Science & Tech

U of O Esport Club logo
The U of O Esport Club logo. Image: U of O Esport Club/Provided
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University has multiple different teams registered to compete in this year’s CSL competitions covering six different games

With the competitive gaming scene becoming increasingly more popular, the University of Ottawa Esports Club offers an environment for gamers of all skill levels and competitiveness to connect with each other.

Run by a large team including co-presidents Zack Goldstein and Jaxon Murphy, each major competitive game in the club has somebody dedicated to overseeing the competitions, events, and other activities. As of right now, there are two vacant executive positions on the team: event coordinator, and internal affairs officer.

No matter if you consider yourself a casual or competitive gamer, the Esports Club welcomes those of any skill level. “Our number one priority is building a lasting community that all share a passion for esports and gaming,” said Goldstein. 

Some of the gaming activities include weekly in-house games for casual play against other players and tournaments where members can compete for prizes. 

Viewing parties are arranged for major esports matches where you can watch professionals make predictions.

The club also creates and manages their competitive teams that compete in leagues against other schools for scholarship prizes. Similar to physical sports, team members attend practices together to develop their strategies to be used in the matches during the season.

One of the most prominent leagues is the Collegiate StarLeague (CSL), the largest competitive gaming organization for post secondary institutions all over Canada and the United States with a variety of competitions including Esports, first-person shooters, and Multiplayer Online Battle Arenas. Other leagues the club participates in include TESPA and Ontario Post Secondary Esports (OPSE).

Since the creation of the first video game in the late 1950s, and the invention of Pong in the ‘70s, there has always been a competitive factor to gaming.  With all of the technological advances in gaming and communication, an industry of gaming competitions was born. With the help of platforms like YouTube and Twitch, gaming competitions have made their way into the entertainment world with millions of dollars spent on competitions worldwide attracting an audience of millions of viewers.

According to a Medium article, “the total esports prize money awarded out amounted to $110.6 million from a total of 3765 tournaments according to the website. The biggest prize pool from a single tournament? A whopping $24.6 million at The International 2017 (Dota 2).”

Currently, the University has multiple different teams registered to compete in this year’s CSL competitions covering six different games. The teams are entered into different divisions depending on the participants’ skill levels.

Of course, the club supports teams and tournaments for a couple of the biggest MOBA games in the world: League of Legends and DOTA 2. The most in-demand first-person shooters are Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (CS:GO), Valorant, Overwatch, and Rainbow Six Siege. As well, Rocket League is very popular within the competitive gaming community. Fighting games like Street Fighter, Mortal Kombat, Super Smash Brothers, and Dragonball Fighter Z are also played by many members of the esports club.

If competitive games aren’t your thing, the Esports Club also offers a space for Minecraft Runescape, World of Warcraft, Pokemon, and many others. With over 700 members on the club’s discord server, you are bound to find somebody who shares a passion for the same games you do.

If you would like to get involved in the esports club, you can join their Discord server or reach out to them on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and Twitch.