I joined an e-sports contest: Sakuragaoka Cup!
NOCCHi: To tell the truth, I’ve started paying attention to e-sports. So, it was helpful for me to know distinguished professional gamers, who are actively involved in esports, who work with me in my company, Amuse.
anan: The timing was excellent!
NOCCHi: One of them is Nemo san, who works for Square Enix as a side job. Another one is a humble handsome boy who’s 21 years old; TAKEUCHI John kun. To spread awareness about esports in my company, staff members were called to hold a mini esports tournament; Sakuragaoka Cap. A venue was prepared in the building owned by Amuse. Players were sitting face to face to fight. Meanwhile, you were able to watch it on the large screen with a live commentator. (Picture 1)
anan: Wow! They went all out!
NOCCHi: Right! Nemo san and John kun specialize in “STREET FIGHTER V”. I wished I could have just watched their fight, but I’d have ended up wanting to play it anyway, so, I decided to register as a player. I practiced for about 10 minutes before I started playing that day. (Picture 2) Other artists who were fond of playing games showed up for the game meeting. I fought against AMAKAWA, Genki, who is the bassist of flumpool, in the first round of the tournament. No sooner did the staff members learn I was losing courage than they began cheering me up. So, Genki kun winded up playing the role of a heel (in wrestling, a heel 「or rudo, in Latin American wrestling」 is the bad guy, so Genki-kun was playing the role of a villian) (lol) I think it was a good fight but I was beat after all. It was very fun to watch a genial-looking guy become quite a different person to win a series of victories, and a female staff member of my acquaintance was advancing through the tournament with Dahlsim, a very rare character. If a person I knew very well won the game, I got super excited, and all of the spectators were howling with laughter when a killer technique was unleashed by a player. The venue was charged with an air of unusual excitement.
KASHIYUKA: Gamers are usually people with mild personalities, but radically change their minds at the climax of a game. (lol)
a-chan : After all of that, what are esports?
NOCCHi: I don’t know for certain. There are professional gamers all over the world, and among them, the top gamers seem to be able to play at a large venue almost like an arena or a stadium. It differs depending on the kind of game though, in the case of some kinds of games like Street Fighter V, there are tournaments overseas, and according to the points they earned through the games, it is decided who can play at the largest venue. Some strong players have gotten sponsorships.
a-chan : Wow, is that true?
NOCCHi: The finalist of the tournament ended up fighting against two of the professional gamers. Everybody felt he was the unstoppable. Actually, he was the strongest player among the staff members of Amuse, but he got knocked around in the fight. (lol) Just like the professional! After the event, I went home to get Street Fighter V to play, but, I cannot trot out techniques nor damage the opponent. Actually, it’s a really difficult game. So, to win even a single game, I’m practicing. (Picture 3) I want to deepen my understanding of esports. I want to keep my eye on it from now on as well!
Picture 1: “Like a mass meeting, the players were shown on a big screen. The professional gamers and the staff members were watching it.”
Picture 2: “Now I’m practicing. It was the first time I handled an arcade style controller, but it was really fun. Look at my face!”
Picture 3: “Birdie is my recent character! He’s really strong. But frankly…I enjoy watching the game rather than playing it…”
a-chan : “It was pity that Genki kun played the heel role. (lol)”
KASHIYUKA: “Gamers seem remarkably energetic when they’re concentrating on the game.”
Birdie (Street Fighter): https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Birdie_(Street_Fighter)
Perfume official site: http://www.perfume-web.jp/
Perfume YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/user/Perfume/
Translator: Kowchan9 (A NOCCHi junkie, Mie, Japan)
Proofreader: Adthrawn1138 (A KASHIYUKA addict, Maryland, USA)