The International Olympic Committee recently announced the Olympic Esports Series, an event with very few real esports. The majority of the games in this virtual Olympics are mobile titles, with only a few needing a controller or keyboard.
“The Olympic Esports Series (OES) is a global virtual and simulated sports competition created by the IOC in collaboration with International Federations (IFs) and game publishers,” according to the official website. The categories are mostly based on real Olympic sports like archery, sailing, and Taekwondo, with a few exceptions.
One of them is motorsport, which Gran Turismo 7 will symbolise. This is possibly the most conventional of the Olympic Esports Series games. Chess, which is not an officially recognised Olympic sport but will be featured on Chess.com, is another exception.
Many of the activities in the OES are mobile games. Tic Tac Bow represents archery, Virtual Regatta represents sailing, and Tennis: Clash represents tennis. All of these are available for installation on Android and iOS.
Dance athletes will fight in Just Dance. It includes a playmat, but Virtual Taekwondo is the most involved “esport” in the OES. This game is similar to a VR title in that players wear sensors on their arms and legs to perform kicks and punches. The greatest difference between Virtual Taekwondo and the real thing is that no throws or grapples are possible due to technological constraints.
Moreover the IOC’s recognition of video games as competitive sports is commendable. Twitter users seem to find it strange that the Olympic body ignores games like League of Legends and CS:GO. Even though when using the term “esports.”
The Olympic Esports Series qualifiers are currently underway and will end on May 15. The finals will be place in Singapore from June 23 to June 25.
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