Each month we will be providing insights into the eSports industry, helping to connect, educate, and inspire you as you move from amateur to professional.
Georgia High School eSports Invitational (GHSeI)
PCX GO! & the Social Change Youth Foundation (SCYF) will be hosting the 2nd Annual Georgia
High School eSports Invitational (GHSeI) Friday July 6th from 10 am- 7 pm at the Andrew & Walter Young Family YMCA.
The invitational targets K-12 students, their families, as well as the gaming and cosplay communities in and around the ATL area to expose and engage K-12 participants to the entry points into and pathways through the eSports ecosystem.
The GHSeI will feature the following areas:
1. Team & Pop-up Tournament Play: Attendees can play and compete for a chance to win various prize packages including scholarships, grants, dream trips, etc.
2. Industry-Focused Panels & Workshops: These immersive experiences are designed to expose attendees to Industry professionals, chronicling the journey of their career and the pathways they took to get there. Ranging from topics like competitive gaming, shout casting, streaming, and game development to hardware/software innovation these experiences are uniquely hands on and engaging.
3. The Technology Talent Recruitment Pipeline (TTPR) Expo (hosted by the Social Change Youth Foundation): This expos is designed to grant attendees a firsthand look at the industry at work, explore the business structure, and will feature some very specific activations:
Gamer’s University – We are assembling the region’s top colleges and universities that offer degree and certification programs within the digital entertainment and tech industries.
Industry Office Hours - Here, we are bringing together regional and national companies to engage with college students and young professionals in a dialogue around potential employment opportunities.
Caster’s Corner – Attendees will have the opportunity to enjoy observing and interacting with the nation’s top level streamers across a variety of digital platforms.
Developer’s Row – An engaging collection of mainstream and independent developers demonstrating and playtesting the next generation of video games.
Comic Strip - An incredible collection of mainstream and independent comic book creators featuring the next generation of superheros.
Tech Town – Home to the latest and greatest in technology innovation i.e. virtual and augmented reality, custom high powered computer rigs, modified liquid and air coolant delivery systems, and other technology designed to move the world into the future.
Road to GHSeI
Meadowcreek High School
Club PCX worked with various high schools such as Meadowcreek in helping setup and create gaming clubs & eSports teams. Meadowcreek High School will be one of the competing teams at the GHSeI!
Fortnite Duos Tournament
Club PCX joined VS Realm Esports Arena for their first Fortnite tournament and crushed it! Benard & Leonard Rapley took home 1st place, with Toderrick Raply & Erich Thomas claiming 3rd place!
Great game guys!
2018 Fatherhood Expo
On the road to the GHSeI, PCX Go! joined KD Bowe at the 2018 Fatherhood Expo hosted by Fathers Incorporated.
Fathers Incorporated is a non-profit corporation that is dedicated to strengthening the community and family infrastructure by encouraging and enabling the positive involvement of fathers in the lives of their children.
STEAMsport Summer Enrichment Program
Club PCX joined STEAMsport at Tommer Elementary, Tuskagee Airmen Global Academy, & AfterSchool All-Stars Douglass Highh School in teaching game design to students.
STEAMsport provides Science, Technology, Arts, Engineering, & Math (STEAM) exposure, education, and competition specifically focused on youth and children living in and around undeserved communities.
On the Road to the GHSeI, Club PCX will be participating in STEM WARS's "STEMFest" on Monday July 2, 2018 at the Andrew & Walter Young Family YMCA. This event will ensure our community youth end the summer with a S.T.E.M. focus.
STEM WARS has become the largest S.T.E.M. (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) initiative in the country dedicated to the engagement of minority, low-income, and first-generation college students in S.T.E.M. fields and careers!
For more information about STEM WARS, visit their website here.
GGDA: Game Developers News Network
Be sure to check out the new episode of the "Game Developer's News Network hotsed by the Georgia Game Developers Association (GGDA)! This month's episode covers Tripwire Interactive becoming a publisher, E3 highlights including Ubisoft's new partnership with HitRecord, Southern Fried gaming Expo, MomoCon & more!
They are continuing to work with a variety of partners to create a network capable of covering stories relevant to game creation from techniques, tools, and plug-ins to breaking news in the game dev community. If you are looking to get into game development then be sure to watch their show, because you won’t find a more valuable resource!
For more like this, please support their Patreon here!
Georgia State's eSports Program Helps Students Tap Into This $900M Industry
This year, the global eSports industry is projected to grow to more than $900 million in revenue, a year-over-year growth of 38 percent. The state of Georgia is central to the industry, currently playing home to over 75 gaming companies, such as Hi-Rez Studios of Smite and Paladins fame.
Georgia State University is helping students make the necessary connections to careers in the eSports industry, which can include social media management, eSports reporting, event management, game tester, team coach, business strategy and more. The program offers workshops on how to become a newscaster, working as a tournament planner and how to build a social media branding strategy as it relates to the eSports industry. This fall, the school will partner with Georgia Public Broadcasting to develop a broadcasting bootcamp for course credit.
Following the unveiling of the eSports program last fall, the university became the 34th member of the National Association of Collegiate eSports. They also provided 10 varsity eSports players with a scholarship of $1,000 to go towards tuition.
For the full article on GSU’s eSports program, go here.
Indie Corner: Wahler Digital, LLC
Wahler Digital LLC is a small, independent game studio located in Atlanta, Georgia with a keen interest in handcrafted puzzle and adventure type games.
SiNKR is a minimalist puzzle game. There is just you, hooks, pucks, and various contraptions you need to clean up each level. Sink all the pucks to advance to the next challenge. Each level is handcrafted. No scores, no timers, no text, no distractions. Responsive ambient music.
SiNKR was an Indie Selection at DREAMHACK Atlanta, 2017, the Indie MEGABOOTH MEGASHOW Atlanta, 2017 and won fan favorite at SIEGE October, 2017.
For more information about Wahler Digital, be sure to check out their website.
Press Start to Play
THE MECCA OF GAMING
With E3 last month, the game industry is abuzz following all the showcases, gameplay and announcements. And why wouldn’t it be? This is looking to be another excellent year in gaming.
E3 is a platform for the industry to talk to the world, an opportunity to showcase our innovation and art that will define the next year of interactive entertainment. It provides a light for where gaming innovation is taking us, not just for gamers, but industry professionals as well. It’s an opportunity for professionals to see what other companies are doing and how they are leading the charge into the future of gaming.
For many professionals in the industry, E3 is a time of elation mixed with exhaustion as teams prepare for the largest gaming event of the year. It’s an opportunity for publishers, developers and retailers to meet, and it has traditionally been a place where deals and connections are made behind closed doors. As a gamer though, I still view it as the industry’s annual Mecca, where everyone in the industry comes together for one purpose: to showcase their love of games.
There was a lot of exciting coverage this year with many great titles on the horizon, but as a single-player gamer at heart, there were a couple titles that I completely fan-girled over.
LARA CROFT BECOMES THE TOMB RAIDER
Crystal Dynamics has slowly been building Lara Croft’s character to become the Lara we know from PlayStation 1--- and I gotta say, I think we’re here. The first installment of Crystal Dynamics’ Tomb Raider trilogy focused on a young, naïve Lara being hunted and forced to learn how to survive. The second title embodied Lara’s independence and need to set out on her own. Shadow of the Tomb Raider is all about mastery. As seen in the gameplay footage, Lara is no longer the prey. She has become the predator and she is not trapped in the jungle with Trinity. They are trapped in the jungle with her.
Shadow of the Tomb Raider is set in a fictional lost civilization in Latin America that blends Incan, Mayan and Aztec influences. Tombs and puzzles will be more prevalent and deadlier than ever before. This makes me happy to hear, since I miss the longer, intricate puzzles that dominated the original PS1 Tomb Raider. Also, instead of the quick ‘fetch quests’ that we saw in Rise of the Tomb Raider, side quests will be multi-step stories, where you can learn more about the community and the history behind this world.
As Crystal Dynamics has taken their time layering the scars upon the mercurial adventurer, I look forward to seeing Lara Croft take the final steps to becoming the Tomb Raider she’s destined to be.
THROUGH THE VALLEY: TLOU 2
Five years later, and The Last of Us is still one of the greatest games in video game history. It’s ability to evoke strong human emotions such as compassion and tenderness makes it a unicorn in this industry.
E3 showcased the first gameplay trailer of The Last of Us Part II and if there is one lingering impression from it, it’s the starkness and grimness of the violence. Which Naughty Dog VP, Neil Druckmann, says is the point. The game is designed to make you feel uncomfortable.
If the first game’s over-arching theme was the primal idea of love and the unconditional love of a parent for a child, then the second game’s primal theme is hate. Something we’ve all experienced when we see injustice being committed and something that’s easy to lose control of. Druckmann’s aim in TLOU 2 is to make the player feel that and to reflect and show the consequences of violent actions.
Unlike other games, where violent action is not intended to be meditated on, here it is different. It’s gristly and slow, with all the messy intangibles of real violence to make you reflect on. It’s not supposed to be fun. It’s supposed to be engaging—to make you feel these moments, which can be hard to watch as it should be with human suffering and cruelty.
These are the concepts that no other studio has been able to master in a game quite like Naughty Dog. For me, The Last of Us Part II is undoubtedly my most anticipated game to come out of E3. Taking place four years after the first game, I’m ready to walk in the shoes of Ellie and see how the world has turned her into resilient, survivor she’s become today.
While Shadow of the Tomb Raider and TLOU2 may be at the top of my most anticipated games to come out of E3, there were still several other notable titles worthy of the hype.
· CD Projekt Red’s Cyberpunk 2077 is a FPS with heavy RPG-elements whose gameplay trailer
left the audience in awe. It’s an ambitious crawl through a seedy city’s underbelly in a grimy, dystopian future. From the creators of The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, this expansive story-driven, open world RPG is certainly one to watch out for.
· Ubisoft’s Assassins Creed: Odyssey was announced and the trailer looked breathtaking. Set in Ancient Greece during the Peloponnesian War, for the first time you get to choose a male or female protagonist. Ubi’s also hitting hard on the RPG-elements with individual pieces of armor, dialogue trees and romance options for your character. Interestingly though, it’s set several hundred years before the creation of the Assassins (AC: Origins). While only a theory, since we saw the birth of the Assassins in the last game, I wonder if we will see the birth of the Templar in this one.
· Beyond Good and Evil 2 was announced last year at E3 as a prequel to the 2003 game, Beyond Good and Evil, and this year Ubisoft showed off a new trailer that wowed long-time fans of the game. It’s confirmed that both Jade and Pey’j will be in the second game, but Jade isn’t the girl we thought we knew. It seems that she was once deemed a ‘nemesis’ and the trailer ends with Jade rushing toward Pey’j wielding a katana with rage in her eyes. Intrigued, I can’t wait to learn the origins of one of my favorite space operas.
Stay tuned each month as I use this platform to discuss, ponder, and illustrate the complexities within the game community and industry. If there are any topics you’d be interested in reading about or seeing discussed, please don’t hesitate to reach out!
The views and opinions expressed in this column are strictly those of the author and not necessarily those of Pharaoh’s Conclave (PCX)
Content & Community Manager
Follow me on Twitter/IG: @brittregay
"I am a gamer not because I don't have a life, but because I choose to have many."
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