The broader arcade community is vibrant one, with dedicated pockets in fighting games, rhythm games, and redemption games, among many other subsets. But one of the most undeniably devoted followings can be found in none other than Big Buck Hunter.
For the past 12 years, top players from all over the globe have gathered in fierce competition at the annual Big Buck World Championship. Now, the popular esport will be highlighted on ESPN as part of “ESPN: The Ocho”.
Don’t ask me what that is. ESPN is, like, the last TV network I would be familiar with.
This 30-minute segment, showcasing the Big Buck Hunter community and their journey to 2018 Ladies’ Tourney and World Championship, will air on EPSN2 at 3:00 AM EST (2:00 AM CST) on August 7th, 2019.
Admittedly, three in the morning isn’t exactly ideal TV-watchin’ time, which is likely why the press release I'm consulting especially advises fans to set their DVRs or watch in on-demand. Even so, this is very interesting news.
While I don’t have any interest in esports myself—watching people play any sport, even at exceptional performance, isn't my thing—I understand that it’s an explosive pastime. A pastime that arcades should most certainly be included in.
So far, there are but a handful of arcade games played on a hyper-competitive level: mostly just Golden Tee, rhythm games, and, of course, Big Buck Hunter. We have plenty room to grow, and that’s exactly why Play Mechanix’s seminal deer shooter is so pivotal.
Given that the Big Buck Ladies’ Tourney and World Championship are already serious business, the spotlight provided by ESPN could take things to a whole new level, even if it is just a recap of last year’s events.
Maybe one day we’ll see the annual Big Buck Hunter events broadcast live on ESPN like EVO. Until that time, it’s good to see the arcade community get all the exposure it can get.
My family no longer has cable TV—only an antenna and Hulu—so I won’t be catching this television special. But for those of you who have, in fact, kept your cords in tact, will you be watching? And what are your thoughts on arcades in the esports scene?
Share your thoughts in the comments below. See y’all around.