September 26, 2021

Xbox One X

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Esports still need to become more accessible to casual spectators

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Not too long ago, I was screaming myself hoarse at the TV while two groups of men kicked a ball across a field. What’s even wilder than me getting invested this much is how I dependably stop caring about any sport unless a large scale-event is on.

During the Winter Games I’ll be sitting in my living-room at 2am to watch Japanese people ice-skate. When the Summer Olympics are on I assault helpless friends with fencing statistics. On the other hand, true to my profession, I never get out of my chair, and consider even a light jog a prelude to death.

This year, the World Cup overlapped with Summer Games Done Quick, and looking through my Twitter feed, I noticed how it attracted people that usually didn’t follow esports. That made me take a closer look, and to my own surprise, I really enjoyed myself. There is something about someone pushing a game to its limits, opening them up and exposing all the wires below well-placed mechanics, that was really fun to watch. It made me wonder where the difference in my perception of sports compared to esports is, when both do something really similar – show you someone who is really, really good at a game. Why do people seem to be either fully invested… or not at all?

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