E-Sports Club Brings Battle Royale to Life


Photo by William Hsieh

During the Overwatch match against El Dorado High on Nov. 28, sophomores Vincent Nghiem and Ethan Ho dedicated their time to playing their very best. While the team was unfortunately unable to get first, they still went to the playoffs and made it into the top 16. The club hopes to participate in the Overwatch U.S. Southwest Regional Championships in late January.

Julia Kim and Simrat Singh

Beyond a computer, keyboard and mouse lies a never-ending world of games filled with competitive spirit. As a league of its own, the eSports Club connects Portola High’s avid gamers with opportunities to continue playing Fortnite, Overwatch, League of Legends or any other games they are passionate about.

“The message we are trying to send behind this club is to spread the future prominence of competitive gaming and have this club be a continuing thing in Portola,” vice president and junior Aiden Wu said.

Every Thursday meeting, leaders present new tournaments or opportunities. After competing in a recent Overwatch tournament, the club received new equipment for their gaming endeavors from Bloody Gaming, allowing members to compete with better equipment such as keyboards and headphones. The club received around $3500 worth of equipment from Bloody Gaming, a gaming hardware developer and seller.

“[Competing] will be able to give the parents a window into why eSports is so popular. This also gives a small taste of eSports competition to the students,” Overwatch team coach Lumen Vera said. “Playing on stage is an intense feeling. Everyone is watching you, and you’re on the big screen; I hope this results in parents and schools investing into eSports.”

In addition to an Overwatch team, the club is hoping to expand by creating a Rainbow Six: Siege, Rocket League, as well as two League of Legends teams for the winter season, which begins in late January.

“The spreading of eSports at our school can also influence kids who are really passionate about video gaming to think about career paths they may have never realized to be within reach or possible,” Wu said.