Should esports count as high
school and college sports? First things first,
we got a new set. We’ll actually be changing out
some of the objects from week to week, so if you have
any suggestions for things that I should put
back there please let me know in the comments. Anyway, let’s get back into it. I probably don’t need
to tell you that esports are a really big deal. League of Legends Worlds are
happening right now in Korea and there’s a million dollars
on the line for the top team. Dota 2’s the international
had more than $15 million in its prize pool. Even the prestigious
Gray Lady has declared that esports
are finally here, and that’s a good sign. Unfortunately, not
everyone’s convinced. Sports figure heads like
Bryant Gumbel and the head of ESPN protests that esports
are not actually sports, and all this despite the
fact that Limp Bizkit, yes, Limp Bizkit’s
lead guitarist played at last year’s championship. But seriously, the United
States visa department already recognizes
League of Legends as a professional sport. The United States
government recognizes League of Legends Pro-Players as
professional athletes and award visas to essentially work in the
United States under that title. And Robert Morris
University Illinois recently began offering scholarships
to League of Legends players, so clearly there’s
something going on. And I was wondering
should esports become an official part of high
school and collegiate life? Me personally, I would have
jumped at the opportunity to learn to play a game
like Quake in high school, but maybe that’s
only because I was cut from football, basketball,
and baseball my freshman year. ANNOUNCER: Look out. Scary play. Now, not everyone agrees
that esports are sports. Esports barely nudged out
competitive eating in a Reddit poll asking people
what activities they consider to be sports, and this
is on Reddit of all places. So what is a sport anyway? The widely held definition
of sports– and by widely held I mean on
Wikipedia– is that sports are competitive, organized,
skill-based and physical. Those last two are
really important. A game like football has high
skill and high physicality requirements, so everyone
thinks it’s a sport. Chess on the other
hand, has high skill but almost no physicality,
so most people don’t consider it a sport. Esports occupy this
strange liminal space where their athletic in
a lot of different ways, but just not in the full
body doing a triathlon sense. And I admit, it’s a
little bit hard for me to think about League
of Legends being nearly as strenuous and even the
least challenging winter sport. Curling, I’m looking at you. But if you think about it,
sports are more than just bodily exertion. If phys-ed class was just
about the physical part then we would just make
kids do vertical push-ups and that crazy rope
thing from Cross Fit. I’d argue that development
as a human being is the biggest, most
important part of sports. They make us better at
other facets of our lives. Daniel H. Bowen and Collin
Hitt of The Atlantic have written that schools
that are better at athletics perform better on tests
because success in sports requires focus and dedication. And esports are a
horn of plenty when it comes to stuff like this. If you think the esports is just
staying up every night playing Call of Duty you’re
totally wrong. The top League of Legends
teams train grueling. Team Dignitas for example,
practices 12 hours a day, six days a week. They draw up plays
on a dry erase board and watch four hours of
replays every single day. This isn’t any less
training or work than any other
professional athlete. And esports such as
League of Legends have a huge emphasis
on teamwork. You play with
specific characters to fill specific roles, and
if you don’t work together with perfect timing
and coordination you’re going to get stomped. [INAUDIBLE] You need the same amount
of skill, coordination, and teamwork in esports to
compete at a high level. As the writer Bethlehem
Shoals has written, order isn’t something that
can be decided on in advance. It’s a puzzle to
be solved drawing on the collective
resources of the group. He was talking about
basketball, but he might as well have been talking about
League of Legends, right? And esports is
incredibly competitive. They have to learn to perform
under just as much pressure as any athlete. MAN: There’s a
fight breaking out. So while it might not be
the most physically taxing of endeavors, maybe
esports do deserve a place alongside other
sports in that trophy case, because esports imparts
similar values and lessons that help you become better at life. Some of you are probably
saying, who cares? I don’t need some high
school or college coach to make esports a
real thing for me. Esports are clearly
doing fine without it. Now this is kind of true, but
North America does frequently get stomped in
international competition, and this is in no small part
due to the culture of esports in this country. Another concern is whether
public institutions should be putting
all their eggs in one basket with private companies. Here’s what I mean,
the NFL doesn’t own the sport of football,
just like FIFA doesn’t own the sport of soccer. But League of Legends
is owned by Riot Games, and that could be a problem. What if Riot goes
bankrupt, for example? What happens to all the money
that high schools and colleges spend, or if Riot decides
to permanently change the game somehow. MAN: Welcome to
Ultra Rapid Fire. Athletic departments
would have no recourse. These are very
serious questions, but whatever you think
about whether or not e-sports are real sports
or how you personally define what sports are,
it’s more than just a semantic debate. Think about what the things are
that you value in real sports. It’s about
dedication, hard work, pushing yourself,
working as a team, and a commitment to improving
your abilities– all of which is just as present in esports. Besides, if being
physical is so important then all we need to do to fix
esports is just put the players on omnidirectional treadmills. Problem solved. So what do you think? Should educational institutions
support esports the same way that they support other sports. Hash it out the comments,
and if you like what you saw, please subscribe. I’ll see you next week. Last week we talked about why
Mario’s jump felt so good. Let’s see what you had to say. JohannesLazorFREETIME
wrote, “I would not say it is Mario that makes
us jump so much in games, I would rather say it is
the sensation of jumping that compels us to do it.” That is the most poetic
comment of the year. Joseph Hall-Patton argues
that the prominence of jumping in
video games is more of a necessity of 2D
movement, but if you look at the early days of
games that wasn’t necessarily the most direct path. I mean, there are
other games that had 2D movement that didn’t use
jumping, so a game like Galaga, for example, where
you’re a spaceship, or a game like Defender
which kind of has this vaguely isometric
point of view which has you kind of moving up
and down over the screen. So I think it’s only proof
of how influential Mario’s jump was, how good
that jump felt, that side scrollers are
such a dominate game genre that we know today. Tales from IDEATH– that’s
a very spooky username– this person says if
we’re going to talk about how awesome
jumping is in games then we need to also take a
look at when jumping sucks and when jumping
doesn’t feel right. This concept of game feel that
I alluded to in the video, it takes tales from IDEATH
out of the experience. It’s interesting,
we didn’t really get into it in the
episode, but if you look at jumping in other
video games, specifically first person shooters, the
idea of how high you jump and how that’s supposed to
feel in the context of the game universe is incredibly
important in terms of making you feel like
you’re a part of it– making you feel like you’re
sort of in this moment. So yeah, excellent comment. Gatchaponkei asks how
big of an obstacle one would need to jump over to
get featured in the comments. I would say roughly a little
bit taller than the chair that Bill Gates jumps over. Yeah. As a general rule, you
should be able to jump higher than a billionaire.