Are Asian Gamers No Good?

Fancy playing Tiger Woods in a head-to-head match-up in his own video game?

Tiger Woods

Steve Ward of Nhill Australia reckons it is better than being crowned Gaming Champion in Gillette-EA Sports Champions of Gaming Tournament 2009.

But as I read about the EA tournament, what struck me was that there was not a single Asian winner. Even the Asia-Pacific category was dominated entirely by Australians.

I am not racist, but it was just odd that a continent with at least half the world’s population could not even have a single winner in a gaming tournament.

Why is it odd?

Well, South Korea is, after all, a part of Asia, and nowhere else in the world has computer games been taken so seriously. South Korea is also home to a one of the longest-running professional gaming leagues… Starleague.


In Starleague, teams of professional gamers duke it out year after year in front of computer screens to the delight of their Korean fans. These teams are not merely collections of unknowns, but made of professional gamers, each with their own dedicated loyal fanbase and sponsored by corporations. One team is even actually sponsored by the Korean Air Force!

Maybe all those aircraft simulator games actually do help improve piloting skills. The game used in Starleague however is not an aircraft simulator but one of Electronic Arts’ greatest real-time strategy game, Starcraft.

OK back to my question of the lack of Asian winners in Gillette-EA Sports Champions of Gaming Tournament 2009. Take a look at the choice of games in this tournament.

  • Tiger Woods PGA TOUR(R) 09
  • Madden NFL 09
  • NBA Live 09
  • EA Sports (TM) Soccer 09
  • NASCAR (R) 09

Notice something?


Still can’t see it?

Three out of five of them are American-oriented sports!

  • Madden NFL 09 is a computer game about American football.
  • NBA Live 09 is about the world famous American basketball league, the National Basketball Association.
  • NASCAR is a car racing game (National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing – an American car racing championship).

So what does this have to do with the winners?

Simple. Ask yourself if you would play a game about a sport that you have no knowledge about and does not even interest you in the first place.

And where gamers, especially dedicated and hardcore players, are concerned, interest is the primary motivation to achieve excellence in any game.

That might explain just why there is a lack of Asians in the list of winners in this year’s Gillette-EA gaming tournament. Or, just maybe, we were not good enough. Hmm… Impossible!

Disclaimer: RGG is Asian by descent and would like to state that this article is not meant to provoke any debate regarding race.