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I’m too ______ for Esports!

Oktober 14, 2019

In our last article, we wrote about esports and how it has come a long way from just being a source of entertainment for youth. Despite that, eSports still has a hard time shaking off its reputation for being a “benda mainan anak-anak” (children’s play thing). Maybe you want to get into esports but are a little paiseh (embarrassed) about how others will perceive you. Well, worry not! Yoodo esports is here to give you all the best reasons why esports is for everyone to enjoy. (You are most welcome to bookmark this for your next family gathering when some uncle/aunty starts to grill you about your new interest).

I’m too Old for Esports!

While teenagers winning massive amounts of money in esports are all over the headlines, it is only a small percentage of the total demographic that enjoys esports. In fact, according to a recent study, the average gamer is 34 years old, owns a house and has children! Thats the average person out of 2.5 BILLION gamers. What about the older folks, though?

It’s a proven fact that gaming is healthy for all our warga emas as the interaction with devices as it improves cognitive function at an age where they always ask if sudah makan?  Gaming also has the added benefit for the older folks in finding a common ground to connect with the younger generation.

One of the more famous streamers is GrndPaGaming. This 64 year old uncle is a retired Navy Soldier who not only beat cancer and overcame a disability, but also got the better of a lot of other gamers in shooter games like PUBG and Apex Legends! He also cites how his gaming hobby helped him through his fight with cancer!

“Games did help me a lot during the treatment. The burning pain from the cancer and plates in my neck constantly harrasses me. But, I am relieved from this when I play games, and I was able to release my mental stress. Of course, it differs from person to person, but I believe that games can be helpful in relieving your pain.”

GrndPaGaming

What about competing in esports? 

Unlike physical sports, esports is more reliant on mental capability and not physical ability. The reason we see so many prepubescent esports superstars is because most competitive esports titles (CS:GO, Call of Duty, Fortnite, etc), prize lightning-quick reflexes over experience and maturity, although that is quickly changing. Contrary to belief, there are plenty of older gamers in the professional circuit still competing, leveraging their experience and level-headed leadership which only comes with maturity. 

Case in point? The Silver Snipers.

The first professional senior CS:GO team in the world, where all the players are over 60 years old

You’re never too old to enjoy esports! Actually, if you’re older or retired you can enjoy esports even more while the rest of us have to pry ourselves away to do “young people stuff” like… work!

I’m too Ladylike for Esports!

We had to include this to dispel the myth that gaming is just for dudes. The numbers show otherwise; 46% of the world’s gamers are women. That’s 1 billion women who are likely to play games while they wait in queue to use the toilet (society needs to fix this)!

Generally there is a stigma of women in esports. The trope of sexually revealing streamers to gain viewers is still commonplace and frustrating to talented female streamers who work hard to engage their viewers and create content. In a similar parallel to cosplayers, a lot of these ladies go through a lot of online negativity, verbal abuse and even creepy stalkers to get where they are in the esports industry. It diminishes their accomplishments by only crediting their gender or physical appearance.

“I believe the gaming industry as a whole has an uphill battle to fight with regards to female representation. Level Up KL had a Women In Gaming seminar and many of the stories shared there were eye-opening. Our female artists and developers also go through a lot from a young age to pursue their passion, many are discouraged and abandon their path in the face of ridicule and pressure from their male peers.”

Azlan Ismail, eSports Malaysia (ESM)

That’s a shame when there really are strong all-female esports teams right here in Malaysia such as Sphynx (CS:GO), Grills Gaming (Dota 2) and MBT.Valkyrie (Overwatch)

MBT. Valkyrie

Every industry in the world right now is going through a wave of feminist upheaval of outdated male-focused practices. From Hollywood’s “Me Too” movement to governments showcasing more female leaders, women are taking their place and showing representation in positions of power and influence. The gaming industry definitely gives a lot of power to the influence of women streamers!

Enclosed in glass booths, the two women are playing Borderlands 3, offering a preview of the shooter game to about 4,000 of their combined 1.1 million Twitch followers and to onlookers in the Los Angeles Convention Center. Their devotees, many also female, represent a new market for the high-end cosmetics brand. Sales of M.A.C. lipsticks inspired by the mobile game Honor of Kings were “gangbusters,” say the execs.

Fast Twitch: Female Gamers Are All the Rage

It seems the lengluis have a lot more going for them in esports than the boys. Girl power! 

I’m too Different for Esports!

One of the lesser-talked about reasons for the explosion of esports in popularity is its accessibility. Gaming and esports is a great equalizer as EVERYONE can play. It does not matter where you come from, your background, your age, gender, belief or anything! When you’re watching a Pubstomp with other fans or playing a game online with other players, all that matters is your shared interest and your presence.

Popular Free-To-Play Shooter Apex Legends features a truly diverse roster of playable characters of varying age, ethnicity, gender and body shape

The internet has brought huge advances in technology and even completely changed the way we humans interact with one another as a society. Never before could we have friends with so many people across the globe through a shared interest. We don’t even need to travel out of our own country to meet new people! Gaming is just another way to “plug in” to the digital world and socialize without the need for physical requirements.

For some gamers who are physically challenged or OKU, gaming has allowed them a sense of freedom and connectedness to the world that has never been achieved before. One of the most eye-opening examples is a popular twitch streamer named RockyNoHands.

Rocky Stoutenburgh was unlucky. 11 years ago, when he was 19, he caught a nasty fall and landed in just the wrong way, severely dislocating two of his thoracic vertebrae and severing his spinal cord. The incident left him paralyzed from the neck down. Today, Rocky can hardly roll his shoulders. But remarkably, he continues to game despite his quadriplegia and streams regularly on Twitch. He racks up headshots and chicken dinners in PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds on a weekly basis and also enjoys games like For Honor and Rocket League.

Meet Rocky NoHands, the paralyzed PUBG streamer who kicks ass using only his mouth, PC Gamer

Do check out the article linked above to read more about this amazing gamer! It really is a moving story and tak kasi chance for any other excuse for you to be excluded from esports.

Many companies are discovering the power of gaming in helping people. For people with disabilities like Rocky, esports is a boon for their condition and enriches their lives. Companies like Microsoft create peripherals like the Xbox Adaptive Controller for those with disabilities to better experience the games they play.

We hope this article has managed to dispel any doubts of whether esports is for you. Esports has so many aspects that make it enjoyable for everyone. 

Besides, we at Yoodo Esports believe that you should do YOU. Game on!

Esports is full of diversity! Thanks for reading and share with us what you think of it. What games do you think you’ll be playing when you are 60 years old?