Human hockey pucks? Throwing the competition as a strategy? Practical jokes taken wrong? It might sound like an episode of MTV’s Road Rules or CBS’s The Amazing Race, but it’s actually WCG Ultimate Gamer 2.
If you haven’t caught on to WCG Ultimate Gamer 2, it’s a reality TV style gaming competition that pits competitive gamers around the US against each other. Twelve competitors live in a house in Los Angeles, Calif. together as they partake in real life and gaming challenges which range from NHL 10 to Mario Kart to Tekken on Xbox 360 and Nintendo Wii.
“We thought it would be really exciting to take the video game beyond the game and to have something not for only real gamers,” Bruce Loeb, Senior Vice President and General Manager of WCG’s US office said.”We wanted to make it so that it was something that was really fun and exciting for video game fans the hardcore ones, also really enjoyable for people who didn’t know that much about it.”
WCG is one of the two major gaming leagues. The Korean-based company partnered with Microsoft and Samsung here in the United States, so their gamers tend to be active on PC or Xbox 360.
Last night’s challenge was based around NHL 10 for Xbox 360, so the contestants headed down to the local ice rink (yes, Los Angeles has ice rinks) to turn themselves into human hockey pucks. Each contestant had to fling themselves via a giant slingshot across the ice and throw pucks in hockey nets while trying to maneuver themselves into a goal for points.
“I was the first one launched we really wanted to be accurate and had them pull them really far back,” Rachel Quirico, gamertag Seltzer, said. She’s had multiple first place finishes in Team Fortress 2. “I had to hit that wall at least 15 miles per hour.”
“Caesar and Sebastian, we though neither of them were going to go in the sled,” Quirico revealed. “I don’t know if it really benefited the team. They were really encumbered by the size of the sled.”
But, the real drama broke down in the house when Quirico and Kat Gunn — ||| Mystik |||, the national champion for D.O.A. — put pancake mix on Jake Pfister (Thirstee, who has multiple local tournament titles in 3 genres) while he was sleeping as a joke. He didn’t take the prank lightly and had a diva-like meltdown.
“It had terrible terrible consequence,” Quirico admitted. “If I could do it all over again I would spill 10 times the Bisquick I knew no matter what he was going to get upset so I might as well have gone all out.”
Both girls were scared because Jake was the top gamer of the night, and he gets to pick who faces off against the bottom contestant of the round in the elimination challenge: A one-on-one game of NHL 10. In a strategic move, Yaz Ammari — clowN, the world champion of Counter Strike: Source — didn’t even play the game so he could come in last. He then requested that he be put against Sebastian Burton, one of the national finalists for Madden known as Chosen1, since Sebastian was annoying him with his cocky attitude.
The game ended in a shootout with Yaz scoring one goal to win the game.
“If I could do it again, I would probably kind of go harder,” Burton said, “I think you can’t help and be lax when you’re in an environment where everybody is so chill.”
“I beat myself up, and its going to cost you,” he added. “I told myself, ‘If you don’t beat him in the game he’s going to sink you in the shootout.'”
He had no regrets, but he did think that his earlier actions is what set Yaz against him.The boys in the house had formed an alliance. Sebastian was supposed to throw the first challenge so he could go in against Kat in the elimination challenge, but he chickened out.
“If I could go back, would I have went in again Kat?” he asked. “In turn that’s what got Yaz upset. I didn’t do it then because I thought, ‘Whoa this is the first week, you don’t put yourself out there the first week.'”
But, don’t count this gamer out yet. He’s training for MLG: DC to compete in Tekken 6. Also, he’s looking forward to competing in EA Sports: MMA.
“I will be number one in the world in EA Sports: MMA,” he said. “I told you that.”