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Sri Lanka to attend Esports World Championship 2018

Sri Lanka to attend Esports World Championship 2018

During the last decade, the Esports scene in Sri Lanka has continued to grow with new and exciting milestones being achieved each year. This year has seen many achievements in Esports. In this light, a talented group of Esports athletes hoping to make their mark in the international Esports arena are representing Sri Lanka at this year’s Esports World Championship organized by the International Esports Federation (IESF). After a long hiatus, this marks Sri Lanka’s return to the IESF Esports World Championship. Continuously supporting the exponential growth of local Esports, members of the Sri Lanka Esports Association will be accompanying this group. Sri Lanka, a member of the IESF since 2010, will be one of the 46 member nations to take part in the Esports World Championship. After a round of national qualifiers, the following Esport athletes were selected by the Sri Lanka Esports Association to represent Sri Lanka at the 10th Esports World Championship,

League of Legends

Sajitha de Silva

Shalitha Chandrarathna

Ashik Saleeth

Achintha Konara

Hilal Jismy

Counter Strike : Global Offensive

Sanjeevan Kalaieesan

Shakir Razak

Geeshan Jayarajah

Zayyaan Ali

Omal Sirisena

Tekken 7

Rishan Warnakulasooriya

The world’s governing body for Esports, the IESF will be hosting the tenth iteration of the Esports World Championship – its largest Esports event. Taking place in Kaohsiung, Taiwan, the 10th Esports World Championship’s main events will be held from the 9th of November to the 11th of November.

Formed with the intent of fostering steady and sustainable growth in esports, the International Esports Federation continuously strives to support its member nations regardless of language, race, and culture. Initially starting off with 9 member nations, the IESF now spans over 48 countries.

Featuring three game titles; League of Legends, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive and Tekken 7, the IESF’s 10th Esports World Championships will have a prize pool of 54,000 USD, with 10,000 USD of the prize pool going to the overall champion nation.

After a meticulous selection process, Sri Lanka was awarded the highest points to be eligible for flight support, as well as allowances for food and stay. The IESF will also be sponsoring national federation’s athlete flights for 22 nations for team titles and 31 nations for individual titles, as well as food and stay for select nations.

Raveen Wijayatilake, President of the Sri Lanka Esports Association will be accompanying the esport athletes as the Sri Lankan representative for both the IESF General Meetings and the Global Esports Executive Summit happening in Busan, Korea.

MAS Twinery joins the Sri Lankan Esports movement by coming onboard as the main sponsor of the national Esports team taking part in the World Championships. Twinery is the source of innovations for MAS which is one of the largest apparel manufacturers in South Asia.

Red Bull who has continued to supported the culture of Esports in Sri Lanka during the recent years is the official Energy Drink for the team.

Stay tuned to Gamer.LK for the latest updates from Sri Lanka’s journey at the Esports World Championship.

SLT e-Sports Championship 2018, Sri Lanka’s ultimate gaming event returns for the fourth consecutive year

SLT e-Sports Championship 2018, Sri Lanka’s ultimate gaming event returns for the fourth consecutive year

Sri Lanka’s premier telecommunication provider Sri Lanka Telecom (SLT) is bringing the thrill of competitive video gaming with the annual SLT e-Sports Championship 2018. The Championship which sets the stage for casual gamers and competitive Esports athletes to come together, will be organized alongside the INFOTEL 2018 exhibition at BMICH from the 2nd to the 4th of November in partnership with the Esports Partner, Gamer.LK.

Considered to be the Esports event with the largest prize pool in the country with ultimate fame and prestige for the Champions, SLT Esports Championship 2018 will feature many popular online multiplayer gaming titles such as Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare, Counter Strike: Global Offensive, Dota 2 and League of Legends as well as single player titles such as FIFA 19, Project CARS 2, Injustice 2 and Fortnite. Popular mobile game titles, Clash Royale and PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds Mobile will also be featured at the event. In addition, a Women’s League and an Under 12 Championship will also be taking place. The Championship will be recognized as a ranked event by the Sri Lanka Esports Association (SLESA), thereby further asserting the tournament’s reputation in the country

This year’s Championship will also feature an Esports awareness area equipped with facilities to educate visitors and newcomers to the event about Esports and its benefits. In addition, a mobile games area and the professional Esports arena will be showcased at the event.

SLT stepped into the limelight with the inaugural SLT Esports Championship in 2015. which became an instant success. Since then, SLT has continued to support the Esports industry in the country as it continues to grow. This year, SLT proudly initiated new types of Esports events held across different formats and regions of the country to further promote Esports and strengthen the SLT brand position among the youth segment. The company marks the end of its Esports activities for the year with the pinnacle event, SLT e-Sports Championship which promises to be more extravagant and colorful than previous years.

The SLT e-Sports Championship will be played on a network backbone powered exclusively by Sri Lanka’s Number 1 broadband network – SLT Broadband, famous for its low latency, dedicated and reliable connectivity which is compulsory for Esports and gaming. Showcasing speeds of over 100Mbps and optimized packet routing paths, gamers will receive an unparalleled broadband experience at the event.

In addition to gaming, SLT is also encouraging cosplayers to dress up as their favourite characters as they will also be holding a cosplay competition to select the best cosplayer at the event.

SLT is excited to also introduce a mobile game development competition which will be launched at the event. The competition is aimed at showcasing groundbreaking innovations and new trends in the mobile entertainment industry. Applicants will be able to enroll for the event, for either Android or iOS mobile game applications.

In addition, SLT will also be launching the SLT eSports platform to the online gamers of Sri Lanka at the Championship, making SLT the first operator in South Asia to launch such a service.

Join the action at www.slt.lk/esports and be prepared for a mind-blowing gaming experience.

Red Bull River Runes – Red Bull steps into the Sri Lankan Esports arena with first River Runes Dota 2 1v1 Championship

Red Bull River Runes – Red Bull steps into the Sri Lankan Esports arena with first River Runes Dota 2 1v1 Championship

A rapidly rising cultural phenomenon, Esports viewership is predicted to top 250 million viewers by 2020. Growing at a breathtaking rate, major brands have begun to take notice of Esports and invest in it. Giving you wings, Red Bull is one of the said brands to get into the action.
Presenting the Red bull River Runes. A 1v1 Dota 2 tournament hosted by Gamer.LK and event partners SLT and Colombo City Centre, where the chosen will have the chance to showcase their skills and prove themselves worthy of the arena.
An invite-only event, Red Bull River Runes is open to Dota 2 players from clans who are a member of the Sri Lanka Esports Association. The invited clans and representing players are

  • Xiphos eSports
  • PhoeniX Gaming
  • Noob Alliance
  • Maximum eSports
  • Tech Morph Gaming
  • WolfGang eSports
  • Evox eSports
  • Division eSports
  • Death Pact

A new twist on 1v1 mid games

Unlike the traditional 1v1 mid games you’re accustomed to seeing at tournaments like The International, games played at Red Bull River Runes, will be based on a unique custom game mode. Dubbed Red Bull R1v1r Runes, this modified version of a 1v1 mid game makes for a challenging one-on-one matchup. Contrary to normal 1v1 mid games, both heroes will start off in the mid lane with 3 Items already in their inventory. Namely the Blink Dagger, the Bottle, and an Observer Ward. Instead of having to farm experience and level up from scratch, heroes will also start off at Level 6, making it such that their ultimates will come online right off the bat. Players are also given a random item at the 5-minute and 10-minute marks, and a Divine Rapier is dropped at each of their towers at the 15-minute mark. The winning objective, however, remains the same as the traditional 1v1 mid game. Kill your enemy twice or destroy their Tier 1 Tower.

The tournament format

Consisting of 6 Dota 2 players per clan, the tournament will host 54 players. Split into 6 groups, the group stages of the tournament will be played in the single elimination format, but there’s a twist. 2 groups will have only 8 players. Based on a social media poll, two players will earn a slot in the final bracket, depending on their popularity. The 52 other players will have to duke it out in the group stage and the winner of each group will advance into the final bracket. The final 8 will play in the single elimination format as well

When, where and the winner’s prize stash courtesy of Gamer.LK

With Rs. 150,000 worth of prizes up for grabs, the Red Bull River Runes tournament will take place on Saturday the 27th of October at the Colombo City Centre from 9.30 am onwards.
With a fully decked out Esports athlete kit fit for a DotA 2 pro, the prizes are as follows

First place –

  • 1 x Gamdias gaming chair
  • 1 x HyperX Elite Gaming Keyboard
  • 1 x HyperX Pulsefire Surge Gaming Mouse
  • 1 x HyperX Cloud Alpha Gaming Headset

Second place –

  • 1 x Gamdias gaming chair
  • 1 x HyperX Pulsefire Surge Gaming Mouse

Third place –

  • 1 x Gamdias gaming chair
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.

Gateway takes Esports crown at school-level Esports Championship by Gamer.LK

Gateway takes Esports crown at school-level Esports Championship by Gamer.LK

The Inter-School eSports Championship – Powered by Dialog Gaming, returned for its third consecutive year on the 22nd and 23rd of September 2018 at Trace-Expert City, Maradana. The tournament open to all school students s organised by Gamer.LK, the leader in Esports and Digital Entertainment experiences in Sri Lanka.

This year’s event saw  over 100 schools from all across the country registering for the championship, making it one of the largest School sporting events bridging demographic barriers such as geography and language. The defending champions Gateway College Colombo retained the Championship in convincing fashion by securing medals across many Esports titles. Royal Institute came in as runners-up with Gateway College Kandy coming in at third place.

The Championship kicked off in style with matches being broadcast on the giant screen at the venue with a livestream also being broadcast on Facebook and Twitch for viewers who were not at the venue. Students battled it out across 13 competitive gaming titles over the two days, which included the popular team titles – Call of Duty 4 Modern Warfare, Counter Strike: Global Offensive, Dota 2, League of Legends, Overwatch and Special Force 2 as well as individual titles – FIFA 18, Project CARS, Tekken 7, Injustice 2, Clash Royale and Subway Surfers. For the first time in Sri Lanka, Fortnite was included as an individual title which drew a record number of registrations.

In addition, tryouts for Sri Lanka’s Fastest eRacer took place at the event. Complete with Red Bull racing seats, racing wheels, pedals, large-screen TVs and the tracks on Project CARS, this is a brand-new concept devised by Gamer.LK and aimed at promoting simulation racing in the country. The tryouts drew a lot of attention as young gamers tested their skill behind the wheel.

This year, a special Under 12 segment was also introduced with the mobile gaming titles Subway Surfer being added into the midst.

The Inter-School Esports Championship was organised by Gamer.LK, who are also the organisers for successful annual events such as Play Expo (featuring Sri Lanka Cyber Games and Colombo Comic Expo). From 2016, Gamer.LK took the initiative to branch out Esports and digital entertainment into the three tiers of School, University and Mercantile.

The Inter-School Esports Championship was powered by Dialog Gaming, who over the years have provided vital support towards the development of Esports in the country. Dialog Gaming also promoted the competitive title Special Force 2 at the event. In addition, they will be kicking off the Dialog Gaming League later this year, for which the Special Force 2 champions at Inter-School Esports have already qualified. The overall winners of the League will get the chance to represent Sri Lanka at International tournaments. .

MSI was the Technology Partner for the event. MSI officially launched their 8th generation high performance laptop series in April. The latest MSI laptops were on display at the MSI experience stall, with participants being able to test and feel the sheer power and capabilities available on MSI gaming laptops.

Honda was the Motorbike Partner of the event. Honda started out a brand new season of the Rider Rush championship where they offer a free Honda NAVI to the winner in December.

HyperX made its debut into the Sri Lankan Esports scene as the Silver Partner for the event. HyperX is a high performing gaming brand, featuring best-in-class components that have delivered superior performance, quality and aesthetic design for more than a decade, HyperX products are the choice of top-rated gamers, tech enthusiasts and overclockers worldwide. HyperX gave away valuable gifts at the event.

TRACE Expert City was the Technology Hub Partner for the event. TRACE aspires to transform Sri Lanka into an economically sound, knowledge based, techno-centric, sustainable business hub by promoting innovation, entrepreneurship and professionalism by technologically reawakening our culture of excellence.

The Inter-School Esports Championship was supported by the Official Radio Partner Kiss FM, National Partner ICTA, Strategic Partner FITIS, Digital Media Partner ReadMe, Audio-Visual & Lighting Partner Elektro Revo and the Photography & Videography Partner LetMeKnow.

For more information on all the events visit www.gamer.lk or follow Gamer.LK on Facebook via www.fb.com/gamerlk.

The successful completion of the Inter-School Esports Championship marked the final of the three major competitions held annually by Gamer.LK for universities, schools and companies.Up next in the calendar is Sri Lanka Cyber Games and Colombo Comic Expo which will be held within Play Expo – Sri Lanka’s only Digital Entertainment and Technology exhibition, happening on the 7th, 8th and 9th of December 2018 at the Sri Lanka Exhibition and Convention Center (SLECC).

The winners of the titles are:

Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare

  • Champions: Mahanama College
    • Danushka Udayanga
    • Sandeep Perera
    • Ravindu Shamikara
    • Avinda Himesha
    • Kavishka Gayashan
  • Runners-up: St. Aloysius’ College, Ratnapura
    • Osanda Kothalawala
    • N Kavingza
    • Harindu Shiran
    • Pasindu Prabod
    • Hasantha Dilshan
  • Second Runners-up: Royal Institute
    • Nipuna Akash
    • Lakshan Sandesh
    • Randika
    • Thathwidu
    • Omila Fernando

Counter Strike: Global Offensive

  • Champions: Royal Institute
    • Skanthies Skantharajah
    • Thathvidu Weeratne
    • Yasir Siddiq
    • Shezan Shiraz
    • Mahfooz Mufeed
    • Thirisulan Jeyaseelan
  • Runners-up: Gateway College Colombo
    • Dodi Al Fayed Mohomed Jafferjee
    • Senika Wanigaratne
    • Arreb Niyas
    • Malintha Rekewa
    • Ruwantha Kumara
    • Ashayle Perera
  • Second Runners-up: Peace Island College
    • Sajid Mansoor
    • Maqsood Siddique
    • Thamir Ahamed
    • Taira de Kretser
    • Samhan Mansoor

Dota 2

  • Champions: Dharmapala Vidyalaya, Pannipitiya
    • Hirushan Dhananjaya
    • Ravindu Senajith
    • Dulan Renuja
    • Sahan Malinga
    • Irosha Udhana
    • Thimira Thaththsara
  • Runners-up: Gateway College Colombo
    • Arush Senanayake
    • Ruwantha Kumara
    • Dodi Al Fayed
    • Avindhya Cabral
    • Areeb Niyas
  • Second Runners-up: Ananda College
    • Okanda Sandasiri
    • Udara Ashen
    • Kesara Karannagoda
    • Kalana Bimsara
    • Maduka Maleeshan
  • League of Legends
    • Champions: Carey College
      • Dinul Munasinghe
      • Muhammad Akif
      • Muhammad Zaith Nazreen
      • Manusha Lakshan Jayasinghe
      • Mohammed Naflan Nazar
    • Runners-up: Gateway College Colombo
      • Wishma Wickramatunga
      • Shakeel Jowhershah
      • Khyle Amit
      • Maalik Muthaliff
      • Behan Akila Bandara
    • Second Runners-up: Kegalu Vidyalaya
      • Gamunu Nadeesh
      • Miyuranga
      • Lashan Manchanayake
      • Dushan
      • Janith


  • Champions: Thurstan College
    • Rusith Umanga
    • Lochana Mallaawarchchi
    • Malindu Erantha
    • Isira Wijayarathne
    • Kavindu Dilshan
    • Sangeeth Maduranga
  • Runners-up: Gateway College Colombo
    • Manuga Yuthmin
    • Kavin Gunasekara
    • Ishrath Inaam
    • Hevidu Samarakoon
    • Demetre De Alwis
    • Maalik Muthaliff
  • Second Runners-up: D. S. Senanayake
    • Yashintha Wijetunga
    • Nethmika Jayawickrama
    • Naveen Kannangara
    • Ronath Jayasuriya
    • Manul Chandila
    • Ashen Dulsanka

Special Force 2

  • Champions: Royal Institute
    • Akash
    • Ranush
    • Thathwidu
    • Randika
    • Lakshan
    • Omila
  • Runners-up: Gateway College Kandy
    • Mathurshan Mathavakumar
    • Thashin AB
    • Lakshagar Raja
    • Seshith Ariyawansa
    • Abdullah Ajmal
  • Second Runners-up: Gateway College Kandy
    • Zamaan Anas
    • Athif Ismath
    • Kishanth Parameswaran
    • Thanush Yik
    • Dulan Waduge


  • Champion: Mahabodhi Vidyalaya
    • Shakir
  • Runner-up: Gateway College Colombo
    • Areeb Niyas
  • Second Runners-up: Gateway College Colombo
    • Dulaj Wijewardena

Project CARS

  • Champion: St. Joseph’s College, Colombo 10
    • Wishwere Umayanga Perera
  • Runner-up: Gateway College Dehiwala
    • Saluka Subasinghe
  • Second Runners-up: Gateway College Kandy
    • Nirbheeth De silva

Tekken 7

  • Champion: Royal Institute
    • Dillon Jayesinghe
  • Runner-up: Gateway College Colombo
    • Charuduththa
  • Second Runners-up: Royal Institute
    • Shehan Cecil

Injustice 2

  • Champion: Gateway College Colombo
    • Tuan Maalik
  • Runner-up: Christ King College Pannipitiya
    • Ruwen Hemal Perera
  • Second Runners-up: Henerathgoda Keppetipola Maha Vidyalaya
    • Saumya Ranaraja

Clash Royale

  • Champion: i-GATE College
    • Osure Wengappuli
  • Runner-up: Daybridge International School
    • Christian Warnakulasuriya
  • Second Runners-up: Royal Institute
    • Namith Nimlaka


  • Champion: St Peter’s College, Colombo
    • Shakeel Vazeer
  • Runner-up: Gateway College Colombo
    • Ishrath Inaam
  • Second Runners-up: D. S. Senanayake College
    • Thiviru Perera

Subway Surfers

  • Champion: Presbyterian Girls School
    • Enuri Perera
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