Pro-gaming comes to the UK today as EuroGamer, the Online Gamers
Association, and PC Gamer magazine came together to launch the PC
Our first event, taking place
today, is a massive Unreal Tournament competition at the
LAN Arena in
Nottingham, sponsored by AMD.
LAN Arena is set up inside the massive Megabowl complex here in
sunny Nottingham, sporting a thirty system network of AMD Athlon
powered PCs as well as the usual bowling lanes, arcade machines,
bars, restaurant, and pool tables. Tempest and the lads from
SubSpace are providing live mixes throughout the day, broadcast via
Shoutcast to the rest of the world, and there is a huge projector
screen up showing the action for a packed audience on the balcony
overlooking the venue.
With well over 200 players taking part in the event, the place is
going to be packed. When I arrived at the venue this morning there
were already over 150 people inside, and the queue to get in
stretched down the stairs, round the corner, and back through the
doors inside the ground floor of the venue! Some players had been
waiting to get in since the early hours of the morning.
And with a first prize of £2500, who can blame them? This is
the biggest computer games tournament ever held in the UK, both in
terms of cash prizes and sheer numbers taking part. And this is
just the first PC GAMER Championships event!
tournament starts with a series of eight player free-for-alls
on DM_Codex and DM_Tempest, with the top two players from each
game guaranteed a place in the next round.
These free-for-all rounds will weed out the also-rans, leaving us
with just eight players for the single elimination duel rounds.
Duel matches will be played on DM_Fetid, DM_Fractal and
At the end of the day the overall winner will walk away with a cool
£2,500, one of the biggest cash prizes ever to be given away
at a UK gaming event. Another £2,500 will be split amongst the
other seven players who make it through to the duel rounds.
Results for the top two players from each of the eight player free
for all first round qualifiers -
First Round Results
More results for the top two players from each of the eight
player free for all first round qualifiers -
Brem X Jones
Second Round Results
Results for the top two players from each of the eight player
free for all second round matches -
Third Round Results
Results for the eight player free for all third round matches
[more coming soon!] -
Played on the cheerily titled "Fetid Sewers" map, the
first of the quarter finals saw Ruination taking on Whaq
in a close match that left the scores dead even on 4 : 4
with just two minutes left to play, before Ruination
finally managed to pull out a slim lead.
It had been a tense game, with both players cautious as they
ran around the pipes, firing off grenades and rockets as they
caught sight of each other, or just lobbing one down a pipe on
the offchance. In the end Ruination put on a late spurt to take
the match 7 : 4, becoming the first player to make it through
to the semi-finals.
Meanwhile PHreaK had been taking on [CaK]Hades, with Hades
having a much easier time of it than Ruination as he cruised to
a 7 : 3 victory having been a clear frag or two ahead for most
of the match.
The third quarter-final was between Terminator and Matrix,
who had proven to be a strong favourite with the crowd when we
put a Voodoo 3 up for grabs to whoever could predict the final
outcome of the tournament, receiving more votes than the other
seven quarter-finalists combined!
Terminator took the early lead, but it wasn't to last long as
Matrix fought back to equalise and then forced Terminator into
suiciding, eventually taking the score to 2 : 0. From here on
in everything went Matrix's way, and he finished the match 6 :
Finally we had Dougal vs Agento[Vortex]. As we joined this
match Dougal had already gone 7 : 3 up, and would have made it
eight if his eightball rocket hadn't blown him up along with
his enemy. Agento got the shield belt and recovered a few
frags, promising a tight finish, but in the end Dougal came
through to take it 10 : 7 in the final minutes of the game.
And so Whaq, PHreaK, Terminator and Agento[Vortex] all went out
of the competition, picking up cheques for £150 for their
efforts - not too shabby for a half day's work! Meanwhile
Ruination, Hades, Matrix and Dougal went on to compete for the
£2,500 grand prize...
Semi-Finals : Dougal vs Matrix
matches were played on DM-Fractal, and the first game saw
Dougal and Matrix squaring off in what was to prove a
close fought match on a tight map that left neither player
anywhere to run.
Early rocket and shock rifle exchanges left Dougal with a
flimsy 4 : 3 lead at the start of the game, and both players
picked up a frag as they ran into each other and their rockets
reduced each other to byte sized giblets. Matrix fought back
with shock (rifle) tactics to take the lead 7 : 5, but Dougal
was soon back on the case as Matrix managed to blow himself up.
Within seconds the tables were turned, and Dougal was 7 : 6 up
after four minutes of play.
Matrix skirted round the top balcony, grabbing the rocket
launcher and shield belt before dropping down into the central
arena to equalise the scores on 8 : 8. Dougal had soon picked
up a couple more frags himself though, but neither player was
able to pull out a clear lead. At half time it was still 10 :
Matrix again fought back, taking it to 12 : 12 at six minutes,
and the two players continued to match each other almost frag
for frag, Matrix just pulling out a slim lead before Dougal
picked up the shield belt and recovering his position. With
eight minutes gone it was 20 : 18 to Dougal.
As the game drew to a close it was neck and neck, with both
players on 24 : 24. In the final seconds though it was Dougal
who got the final frag, taking the match 25 : 24. An exciting
game between two very evenly matched players.
Semi-Finals : [CaK]Hades vs Ruination
other semi-final was between Hades and Ruination, and was
a little more one-sided. Ruination started as meant to
carry on, cutting through his opponent's shield belt and
taking Hades down with his shock rifle.
Ruination got a second frag, but then Hades caught him out on
his way up to the top balcony. Ruination smacked him down again
hard to take his lead to 3 : 1, but Hades was soon back to pick
up a second, and then responded to Ruination's fourth frag by
catching him as he dropped down into the central arena.
Ruination began to pull out a small lead now, and Hades blew
himself up with his rocket launcher to leave him 6 : 2 behind.
Ruination was on a roll, and by the fourth minute he had
extended his lead to 9 : 3 as Hades suffered. He wasn't giving
up though, and did manage to notch up a few more kills, but
Ruination was always comfortably ahead by about five frags.
Hades got hold of the shield belt, but came face to face with a
rampaging Ruination as he dropped down from the balcony, and
the two players blew each other up. Ruination was more or less
controlling the level now, and in the eighth minute he was a
commanding 16 : 9 up, and still pulling out.
Hades was desperately trying to recover, but even on this tight
confined map he was unable to recover from such a deficit in
the few minutes left. In the end Ruination took the game 24 :
Finals : Ruination vs Dougal
The final match took place on DM-Stalwart, and Dougal was
off to a flying start. Ruination got the armour but went down
under to the green shaft from Dougal's pulse gun, then was
killed again soon after respawning. A trio of quick flak cannon
frags took the lead to 5 : 0!
Ruination wasn't having any of it though, and soon got a couple
back, but it was obvious that Dougal had the upper-hand. As
Ruination suicided four minutes into the game the score was
already 9 : 1, and Dougal was streaking away in a hail of
shrapnel and green lightning.
The two players ran into each other in the central corridor of
the map, Ruination's shock rifle no match for a rampaging
Dougal and his flak. Then Ruination suicided a second time,
making the score 10 : 0. Ouch. He wasn't completely out of the
game yet though, and got one back with his shock rifle, and
then a second as the two players splattered each others guts
against the walls, making it 12 : 2.
Dougal was soon domination again though, and with seven minutes
gone the score was 16 : 3 in his favour. A flak battle in the
central corridor left Ruination injured and running for cover,
only to suicide again with his flak cannon. Dougal obviously
liked his flak cannon, lobbing canisters of red hot metal left
right and center as he took it to 19 : 2 in the final minute of
Ruination got one back with his shock rifle in the middle
again, but Dougal fought back and yet again Ruination suicided!
The final score was 21 : 2 after an impressive display from
And so the tourney ended with Dougal walking away as the
UK's Unreal Tournament champion, with a crisp cheque for
£2500 to show for his efforts. Ruination came a well
deserved second, taking a cool £1000, while Matrix and
Hades picked up another £900 between them, and the four
remaining quarter finalists each banked a £150 cheque.
The tournament had seen some great play from the more than 200
competitors taking part, with many of the games coming down to
just a handful of frags at the end. In a "friendly" grudge
match at the end of the first round the EuroGamer staff had
battled it out, with your humble narrator John "Gestalt" Bye
leading the staff bunch in third place. MC Tempest took a break
from announcing other people's results to pip me to the post by
just one frag, which he had scored in the last five seconds of
Meanwhile the first place man was just another frag ahead of
him, leaving just two points covering the top three places. An
exciting and fun match was had by all, although we had all
agreed before it even started that none of the EuroGamer staff
should go through to the next round anyway, whatever the
results. It just goes to prove, it's not the winning, it's the
taking part that counts!
At the end of the day the event was a big success - the largest
pro-gaming tournament of its kind ever held in the UK, as well
as the first PC Gamer Championship event, and it had all gone
off smoothly with very few problems.
Here's to the next event, which should be even bigger and
Rogues Gallery - Photographs From The Event
-- John "Gestalt" ByeRelated Features -
LAN Arena 3 coverage
UKPCGC Finals coverage
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