Emerging on the scene in 2006, OpTic Gaming has dominated the Call of Duty e-sports arena, thanks to the talents of legendary players such as Matt “NaDeSHoT” Haag, the biggest eSports personality on earth; Seth “Scump” Abner, the best Call of Duty player in the world; Midnite, one of the first girl gamers to rise to stardom on YouTube; and Hector “H3CZ” Rodriguez, the team founder and CEO. With over 14 million followers across social platforms like Twitter, Facebook and YouTube, no other team of players in eSports can match OpTic's popularity or ability to bring fans into the game.
Now, these remarkable players have collaborated to produce this one-of-a-kind book. In OpTic Gaming, they candidly share their story of becoming Call of Duty's global royalty—ESPN XGAMES, MLG, ESWC and GFINITY champions—laying bare their lives, exploring what it takes to make it in professional gaming, and speaking honestly about the consequences of their newfound fame. These best-of-the-best take you behind the controller, offering insights, knowledge, and strategies to help you improve your shot, master the most complex maps, and conquer the game with the ultimate weapons. Going beyond their number-one game, the team also discusses the rest of their lineups and how to become a champion in any arena. Revealing their go-to strategies, best missions, and favorite challenges, OpTic Gaming brings fans closer to these wildly popular professional gamers more than ever before.
A video game is half-real: we play by real rules while imagining a fictional world. We win or lose the game in the real world, but we slay a dragon (for example) only in the world of the game. In this thought-provoking study, Jesper Juul examines the constantly evolving tension between rules and fiction in video games. Discussing games from Pong to The Legend of Zelda, from chess to Grand Theft Auto, he shows how video games are both a departure from and a development of traditional non-electronic games. The book combines perspectives from such fields as literary and film theory, computer science, psychology, economic game theory, and game studies, to outline a theory of what video games are, how they work with the player, how they have developed historically, and why they are fun to play.
Locating video games in a history of games that goes back to Ancient Egypt, Juul argues that there is a basic affinity between games and computers. Just as the printing press and the cinema have promoted and enabled new kinds of storytelling, computers work as enablers of games, letting us play old games in new ways and allowing for new kinds of games that would not have been possible before computers. Juul presents a classic game model, which describes the traditional construction of games and points to possible future developments. He examines how rules provide challenges, learning, and enjoyment for players, and how a game cues the player into imagining its fictional world. Juul's lively style and eclectic deployment of sources will make Half-Real of interest to media, literature, and game scholars as well as to game professionals and gamers.
Watched by millions and contested by the best professional gamers in the world, League of Legends is more than a game.
Since the very beginnning of eSports, Fnatic have been competing at the highest level. In 2011, they won the World Championships and in 2015 they achieved the impossible: an entire regular season undefeated. In How to be a Professional Gamer, they take you inside the elite world of the sport, and into the world of competitive gaming. Sharing their knowledge, expertise, and strategies, it’s only a matter of time before you’re a world champion, too.
Including tips on game strategy, teamwork and mental strength, How to be a Professional Gamer is both a guide for how to improve as a regular gamer, and the story of Fnatic and how they’ve conquered the world of eSports.
Are you ready?
Competitive video and computer game play is nothing new: the documentary King of Kong memorably portrays a Donkey Kong player's attempts to achieve the all-time highest score; the television show Starcade (1982–1984) featured competitions among arcade game players; and first-person shooter games of the 1990s became multiplayer through network play. A new development in the world of digital gaming, however, is the emergence of professional computer game play, complete with star players, team owners, tournaments, sponsorships, and spectators. In Raising the Stakes, T. L. Taylor explores the emerging scene of professional computer gaming and the accompanying efforts to make a sport out of this form of play.
In the course of her explorations, Taylor travels to tournaments, including the World Cyber Games Grand Finals (which considers itself the computer gaming equivalent of the Olympics), and interviews participants from players to broadcasters. She examines pro-gaming, with its highly paid players, play-by-play broadcasts, and mass audience; discusses whether or not e-sports should even be considered sports; traces the player's path from amateur to professional (and how a hobby becomes work); and describes the importance of leagues, teams, owners, organizers, referees, sponsors, and fans in shaping the structure and culture of pro-gaming.
Taylor connects professional computer gaming to broader issues: our notions of play, work, and sport; the nature of spectatorship; the influence of money on sports. And she examines the ongoing struggle over the gendered construction of play through the lens of male-dominated pro-gaming. Ultimately, the evolution of professional computer gaming illuminates the contemporary struggle to convert playful passions into serious play.
Developing video games—hero's journey or fool's errand? The creative and technical logistics that go into building today's hottest games can be more harrowing and complex than the games themselves, often seeming like an endless maze or a bottomless abyss. In Blood, Sweat, and Pixels, Jason Schreier takes readers on a fascinating odyssey behind the scenes of video game development, where the creator may be a team of 600 overworked underdogs or a solitary geek genius. Exploring the artistic challenges, technical impossibilities, marketplace demands, and Donkey Kong-sized monkey wrenches thrown into the works by corporate, Blood, Sweat, and Pixels reveals how bringing any game to completion is more than Sisyphean—it's nothing short of miraculous.
Taking some of the most popular, bestselling recent games, Schreier immerses readers in the hellfire of the development process, whether it's RPG studio Bioware's challenge to beat an impossible schedule and overcome countless technical nightmares to build Dragon Age: Inquisition; indie developer Eric Barone's single-handed efforts to grow country-life RPG Stardew Valley from one man's vision into a multi-million-dollar franchise; or Bungie spinning out from their corporate overlords at Microsoft to create Destiny, a brand new universe that they hoped would become as iconic as Star Wars and Lord of the Rings—even as it nearly ripped their studio apart.
Documenting the round-the-clock crunches, buggy-eyed burnout, and last-minute saves, Blood, Sweat, and Pixels is a journey through development hell—and ultimately a tribute to the dedicated diehards and unsung heroes who scale mountains of obstacles in their quests to create the best games imaginable.