Texas State Esports prepares to ready up for collegiate gaming season

The+Texas+State+Esports+Overwatch+team+prepares+to+compete+on+stage+at+the+Battle4Texas+Overwatch%C2%AE+tournament%2C+Saturday%2C+Sept.+21+2019%2C+in+the+Esports+Stadium+Arlington.+So+far+this+year%2C+Texas+State+Esports+has+not+traveled+to+compete+in+any+competitions.+Photo+credit%3A+Photo+courtesy+of+Micah+Cavender

The Texas State Esports Overwatch team prepares to compete on stage at the Battle4Texas Overwatch® tournament, Saturday, Sept. 21 2019, in the Esports Stadium Arlington. So far this year, Texas State Esports has not traveled to compete in any competitions. Photo credit: Photo courtesy of Micah Cavender

Samuel Cravey, Special to the Star

Texas State students are turning their hobby into a career by proving themselves as elite gamers that are a cut above the rest. Texas State now has an esports team of its own looking to get on the action.

As of August 2019, after only two semesters, Texas State esports is now an officially recognized sports club on campus. Students who are interested in playing online games competitively can join the group.

Club president Micah Cavender was part of The Summoners, Texas State’s former “League of Legends” gaming club, up until 2018 when the last president of the club left. Cavender met a community he was proud to be part of while in The Summoners. From the ashes of the old club spawned a new esports club—Texas State esports.

“After the old president peaced out, I was like, ‘I’ll make a club,’” Cavender said. “It’ll be esports and we can get other games involved, so it’s not just League of Legends. It’ll be more active and won’t die out.”

Texas State esports members compete against other universities in gaming tournaments such as Battle4Texas, College League of Legends and the Collegiate Star League as an official college team.

Texas State esports competes in the south-central brackets for all video game titles they play. Last year at the Battle4Texas “Overwatch” tournament in Arlington, esports played against 16 different teams including The University of Texas at Arlington, Baylor University, Sam Houston State University and The University of Texas.

Cavender said competitions usually depend on the title of the game because there is no set bracket for esports collegiately. Every video game normally has tournaments set up through their parent company for college teams to compete in.

There are six different titles, or games, that esports plays, including, “League of Legends,” “Overwatch,” “Super Smash Bros. Ultimate,” “Rocket League,” “CS:GO” and “Rainbow Six Siege.” About 50-60 Texas State esports club members make up the rosters for these games, which includes both varsity and academy (junior varsity) teams.

One of the most popular games esports plays is “League of Legends.” “League of Legends,” or ‘League’ for short, is a multiplayer online battle arena game, in which two teams of five battle against each other to win the game by destroying their opponent’s nexus (base).

Enrique De La Torre, history freshman, has been playing for esports’ varsity “League of Legends” team since fall 2019. As the team’s jungler, De La Torre is responsible for creating chaos for the enemy team from the shadows of “The Jungle,” any area of the map that is not a lane or part of either team’s base, while securing strategic objectives to leverage a win.

De La Torre said last season the esports league team competed against 11 teams in the Collegiate Star League and finished with a record of eight wins and three losses. The team did not make it into playoffs despite their positive record, but De La Torre is already looking forward to next season.

“Even though our season is pretty much over, the next season starts early fall—hopefully we can get this team into playoffs then,” De La Torre said.

Chelsea Payton, esports event coordinator, said the organization is a community at Texas State for students who share an interest in playing video games.

The club also plans monthly events for paid members. Payton said every time the club gets together in person, they want to do it again and are planning more events to socialize.

“We’re simple; we are just a bunch of gamers that like to hang out,” Payton said. “That’s why I joined when I first got to Texas State.”

Currently, Texas State’s esports team has over 500 members on its Discord channel, which is a free voice call program popular amongst gamers. All that is required to join the Discord channel is to be a student at Texas State.

For more information about Texas State esports and upcoming events follow them on Twitter @TXSTEsports and on their Discord server, discord.gg/txstesports.

 

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