First-ever Video Game Tournament Brings Hive Together

White Section Victorious

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Screenshot by Israel Small

SBP’s first-ever NBA2K20 XBOX tournament featured two rounds of intense competition.

A slow start seen by a few viewers defined the beginning of the NBA2K20 XBOX Finals. A muffled and muddled voice spoke incoherently and the game began.

On Friday, Aug. 7, 2020, the Senior Leadership of St. Benedict’s Prep hosted the first-ever, school-wide NBA2K20 XBOX Tournament. The tournament involved three teams playing 3-on-3 games of NBA2K20, a basketball simulation game made by 2K. The Finals were live streamed on Twitch at https://www.twitch.tv/davhoncho and some of the stream is still available at https://youtu.be/2qrVOjSZZ7U.

Six teams were supposed to play a tournament but only 3 showed up after many prospective players did not read emails regarding tournament details. In the end, White, Maroon, and Gray Sections were represented. 

The first match between White Section and Gray Section was short, tight, and tense. David Okeh captained White Section’s team, named F1LAYY4, who triumphed by a score of 22-18 to advance to the Finals. Waiting for F1LAYY4 was Maroon Section’s Moneybaggkillas, led by Tinashe Maphosa, who didn’t play anyone in the previous round as the opponents never showed.

The Finals displayed the game’s faulty animations, systems, and ability to aggravate its players. In NBA2K20, players regularly miss shots they should make and individual players phase through each other frequently, which can cause glitches. In addition, the banter between players was less than friendly and viewers in the chat were very vocal, creating a stressful atmosphere.

F1LAYY4 made light work of Moneybaggkillas in Game 1, winning by a score of 22-18. Soon, the second match started, and it was very reminiscent of the first but controversy erupted when Moneybaggkillas replaced one of its players with a random comp player. A comp player is a competitive player who ‘grinds’ the game in an attempt to get higher in rankings. “Their team was light work,” said David in retrospect, “they were so desperate they needed to bring in a comp player.”

Game 2 began with over-dribbling and a missed lob that represented the match to come: there would be many missed chances to score. In the midst of gameplay, David remarked on the strange new player but decided to allow play to continue. Fast break layups, fade-away Js, and a behind the back move that left a defender on the baseline were highlights of a strong performance by Moneybaggkillas, who tied the series at 1-1 with a 22-14 victory.

Game 3 came and an air of competition settled on the players. The match got out of hand quickly as F1LAYY4 began to struggle with bad shots, miscommunication, and overall frustration. Moneybaggkillas capitalized on the confusion and outshot the opposition 16 to 2 en route to completing a comeback and winning the all-important Game 3 with a thunderous slam and a score of 21-8.

After the series concluded it went into review and Moneybaggkillas was disqualified for use of a comp player, who was not a Benedict’s student. As the last man standing, White Section’s F1LAYY4 was declared victors of the NBA2K20 XBOX Tournament.

In the end, the tournament occurred successfully, but with some hitches, so it is unknown if a tournament like this will be repeated. Despite its dubious result, Friday’s XBOX Tournament brought the Hive together for some much needed entertainment after the last day of Summer Phase. “Games and tournaments like these can really bring us together,” said Shavar Francis ‘21, “especially with the virus around.”

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