£75,000 prize for Fortnite champions

Battle royale: The competition was called the Summer Skirmish.

Should video games count as sports? Last week, tennis players at the Australian Open shared an arena with another sporting event: a huge Fortnite competition.

What’s happening

Last weekend, more than 7,500 people crowded into the Australian Open arena in Sydney. Only this time, they weren’t watching tennis. They were watching Fortnite!

In the competition, the world’s best gamers competed for a £75,000 prize.

Find out more

These multiplayer video game competitions are called “esports”.

Esports has boomed in the last few years. In fact, the industry could be worth over £1 billion by 2021.

In 2017, 100 million watched the League of Legends video game world championships. That is 10 times more people than the number who watched the Wimbledon tennis tournament.

In fact, esports could even appear at the 2024 Paris Olympics as a demonstration event.

Should video games count as sports?

Some say…

No! Sport is about running around and getting exercise, not staring at a screen. We should not encourage people to spend too much time playing video games by calling them sports.

Others think…

Yes! The people who win these competitions have put as much time and practise in as any athlete. Sport is about having fun in a competition with others, so it is the same thing.

You Decide

  1. How much time do you spend playing video games?

Activities

  1. Write your own definition of the word “sport”. Share your answer with your classmates. Are theirs the same or different?

Some People Say...

“Some people say video games rot your brain, but I think they work different muscles that maybe you don't normally use.”

Ezra Koenig

What do you think?

Word Watch

Australian Open
One of the four biggest tennis competitions.
Competed
When you try to beat someone at something in a contest.
Industry
All the sales and money involved in a particular area.
Tournament
A competition.

Subjects

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