Although given relatively little media attention, UC Berkeley’s electronic sports team has garnered quite a bit of respect both across the nation and internationally. Cal has particularly excelled in several real time strategy games, including Defense of the Ancients (DotA) and StarCraft, with the DotA team becoming the first ever Collegiate DotA League (CDL) champions and the the StarCraft team poised to win its second championship in the Collegiate StarLeague (CSL). We sat down with the Electronic Sports club‘s president and ace StarCraft player Conan “Suppy” Liu and asked him a few question about E-Sports here in Berkeley:

What does it take to become a serious gamer?

Conan: A lot of dedication. Not just playing casually, or for fun, but you have to focus on areas you can improve on. There are a lot of resources online, including videos of some professional players. One good way is to play a game and watch the replay, taking notes on ways to improve your strategy. It’s almost an academic way of gaming.

Are there any skills in competitive gaming that you would say are applicable outside of the gaming environment?

Conan: (Laughs) There is a study linking surgeons to their video gaming abilities, but in terms of realistic applications, gaming involves a lot of problem solving. At least in Starcraft, there’s a lot of strategy and on-the-spot critical thinking that requires you to think very quickly in reacting to your opponent.

How do students get on the Berkeley StarCraft team? How else can they get involved?

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Somebody please hold us, it has finally happened. Our dreams have come true! Someone has made a history class that fuses the academic study of history with the playing of video games. That’s right; a professor by the name of Joseph November of the University of South Carolina has crafted a history class that features video games as the main way students engage with course material.

According to a handout of the course description posted on reddit, the major focus of the class is to examine each game’s portrayal of its respective time period as well as consider how video games as a medium can help provide new perspectives on history. The playing list for the class features a variety of video games based in historical settings such as Assassins’ Creed II, Railroad Tycoon, Age of Empires III, Fallout 3 and many more.

With the announcement of this class, read more »


4834833062_b1bf8a7717_bLooking for an alternative way to celebrate Easter? After churching it up, and fighting Sunday school children over Easter eggs, after brunching it up, and letting your honey-baked ham filled belly hang over the loosened waistband of your jeans, head over to Pappy’s! Although hanging at a bar during Easter may be a bit unorthodox, it’s a way to spend this holy Sunday resting, and combining two things that go together better than bunnies and Jesus (wait, that makes no sense).

The Berkeley CSL club is hosting a “Barcraft” at Pappy’s. What is a “Barcraft” you ask? Well it combines two very manly activities, going to a bar and Starcraft. On the big screens of Pappy’s Bar and Grill on Telegraph, you can watch some of the best professional Starcraft players in the world play in the finals of the IPL 4 tournament. It is a great learning opportunity for those new to the “craft,” and a great space to meet new Bresties (Bro/besties), or just enjoy the game while sipping on an ice-cold brew.

Now, we know that

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Sunday Shout-Out picks out the week’s stories that simply slipped our minds.

* Someone pooped UC Berkeley’s party. So much for celebrating Darwin’s contributions to science. [Drudge Retort]

* National security much? Computers from Los Alamos National Laboratoy walk off. [Daily Cal]

* Quote of the week: “I honestly don’t know if he’s a crazy or a professor.” [UCB LJ]

* Starcraft + DeCal + YouTube = entertainment for anyone who’s bored or high. [YouTube]

Image Source: Anna Vignet, Daily Cal
Earlier: Obviously Obsessed With Food