League of Legends, Overwatch, Counter-Strike, Fortnite Battle Royale are just a few eSports widely played across the world. The first records of eSports date back to October 19, 1972 at Stanford University for the game Spacewar. By 2019, an estimated 427 million people worldwide will be watching some form of eSports. The global market for eSports generated $325 million USD of revenue in 2015 and is expected only to increase. Riverside Secondary School also participates in this worldwide, electronic trend. Thanks to Riverside multimedia teacher Mr. Mike Schoenhals, the online gamers of Riverside are able to partake in their favorite hobbies and passions competitively, and as part of school.
The eSports club came to Riverside via a discussion item amongst some of the media teachers of the district roughly two and a half years ago. Six months later, the club began their first season, which was last season. “We featured League of Legends,” said Schoenhals. “That was our first game. This year we’ve moved onto a different game and I think we’re going to continue to do that.” This year’s game was Overwatch. Last year the club had an A and B team because there were more participants, but this year they just had an A team. Six schools take part in the local eSports league, so in total they played five games. The games were best out of three and played with competitive rules exclusive to the specific game.
Schoenhals said Super Super Smash Bros. Ultimate would be the next potential
game for the eSports club. This game would occur during the spring season and Schoenhals just received funding to buy a Nintendo Switch for the school, which is the console that the game is played on. “I’m going to get the special edition Super Smash Bros. version of the Switch,” said Schoenhals. This team and its members are well worth the purchase.
The students came up with the schedule for the eSports club practices and according to Schoenhals, they practiced almost every day at lunch, and sometimes after school. The eSports club has a flexible schedule, is open to all grades and taught by a teacher who loves games just as much as students; it can’t get any better than that!
2017-18 A Team Roster: Jamie Shwanebeck, Tyrell Herrmann, Zachariah Murphy,
Jayden Wenzel, Matayas Bauer, Ayden Miller, Gianfranco Borrelli