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New England Regional Gaming Convention, eSports Tournament for the Military

  • Published
  • By Mr. Timothy Sandland
  • 102nd Intelligence Wing

Camaraderie. Esprit de Corps. Teamwork.

These are terms that define the bonds that connect service members. These connections begin during the initial days at boot camp, and don’t stop growing until long after one’s service is complete.

Undoubtedly, these bonds of service are enhanced and strengthened on the battlefield, and to a lesser extent, in-garrison under less hostile conditions. They are also strengthened outside of typical duty hours, during times of rest and relaxation. A pickup softball game, a round of pool or maybe a few sets of racquetball at the base gym.

One of the newer forms of this is eSports or gaming.

Since the early days of Pong and Pac-Man, video games have proven to be not only a great way to “get away from it all” but, in more recent years, a safe and convenient way to battle in a virtual arena. Be it over the internet, thousands of miles apart; or connected to the same physical server at a modern gaming facility, the story is the same; triumph or be beaten.

Once such an event is being put together by Guardians at the 6th Space Warning Squadron from Cape Cod Space Force Station.

Billed as the “New England Regional Gaming Convention, eSports Tournament for the Military” the contest will be held in Hanover, Mass at the Uptime eSports facility on Jun 11.

The intention is to bring military competitors from across the Commonwealth to compete against their fellow service members in an event that will test their mettle and fortitude in the digital realm.

“The overall goal is to try to get everybody together,” said Sgt. D’Andre Floyd, 6th SWS. “I feel like we have a bunch of people who we don’t know anything about. Otis [Air National Guard Base] sticks with Otis, Hanscom [Air Force Base] sticks with Hanscom. Noone knows anything about the 6th SWS… It's an opportunity for all of us to get together and play some video games.”

Of course, these engagements are for fun and most notably, bragging rights - but the interaction hopes to be an opportunity for Guardians and Airmen to interact with their Army, Coast Guard, and National Guard counterparts. Maybe even some Sailors and Marines.

Some of the games that will be in play are Halo: Infinite, Mortal Kombat 11, Super Smash Bros: Ultimate, Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War, Rocket League, Forza 5 and Madden 22.

Military gamers are free to bring family and friends to share in the festivities, although anyone looking to be a part of the formal competition will need to be a current active, guard or reserve member.

“Bring your friends, bring your family, but for the tournament itself, it has to be a military person - anyone who has affiliation, come on out,” said Floyd.

There will be food and drinks - a food truck will be on site.

In this ‘virtual’ arena, winning is the objective, but when all is considered, the real goal is bringing service members together for a day to reinforce and celebrate the shared experience of the Profession of Arms - that is a win for all.

Service members who would like to participate are invited to register at https://tiny.one/nergc or email nergc.staff@outlook.com.