8-Yr-Old Becomes the Youngest Professional eSports Player

Joseph Deen signed a contract with Team 33
(PRNewswire/Team33)

There was a time when kids could get yelled at for playing too many video games, and that time may as well be considered ancient history with the explosion of professional gaming. We’ve seen major TV networks start to cover eSports and colleges even begin to offer scholarships for gaming. And now we have one of the youngest professional eSports athletes, as 8-year-old Fornite expert Joseph Deen signed a contract with Team 33.

We know a thing or two about gaming, well, our community does at least. The Dad Gaming is one of the best (or the very best, according to us) gaming communities around. And eSports is definitely becoming much more legitimate. Still, it’s a little wild to see a third-grader become a professional athlete.


Deen has been training with the team on Fortnite since he was 6 years old, and the player known as 33 Gosu is officially one of the youngest players ever to sign with a pro team. For his efforts, he got a $33,000 signing bonus and will be getting a $5,000 professional gaming setup.

In a press release, Deen called it a “dream come true.”

“While many other teams didn’t take me seriously due to my young age, Team 33 scouted me through Fortnite games and let me train and learn with them daily. I couldn’t be happier today to become an official member of the team,” he said.

One of the founders of Team 33, Tyler Gallagher, said they are beyond excited to have him on the exclusive roster.

“We have secretly been scouting talent for our roster and games over the last few years and are proud to officially sign Joseph,” he said in a press release. “We made it a point to train him over the past few years because young gamers are the future, and we want to start training them early….it has now finally all paid off and is a momentous day for all of us.”

My kids have been playing games FOR FREE like suckers for years, and now it’s time to start holding them accountable at the bottom line. Sure, my kids did bring in some sales $$ this year through a lemonade stand (definitely hurt by the pandemic), but they gotta up their game apparently to reach their true potential.

The Dad Gaming Bootcamp: Apex Legends

a man and his son cheer in excitement while playing a video game.

This post was written by The Dad writer Matt Fisher.

Gaming Dads walk that fine line between accepting the mantle of adulthood and goofing around on the internet with their friends. This is why so many of us are drawn to the world’s second-favorite battle royale shooter, Apex Legends. It’s the fancy French mustard of free-to-play mayhem- where Fortnite has cabin building and people running around in horse costumes; Apex Legends has an impenetrable system of guns and attachments and playable characters who are mostly evil scientists or psychotic robots. Where Fortnite has weird Day-Glo environments and surprise Travis Scott concerts, Apex Legends has, well, weird Day-Glo environments and ten-story-tall dinosaur dogs. What can I say? Weird Day-Glo environments are fun.

The Dad Gaming League is hosting an Apex Tournament on December 11th, which I highly recommend to Apex Legends Dads everywhere. (Editor’s Note: While Apex is cross-platform, this event is for PC players only, and you can sign up here.) Now, the first rule of The Dad Gaming League is that you do not need to be very good at video games to take part in The Dad Gaming League, and Apex Legends is an especially fun game to be mediocre at. So grab a fresh case of Planters Pop n’ Pour because this one’s gonna be sweaty!  

The learning curve is a little tougher than most free-to-play games, so we’ve laid out a quick course in the basics below to get you over the hump and shooting your way to the top of the pack. Our advice is laid out from most general to most specific, but remember- Apex Legends is at its heart, a twitchy FPS shooter, so there’s no substitute for getting into the arena and getting a feel for the mechanics. So soak up a few tips here and fire up the old entertainment center, and we’ll meet you in the robot-corpse-strewn fields of King’s Canyon.

This Is How We Do It – The Basics

The year is apparently 2733, and since this is a battle royale shooter, you are jumping out of an airplane onto a giant island with sixty other souls to pick up armor and guns and use them to become the Apex Champion – the last player left alive. There are three island maps currently in the game’s rotation, each filled with mountains, valleys, and derelict buildings. In the standard game mode, you drop in a team of three, and working together with your teammates will mean the difference between instant death and death that’s like five or ten minutes away. As the combatants scramble around and fight, a shrinking concentric circle forces everyone to fight in closer and closer quarters until only one team remains.

Apex Legends has a very complex system of skins, emotes, and assorted doo-dads that, along with the completely nonsensical lore and character backstories, we will ignore here. If you’re the hoarding type, there are Legend Tokens, Apex Coins, gun charms, holo-sprays, personalized tomahawks, badges, stat trackers, kill quips, finishing moves, and much, much more. None of which actually affect gameplay, so we’re setting them aside. If you become a true Apex-head, there’s a universe of ludicrous sci-fi backstory and obsessive collecting for you to explore, but in the meantime, we’ve got heads to click on.

Me, Myself, and I – Picking Your Legend

One of the best aspects of Apex Legends is the character system. It incorporates elements of team-based FPS games where you play as a character with a unique set of special powers. In Apex Legends, the system is subtle; your powers will definitely affect the way you play and contribute to the team, but no matter which Legend you choose, 75% of what you’ll do, especially early as a player, is running and gunning. This makes it easy and fun to experiment with different Legends to see whose powers best accentuate your play-style. One character can set up shields; one can toss around poison traps, etc. 

For new players, the best options are the ones whose powers can create a lot of value for the squad without the development of new, specialized skills. Take a spin with Lifeline, who can heal her teammates, or Bloodhound, who can emit radar pings to locate nearby enemies. A little further up the skill tree are Pathfinder, the robot who can sling around with a grappling hook, and Crypto, who has a remote camera drone that he can send around the map. 

Jump Around – Dropping In

This being a battle royale shooter, a round of Apex Legends begins with you and your squad jumping out of a plane onto the island map. Choosing how and where you land will color your whole play experience. Very generally, there are two schools of thought here. A good philosophy for beginners is to try to drop somewhere out of the way, where few other people are headed, and you’ll have a minute or two to get your bearings and gear up before you’re face-to-face with other players. Whatever you do, land near your teammates and be ready to back them up as soon as you all hit the ground. 

Here’s a pro-tip, though: glide to the ground right next to your teammates, but break off just before you land so that you’re within easy reach of the squad, but not directly shoulder to shoulder. The first thing you and the team will do is to begin rooting around for guns and armor, and by creating a little bit of separation, you ensure that you and your squad won’t all be rooting around in the exact same containers and loot piles. There’s such a thing as etiquette, even in 2377.

The other philosophy, favored by thrill-seekers everywhere, is to “hot-drop,” or to intentionally drop into a loot-rich area that will be crowded with fighters right from the get-go. Look for light beacons shining into the sky or just follow the smoke trails of other players as they drop to the map. 

This creates an entirely different style of play: a frantic scramble of running around, looting, punching, and shooting that will either leave you well-equipped and with a kill or two under your belt, or more likely dead and gone a minute into your game. For dads on a time crunch, the hot drop is often a fun option- ensuring that you’ll see some action even in a very short game. Otherwise, you may find yourself creeping around the map, trying to find a shootout for ten minutes while your family waits in the driveway, only to get sniped out of the blue after a long and excitement-free round.

If I Had No Loot – The Gear Of Apex Legends

The only way to hold your own in Apex Legends is to gear up, and the game distinguishes itself on the breadth and complexity of the stuff you need to acquire to stay alive. Initially, you’ll pick up everything you need right off the ground or from conspicuous containers strewn all around the map. As the game progresses, though, the only way to acquire higher-level gear is to take down other players and loot the gear that they leave behind.

First are the wearable elements: armor, helmets, and backpacks. Armor and helmets will increase the amount of damage you can take in a gunfight, and backpacks increase the number of shield batteries, first-aid kits, and grenades you can carry. These items (along with gun attachments) are color-coded by quality: you’ll want to move from white to blue to purple to gold as you play through the round. 

Then, of course, there are guns. Apex Legends Season 7 features 24 weapons, each with unique damage, stats, and attachments. Players can carry two guns at a time. You’ll gain expertise with the weapon system over time, but everything is color-coded to keep things comprehensible, even for new players. Thus, when you pick up a shotgun, the onscreen icon is red, and shotgun ammo boxes in the world are red as well. Same for pistols and SMGs (brown), energy weapons (green), etc.

A good baseline strategy is to prepare yourself for ranged firefights as well as close-up scraps. I like to grab a shotgun for up-close work and keep something with a better scope for finding enemies further away. 

Speaking of scopes, there is a whole ecosystem of gun attachments (barrel stabilizers, extended magazines, etc.) that can mean the difference between life and death in a hectic firefight. As with so much in Apex Legends, there’s a lot here that will reward players who want to pore over the stats, but there are pretty clear onscreen guideposts to help non-experts make smart decisions. One thing to look for- when you put your crosshairs over any kind of gear, a big explanatory text box appears. For gun attachments, another box below this one will appear if the attachment works with one of the guns you’re holding, making it easy to see if you need the attachment or already have a better one equipped. Get used to looking for this bottom box to make it easier to scan over gear for what you want to snag. And remember, just as with armor, gold beats purple which beats blue which beats white.

Let Me Clear My Throat – Comms

Teamwork will give you the edge in Apex Legends, which makes communication paramount. The most fun way to play is with friends on headsets, but even if you’re solo queuing, take the time to get on mic. Especially as you start out, more experienced players will be happy that they’re paired with someone who’s paying attention, and hashing out strategy while it happens is a great way to gain expertise. 

That said, Apex Legends also has a best-in-class ping system for communicating with teammates without speaking. The right shoulder button (or center mouse button) pings whatever your crosshair is pointing at, highlighting it for all your teammates. You can use this system to suggest gear that your teammates might want to grab, point out open doors and containers that indicate nearby enemies, suggest locations to move towards, and of course to shout when you see the bad guys. Ping early and often, because the best way to win firefights is to have your whole squad shooting in the same direction.

Mama Said Knock You Out – Dying In Apex Legends

When the bullets start to fly, you will inevitably catch more than a few of them. The mechanics around dying and resurrecting teammates are unique to Apex Legends and worth understanding right from the get-go. 

If an enemy manages to bring down all of your shields and all of your health, you’ll be “knocked down,” leaving you technically alive but unable to shoot at anyone. You will be able to crawl around, hide behind your knockdown shield (another color-coded bit of gear to pick up in your travels), and frantically ping at the enemy standing over you while your teammates come to save the day. If they can get to you, you can be revived on the spot, with minimal health but all your gear intact. Because a knocked-down enemy is harmless, it’s often smart strategy to leave a knocked-down player alive to draw their teammates in on a doomed rescue mission.

If you lay a bit more damage onto a knocked-down player (or carry out one of your fancy finishing moves), they become really, very nearly dead. All of their gear becomes lootable, and their teammates must pick up their “beacon” and carry it to a respawn location where they can call for another ship to drop the teammate out of the sky, now stripped of gear and guns. This is a long, labor-intensive process visible for a half-mile in every direction that will generally get the whole team ambushed and killed, so it’s pretty common for even good-hearted teammates to let you rest in peace.

Don’t Sweat The Technique – Use A Little Strategy

As described above, Apex Legends gameplay can be incredibly deep if you put in the time, but Respawn has built-in plenty of guide rails to keep even newer players in the hunt. The way to distinguish yourself and reach a Top Ten finish is to use your head. 

The baseline proposition of battle in Apex Legends is that you’ll win firefights where you have a numerical and strategic advantage. In all other cases, you’re leaving yourself in the hands of fate. Until you become very skilled with the controls and weapons, for instance, one-on-one fights will be a mess of jumping around in a circle and panic firing where your survival odds are very low. You should always be looking for situations where your squad is synced up and get the drop on enemies, arranging 2v1 and 3v1 fights. 

The best way to do this is by placing some value on simply staying alive. Call Of Duty-style shooters with infinite respawns have led a generation of gamers to place more value on bravery than smarts. But remember- in Apex Legends, you’ve only got one precious life per round. Keep your head on a swivel and use that one life well. While other players are rushing around killing each other, you’re moving up the leaderboard just by standing there. 

It’s easy to get keyed up in a battle royale game and let adrenaline carry you forward blindly to your doom. Think carefully about what you’re trying to accomplish in any given moment and move deliberately from place to place. Have a specific strategic goal in mind and an eye out for nearby enemies.

For instance, at the outset, it’s well worth your time and attention to search around for good gear. Once you’re in the blues and purples, though, and you’ve found the best gear that’s just lying around, staring into dumpsters leaves you at a tactical disadvantage, so it’s time to switch your attention from shopping to fighting. I can’t count the number of times that my squad has fully looted our landing zone and moved to an adjacent area in search of a firefight. When no one immediately presents themselves, we blindly start opening containers again just in time to get jumped.

Move deliberately, keep a low profile, and stay on the hunt for stray enemies and squads who aren’t keeping a lookout. To me, this is the real value that differentiates Apex Legends from Fortnite and the rest- even for new players, it’s very good at creating situations where you can use your noodle a bit and act as an operator. It activates that same dorky Dad gene that makes you raise a silent fist like a Marine on recon when you need the family to stop at the cereal display in the supermarket. And there’s no better crew for dorky video game heroics than the Dad Gaming squad. Make sure to register for the December 11th event, lay in get your Pop ‘n Pour in-reach, and we’ll see you on the dropship.

Father Figures: A New Addition

“After months of The wife and I waiting, we’re excited to announce the latest addition to the Marin family!

INTRODUCING little Ethan “ps5” Marin to the world!

Weighing in at a whopping 9.9 pounds and 14.9 inches it was a tough labour, with queues at 7am this morning but relatively quick and painless (apart from carrying Ethan to the car which almost broke dad’s back!).

Dad and Bub are doing fine; mum is still recovering from the hit to the bank balance and the girls couldn’t be happy for their newest little brother as you can see..!”

– Jonathan Marin, from The Dad Gaming group
Want to share a story about fatherhood? Email [email protected]

The Dad Gaming Bootcamp: How To Take Over Rocket League Before It Takes Over You

Rocket League Car on Busy Freeway
(Getty)

I bought Rocket League for my son for his 8th birthday. He’s probably played 20 times since then. I’ve played it nearly every single day since. 6 months later, I am ranked Platinum.

Sometimes it feels like I’m amazing at this game, but I know that compared to many, many others…I’m terrible. But that’s exactly what keeps me coming back. It’s what experts call “flow” and it’s so addicting. Like throwing back some Planters Pop & Pour, proud sponsors of The Dad Gaming League, once you start, you just keep coming back.

Rocket League is the most sport-like game I’ve ever played. The strategy and coordination, sure, but I think mostly it is because of the progression of skills. It’s one of those games where you can come in, learn the basics, and have a blast. But there are so many skills that can be honed and refined over days, weeks, months, and YEARS, just like real sports. Yes, really. The soccer car game. 

Normally we write comprehensive “getting started” posts that will help newbs get up to speed immediately while giving experts some tips and tricks they can use as well. However, the skill range of Rocket League players is just massive. The difference between a first time player and a Grand Champ is hard to fully comprehend. And that’s what makes the game so great.

So here we’ll list out the top things to focus on, in order of importance, to get started in Rocket League. But a lot of these things may just link out to other sources. And that’s because a single comprehensive training guide for Rocket League cannot exist. Everyone’s journey will be different. 

PREREQUISITE: HAVE FUN

So there are a ton of Rocket League guides out there right now. 99% of them are geared towards mechanics and skills and how to sweat it out and grind and get better fast. We have a lot of that too, but more geared towards casual players who want to have a good time. See, above all else, we recommend you go into Rocket League with one goal in mind: to have a good time. In true dad fashion, we know it doesn’t matter who wins or loses, we just want everyone to try their best and have fun.

Rocket League lends itself well to sweaty players who want to prove to everyone they are better than them, talking trash along the way. But it doesn’t have to be that way. We encourage you to go into it expecting to have fun and doing just that. So while you can work your way up the ranks and do all of the right things, try not to take it too seriously, and absolutely don’t be a toxic player. Tell the other team, “good shot,” when they make a good shot. Never use “what a save!” sarcastically. And say “gg” at the end of each match, win or lose. This is what being a dad and Rocket League are all about.

So work on your skills if you wanna, but above all else: have fun and treat teammates and opponents kindly. *Dad steps off his soapbox* 

Now, for how to play. 

Camera Settings
Before you even get in to try your first training module or play your first practice game, change your camera settings. The defaults are just so bad. They’re very zoomed in on the car and tough to see the full field. Making this change will make your experience so much better and your leveling up so much faster. You’re welcome to jump right in the game and play with the defaults, find what you like, and change later, but I’d recommend changing them to the below settings right out of the gate…

Play the Bots
The most accessible way to get started is by playing the always-polite bots. In local matches, you can play against varying skill levels of bots. Play some games against the easiest bots, then when you find yourself winning most, increase the difficulty. The max difficulty for bots is not anywhere near the max skill level of real people, so you can use this to get your skills up before jumping into online play.

This tip is listed early because you can jump in and play against bots right away for fun. All the while working on the below skills and returning, again and again, to practice what you learn.

Training Training Training
As I’ve gotten better at Rocket League, I’ve realized the importance of training. It’s laughable, but I’ve even told my wife, “Sorry, I can’t hang out tonight, I have to TRAIN.” This particular move is NOT recommended, but for real, training is important.

You should spend a certain amount of time each RL gaming session in training before you jump into a match. There are a few methods of this.

When you start the game up for the first time, it’ll walk you through the basic controls. This is important for getting started, so take it seriously. From there, there are built in training modules for things like shooting, defending, etc. Try those on beginner. There are also custom modules that are really great for honing particular skills. You can browse them within the RL interface, or Coach JSU gives some really great training package codes in his videos.

Lastly, FREE PLAY is an invaluable resource. It’s just you and the ball. Seems basic, but you can do all kinds of things. Practice dribbling, knock the ball in the wall and then try to nail a shot, or even use your infinite boost to learn to fly.

Kickoffs
This skill is so early mostly because I want to get the word out that LEFT GOES FIRST. Kinda kidding but not really. You’ll notice that you are positioned randomly for kickoffs. Some spots are closer to the ball than others. Whoever is closest should go for it and the other people can defend or boost up. The far left and right diagonal spots are always closer than the back positions. So whoever is there, goes. And if there is one on the left, and one on the right, the one on the LEFT goes! When in doubt, use quick chat to let your team know “I got it!”

The easiest way to get to the ball fast is full gas and full boost all the way through. Then double jump (flip/dodge) into it at the last second. More advanced technique allows for flipping on the way to the ball to get there quicker and preserve boost.

Speed (Boost and Lips)
Rocket League is a game of accuracy and positioning, but above all it is about SPEED. Getting to the ball or in position quickly is vital, and boost is the easiest way to make this happen. But don’t use it all up and have nothing left. You’ve gotta preserve boost.

When you hit supersonic speed, you’ll notice a trail behind your wheels. This is essentially MAX SPEED. So when that happens, you don’t need to use boost anymore. Preserve it.

The quickest way to accelerate is actually not boosting, but flipping. So if you need to get back on defense and go the whole length of the stadium, try to boost a little to get started, and then do two rapid front flips to hit supersonic speed as fast as possible. If you get used to flipping forward to gain speed quickly, you’ll preserve boost and get where you need to go fast.

Flipping into the ball at the last second has the same speed effect, but this time on the ball. Flipping into the ball is the best way to blast a harder shot.

Positioning (Rotations)
Positioning is nearly as important as play mechanics. Even if you have amazing skills in everything else, if you spend the whole time chasing the ball around the field, you’re not going to have a good time, bro, and your team will lose and hate you.

An entire book could be written about positioning and rotations. But the thing to know is that a good and efficient 3s team will always be “rotating” or taking turns being in particular positions. If you’ve spent time on offense trying to pass or take shots, when you run out of boost or possession changes, it is most likely time to get back on defense so whoever was back can move up. It’s not about fairness; it’s about a smooth movement of players around the field to set up pass/shot opportunities and all the while make sure the goal is covered.

With good rotations and positioning, your team won’t need someone planted in the goal, not moving. There will be smooth movement and someone who is ready to be goalie when needed, but also able to take advantage of missteps by the other team.

Shot accuracy and Big Booms
Take some shots when you have an opening! The key to getting better at shot accuracy is to take a lot of shots. In training, sure, and also in games. Keep at it and you’ll gradually get better. Focus on lining up the shot as well as you can as you approach. Those are higher percentage shots.

The other key part of getting good shots is hitting shots with power. A slow moving ball is an easy one to save. But if you hit the ball solid, with speed, and you flip into it right at impact, you’ll launch it at a speed that is much tougher to defend.

Dribbling and Flicks
Just like in soccer or basketball, dribbling is maintaining possession of the ball and moving down the field to where you want to take it. Free play is an amazing place to practice this. Most recommend turning ball cam off when dribbling. Just drive around, slowly tapping the ball on the front of your car and get used to this. Then, when you’re in a game, don’t just blast a wild shot from way downtown, put your dribbling skills to use. This is especially important in 2s or 1s games, with less people to come take the ball away.

Once you have your dribbling capabilities down, you’ll find that sometimes, if you creep up on the ball quickly from the side, the ball will slide onto the top of your car. If you have the ball on top of your car and you single jump or flip forward, it’ll POP into the air straight ahead. Congratulations, that’s your first flick. This type of shot is great for catching opponents off guard who may be coming to challenge your dribble, but also great for popping the ball over a goalie who has to fly high to try to get it.

Aerials
For new players, aerials are easily the most intimidating skill. Don’t let it be. Work on the other stuff first.

The thing about aerials that I found is that it starts with something far simpler: boost+jump.  Early on hitting jump and boost at the same time felt so strange, but for us dads with adult-sized thumbs you get accustomed to it. So start by getting used to hitting boost and jump at the same time when trying to reach those slightly higher shots.

Once you have that down, you’ll find you can press and HOLD boost and jump at the same time. The holding of the boost button will simply allow your jump to continue. If your car is aimed upward, you are flying. Again, just practicing this, and doing it in game when trying to reach balls, will get you used to the mechanics very naturally.

To get higher even faster, you can press that jump button twice. As long as you aren’t pressing any direction on your joystick, your car will push a bit higher on that second press (rather than flipping). Try that to get higher faster.

Just by getting in the habit of this boost+jump button pressing, it’ll naturally lead to more advanced mechanics on aerials when you’re ready.

And Beyond…
Again, this article attempts to give you some skills and things to think about as you start your Rocket League career. But mannnnnnn, people in those champ, grand champ, and SUPERSONIC LEGEND ranks are just unreal. They all have their own styles and mechanics. So if you’re at the level where you are ready to progress, seek out some more advanced material. There’s a ton on YouTube and other places. And join up with a group like The Dad Gaming – Rocket League. There are a ton of extremely elite players there, who are always happy to help folks of all skill levels!

For more of a hands-on look, check out some clips on The Dad Gaming Youtube page:

Above all else, have fun with it! Rocket League is my favorite video game of all time. I love it so much, and I can’t wait to stock up on some Pop & Pours on tournament night to play with all the great Dad Gaming League friends –  It’s gonna be a blast!

(This article was written by the head of The Dad Gaming, Joel Willis. Though he will readily admit he’s not very good at this game, he is getting better all the time. And everything he knows about the game was taught to him by Rocket League Grand Champ and Coach JSU, who also advised on this article and created the instructional videos referenced.)

This post was sponsored by:
Planters

Mario Kart Event Recap: The Dad Gaming League, Sponsored By Planters

(The Dad Gaming League)

Hey gamers. We did it. AGAIN. We’ve completed the second event for The Dad Gaming League, which we couldn’t have done without our sponsor, Planters.

We had 200+ people sign up for the Mario Kart event, which is outstanding!

Thank you to all the racers who showed up to the track, and shout out to our streaming hosts, Joel and Bayesic.

On September 18, we ran private tournaments for three categories. Battle Mode (6 battles), 150cc (12 races at high speed), and 200cc (12 races at ludicrous speed), streamed on The Dad Gaming’s Twitch channel.

We invited the top 12 of both the 150cc and 200cc categories back for the Grand Finals and the results were decisive, to say the least! Your 2020 The Dad Gaming League champion Mario Kart-er is: Mc (Brad McCaffrey).

We gave away prizes for the top three racers in ALL categories. As always, in the spirit of casual dad gaming, we also gave away a handful of random prizes, prizes to the first and last place racer in the first race with Joel (in both 150cc and 200cc), and possibly even some other surprise winners!

Prize winners are getting an epic loot box, with an official The Dad Gaming esports jersey and delicious Planters snacks. (First and second place in the Grand Finals also get $100!)

Congratulations to the champ, Mc, and all of the prize winners!

This was so much fun, everyone brought their A game and we saw some fantastic racers out there on the track.

Our next event is Super Smash Bros on October 9. Sign up now at thedadgaming.com. Then we have Rocket League (November, go here for a great Rocket League primer!), Apex Legends (December), and more!

If you have suggestions or ideas on how we can continue making these events better, we’d love to hear them. Email [email protected]. The Dad Gaming community is the best.

Squad up. Join The Dad Gaming FB group and Discord. Follow The Dad Gaming on Twitch, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube.

Mario Kart Results

Battles:

12. 1genxer

11. TootLaRoo

10. M.A.T.

9. Solace

8. TJ

7. Matthew

6. Bayesic

5. MickyWinz

4. ElRey

3. SharkBait

2. Kaokoo333

1. Mc

 

150cc:

12. MickyWinz

11. Snock73

10. Kristie517

9. TootsLaRoo

8. Hunna

7. Josh

6. CampBean

5. SharkBait

4. GmrDad

3. Bayesic

2. MrTeets

1. Mc

 

200cc:

12. TootsLaRoo

11. Hunna

10. ElRey

9. Trey

8. thedadJOEL

7. Rhino

6. Kristie517

5. GmrDad

4. Bayesic

3. SharkBait

2. Mc

1. MickyWinz

 

Grand Finals – 150cc:

12. Ruben

11. CampBean

10. Snock73

9. GmrDad

8. MrTeets

7. TootsLaRoo

6. SharkBait

5. Hunna

4. Kristie517

3. MickyWinz

2. Bayesic

1. Mc

 

Grand Finals – 200cc:

12. Ryan’s Dad

11. GmrDad

10. ElRey

9. thedadJOEL

8. Hunna

7. TootsLaRoo

6. Kristie517

5. Rhino

4. MickyWinz

3. SharkBait

2. Bayesic

1. Mc

This post was sponsored by:
Planters

The Dad Gaming Bootcamp: Super Smash Bros and The Art of Not Rage Quitting

(The Dad Gaming League)

(Expert advice from TDG Super Smash Bros Champ Ivan Bunag,  TDG Admin Rueben Qualls and Super Smash Bros Rage Quitter, Jared Warner)

There’s something different about Smash Bros from other fighting games. Most notable is that instead of damaging health and decreasing a life bar, you inflict damage that makes it easier to knock your opponent off the board. That makes for much more of a nail-biting finish to each round because you never know exactly when someone’s going to get sent flying into space. Also, as it happens, it causes losing a round to fill me with a deep and unprecedented fury as though a black hole has ripped a tear in the universe deep in my stomach.

Something about the combination of the bright light that engulfs you as you fall to your doom and the fact that I know freakin’ Jigglypuff is sitting there looking smug as my R.O.B -AN ADVANCED ROBOT WHO SHOULD NOT BE DEFEATED BY A MARSHMALLOW-  gets jettisoned into the ether…I just…ooooooooooooo it gets me worked up. So to help all the dads out there who are new to Smash, we put together this handy rage-avoidance guide to prepare you for our Super Smash Bros Ultimate Tournament!

First off, here’s how the event will go down. Sign up here. Then, on October 9, we’ll all pop a fresh pack of Planters Pop & Pour, and settle in for an elimination bracket. If we have enough signups, we’ll hold two of these. The top 16 – or 32 – will then be invited back for a Double Elimination Grand Final Showdown to secure ULTIMATE BRAGGING RIGHTS.  In order to play in this tournament, you will need Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, a Switch console, Nintendo Online, and the determination of Bowser taking his opponent on a flying slam off-stage.  What you do NOT need is to be any good at the game. Just take it from me.

Sign up here, and now let’s learn to overcome our demons…

What is SSBU?

Super Smash Bros. is a fighting game at its core. As we talked about before, though, unlike arcade classics such as  “Boulevard Warriors” and “Fatal Konflict” the idea is to inflict a higher percentage of damage to your opponent, making it easier to throw them off the board and send me into a rage spiral. It’s kinda like a sumo wrestling match, but with Pikachu and Donkey Kong. 

Lingo

  • Stock – your “lives” in a match. Your starting stock can be altered in the game settings.
  • Blast Zone – The outside edges of each stage – your goal is to knock opponents into this, and you lose a stock when you touch it. Trust me, you’ll know. 
  • Normals or Tilts– the basic A-button attach. There are 4 variations based on also pressing on the direction pad. 
  • Specials – the Special  B-button attach. Again, 4 directional variations. These are character-specific moves, so experiment with these to find your “Mains” 
  • Smashes – 3 extra powerful attacks performed by pressing A, but with a hard/fast directional input.
  • Double Jump – all characters can perform a double jump while airborne, and some can even perform multiple jumps (Kirby and Jigglypuff have 5, the smushy jerks). You can use these to pull yourself back from the Blast Zones.
  • Rolling – This is a quick dash-move that makes you invincible for a brief second. It’s good for getting out of a tight fix. Press the directional button while holding the shield button at the same time. 
  • Recovery – The strategy I just described – trying to get back on the board from the Blast Zone so you don’t lose a stock. 
  • Edge Guard – attempting to prevent your opponent from recovering back to the stage. Usually standing on the edge yourself shooting or attacking them so they can’t quite land.
  • Knockback – the force and distance you travel when hit by an attack
  • Percent or Damage – how much damage you have taken on your current stock. As your percentage increases, so does your knockback, making it easier to send you flying into the Blast Zone. 

HOW TO NOT LOSE YOUR COOL

Because Smash is an otherwise straight-forward fighting game, the strategies here are pretty simple to learn but difficult to master.

Learn the “Neutral”  – AKA: Footsies
Have you ever watched any boxing or MMA fights and noticed that those guys don’t throw haymakers and power hits all the time? They only go for it when they are confident it will land. Spamming the slow but powerful hits is a good way to get KO’d quickly. Use quick “safe” moves to test their opponent; momentum can shift quickly in a Smash Bros. match, so sometimes reverting back to the neutral game may be the best choice.

Know Your Character
SSBU currently fields a roster of 74 characters that all handle differently and have different abilities. Knowing one inside and out is difficult enough, trying to generalize that can just dilute your abilities. This is why fight gamers like to have a “Main” – the character they rely on and know how to live in. Definitely play the field at first and be willing to try new things, but when it’s time for a tournament, you’ll want to play with a character you know like the back of your hand. 

Limit Your Rolls
While rolling is an essential tool for bobbing and weaving around a fight, doing it too much gets predictable, allowing your opponent to lay the smackdown on you. They also have diminishing returns, and gradually make you more vulnerable. It’s good to float like a butterfly, but you gotta learn the stinging/bee part, too.

Use Your Shield
Oh how I wish I knew about this the first twenty times I played Smash back in college. Many newer players keep their foot on the attack pedal, forgetting that the shield button even exists. Playing defense doesn’t have to mean losing ground. You need to look for openings, not just button-mash. The game is fast paced, but I promise you’ll do better if you stand your ground and get acclimated to that speed, rather than trying to just hail mary your way through. 

Don’t Burn Your Double Jump
Oh no! You got knocked off the stage! Don’t panic, you have a lot of resources you can use to help you recover, the best of which is your double jump! However, and this is a big instinct to learn to beat – if you use it too soon, but ar being edge guarded, or are just too far away, you’ll still fall into a KO.

Recover Low
If you are recovering – as in trying to get back on the board, not…like, recovering emotionally – it’s usually safer to drop below the stage and approach it from below. It’s harder and riskier for most opponents to edge guard against someone below the stage as opposed to above. 

Pop & Pour
Smash Bros is a fast-paced game, and the tide can change swiftly. Many an overconfident player has found themselves blasting out unexpectedly after reaching for a snack or a drink. Planters Pop & Pour are designed to give you a quick, one-handed snack fix so you don’t lose focus on what’s important. 

Don’t Spam Your Smashes
SSBU has a mechanic that reduces the effectiveness of subsequent uses of attacks. Sometimes it will be better to utilize the weaker attacks that are better at combo-ing, then following up with a quality smash more likely to send them into a blast zone.

Mix It Up and Adapt
Simply put, try to be as unpredictable as you can. If you start showing patterns, your opponent will likely pick up on those and hit you at your most vulnerable moments.

Practice, Practice, Practice!
There’s a training mode in the game, which is a great way to find your Main and get used to the moves and rhythm of the game. 

Watch The Pros
Join The Dad Gaming Smash Bros group and find resources to learn from the best! There are a ton of character-specific and tutorial videos online, and just watching people who are good at the game can help you play better! 

Okay, that’s enough to get you going. I can’t promise you’ll win every round without a lot of practice, but if I’d known these tips when I got started, I’d probably have much better blood pressure. Hop into some rounds with The Dad Gaming to get warmed up, stock up on some Pop & Pours, and then we’ll see you on October 9th!

This article and The Dad Gaming League are sponsored by Planters. Enjoy delicious snacks without gunking up your controller with Planters Pop and Pour

This post was sponsored by:
Planters

The Dad Gaming Bootcamp: Mario Kart & How To Completely Destroy Your Kids

Dad's racecar crosses the finish line

(Expert advice from The Dad Gaming Mario Kart Season 5 winner Joel Willis. With expert consultation from Season 1, 3, 4, 6, 7, and 8 winner Mick Winzeler and Season 9 winner Martin Flores.)

As dads, we want our kids to be winners. Usually. The main exception being when we play them in Mario Kart.  It’s written in The Dad Law that dads are never to take it easy on their kids in Mario Kart. EVER. Life doesn’t work that way, and neither does Bowser on his Wild Wiggler on Rainbow Road. So pick up the sticks and try not to cry when you get lapped, son. 

For the 2nd event in The Dad Gaming League, we’ve teamed up with Planters to throw an all-star, all-dad Mario Kart tournament! On Friday, September 18, we’ll have a 150cc tournament, a 200cc tournament, and possibly even Battle. Reminder, you do not have to be good to play any event in The Dad Gaming League. (In order to play this tournament though, you need Mario Kart 8, a Switch console, Nintendo Online and the will to take your child’s optimistic spirit and crush it without remorse.)

To sign up, click here. Whether you’re competing in this tournament, or you want to level-up your skills in order to impress/destroy your kids, we’ve got you covered. So, pop your favorite Planter’s Pop n’ Pour and join us on a spin through The Dad Gaming Bootcamp. 

These tips progress from easiest and most essential, to more advanced. So be sure you master the first ones, and then move on through the list to become a Mario Kart esports pro. LET’S-A-GOOOOOO.

Don’t go in the grass, dirt, or hit the walls

So this one is unbelievably obvious and basic. But as I most often shout to my kids whilst trying to coach them, “Stay in the middle of the track! Go in a straight line and quit swerving all over the place!” 

The first goal is to keep Basic Max Speed, which you achieve by not getting slowed down by obstacles or the path. As soon as you touch a non-track surface such as grass or dirt, your speed drops dramatically. In 150cc (the 2nd fastest kart in the game) or below you can basically hold the gas down the whole time. So stay on the track and you’ll keep at the basic max speed. Beyond that, you’re going to need boosts. 

Speed boost at the start (just after 2)

The earliest boost you can get is right at the start! Here’s a protip: Watch the start countdown. “3… 2… 1….” Start holding down the gas immediately after “2.” This will give you the most boost. If you’re a little late, it’ll be a little less boost. If you are a little early, you will burn out. This is relatively easy to master and starts you off right, and teaches the most important lesson: timing is everything. 

Jump on bumps

In Mario Kart 8, there are ramps all over the place. Right at the top of a ramp, hit the jump button. Your guy will do a little flip and get a speed boost. This move can quickly become a habit and you’ll do it even without thinking, and because, again, there are ramps all over the place. It can help a ton.

Actually, try it off of any bump you see. It doesn’t just have to be a proper ramp. Any track object that gets you airborne for the slightest bit can be used to get a jump boost. These can add up quickly!

Hold an item behind you for defense

Now that you’ve got a good start and are getting a little boost for every jump, you’re going to quickly find yourself out in front of the pack, especially if playing my children, who are notoriously trash at this game. To maintain your lead, it’s time to play a little defense.

You gain items in this game by driving through the multi-colored question boxes littered around the track. Certain items you can hold behind your cart by holding the “use item” (L) button. You can do this with bananas, green shells, red shells, and bombs. While driving, you’re holding gas anyway, if you have one of these defensive items, you will hold L as well and it’ll stay behind you. It may feel weird at first, but it’s worth getting used to. Now, if someone fires a red shell at you, the item will deflect it!

When you release the L button, the item gets released. If you hold back on the joystick while releasing, it will shoot the shell, banana, or bomb behind you. This all makes it difficult to snag some snacks, so keep your Pop & Pour nearby for quick-crave release. 

IMPORTANT: If you hold a bomb behind you and it gets hit, you’ll get caught in the explosion! So best to release those back behind you if anyone is approaching.

Holding items behind you does not save you from a blue shell! Only a Super Horn can help with that. (You may also use a mushroom to speed away just before the blue shell drops, but it’s gotta be perfectly timed!)

Get 10 coins as quickly as possible then don’t worry bout more

Coins are dramatically misunderstood by many Karters, especially my kids, who are just so, so bad at this game. 

Coins increase your base speed. More coins you have, the faster your core speed. Great! But the max effect is 10 coins. So try to get 10 coins quickly, then don’t worry about ‘em.

Drifting – turn boosts

Drifting is absolutely essential to being competitive in Mario Kart. The only reason it’s so far down this list is that it’s a little tricky for noobs, like my kids, who are terrible. But give it some practice and you’ll be drifting on every turn in no time.

To start a drift, do a little hop right before a turn. You’ll want to hold down the jump button (R). Depending on the direction your guy is facing when landing, your kart will begin turning a bit more in that direction. Keep holding the jump button! Try steering left and right with the joystick. You’ll find that if you turn into the drift, the kart turns EVEN MORE than normal. But if turning against the drift, it’s impossible to even turn that direction, but you can get the kart nearly going straight. 

As you keep turning and holding that jump button, eventually colors will appear behind your cart. Blue… orange… pink. The longer you hold a drift, the more powerful the boost when you release. After the turn, let go of the jump button and OFF YOU GO. Boom. That’s it. 

The most important skill in the game.

Know it, love it, master it. You’ll find that the mechanics of drifting also help taking sharp turns faster, and you’ll wonder how you ever turned without it.

Item management

Now that you’re drifting and boosting all over fools like my abysmal kids, you’re gonna be wayyyyy out in front. You need to start thinking strategy. The differentiator amongst top competitors is often item management. There’s some randomness when it comes to items, but there’s also strategy in how you manage them. Everyone’s style here may be a bit different, but there are some things to know…

If you’re out in front, you really want to have some defense. That is, holding a shell or banana behind you. 

When you’re in front, the items will almost always be a coin or a banana. So try to get a double item box so you can at least get something for defense if you need it. This also means that if you have a banana, you can drop it right behind the double item box, quickly replace it, and make that double item box tougher to get for those behind you. Muauahahahaha. Eat it, kids. 

Bombs are absolutely destructive if there are karters just behind you and you’re out in front. Drop that bad boy behind you and speed away like you’re in an action movie. 

Getting used to the best way to use each item is a matter of trial and error. If you have a big lead and someone overtakes you unexpectedly, how did they do that? What items did they use?

When you get mushrooms or a star, resist the urge to blast it immediately. Try to use it to cut difficult corners or take shortcuts, because the boost item will negate the speed loss of going off track. 

Know the courses,  time trials, & shortcuts!

Speaking of shortcuts, I guarantee there are more of them out there than you know! In The Dad Gaming Mario Kart we do a different time trial each week. Some people will spend HOURS on a track, sometimes trying to beat their own best time by just tenths of a second. You can’t do this without knowing all of the track shortcuts. 

There are lots of videos on YouTube to search for more intel. (You can start with MK8DX Records.) After learning the above tips…. Watch a record time for a particular track on YouTube, note all the shortcuts, and then spend 20 minutes trying to get a good time on your own. Now do that for every track. That is BY FAR the best training you could do in Mario Kart 8.

Know the courses – proper lines!

Time trials and watching record times on YouTube is not just about shortcuts. Also watch the “lines,” or the path you take on the track. Sure, taking a turn on the inside is faster, right? Well entering and exiting turns in particular spots, on particular tracks, can be more efficient and also set you up for what’s next. Getting down to that level of detail is important to be elite, which my kids have no hope of achieving.  

Drafting

If you get right up behind another racer, after a few seconds, you’ll see a wind effect blowing and your Kart will speed up significantly, then you’ll blow by them!

I tend to see this happen the most at the start of a race when everyone is so close together. It doesn’t happen quite as much as you’d expect otherwise, because a few seconds behind someone is kind of a lot. But if you can make it happen, the boost is pretty solid. Just watch out for the guy in front dropping a banana on ya!

Whether you’re attempting a draft of not, you can see the item the person in front of you has. So if they have a green shell or banana, don’t try to trail directly behind them.

200cc, get used to brake drifting

Once you’ve mastered all of the above, and you’re ready to put it to the real test, strap in and kart-up to the start line of a 200cc match. Everything you’ve learned still applies, except faster. You will no longer be able to hold the gas down the entire match! You may even need to press a button you’ve never pressed before: the brake. 

You won’t need the brake on straightaways, only turns. And since you mastered drifting, you’re still going to be drifting on almost every turn (holding the jump button). So the main thing you need to know for 200cc is brake drifting. When you’re FLYING around the turn in 200cc, holding down the jump button and drifting, just let off the gas and tap the brake button a few times. In some cases, you may need to press it, not tap, but a lot of the time, simply tapping it will keep you from slamming into the wall.

Get used to holding jump, drifting, letting off gas, and tapping brake. It’s a strange combo. But you’ll have it in no time and destroying peeps at 200cc. Then the biggest difference between 200cc and 150cc is your kids will be crying 2 minutes sooner.

So there you have it. You’re ready to compete with the big boys and bask in the defeat of my children and yours as well. Use their tears to wash down some Planters Pop & Pour and we’ll see you on the tracks September 18th! 

This article and The Dad Gaming League are sponsored by Planters. Enjoy delicious snacks without gunking up your controller with Planters Pop and Pour

This post was sponsored by:
Planters

How Fortnite Turned Me Into My Dad

Jared Plays Fortnite
(Polygon)

“Can you hear me?”

We’re in a dilapidated bus, suspended by hot air balloon high above an island. To our left, I can make out a pirate ship, while on the right a giant meteor is seconds from cataclysmic impact, but frozen in time. Talking to me is a dad I’ve been randomly paired with for a round of “DUOS.” This means we’ll have to work together to outwit, outmaneuver and outpace the other 50 or so players in the game to survive. Fortunately, it’s not my first time playing Fortnite… that was earlier this afternoon.

Fortnite Meteor

“Do you have a mic?” he asks. I do not. I am to be a silent companion. A watchful burden.

This poor guy’s so screwed.

Here’s the thing. My editor wanted to set up an online gaming league for The Dad community and figured the best way to start would be with the game that all kids are currently obsessed with. “It’ll be funny,” Joel said. “I don’t think there will be anybody playing who’s very good.” I wonder, would the US Army see better recruitment if they adopted Joel’s tactic of “the other armies probably suck?”

“I’m gonna head over that way if you wanna follow me.” There is no discernible way to see where he is pointing. We’re not actually in the game world.

Now, I’m obviously not a pro gamer or anything, but I’m no slouch. I’ve beaten Dark Souls, for crying out loud! Okay, my friend Holden, who IS a professional, walked me through it but still. I know the ropes.

Dark Souls Endgame

My earliest memories of video games are of the late 80s, being sent to bed after getting frustrated at my own dad for being the worst possible Luigi of all time. It was like he couldn’t grasp the basic physics of an 8-bit world, something that was so intuitive to me. Playing Tecmo Bowl, dad would grumble when I managed to pull off win after win just by throwing a hail mary for every single play. His meticulous strategies didn’t work in Nintendo-verse, and it drove him nuts.

As an 80s kid, I figure I’m generationally dispositioned for gaming.  A new physics engine doesn’t baffle and confound me. “Surely,” I thought, “I will pick up a new gaming world’s mechanics fast enough to not be a total asshole.”

I was wrong
(Giphy)

“I’m going for the big robot if you wanna follow me,” says my involuntary, but not unkind guide in this unhinged world. I knew the robots! My first and only Fortnite round consisted of being stalked by one for ten minutes earlier in the day. It’s exciting to know things! I jump out of the bus and aim for the ridge I remembered having the robot. My partner is… across the map. There are, I guess, different robots? Good start. 

“We’ll figure it out,” my guy chuckles. I am silent, a mindful apprentice.

I glide to the ground closer to my friend’s landing zone than expected but spontaneously transform into an old western gunslinger. I’ll later learn this is called Tilted Town and there’s a deep and rich history here. There used to be towers. Now there’s a saloon. This game is weird. 

Fortnite Tilted Town
(SVG)

Arriving at the graveyard where my mentor has staked his claim, we begin foraging for materials. He has a gamertag that I can barely decipher, so in my head, I call my friend Dale. He sounds like a Dale. Now that we’ve got boots on the ground, I must find a way to let Dale know I can hear him, and his guidance is appreciated. I can’t talk, but I can communicate the way the ancients did; by jumping up and down in, and immediately running sporadically back and forth, like Lassie in camo pants. Yes, I know there are the little dance moves you can buy in the game, but there is a storm brewing and time is short.

Suddenly someone jumps out from behind a crypt, hoping to get the drop on us. In shock, I fling my harvesting ax at his head but miss. Dale is quick on the draw and dispatches the intruder handily. You have to stay sharp on Battle Island. We make our way to the big robot.

On the road, we come across an abandoned town that I would think is ripe for looting. “Someone’s been here,” Dale says. I’m learning the scavengers code to this cartoon dystopia. We don’t have time to loot anyway because the storm is coming, and a quick glance at our map shows the safe zone an impossible distance away. The stakes have suddenly been raised, but Dale stays cool. He explains that there’s some sort of, I don’t know, trampoline thing we can use to get airborne, then take our gliders to safe ground. It makes as much sense as tubes that lead to dungeons, so sure. 

Something I do really enjoy about this game is the escalating tension. Dale desperately explains how the jumping mechanism works. He’s Tom Cruise, and I’m Simon Pegg in Mission:Impossible, except you could infer that Pegg’s character is good at video games in those movies. But it’s that sort of endorphin rush leading up to our hitting the space trampoline thing at the same time, getting sent flying into the air. It’s triumphant. I’m with you, Dale! I may be dumb, but I’m no idiot!

Except I’m like… nowhere near the guy again. And I’m barely in the air at all. WTF?

“If you need to jump higher, you can hit the bubble again.” Once more, I’m being afforded more patience than I deserve.

The only bubble I see is the giant glowing field of energy directly beneath me in the center of the island? Does he mean that?

Fortnite Skydive

Hope so, since, you know, gravity. As I fall, prep to land perfectly in the rebound zone and shoot back into the sky much better this time. I won’t let you down, Dale, this is going to be awesome.

Except this is not the bubble he was talking about. Again, descriptors like “over there” or “that one” are very deceiving in video games, and there is something maddening about losing all physical forms of communication.

Anyway, I find myself in a weird crash site where time doesn’t exist and gravity is wonky.

Obi Wan Happy Landing Gif
(Giphy)

Separated again, we’ve entered what Blake Snyder would call this the Long Dark Night Of The Soul portion of the story, but there’s no time to wallow. Dale needs me! (He doesn’t). 

So, I hoof it. It’s a long walk. And boring. I wish there was something interesting…some encounter where I got the drop on someone and the lessons Dale taught me clicked into place, but no, I just take a walk until I find him. He didn’t comment on my absence, even though it had been several days, or perhaps a minute and a half. It’s hard to understand time on Battle Island.

“There’s only two more left, and they’re in that building up there.” There’s only one building around, so I’m almost confident I know what he means by “there.” Somehow I’d derfed myself into the final showdown. It was us against some guy who called himself AssClown that had literally wiped the floor with everyone else in the server. Gotta admire that kind of moxy. 

Crouching in the bush, I watch our prey building wooden ramps along the side of a fortress. I have literally no idea how anyone can build this stuff while still managing to, you know, play the game. How do you switch back and forth from guns and crafting so fast? How do you put the, like, floors in the right place?

Suddenly I get a sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach. I  recognize what is going on here. I had finally turned into my own dad from back in the 80s. I crossed some threshold of understanding what a child finds intuitive. It wasn’t a generational thing, it’s the same generation gap that will always exist, just with a higher pixel count.

Without warning, AssClown was airborne and flying directly at us. I couldn’t believe it, I had him in my sights. He couldn’t shoot back. We were gonna win! He dropped out of his glider and landed right in front of me, brandishing a skinned shotgun that I think he bought in the item store, but I’m not one to point fingers.

If this were a movie, a very satisfying end would have been for all the lessons my friend tried to teach me to click together. I would get the edge over the AssClown, and win the day. Or, if we were doing a later ‘00’s dark and gritty kinda thing, I’d wheedle away his health, but just before he took me down, Dale would step in front of the bullets, and take Ass Clown down with him, leaving me scarred for life, but reborn a man. A poignant story of sacrifice and new beginnings.

Of course, it’s not a movie. What actually happened a guy named AssClown shot me to hell, and like a tortured ghost, I had to sit and watch Dale go down seconds later.

Obi Wan I have Failed You
(Giphy)

“Ah, it’s tough to fight two guys by yourself,” He said. (Apparently, there was a second guy?) Ouch, Dale.

But then a beat later “…But that’s okay.”

In the afterlife of Facebook chat, I was excited to thank my companion, whose name was not Dale. See, I’m not as dumb here as I am in the game. I know that I’m bad! Haha! Haha? 

His disappointment in losing had already dissipated.  “I tried to win it for us, man. Sorry, I couldn’t get there,” Dale. A dad. A hero.  

Not long ago we got my dad an Xbox, and you know, he’s pretty good. My favorite games of all time are the Mass Effect Trilogy, so I got him some preowned copies at the local Gamestop for Father’s Day. (I know, I’m a decadent gift giver.) Those are much more dad and my speed. You get to think a lot, the story is engaging and the action sequences are fun, but straight forward. And no 12-year-olds dunk on you.

So, perhaps I’ll venture to Battle Island again one day. Just like dad staying up late to grind Mario Brothers when I was 7, I won’t be content until I “get good,” which may never happen.

But today I think I’ll go visit my dad and play a game with him, now that we’re finally on the same level.

Adidas Signs Fortnite Star ‘Ninja’ for Multi-Year Apparel Deal

(Twitter/Ninja; Getty/Taylor Hill)

Vibrant-haired pro-gamer Tyler Blevins aka Ninja is making serious waves in the industry for tying down a monumental apparel collaboration with Adidas. While Ninja has received a number of expensive brand deals in the past, he is the first eSports pro to partner with the German sportswear giant.

Adidas told Engadget that they want the deal to reflect their commitment to eSports and gaming culture as the industry continues to rise in popularity. They are passionate about “supporting creators who show dedication to excelling in their field.”

Both Ninja and Adidas shared the news on social media, clearly excited about what this means for the future. “Never let anyone tell you that you can’t catch your dreams,” Ninja tweeted, before concluding, “I’m humbled, and excited, to officially announce my partnership with @adidasoriginals.”

Ninja’s announcement comes only a month or so after leaving Amazon’s giant streaming platform, Twitch, for Microsoft’s new streaming service, Mixer—a multi-million dollar deal in itself.

No more than a decade ago, you wouldn’t have imagined video game competitions being streamed on the same networks as traditional sports, but now mainstream channels like NBC, TBS, and ESPN are all highlighting major eSport events, which have been seeing absolutely absurd growth year by year.

STAMFORD, CT – MAY 30: John “johnwaynee90” Casagranda reacts after scoring a goal against David “JrPens91” Roebuck during the 2019 NHL Gaming World Championship U.S. Live Regional Final at NBC Sports Studios on May 30, 2019 in Stamford, Connecticut. (Getty/Jared Silber/NHLI)

“It’s got people who are passionate about it, both playing it and watching it [and] lines up with our desire to reach as many audiences as we can around the country, of all demographics, of all interests,” said Rob Simmelkjaer, senior vice president for NBC’s Sports Ventures, about the promotion of professional gaming.

So, bottom line: Go throw on your favorite Adidas gear, boot up that console or PC, and tell your family you’re finally ready to take your sports career seriously. You just might get sponsored, too.

Announcing… The Dad Gaming

(The Dad Gaming)

Let’s-a-go! Join now.

Fortnite Event Recap: The Dad Gaming League, Sponsored By Planters

(The Dad Gaming)

What’s up gamers. The historic The Dad Gaming League inaugural event is a wrap. Shout out to our sponsor, Planters, for helping to make this all happen.

We had an incredible 700+ people sign up for the Fortnite event! Phenomenal.

Huge thank you to everyone who participated and to our streaming hosts, Bullboski and Joel.

On August 21, we ran 8 waves of up to 100 players each, competing in private The Dad Gaming lobbies on two simultaneous Twitch streams.

We invited the top finishers to the Grand Finals on September 4. (We also invited the bottom finishers to a Consolation Finals because that’s how we roll.) It was EPIC, pun intended as always.

Without further ado, we present the winner of the Grand Finals, your 2020 The Dad Gaming League Fortnite champion: TTV FormMorm 

 

We gave away prizes for 1st place and 2nd place in EVERY WAVE. And because we’re dads and casual gaming is what many of us do, we also gave prizes for first eliminated.

And other stuff like whoever eliminated our hosts (Joel Willis and Bullboski) and randomly selected participants.

 

Prize winners are getting an epic loot box, with an official The Dad Gaming esports jersey and delicious Planters snacks. (First place winners also get $100!) All in all, The Dad Gaming and Planters gave out over 30 prizes. 

Congratulations to FormMorm and all of the prize winners.

I don’t know about y’all, but we had a blast. Hope you did too. Many more events to come! And we’ll keep the same positive energy flowing, as well as the Planters cheeseballs.

 

Our next event is Mario Kart next Friday, September 18. Sign up now at thedadgaming.com. After that we have Super Smash Bros (October), Rocket League (November), Apex Legends (December), and more!

If you have suggestions or ideas on how we can continue making these events better, we’d love to hear them. Email [email protected]. The Dad Gaming community is the best.

Squad up. Join The Dad Gaming FB group and Discord. Follow The Dad Gaming on Twitch, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube.

FULL RESULTS

Highlight reel of all victory royales.

Wave A Top 10

10  LordFarquaad614
9  Triple_6_Chris
8  SlapShotMike42
7  KingDadles
6  CDDCLO
5  xFleazx
4  ShadowComa6
3  TTV FormMorm
2  D-Hypno
1  xMinist3r

Wave B Top 10

10  QWACKY-WACK
9  HRL Westy
8  BrianEdwardM
7  IronFirefly
6  BLuE Aphid8395
5  v KILLABEE v
4  Adape4345
3  SpyderWurm07
2  GraveTitan1858
1  arrowslingerW4B

Wave C Top 10

10  TrvrMagz
9  Loud-N-Clear-24
8  YTMidWest_Latino
7  ope_dawg_killa
6  Brizzdog
5  Wf Pukin dog
4  xX_SPIVEY_Xx
3  SAL-TEE-NUTS
2  A and A GAMERS
1  ImpeachedLight

Wave D Top 10

10  CptnScrgleBeard
9  JustJoe1919
8  JUSTIN BIEBER
7  JNasko0406
6  Williams x12x
5  PumpedMarlin928
4  DeadlyDaddyDuck
3  BiggEazy50
2  CushAMush
1  ToxicGlaceon

Wave E Top 10

10  BlastDatAss69
9  SOWING_MANGO
8  j_sparg
7  Roalith
6  ttv_IrishHawk27
5  TBG_TITAN
4  TTV DadxSkillz
3  Mrs Dips
2  TILT Knight
1  Bring Them Dips

Wave F top 10

10  ALPHA DOG 487
9  CallSignCharlie7
8  RealSauceMeOne
7  ImRagingPHX
6  clselfridge
5  badboywenwi
4  DaddyBearKillah
3  TankSinatra210
2  RagingRayCharles
1  BlakCastleWizard

Wave G Top 10

10  longhornsfan1377
9  KINGJACKXMAS
8  xAdmbombx
7  jc_brewer
6  J_A_N_S_S_E_N
5  WCW_AbbyCrotch12
4  DARKxDARTH
3  BLADE0717jr
2  ggshadow
1  CDrum

Wave X Top 10

10  Mag380
9  Scrappytatz
8  dfabrem-blue
7  TIC_JMCDERMIT
6  invaderzim1119
5  TILT Funky
4  TheGiraffe94
3  BoiseNation
2  affliction
1  Tuxedomask_1

Consolation Finals Top 10

10  Yahwehnissi0514
9  boss-n-king
8  CoranHalcyon
7  roddad27
6  NowayScott1
5  Saltysample
4  sdude22
3  TimikazeMF
2  Wackyzclutch
1  Kilup

Grand Finals Top 10

10  D-Hypno
9  BiggEazy50
8  ggshadow
7  twitch xMinist3r
6  DaddyBearKillah
5  badboybenwi
4  RagingRayCharles
3  CDrum
2  TILT Knight
1  TTV FormMorm

This post was sponsored by:
Planters