Wyatt Kinsinger, senior electronic media and film major and vice president of the gaming collective, is the Capital student to talk to when it comes to esports. Kinsinger is a streamer affiliated with Broken Alliance Gaming, and is one of the organizers behind the on-campus competitive gaming event Convergence.
Esports and competitive gaming have been growing in popularity across the United States over the past few years. In these competitions, individual gamers or entire teams compete against each other at certain video games to win both prestige and prizes. Each video game is considered its own “sport” and only the best of the best at these games rise to the top in esports tournaments.
Kinsinger has participated in several tournaments both in and outside of the state of Ohio, such as Combo Breaker, a fighting game tournament based out of Chicago. In fact, Kinsinger’s primary expertise is on fighting games, particularly Dragon Ball FighterZ and the Soulcalibur series.
“There is an energy that you cannot replicate anywhere else,” Kinsinger said about his experiences at tournaments. “When you’re at a major [event], everyone in that room wants to win. And you feel that… it’s just so cool to feel that passion.”
Aside from his time in the competitive scene, Kinsinger is also a streamer. For those unfamiliar with the practice of streaming as it relates to video games, a stream is a live, online broadcast of someone playing a specific game. These broadcasts are usually hosted by streaming services such as Twitch.tv, or in Kinsinger’s case, Stream.me, and usually include audience interaction with live chat rooms.
As an affiliate of Broken Alliance Gaming, or BxA, Kinsinger must stream for at least 10 hours a week, along with doing a shift on the main BxA channel. “With me being at school [it’s] a bit shaky,” Kinsinger said about his hours. “But, I try!”
As for what he’s required to do during his streams, Kinsinger said, “I play the games that I like, and then say ‘Hey, I’m with BxA.’” Kinsinger is also required to do product placement for BxA’s sponsors during his broadcasts.
Even with these obligations, as only an affiliated streamer Kinsinger is not directly paid by BxA for his time. Instead, Kinsinger receives various perks as part of his affiliation, such as discounts on the products BxA is sponsored by, and hotel coverage for any esports competitions he chooses to attend.
In the future, Kinsinger hopes to become a full-fledged member of BxA’s team, and be able to compete at major tournaments with them.
“You truly feel like you’re a part of a family with these guys,” Kinsinger said. “I know a lot of teams say they are, but this is probably the most wholesome group I’ve ever had.”
Kinsinger also hopes to be more involved with the production and hosting of esports competitions in the future, including here at Capital. As the vice president of gaming collective and their head of esports, Kinsinger is one of the driving forces behind the gaming collective’s on-campus esports competition Convergence, which will be hosted twice in this upcoming month on Oct. 6 and 27.
For those interested in getting into competitive gaming or esports in general, Kinsinger had some advice. “Go to a major tournament. Don’t be discouraged. It’s very easy to kind of fall into a … dark time when you’re not doing well. Even if things look rough, I know it can get better. You just need to keep pushing for it.”