The team at Click-A-Brick have applauded the innovation behind Super League Gaming’s idea of using conventional cinemas for creating video game leagues for children and teens to compete against each other, saying it gives kids the best gift from both worlds, playing their favorite video game and also being socially involved with other kids.
Players in Super League Gaming bring their laptops to a cinema and compete against one another in the computer game Minecraft. A third-person perspective of the competition is then projected onto the movie screen so parents and other spectators can watch. The company has partnered with the AMC, Regal and Cinemark cinema chains for its events.
So far, Super League Gaming has held several preview events across the country and recently kicked off its inaugural fall season in more than 30 cities across the United States, including Anchorage, Alaska. The season’s top winner will receive a $5,000 scholarship.
President and COO of Super League Gaming Brett Morris said he wanted to combine the camaraderie of little league sports with the communal nature of old-fashioned video game arcades.
“We grew up in a generation where we would go into an arcade and compete,” Morris said. “It wasn’t just about competition. The memories we relished most were the social moments. Our kids don’t have that face-to-face interaction.”
Since Minecraft is open-source, Super League Gaming can tinker with the game itself to suit its needs and that need was to make the game competitive, but not quite as competitive as e-sports leagues.
“We’ve made ‘Minecraft,’ the world’s most popular game, better by adding this theater element,” said Morris. “We’ve built it to take advantage of all the interaction that the kids can have inside the theater. It’s not the same experience as just playing by yourself. Currently, e-sports is very competitive. It’s different with ‘Minecraft.’ We see ourselves as a recreational league below e-sports, where you can actually come in and play. Our kids are coming to the theater to play together, not just watch.”
Click-A-Brick Co-Founders Jason Smith and Georg de Gorostiza say they like the idea behind Super League Gaming, as it takes something that is normally associated with solitary play and makes it a group activity, making it one of the best gifts for kids who love Minecraft.
“We’re big advocates of traditional toys for obvious reasons, but we do appreciate the innovation shown by Super League Gaming in bringing a new element to video games,” Smith said. “We also like that the league uses Minecraft. As far as video games go, it’s about as close as you can get to building blocks and we often hear that playing with Click-A-Bricks is a bit like real world Minecraft. So, what Super League Gaming is doing is tapping into something kids traditionally enjoy doing — building with blocks — and adding in the video game element, plus the socialization aspect. It’s a great way to get kids who love video games together to have some fun in a social environment.”
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