Video games are sports too

Students and teachers find excitement through competitive nature of video games

Coppell+High+School+senior+Andrew+Yi+plays+League+of+Legends%2C+an+online+battle+arena+game%2C+on+the+afternoon+of+Dec.+12.+Yi+is+one+of+many+CHS+students+who+play+competitive+video+games+to+relax+and+have+fun+outside+of+school.
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Video games are sports too

Coppell High School senior Andrew Yi plays League of Legends, an online battle arena game, on the afternoon of Dec. 12. Yi is one of many CHS students who play competitive video games to relax and have fun outside of school.

Coppell High School senior Andrew Yi plays League of Legends, an online battle arena game, on the afternoon of Dec. 12. Yi is one of many CHS students who play competitive video games to relax and have fun outside of school.

Kelly Monaghan

Coppell High School senior Andrew Yi plays League of Legends, an online battle arena game, on the afternoon of Dec. 12. Yi is one of many CHS students who play competitive video games to relax and have fun outside of school.

Kelly Monaghan

Kelly Monaghan

Coppell High School senior Andrew Yi plays League of Legends, an online battle arena game, on the afternoon of Dec. 12. Yi is one of many CHS students who play competitive video games to relax and have fun outside of school.

He walked into his room, set down his backpack and cleared the table of everything except for headphones, his computer and a newly opened can of soda. Clearing his mind of everything but the game, he opened up his laptop and prepared to play.

 

Like many students around the world, Coppell High School students enjoy spending their time and relaxing their minds through the world of video gaming.

 

“I first started playing really really young, about 4 or 5 years old, playing Starcraft 1 and Star Fox on the Nintendo 64,” CHS senior Andrew Yi said. “I play games basically every day and I enjoy it because not only is it fun, but it’s also competitive and easily accessible.”

 

While video games have served as a way to relieve stress and enjoy passing time in a fun, comfortable environment, the competitive nature of video gaming has also captivated players and tested their abilities to think and act on their feet.

Kelly Monaghan
Coppell High School senior Andrew Yi plays League of Legends, an online battle arena game, on the afternoon of Dec. 12. Yi is one of many CHS students who play competitive video games to relax and have fun outside of school.

“Video games are different because they’re a fledgling thing that’s only seriously been around for about a decade,” Yi said. “They are already becoming competitive things and countries around the world are acknowledging professional gamers and competitive players as sports players who can get visas for video games.”

 

The competitive nature of video games is not the only thing that has caught the attention of CHS students.

 

“I enjoy playing because it’s like an escape from reality,” CHS senior Rajesh Nallamottu said. “When you experience stress in life, you need something to resort to and games do just that for you.”

 

The allure of video games has attracted not only students, but adults and teachers as well.

 

“I’ve been playing them since I got a Nintendo back in 1988 and I probably got addicted to them in high school because of the adrenaline rush you get, especially with the newest games,” CHS math teacher James Behlen said. “You’re playing against other real people in real time and you’re just seeking that victory. It’s just so much fun and that adrenaline rush you get is just like in any other sport.”

 

While many view video games as a hindrance and time waster, others recognize its tendency to stimulate the brain and nurture critical thinking abilities.

 

“Video games can be compared to sports in a lot of ways,” Behlen said. “You have to work with other people, you have to strategize, you have to have wickedly fast reflexes. The U.S. government recognizes League of Legends players as athletes with visas. If you go look at images of people who play, I bet you they don’t look like the people you think they do.”

 

Along with many other teens and adults across the globe, Yi finds joy and relaxation each time enters the virtual realm of video games.

 

“There are plenty of negative things about playing video games, but every action or hobby in existence has downsides if taken too far and given too much time and videogames are no different,” Yi said. “Honestly, not much sets me apart from your average gamer, but I’ve been playing games as long as I’ve been born; it’s what I do every day, and what I’ve done for as long as I can remember.”

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