Uneven Playing Ground The final on Sunday, 10th November 2019, is the latest display of an uneven playing ground in the e-sporting world. It drove the agenda of people who have recently been championing the formation of women-only e-sports leagues. It will be an avenue for organizers like Gamer Girl, who plan tournaments for women only, to justify their bids. Gamer Girl has been in operation since 2017 but is yet to pick up the full throttle of a major tournament. One of the festival’s organizers, Fernando Pereira, says that the aim of the tournament is to bring to the limelight gamers who can be an inspiration to young girls. But therein is where the argument for people who are against gender specifying the competitions stems. For one, the model of e-sport gaming makes it easy for all genders to take part, they say. There is no physical requirement that is required which would set a male and a female player apart. If both players are apt, then the playing field is even from the word go. Secondly, the women-only tournaments would have a long way to go to catch up with the already mainstream competitions. The Gamer-Girl event in Madrid, for instance, was held in an arena with a 70-people capacity. The latest LoL in Paris, on the other hand, was played with 15,000 spectators in attendance. In that sense, while the women only event might be meant to inspire girl players, the miniature stature of the competition might demotivate them.
Persistent Growth Either way, there seems to be an insistent growth in the development of tournaments meant for women only. In the month of November 2019, another women-only gaming tournament came to the fore. Lenovo Singapore were in the thick of things with a tournament named Legion of Valkyries on the weekend of 9th and 10th November. The tournament was held in a semi-pro model where female players fought it out in a CS: GO bout. Concerns however remain over whether such a model will be viable in the long run. In an age where activists of every kind are fighting for abolition of gender roles, this might be tricky. Some say that creation of such a model is wanting to have their cake and eat it. Both arguments have a basis. Currently, for instance, only woman player appears in an Overwatch league that comprises more than 200 players. The fact that she has made the league means women can do it. The disparity in numbers, however, means that women need an affirmative way to bring them to the same level as their male counterparts.