“I feel disgusting. I feel gross,” said Kristan Baker, a buyer for TigerTech, from behind the cashier desk. She wasn’t the only one feeling the heat. TigerTech had been packed with over 150 men (and a few women) for the past four hours, most there to participate in TigerTech’s first video game tournament.
Baker said TigerTech sold 170 copies of “Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2” – 130 for the Xbox 360 and 40 for the PlayStation 3 – from midnight until 1 a.m. She placed an order for 100 more copies before she left the bottom floor of MU’s bookstore, which was hot and musty, the air charged with testosterone-induced competition.
- Lasted from 8 p.m. Monday until midnight on Tuesday
- Held to promote a midnight release party of “Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2,” which was released and sold at TigerTech after the event
- 32 teams, consisting of four people each, played “Call of Duty: Modern Warfare,” a first-person war simulating shooter developed by Infinity Ward and published by Activision Publishing, Inc. on four PlayStation 3 systems and four Xbox 360 systems.
- Eight televisions were used – one for each game system.
- The winning team received a free copy of “Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2.”
- The second place team received 10 percent off “Modern Warfare 2.”
- Teams were split for two-on-two rounds of Team Deathmatch, with each half of a team playing two separate matches against another team.
- Each round had a 10-minute time limit and each kill was worth 10 points, kept count by the game.
- At the end of each 10-minute round, the scores for each half of the team were added up.
- Winners moved on to the next round, the losers were eliminated.
Crowds gathered around the TV screens to witness the virtual destruction of each team. Although excitement was in the air, the atmosphere was intense as each player furiously flicked thumb sticks and mashed triggers on controllers with precision — gunshots and weapon reloads echoing the presses onscreen.
The final round required both halves of the last two teams to play two, 10-minute matches — one on the 360 and one on the PS3. No one on Team 20, which was affectionately called Team Xbox by various members of the TigerTech staff, had played “Modern Warfare” on the PS3 before. This didn’t slow down their performance.
After four hours of competitive virtual warfare among the players, Team 20 beat Team NPH for the win just seconds after the clock struck midnight.
Brad Puff, Alex Blackmon, Rick McDonald and Keith McDonald comprised Team 20.
Puff and Blackmon, roommates at MU, found Keith on Gamebattles, through a search of the Columbia area. Puff said he randomly sent Keith a message asking if he was interested because they needed two more people for their team. Keith and his cousin Rick both agreed to play, and Team 20 was born.
Puff and Blackmon had never met, nor had they played video games with Keith or Rick before the tournament.
“I had to call him when I was standing a foot away from him because I didn’t know it was him,” Puff said about Keith.
Before exchanging handshakes, Puff and Blackmon briefly discussed the chances of skipping class Tuesday.
“I’ve got accounting at 8 a.m. It’s probably just not going to happen,” Puff said with a laugh.