and cheer when they saw you stomp on a goomba, that they would lose their shit when you set a record lap in Radmobile. That the solution to fixing everything wrong with your life was as simple as finding the the warp whistle. I was in love with the idea. I was never a cool kid, never popular. Even in the context of our lame-ass church youth group, I was pretty low on the old totem pole. But with this game competition I knew I’d been given a golden opportunity. I was good at games, way better than anyone else I knew. While the details about the competition were a little sketchy, the one thing they were sure of was that it would culminate with a big screen performance projected on the theater screen in the camp’s main auditorium (just like the end of The Wizard!) and the winning group would receive a brand new Sega Genesis console. This was my chance stand out and impress everyone. To win a prize for our group and be a big shot. To show them who I really was. And for better or worse, I did. I remember being so thrilled the morning of the competition. The tournament had a weird structure. There would be some preliminary games played during the afternoon to whittle down the herd a bit (which for the life of me I can’t remember) and for the main event that evening to determine a winner, we’d be playing Sonic the mother fucking Hedgehog. The fools were playing right into my hands. It was like it was meant to be. Sonic was practically my best friend. I was a fucking EXPERT at Sonic. In fact, I’d already won a small competition at a local video store years ago (a story I blogged about back in the day) playing Sonic. A little piece of trivia I decided to slyly keep to myself that whole afternoon, only sharing it with a few members of my group. I let them know that so long as we made it to the finals we were good. A few years before this, I pretty much spent a summer of my young life playing Sonic 1. It was the only game we had for the Genesis at the time and rentals for the system were scarce in my area, so I just ended up replaying it over and over again. My obsessive knowledge of the Green Hill Zone had served me before, and it looked like it was set to pay off again.   That evening we slowly filled the auditorium/theater room. The councilors, bless them, had done a really great job of making it a cool event for the kids. They’d wired up a system to play on a small monitor at the back of the room while the action was projected across a surprisingly professional movie screen for the spectators. They were even handing out bags of popcorn. As an uber-geeky 11-year-old who practically worshiped games, seeing the Sonic title screen displayed 30 feet wide and hearing the familiar music piped through a theater sound system was practically a religious experience (I mean, probably not the one the councilors intended, but still). They'd rigged up some kind of scoring mechanism that rewarded both time and points. Each group would pick someone to play for them and it was up to that kid to set as high a score as possible. Truth be told, I ignored them shortly into the whole explanation because I knew that in Sonic, time and points were the same thing. The person who finished the level the fastest and cleanest would always outscore everyone else, regardless of how many robots they popped or rings they collected. In fact, it seemed almost misleading to even separate the ideas (not that I was going to tell the other kids that). We were slated to be the third group up to bat. The way the competition was set up one member of each youth group would represent their little tribe for this final confrontation, and of course I was the designated hitter. I'd talked up my Sonic skills and knew I was the one to do it, but I'd be lying if I didn't admit to a little last minute doubt, some panic. I mean, it had already been a few years since I was really into Sonic, what if I was rusty? What if I choked? This whole thing could backfire. As soon as I saw the first two teams take their turn, I knew how mistaken such doubts were. Please know that I’m not trying to brag when I tell you how badly I beat the other kids. I’m not trying to hold up my skill at Sonic when I was 11 years old as some kind of point of pride. It is just the plain fact that I annihilated the other kids as soon as it was my turn. In whatever block of time they gave each of us to rack up points, I made it all the way to Robotnik, killed him, and started on the next zone before they told me to stop. None of the other kids made it that far -- some of them didn’t even clear the first stage. The worst part about it? I wasn’t even all that happy with my performance. I knew that if I had practiced I could have done A LOT better (#humblebrag before it was cool). You have to understand, the other kids were not “gamers” like I was. They were there to play around, see the hedgehog jump over the spikes and collect a few rings. For them, the definition of being good at the game was “not dying too much”. At the height of my Sonic obsession, I was measuring success by milliseconds. It was straight up rhino versus baby stuff. Shockingly, most of the kids weren’t exactly stoked by my performance. Instead of the cheers I expected, there was a decidedly uncomfortable atmosphere. A few scattered (begrudging) applause here and there amidst a whole lot of murmuring. Even the kids from my own youth group were kind of quiet. They were excited to win of course, but they took the temperature of the room and knew it probably wasn’t the best time to bust out in jumping jacks. I saw a couple of the adults running the event talking to each other. I got the distinct impression they were talking about me, like this was a problem. Like they thought I cheated somehow -- if not in actuality, at least in the spirit of the competition. I was a little 11-year-old ball of indignity, utterly galled at the injustice of it. Nobody thought it was cheating earlier in the day during the Shirts and Skins basketball match (FYI, I was a Shirt by insistence) when the kids that played youth league basketball scored easy rebound after easy rebound on me. Why should they have? The basketball kids put in the work, practiced, and were (way) better at basketball than me. But when I got a chance to take them on in the one weird arena where I excelled, suddenly it was somehow a trick? They were acting like I conned them when really I was just incredibly over-specialized at a game they were unlucky enough to turn into a competition (and yeah, I could have probably stood to branch out a bit more with my hobbies, but shut up). In the end, our group was declared the winner. I mean, what were they going to do, say my turn didn’t count? Much to my disappointment, there was no parade. The competition just kind of petered out as the last few groups took their (pathetic) turns and shuffled off. Our youth minister took the stupid prize Sega and I never saw it again. Either he kept it for himself, or decided that video games weren’t appropriate for a religious environment, or maybe the whole boondoggle just left him with a sour taste. After that, I was pretty sure I was doomed. I had my big chance and somehow blown it by being too good (which I thought was the whole freaking point of a competition, but what do I know). I started to wonder if there was anyone out there who loved games the way I did. This was 1994, way before I would even learn what the Internet was. The only other real game enthusiast I knew was my brother. It was the heyday of Jack Thompson and the popular idea that Mortal Kombat was turning kids into crazed serial killers. Magazines like EGM and Nintendo Power let you know you weren't completely alone, but it all felt so far away and removed from real life. It was a weirdly lonely time to love games. The deflated balloon of my misguided childhood dream is why I can’t get mad at modern YouTube stars who make 4 million a year screaming at the screen while they play games, no matter how much I don’t personally like the content. It’s why I don’t sneer at eSports, even when they struggle with growing pains and identity crises. It’s why I try to book days off every year in the summer to watch EVO. For as silly as it can be, I love the growth of games as a spectator event. The now-reality that people really will gather to watch talented players being wicked sick at games, to cheer them on and lose their shit with every big play and comeback. The fulfillment of The Wizard’s promise, delivered 25 years late, but finally arrived. If an 11-year-old were to stumble on The Wizard today, he or she could take it the same way I did, but they wouldn't be so wrong. The idea of a video game tournament people give a shit about isn't some Hollywood fantasy anymore, it's a daily reality. Now, The Wizard (however dated and cheesy) would play like any other movie about garage bands making it big, or underdog athletes with a lot of heart triumphing against the odds. Hollywood schmaltz of course, but the same kind that inspires some kids to pick up a guitar, or start running extra laps before school. The kind of schmaltz that sets some kids on an arc that will take them beyond dabbling in a hobby or pastime and take it further, to see if they can turn their passion into a profession. I was too early to be The Wizard, but there is a whole generation of apprentices out there just waiting for their shot.
The Wizard photo
Games as a spectator sport
When I was a kid in the ancient days of the early ‘90s I was part of a church youth group. Obviously this was before I morphed into a surly, foul-mouthed teen (and then an even more profane adult). Every year the youth ...

Smash Bros. photo
Smash Bros.

Smash Bros. pro Zero has finally had his 53 tournament win streak broken

Time to cash in on that bounty
Oct 19
// Joe Parlock
You might remember back in May the news that a Smash Bros. player had a bounty put on their head. If anyone could beat Gonzale “Zero” Barrios in a Smash Bros. tournament, they’d be paid $500. At the time, he...
eSports everyone! photo
eSports everyone!

The Classic Tetris World Championship is happening right now

Check it out here
Oct 18
// Jed Whitaker
The sixth annual Classic Tetris World Championship is happening right now, as you can see in the live stream below. The event is hosted by our good friend, Jess Brohard in the land of weird, Portland, Oregon.  The t...
League of Legends photo
League of Legends

Riot bans key reseller G2A from sponsoring League teams

No more G2A branding at LoL events
Oct 07
// Joe Parlock
G2A is fairly infamous among game developers. The site is a third-party key reselling site, which sells game keys users have acquired (through various means), often without the permission of the developer. This means that oft...
Old ppl gonna old photo
Old ppl gonna old

Sports personality Colin Cowherd proves he is an out of touch dick

Bashes eSports
Sep 29
// Jed Whitaker
Colin Cowherd, a man who covers ancient sports, has been known to speak out against eSports having said that listening to eSports commentary was "the equivalent of me putting a gun in my mouth" after ESPN2 covered a Her...
eSports photo

Popular fantasy betting site moves into eSports

Surely this can only turn out well
Sep 18
// Ben Pack
Popular podcast advertiser and fantasy sports betting service DraftKings introduced a new feature to let fans bet on eSports. The company, which is projected to give away $1 billion in prize money this year, released a video ...
eSports photo

ESPN is hiring a dedicated eSports editor

Moving in the right direction
Sep 03
// Brett Makedonski
The advent of eSports in mainstream media has taken off like a rocket lately. Big names like Red Bull are sponsoring teams and running editorial websites. ESPN's giving it front page placement during tournaments. In the insta...
Rocket League pro match photo
Rocket League pro match

You need to watch the Rocket League grand finals

The best match you have ever witnessed!
Aug 21
// Patrick Hancock
Major League Gaming (MLG) just completed hosting its first Rocket League tournament, and the grand finals was one of the most exciting things I have ever witnessed. The two competing teams were Cosmic Aftershock an...
Capcom Cup photo
Capcom Cup

Capcom Cup 2015 taking place at PlayStation Experience

Street Fighter champion to be crowned
Aug 14
// Ben Pack
Capcom Cup 2015, the culmination of the Capcom Pro Tour series of tournaments, will be hosted by Sony at its PlayStation Experience event. The Ultra Street Fighter IV tournament will take place Sunday, December 6 at the Mosco...
eSports photo

ESL introduces random drug testing for their eSports tournaments

Weed, steroids, Adderall and more banned
Aug 13
// Joe Parlock
Last month news broke that eSports professionals were taking Adderall to improve their performance. Adderall is often prescribed to those with conditions such as ADHD or narcolepsy, and helps increase the attention of those t...
Blizzard trademark photo
Blizzard trademark

Blizzard trademarks eSports service Compete

Internet app for organizing tournaments
Aug 11
// Jordan Devore
More Blizzard speculation following that job listing for an undisclosed Diablo project. Last month, the company filed a trademark for something called Compete in the United States. It's an eSports thing, according to the USPT...
Counter-Strike photo

Valve isn't planning an International-style event for Counter-Strike: Global Offensive

Despite it being its second biggest game
Aug 11
// Joe Parlock
Here’s something I never even thought of until today: Dota 2 is a huge eSport. The International is one of the biggest annual events in gaming, and this year had a prize pool of over $18 million. It’s by far the m...
eSports photo

ESPN has a genuinely positive discussion about The International

A bit out of touch, but still positive
Aug 10
// Joe Parlock
Last week saw Dota 2’s annual championship The International take place in Seattle, with a huge $18 million being up for grabs in prize money. It is by far one of the biggest events in eSports, and recent years have se...
Super Smash Con photo
Super Smash Con

Results from the Super Smash Con tournament

Everything from N64 to Wii U
Aug 09
// Ben Pack
[Image via John Michaels] The inaugural Super Smash Con, a three-day event for all things Smash Bros., concluded today. The gathering included everything from panels and exhibits to a series of tournaments of all of the Smash Bros. games featuring high-level players.
Dota 2 championship photo
Dota 2 championship

The International 5 concludes and a new Dota 2 champ is crowned

The six-day Dota tournament is over
Aug 08
// Ben Pack
After six games of some of the best Dota play, Evil Geniuses has earned the title of best Dota 2 team in the world. Along with the title, the American team took home a payout of $6,616,014. The team, with an age ranging ...
Dota 2 tournament photo
Dota 2 tournament

Dota 2's The International 5 finals are tomorrow, here's what you need to know

Three teams remain competing for first
Aug 07
// Ben Pack
The International 5 is coming to a close tomorrow. The three remaining teams in the Dota 2 world championships are each guaranteed at least $2 million dollars.
Dota 2 12v12 photo
Dota 2 12v12

Valve announces 24-player Dota matches, and it's as crazy as it sounds

10v10 showed off at TI5 all star game
Aug 07
// Ben Pack
The was major buzz surrounding this year's all star match at The International 5. Aside from pitting the best Dota players in the world against each other, there has been a history of major announcements at the match. Last ye...
The International photo
The International

Dota 2's The International 5 is halfway through, here's who is in the running

Millions of dollars still on the line
Aug 05
// Ben Pack
After three full days of Dota 2 matches, The International 5 -- the highest-paying eSports event ever -- is fifty percent completed. With $18 million dollars on the line, eight teams of five are still in contention for the title of "best Dota 2 team in the world."
Dtoid Smash Bros. photo
Dtoid Smash Bros.

Results for the first ever Dtoid Smash Bros. tournament

A new one starts soon!
Aug 03
// Jed Whitaker
Our first ever Super Smash Bros. for Wii U online tournament just ended and the results are in and we have a tie! Congratulations to Edgar (NNID MexiBoy51) and Jaydubious (NNID Jaydubious) both having 9 wins. Also an honorabl...
The International photo
The International

The International 5, the largest eSports event ever, begins Monday

Almost 18 million dollars on the line
Aug 02
// Ben Pack
The International 5, Dota 2's largest tournament of all time, kicks off this Monday with two matches. With a prize pool of $17.8 million dollars on the line, TI5 will no doubt offer the highest level of eSports entertainment....

New update and DLC out for Super Smash Bros., preview it here

Jul 31 // Jed Whitaker
Stages: Peach's Castle (64) Hyrule Castle (64)  The stages include their music and a few extra tracks as well.  Mii Outfits: Bear (Gunner) King K. Rool (Brawler) Flying Man (Brawler) Chrom (Swordfighter) Black Knight (Swordfighter) Lloyd (Swordfighter) Samus (Gunner) Hoodie w/ Smash Bros. logo (All) Also, I'm proud to announce an impromptu Super Smash Bros. Destructoid tournament for Wii U! The tournament is now live and joinable by searching for "" and is open up to 100 participants. You have until Sunday at 8:00pm ET to fight your way to the top, then I'll reveal the results on the site and give you a shoutout. Huzzah!  One last thing...
Smash Bros. Wii U tournament!
The new update for Super Smash Bros. for Wii U and 3DS is out in the wild now, bringing with it new stages, Mii costumes, tournament mode, and balance changes. Included for free in the update is a K. K. Slider costume for th...

League of Legends photo
League of Legends

Pro League of Legends team goes undefeated

Sets new record by going 18-0 in LCS
Jul 26
// Ben Pack
Following its victory at League of Legends Championship Series, professional eSports team Fnatic is celebrating not only a successful regular season, but a historic achievement. The group managed to do something no other...
Dota 2 wildcard matches photo
Dota 2 wildcard matches

Dota 2 wildcard matches are now underway

Fighting for a chance at millions
Jul 26
// Patrick Hancock
The wildcard matches for the biggest eSports tournament of the year have officially begun! Dota 2's International 2015 tournament has already raised over $17 million, and four teams are about to fight for their shot at the pr...
Adios adderall photo
Adios adderall

No more Adderall abuse for players in one eSports league

ESL bans performance enhancing drugs
Jul 23
// Jed Whitaker
Abusing drugs to enhance performance isn't just a thing that happens in professional sports, but up until now they haven't been tested for in eSports. Coming just a week after professional Counter-Strike: Global Offensive&nbs...
eSports photo

Pro League of Legends player caught boosting accounts for money

ELO Busted
Jul 23
// Joe Parlock
eSports sure has had its fair share of controversy recently, huh? With drug tests being brought in as an anti-doping measure in the ESL, it seems like eSports has finally got its own Lance Armstrongs to deal with. It has now ...
eSports done wrong photo
eSports done wrong

Ladies-only Hearthstone tournament does it wrong

How hard is it to treat people equally?
Jul 22
// Jed Whitaker
Over 150,000 people watched the International Women's Invitational, a female-only Hearthstone tournament that took place in China this weekend with players from all over the world. With only eight players, the tournament...

Guilty Gear Xrd player stands up too early, loses

Jul 19 // Kyle MacGregor
[embed]296294:59596:0[/embed] Ogawa eventually went on to win the tournament, while Woshige advanced to the losers bracket and ultimately wound up in placing third overall. He's still number one in my heart, though. [Video via RoBoT SheKeiB -- Thanks, Southsing]
Woshige photo
Best moment of EVO so far?
Today's top story from EVO came from a Guilty Gear Xrd match between Woshige and Ogawa. After pulling off a comeback victory in the second round, Woshige mistakenly thought he'd won the match in its entirety. He stood up and ...

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