Getting in the game: More Ohio schools on board with growing esports trend – Wooster Daily Record

Getting in the game: More Ohio schools on board with growing esports trend – Wooster Daily Record


Students on the Super Smash Bros esports team at Ashland High School practice in their lab at the school.

When the founder and president of eSports Ohio is asked to describe the emerging sport for which his nonprofit is named, he has a multi-layered answer.  

“Esports is competitive gaming. Well, that’s what it is at its root, but it’s so much more than that,” says Nick Rider of the activity that is a growing trend in schools across Ohio.

Rider said competitive video gaming involves everything from building computers to make them run faster, to wiring the network to provide the fastest Wi-Fi connection.  

Combine those aspects with what Rider calls “soft skills,” like communication and personal growth, that students also learn, and that, says Rider, is what makes esports stand out.  

“It’s insane how big it is with STEM, with traditional athletics and everything in between,” Rider said. “This just blows traditional sports out of the water and its capabilities.”  

With the surge of interest in video games and competitive video gaming across the world in recent years, countless colleges, universities and even school districts have started to create their own esports teams where students can represent their schools  and finally have an outlet for their love of video games.  

How did competitive gaming get started?   

While the first video games came out of college labs in the 1950s and ’60s, the first at-home consoles and games for the average consumer became more readily available in the 1970s.  

With the number of games and public interest increasing over the years, the United States saw its first, large-scale video game Source…