Gaming teams on campus offering scholarships
By Matthew Perrapato, Staff Writer
Oregon Tech Gaming Society (OTGS), a new club on campus that has brought organized gaming to Oregon Tech in a big way.
OTGS has been busy forming gaming teams to compete against other schools. Competitive gaming or Esports has been rising in popularity over the last decade, and Oregon Tech has decided to start getting involved.
“We compete against schools across the country,” says club advisor Andrew Coomes. “Right now our teams are focused on two games, Overwatch and League of Legends.”
Overwatch, a team-based first person shooter and objective game, is currently in season, and the school’s team is taking part in an online tournament organized by the Tespa network. At the time of writing, the school’s Overwatch team has won 6 of their 8 games, and is ranked 28th in the tournament out of 154 competitors.
“Our team competes weekly,” says Coomes, “and one of the team members streams the games online so that people who are interested can watch how the games are going.”
League of Legends is a Multiplayer Online Battle Arena (MOBA) game, and while the team is formed and actively practicing, their competitive season doesn’t start until early 2018.
“The wait is annoying, but I’m hopeful for the upcoming season,” says Seth Ray, coach of the League of Legends team.
Five to six players and a single student coach on each varsity team receives a $600 scholarship spread over Fall, Winter, and Spring terms. Good standings with academics and the school are required to stay on the team and receive those scholarships.
“All scholarships are also distributed evenly to all team members,” says Coomes. “In the future, we’re hoping to expand on the games we can play competitively and the scholarships we can provide to varsity members.”
Game suggestions are still up in the air as it is relatively early, but club members are hopeful. However, OTGS is not just about competitive gaming, and the club wants to encourage players of all skill levels to come to one of their events on campus.
“OTGS is a welcoming community for gamers of all kinds. We host local area network (LAN) parties, viewing parties for competitive gaming, and newbie nights,” says Quinn McHie, club president. “All of our events are open to players of all skill levels, and people are more than welcome to join in.”
OTGS urges students to look for advertisements regarding their upcoming events on posters around campus, on the campus app, and from members of the club. If you’re interested in joining the club discussion, they have an online text and voice chat room at https:://discord.gg/K7Tga4s, and the club streams their weekly Overwatch games at https://go.twitch.tv/oregontech_gaming.