Eastern Kentucky University, known for its video game development program, is hosting a statewide electronic sports competition this weekend. It’s being promoted as the first time in the U.S. that a multi-title eSports competition has been organized by a state games program.
EKU Gaming Institute Director George Landon says for-profit entities usually host this kind of event. He says the non-profit RunJumpDev is involved in the day-long event Saturday. “This will be kind of an interesting seeing the non-profit groups starting to pick this up and realizing that there’s a lot of opportunity for growth as well, so it will be really interesting to see where this goes,” said Landon.
Landon says this weekend’s console battling event doesn’t focus on traditional sports. “There are eSports events around games portraying athletic events, but it can be other games as well. There’s hearthstone which is based around a card game. So, it’s any video game,” said Landon.
Bluegrass Sports Commission Marketing Director Kyle Childers says state games officials are always looking for emerging sports. While the nine games in this competition aren’t connected to traditional sports, Childers says that could be considered in the future.