Warcraft creator: The Olympics should embrace esports

In 2014, esports officially made the jump from basements to stadiums

Photo via Riot Games/Flickr

In 2014, esports officially made the jump from basements to stadiums. But is there any stage too big for the growing phenomenon? StarCraft: Brood War’s lead designer doesn’t think so.

From Rob Pardo’s perspective, “there’s a very good argument for esports being in the Olympics.” At least, that’s what the former Blizzard chief creative officer recently told BBC News. “Videogames (sic) are well positioned to be a spectator sport,” Pardo told the British news outlet.

“I think the way that you look at esports is that it’s a very competitive skillset and you look at these professional gamers and the reflexes are lightning quick and their having to make very quick decisions on the fly.”

Even despite Pardo’s glowing letter of recommendation, esports faces some hurdles. Perhaps the closest approximation to the cerebral competition of esports, chess, has faced push back for decades as a “mind sport,” thus precluding it from the games’ athletic slate.

Still, Pardo feels that the Olympics’ definition of competition favors esports now more than ever. 

“If you want to define sport as something that takes a lot of physical exertion, then it’s hard to argue that video games should be a sport, but at the same time, when I’m looking at things that are already in the Olympics, I start questioning the definition,” Pardo told the BBC.

H/T BBC News