Arts & Life, Events

CSULB students join together and face off in Tekken 8 esports tournament

Students won prizes and celebrated the release of “Tekken 8” in a round-robin style tournament at the USU Esports Lounge on Friday, Feb. 24.

Cal State Long Beach’s fighting game community and Associated Students Incorporated hosted the event, with an open-call invitation for students to participate and enjoy the new release of “Tekken 8.”

Tekken, as a franchise, is similar to other fighting game titles like “Mortal Combat” and “Super Smash Bros,” where players select an in-game fighter with unique abilities to duel it out one-on-one. The sequel’s release builds upon its predecessors, with updated graphics, gameplay changes and an expanded in-game fighter pool of 32 characters.

The tournament's matches were played on the USU Esports center's gaming PC's. Each player had a preferred style of gameplay, with some using the provided keyboards, their personal controllers or their own arcade fightstick.
The tournament's matches were played on the USU Esports center's gaming PCs. Each player had a preferred style of gameplay, with some using the provided keyboards, their personal controllers or their own arcade fightstick. Photo credit: Samuel Chacko

The pool of nine students faced each other in best-of-three matches. The player that accumulated the most wins won the title of champion and a $20 Amazon gift card. Second place won a $10 Amazon gift card, while each participant was given a sugar-free Red Bull and a raffle ticket for a chance to win a game controller.

Jay Udan, a first-year physics major, said he was interested in the event in order to test out his skills. Though Udan is a seasoned player of the Tekken franchise, this tournament was his first time participating in a Beach esports event.

“I came here to this tournament to meet new people, and meet the people who are in charge of the fighting club community on campus,” Udan said.

Between the total concentration on the screen and the constant rhythmic clicking of controllers and keyboards, players exchanged compliments about each other’s gameplay. A player’s misplay or blunder was a moment of shared laughter, and fast-paced matches were finalized with a shared fist bump.

"It&squot;s up to me to understand what my opponent is supposed to do, and be patient," second-year music education major Jose Ramirez said, when asked about his game plan before the tournament started. 
Ramirez went on to place second in the tournament with his fighter, Alisa.
"It's up to me to understand what my opponent is supposed to do, and be patient," second-year music education major Jose Ramirez said, when asked about his game plan before the tournament started.
Ramirez went on to place second in the tournament with his fighter, Alisa. Photo credit: Samuel Chacko

Some players were joined by friends who came to support them, and they too participated in shared jokes, laughter and conversations about “Tekken 8.”

Second-year graduate student and exercise science major Christian Rogacion said he was happy that the campus had a space for gamers to gather. Rogacion went on to be undefeated in the tournament, ending the night with a score of 9-0 and the title of champion.

Second-year grad student and exercise science major, Christian Rogacion. Sporting a shirt with his choice of fighter, King, Rogacion went 8-0 in the Tekken 8 tournament and took home the champion title.
Second-year graduate student and exercise science major Christian Rogacion wore a shirt with his favorite fighter, King. Rogacion went undefeated, and played all nine matches with King. Photo credit: Samuel Chacko

Rogacion, who is in the final stretch of his master’s program, said it has been very busy and consuming.

“This is a nice way to destress from the program,” Rogacion said.

The CSULB Esports Association features several different games in their monthly tournaments for students, with previous games being titles like “League of Legends,” “Overwatch” and “Valorant.”

“Just keep an eye out, we always have more things on the horizon,” third-year art major and event moderator Matthew Delmar said. “We’re really excited for the future esports events where fighting games can be more involved.”

To keep up to date with upcoming events and support Long Beach State’s collegiate esports teams, follow their Instagram.

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