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SLT eSports Lobby Challenge concludes

SLT eSports Lobby Challenge concludes

On the 29th of November, SLT hosted the first iteration of the “ SLT Esports Lobby Challenge “.
The first Esports event for the 4th quarter of the gaming year, the SLT Esports Lobby Challenge gave teams the chance to benchmark themselves before the main and final events for the year.
The SLT Esports Lobby Challenge featured 3 different gaming titles, DOTA 2, FIFA 18 and Clash Royale, with DOTA 2 being the only multiplayer battle arena event. The DOTA 2 bracket was played in two formats, with an online qualifier and a LAN event from the semi-finals onwards.
Clash Royale and FIFA 18 had multiple qualifiers before the final bracket.

Here’s a recap of the event

Clash Royale

The only mobile title at the tournament, Clash Royale saw a small, but talented group of competitors for its final ranked bracket. With 6 out of the 8 competitors split even between Phoenix GaminG and Noob Alliance, it was more of a question of which clan would walk away with the winnings. Heavily present in round 2, it was clear that the crown was likely to fall into nA’s lap, especially with the former titleholder, nA.Daniel competing. However, PnX-Parthifan and PnX-G4M3R_N4JEE8 weren’t out just yet. In a surprising upset, nA.Daniel suffered a crushing defeat against nA-Angmar.  Playing two close games against nA-Loch and nA-rN’b respectively, PnX won one game and lost one, with PnX-Parthifan defeating nA-Loch 2 points to 1. PnX’s hopes lied with PnX-Parthifan, with the 3 other semifinalists all from nA. While PnX-Parthifan put up a good fight, he was executed by nA-Angmar, 2 points to 0. On the other side of the semifinals, nA-Hanif swiftly disposed his clanmate nA-rN’b 2 points to 0. Knocked down to the bronze match, PnX-Parthifan outplayed nA-rN’b and won 3rd place, 2 points to 0. With both competitors from nA, the final match was theirs as predicted. Duking it out to a score of 3 points to 2, nA-Hanif pulled off a close win against nA-Angmar.

Clash Royale Winner : nA.Hanif

Clash Royale 1st Runner-up : nA.Angmar

Clash Royale 2nd Runner-up : PnX.Parthifan

FIFA 2018

FIFA 2018 had the amusing draw at the SLT Esports Lobby Challenge, mainly due to the fact that roughly 50% of the competitors in the final bracket were from one single clan, Phoenix GaminG. Having the numbers advantage, Phoenix GaminG went on to dominate Round 1, with nA-VeNoM and M.eS-Pro being the only two players not from PnX to qualify for the second round. In an interesting turn of events, the duo faced off in Round 2 to play a close match, with nA-VeNoM winning 2 points to 1. With 3 competitors from PnX, the odds were stacked against the nA-VeNoM, facing off against PnX-Faz in the semifinals. Winning by a landslide, PnX-Faz defeated nA-VeNoM 5 points to 1 and advanced to the finals against, PnX-Dishi – who defeated PnX-SHARPSHOOT3R 4 points to 2. Knocked down to the bronze match, nA-VeNoM went on to duke it out with PnX-SHARPSHOOT3R and lost against a score of 8 points to 4. With all 3 top places under their belt, the finals were in Phoenix GaminG’s hands. A nail-biter of a match, the finals played into PnX-Faz’s favor, defeating PnX-Dishi 1 to 0.

FIFA 18 Winner : PnX.Faz

FIFA 18 1st Runner-up : PnX.Dishi

FIFA 18 2nd Runner-up : PnX.SHARPSHOOT3R

DotA 2

The star title of the SLT Esports Lobby Challenge, DotA saw the most number of competitors.
With 28 teams and 140 competitors, DotA 2 had a colossal display of hero picks, item builds and playstyles. After 20 matches and 2 rounds, round 3 was down to be played between 8 teams.
Xiphos Esports, Division Esports, Noob Alliance, Phoenix GaminG and Tech Morph were the clans skillful enough to make it to the top 8. Playing tactfully and seizing every opportunity, x3-Victorious Secret, nA-team tempest, Div-Death Sentence, and nA-BedTime SamuraiS defeated their opponents and made it to the semifinals.

With one Noob Alliance team per semifinal match, was the crown going to nA? The first match, nA-BedTime SamuraiS vs x3-Victorious Secret. started off clearly in nA’s favor, with the early game clearly in their favor. However, x3 managed to turtle through the early game. Unable to capitalize the advantage they had, nA got punished heavily in the mid to late game by x3 and lost. As for the second match, nA-team tempest vs Div-Death Sentence, the game started with Div punishing nA in the top lane – nA’s safe lane. Unable to secure the need farm and most importantly contain Div’s Alchemist, nA swiftly fell to Div. Matched up against each other in the bronze match, nA-BedTime SamuraiS played in their comfort zone running an Anti Mage against nA-team tempest. Unable to zone out the enemy safe lane or out farm them, nA-team tempest fell to the wrath of nA-BedTime SamuraiS ‘s heavily farmed Antimage.

Matching up against each other, x3-Victorious Secret. and Div-Death Sentence were the last two teams left standing, a Best of 3 finals. Dominating the early and midgame marks, the game was easily within Div’s palm. Overconfident and complacent, Div dragged the game instead of going for the enemy’s ancient, making critical mistakes and giving x3 the opportunity to make a comeback into the game. Playing an impressive Invoker and Monkey King, x3-Victorious Secret. crushed Div-Death Sentence in the first game by capitalizing the late game. Learning from their mistakes and dominating the game just with their draft by playing a heavily farmed Phantom Assassin and Wraith King, Div-Death Sentence managed to crit their way to a swift victory and evened the score to 1 point to 1 against x3-Victorious Secret.. The tie-breaking and deciding game for the crown, game 3 was intense. Roaming lanes and not letting the enemy farm, the Tusk played by x3 zoned out the Div supports. In the mid lane, however, Div’s Viper was zoning out the x3 Tinker and delaying his boots of travel. As for the top lane, x3 shutdown Div’s Monkey King and starved him of farm. With an exchange of power In different lanes and matching up in terms of farm, both teams were neck and neck, but Div pretty much had the early game lead. But by making critical mistakes like not having a gem, not containing both the Tinker and Luna or not shutting down the Silencer who was stealing copious amounts of Int, Div gave x3 space and the opportunity to turtle on and make an easy comeback. Making use of the space they were given, x3 was merciless, felling Div to their knees and taking the crown for DotA 2.

Dota 2 Winner : x3.Victorious Secret

Dota 2 1sr Runner-up : Div.Death Sentence

Dota 2nd Runner up : nA.BedTime SamuraiS

With a wide range of talented clans taking part, the SLT Esports Lobby Challenge was just a taste of what’s to come for the major events for the year.
Will the same teams who emerged triumphantly do it again?
Or will other teams use the time they have left to study and outplay the champions?
Stay tuned.

The new breed of Sri Lankan athlete – Esports

The new breed of Sri Lankan athlete – Esports

Coming from Peradeniya, Kandy, Amruth “Amypie“ Alfred represented Sri Lanka in Starcraft 2 at the Asian Games 2018 and is an Esport athlete. Amruth is also an alumnus of Gateway College Kandy, and is currently following an MPhil in Astrophysics at the University of Hong Kong, where he completed his BSc in Physics and Astronomy with Second Upper Honours.

This is Amruth’s story of his Esports journey.

While Amruth does hail from Kandy, he briefly lived in India during his childhood as his father was undertaking his Postgraduate research. It was during this period that he discovered PC gaming.

While meddling with his father’s PhD desktop, a Pentium 1 running Windows 95, he stumbled upon a copy of Need for Speed 2. Awed by the exotic cars, the driving experience, and the foreign roads, He was instantly hooked and thus opened the gate to PC gaming. Quickly turning into a fully-fledged, after-school past time, Amruth was discovering all sorts of games to indulge in.

With Pokémon becoming a mainstream series in Asia, he soon installed a Gameboy emulator and spent countless hours catching and training all sorts of Pokémon he says. Upon being introduced to the Age of Empire series, he soon realized how much more he enjoys games that required real-time strategy and developed a taste for games that had a competitive component to them.

While most parents would discourage their children from spending too much time in front of the computer, Amruth’s parents were more supportive of his gaming habits. Striking a good balance between gaming and his studies, he managed to stay at the top of his class and score well consistently. His parents even went as far to gift him a personal Pentium 4 PC to keep up with the current gaming generation. He was however, met with criticism from his extended family and schoolmates who had bought into the stereotype that gaming is a waste of time.

Fast forward to 2007 and Amruth got his first taste of online multiplayer gaming. Only 12 at the time, he was introduced to Call of Duty 4 by his school friends and soon started prioritizing the game above other games due to its competitive nature. Being a frequent player and fiercely competitive on the public servers, he soon began making a name for himself under the moniker “Thunder “.

He hilariously adds that he has had moments with his parents where he tried to explain to them that he can’t pause a match during dinner time. Catching the eyes of competitive COD4 players, he was approached by [DC] Grim and was flat out asked to join his team DC.XD on the public servers all chat. Recruited by Death Company, he soon began his ascent in competitive Esports. With frequent team practices, Leagues by Gamer.LK and scrims with other teams, Thunder began picking up more experience and started to shine as the prodigy of the team. With their new found chemistry, he would soon begin frequenting LAN events with the team in Kandy. Being the 12 year old kid on the team, “Thunder” was frequently babysat by his team mate Aasaf Samoo.

“He used to come to my house, pick me up and take me to the café!

I was like a little boy and he was like my uncle! “.

As the team began steadily rising in the COD4 community, DC.XD made its way to their first SLCG in 2009. The team progressed well into the tournament and won games that many thought they would lose, with Thunder being the MVP and carrying his team to victory. While the favourites “Team Perks” did go onto win that years SLCG, DC.XD placed high and it was quite a learning experience for Thunder. As the years went by, Thunder would frequent many tournaments with his team and would go onto win a good share of them. But, with O/L and A/L exams soon approaching, Amruth started paying more attention to his studies and took a break from competitive tournaments. As a throwback to the days he spent playing Need For Speed 2, Amruth has also held the title as the national champion for Trackmania, won season 3 of Gamer.LK’s Racing League and won the Need for Speed – Most Wanted Kandy leg in the past.

With 2014 being his last SLCG, Amruth would soon depart to the University of Hong Kong to start his undergraduate degree in Physics and Astronomy with a fully paid scholarship.

With course work taking precedence, competitive gaming was in the back seat.

But soon enough, he would find himself being sucked into playing a whole new game. Having played DotA, and COD4 reaching the end of its competitive status, Amruth started to casually pick up DotA 2. As DotA 2 progressed into an international phenomenon, Amruth found himself playing more and more competitive DotA 2 online, taking part in multiple Gamer.LK Leagues under the alias “Amypie“ and progressing well into the tournament standings.

“Thing about DotA 2 is that it’s constantly evolving, the meta keeps shifting. With routine patches and balance updates, Icefrog keeps the game fresh. Really makes it hard to not play the game“

Making a return to his First Person Shooter roots, Amruth also picked up and excelled at Overwatch.

Playing for x3.Evangelion, he and his team made it 3 matches into the tournament at this years Gamer.LK Overwatch League.

“ What I really like about Overwatch is the diversity of the game. While traditional FPS games are mostly about mechanical skill,

Overwatch rewards game sense, strategy and team work just as much “

Frequently seen playing Overwatch on battlenet, Amruth’s friend’s convinced him to try Starcraft 2.

Initially put off by the massive download size and no one to play it with, it was a calling for him to finally try a real-time strategy game with a multiplayer component.

“I really like 1 v 1 games, because it just depends on you. Your skill determines if you win or lose “

Steadily progressing with the game and watching pro twitch streams, Amruth climbed to the top of the Sri Lankan Starcraft 2 leaderboard within 2 months of picking up the game. Winning 2 weekend tournaments, he soon caught the attention of Gamer.LK and was chosen to represent Sri Lanka in the regional qualifiers of the Asian Games 2018. Having bested other players from the region, Amruth secured his spot at the Asian Games 2018. Making his way to Jakarta, Indonesia with his girlfriend to cheer him on, he was stoked.

He would go on to meet a swift defeat at the hands of Taiwan’s “Nice” who went on to win Silver, behind Korea’s “Maru” who won gold –  An experience of a lifetime for Amruth and just the beginning to a whole new journey.

“ Never expected that I’d represent Sri Lanka as its first Esports athlete and represent the South Asian region as well. It was just great to see Esports being recognised by the Olympic committee. Didn’t think we’d come this far, this fast. Was an absolute honour and privilege to be surrounded by gold medal athletes! I even managed to meet the God of Starcraft 2, Maru! “

As for future plans and being Sri Lanka’s first Esports athlete, Amruth plans to keep playing Starcraft 2 as preparation for the next Asian Games and play more competitive DotA 2 and Overwatch. He also intends on trying out League of Legends as the title was present at the Asian Games.

Amruth Alfred at the Asian Games 2018

Amruth Alfred from Sri Lanka went toe to toe against Taiwan and gave it his best, but was eliminated after a 3 round match. Taiwan went on to win the silver medal for Starcraft 2, coming in behind Korea who took gold. We’re super proud of Amruths performance at Esports at the Asian Games and will be keeping an eye out for this rising Starcraft star!

Posted by Gamer.LK on Thursday, August 30, 2018

SLT eSports Lobby Challenge

SLT eSports Lobby Challenge

On the 29th of this month, SLT will be hosting the first iteration of the  “ SLT Esports Lobby Challenge “.

The first Esports event for the 4th quarter of the gaming year, the SLT Esports Lobby Challenge gives teams the chance to test their mettle and gauge themselves before the main and final events for the year. The SLT Esports Lobby Challenge will feature 3 different gaming titles, DOTA 2, FIFA 2018 and Clash Royale, with DOTA 2 being the only multiplayer battle arena event. The DOTA 2 bracket will be played in two formats, with an online qualifier and a LAN event from the semi-finals onwards.

The prize pool breakdown for the tournament is as follows, with DOTA 2 offering cash prizes of 50,000, 30,000 and 15,000. FIFA 2018 and Clash Royale offering 10,000, 6,000 and 3,000. All up for grabs. This tournament is yet another addition to a brand new line up of events by SLT Esports and will be followed up by the main event, the SLT eSports Championship in November.
Registrations are now open at http://www.slt.lk/esports/

Sri Lankan Esports athlete to represent nation at the Asian Games 2018

Sri Lankan Esports athlete to represent nation at the Asian Games 2018

With Esports becoming a rapidly rising cultural phenomenon, many countries are quickly adapting to make way for the new gamer generation. From parents hiring tutors to help their kids in Fortnite, to Esports scholarships, gamers are reaching a new level of recognition for their skill. Some go as far as being recognized as celebrities, reaching new heights of stardom normally reserved for those in the entertainment industry. While this is the case in a set of countries, Esports recognition is still taking off in the rest of the world, especially in Asia. With that being said, things are changing for the better, Esports is rapidly growing in Asia, with lucrative prize pools and sponsorships from independent bodies.  One such body, the Asian Esports Federation – the partner for Esports at the Asian Games, is working in tandem with the Olympic Council of Asia to enable Esports in Asia and will be funding teams for the 2018 Asian Games in Indonesia, thus eliminating the burden of being funded by their respective governments or the tax payers.
A group of 3 athletes and officials from Sri Lanka will be making the journey to this year’s Asian Games.

Amruth “Amypie” Alfred, bested players from Maldives and Pakistan to secure his spot in the Starcraft II finals. While 9 Sri Lankan players did compete in the qualifiers across multiple titles, only Amypie managed to triumph the fierce competition and qualify for the final event. Thus making him the only athlete representing Sri Lanka. Amruth is an alumnus of Gateway College Kandy, and is currently following an MPhil in Astrophysics at the University of Hong Kong, where he completed his BSc in Physics and Astronomy with Second Upper Honours. Amruth also has the fact that he received National Colors for esports, to add under his belt. Esports recognition in South Asia is comparatively low when compared to other Asian countries like South Korea and China. Thus, the remaining of the three, Raveen Wijayatilake and Malinda Jayasekera will be representing Sri Lankan Esports, to network with the rest of the South Asian representatives and form ties with other South Asian countries.
It also gives us great pride to mention that Sri Lanka had the honor of being a part of the first Esports opening ceremony at the Asian Games.

Dialog Axiata PLC, Sri Lanka’s first connectivity provider to launch a mobile gaming platform, aims to empower the local pro-gaming community by powering cyber athletes to represent Sri Lanka in the Asian Games 2018. Recognizing the potential and growth for cyber athletes in the country, Dialog continues to spearhead eSports and support the community to challenge global gamers on international platforms.

We wish them the very best at the 2018 Asian Games!

Sri Lanka at the Esports opening ceremony at 18th Asian Games in Jakarta

President of the Sri Lanka Esports Association Raveen Wijayatilake represented Sri Lanka at the Esports opening ceremony this morning.

We’re proud to announce that Amruth “Amypie” Alfred from Xiphos eSports will be competing in national colors at the 18th Asian Games in Jakarta!

Thank you to our national Esports team sponsor Dialog Axiata for the support.

#asiangames #DialogGaming #gamerlk #slesa #esports #srilanka

Posted by Gamer.LK on Sunday, August 26, 2018

If you are a gamer show this article to your parents

If you are a gamer show this article to your parents

Early this year, the World Health Organisation listed Gaming addiction as a mental health condition for the first time. They went on to describe it as a pattern of persistent or recurrent gaming behaviour so severe that it takes “precedence over other life interests”. With many countries including the UK, labelling it as a major public health issue, this topic has been gaining traction for some time.
But is being a Gamer akin to having a mental illness? Seems a bit disproportionate to label it as such, considering that addiction takes various other forms such as substance abuse. With that being said, we figured that it was high time to do a PSA on the benefits of e-sports and gaming.

Vision improvement
Bet you didn’t see this one coming, now did you? With most parents paranoid about how gaming and prolonged exposure to screens can be harmful to vision, this fear is in fact baseless. However to the contrary, researchers have found that playing games in moderation can actually improve your vision. The research goes onto highlight that FPS games can improve one’s ability to discern close shades of grey – perceiving fine differences in contrast, follow the direction of movement, detect slow rates of flicker(Guess you really need 60 FPS?) and distinguish between faces. With the improvements lasting months after gaming.
https://www.nature.com/articles/nature01647

Improved cognitive function
By utilizing problem-solving, memory, and puzzle elements, games have shown to have a positive impact on cognitive function, slowing down the aging process. Studies show that with just 10 hours of play time, games can lead to prolonged increase of cognitive function in adults. As some games continuously stream new information to HUDs in real-time, games have also been found to increase decision making capabilities, with player’s reacting up to 25 percent faster.
http://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1111/j.1467-8721.2009.01660.x

Faster reflexes and hand-eye coordination
With fast paced action games requiring the user to respond to quick time events with precise button mashing combos, it’s a no brainer that gamers get quite the work out for their hands. Keeping this in mind, surgical residents play games to keep their hand-eye coordination high and reflexes sharp. With three hours or more per week played, the gamer surgeons made 32% fewer errors during practice procedures.
http://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/0956797616650300
https://www.medicalbag.com/lifestyle/gamers-make-good-surgeons/article/472347/

Stress reduction and mood elevation
It’s a pretty mainstream idea that games induce high amounts of stress and aggression, however this is mostly due to lag and toxic players. A study performed on the millennial generation has found that playing games has become a key stress coping mechanism. Out of 1,000 participants of said study, 55% play games to relax and blow off steam. The escapism nature of gaming helps process or deal with a mental health issue or concern. As this has an uplifting effect on players, it allows them to look upon other aspects of their lives more positively. A third involved in the study also mentioned that they continue playing games due to the achievement or accomplishment they receive through gaming, receiving high adrenaline rushes from their victories.
https://www.makeuseof.com/tag/video-game-stress-reduction-need-start-playing-right-now/
https://www.mcgill.ca/channels/news/video-game-shown-cut-cortisol-27675

Social connections
My personal favourite amongst this list. It is a general misconception amongst the older generation that gaming makes people antisocial, but the opposite is actually true. With high speed internet getting more affordable and more widespread, there has been a steady rise in the popularity of online multiplayer games. With games focused on players to work together to finish missions or compete against teams of other players for victory, this has given way to a new form of socializing.
Many friends and connections have been made during those late nights of Dota, Fortnite and Overwatch. Shout out to my close friends Onca, Thunder and everyone else I’ve met through gaming. Games have also shown to be a great way of keeping in touch with old friends regardless of physical proximity.

Exposure to new culture
Most single player games like the Assassins Creed series, use actual historical events as a basis to drive their stories. With well written characters and immersive environments, games can spark one’s interest in discovering more about the culture the game is set in. This in turn leads to players developing curiosity towards said culture, obtaining books and relevant resources connected to the setting of the game. It is even more noticeable in the younger demography with parents stating that their children are more engaged in learning about historical events, hopefully leading to a lifetime appreciation for other culture.

Kushan Dodanwala, the Director at Redline Technologies had this to say
“One of my favourite games when I first started gaming was the Age of Empires series, with Age of Empires II being one of the first RTS games I ever tried. All the story campaigns were based on real events – from Joan of Arc to Genghis Khan. This opened the door to and got me interested in global history. When it came to my O/Ls, history was an optional subject which I didn’t really bother studying as I had already learned as much as I could on my own. Instead I opted out for the easier route with health science. I once visited a relative who was a teacher and he was tutoring a student history for O/Ls, and the lesson was on the Hun invasion of Constantinople. I overheard the lesson, and was able to explain it better than the text book purely based on my experience of playing this game. The teacher, being the experimental type, learned the game himself, recommended all his students to play it, and based some lessons off in game scenarios. “

New perspectives
With most story drive games going the first person shooter styled camera angle, it’s pretty easy to get immersed in a good game. By taking on the role of the main character, players are pushed into a different perspective. As the story progresses, players find themselves investing in relationships and making decisions for the main character, often sympathizing with the characters. This tends to build empathy in players as they are able to “ live “ different lives with varied circumstances and situations. When I first played Dishonored, I was thrust into the role of Corvo Attano.

The last bodyguard to Empress Jessamine Kaldwin, Corvo is framed for her murder and the abduction of her daughter, Emily. As the game goes on, Corvo must escape confinement, eliminate those involved in the assassination of the Empress and restore Emily to the throne. Once I was done playing the game, I realized how much more empathy I had developed towards people caught in the wrong place, at the wrong time.

There you have it folks, 7 benefits of gaming. We hope this clears up the stigma and mainstream myths on how gaming is bad for you. While we do agree that getting addicted to anything can be harmful to you, gaming in moderation is as beneficial as any other leisure activity, as the benefits outweigh the risks.