The first inter-school esports tournaments is returning for a second time. This event was the first of it’s kind in the UK and the first tournament took place earlier this year. The Rocket League tournament was hosted at the Gfinity Arena in London where St. John Fisher Catholic Voluntary Academy took the first place prize. The announcement was made on the Digital Schoolhouse website which states that “more than 1000 pupils across the UK are expected to take part”.
The announcement post states that the next tournament will begin at the end of 2017. It will feature regional heats and a grand final. The 2018 event will be hosted at the London Games Festival in April. Schools that took part in the tournament reported a “rise in interest in games and esports-related careers during the competition”. Dats states that “87% of participating pupils reporting a greater interest in studying computing and tech-related qualifications, and 75% of students reporting significantly increased interest in a career in the video games industry.” So clearly the competition is having a positive effect on students then.
Each school taking part in the competition will be paired with an industry coach. This coach will offer career advice and gameplay tips. However, the quarterfinals will also feature industry speakers who will talk about careers. Students who don’t join the tournament as a player will be encouraged to take part by exploring other roles such as casting, event production, marketing and more.
The first tournament was backed by PlayStation, 505 Games, Sega and the National University Esports League (NUEL). There’s currently no information on who will be backing the second tournament of the Digital Schoolhouse. The creators of the event also have not stated when the first game will take place for the tournament. However, we can expect news to come over the next couple of months as the expected start date approaches.