E-sports, or competitive video gaming, is quietly on the rise in China. We visited a training spot of KillerAngel, an all-female e-sports club, in Shanghai to find out how gamer girls are professionally trained.
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This is how e-sports teams are trained in China. The clubs usually rent houses on the outskirts of metropolitan areas, where professional players live together to focus on their training. Often times before a tournament, coaches and managers would arrange “friendly” matches with the other listed teams—to spy on each other.
KillerAngel (KA, 杀戮天使 in Chinese) Women’s E-sports Club is one of the best professional teams in China. Just before Christmas, the six-woman team, who were top players in League of Legends, pocketed the championship of 2017 NTF Women’s Super League in China.
“With more young girls becoming professional (e-sports) players, nurturing the young talent is fulfilling for me,” said Nini, a former professional gamer on KillerAngel. She currently works as the team’s manager.
Valued at $3 billion in 2016, China’s e-sports market is expected to hit 220 million spectators by the end of 2017. To put that into perspective, one in every six people in the country will have watched e-sports matches and have some understanding of the matter.