It Must Be The Shoes?

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There’s a couple benchmarks from one of these dual video card systems that we first mentioned about a month ago.

Prices will start at $5,000+.

This is not chump change.

Questions

I’d like to ask the rabid gamers out there who actually play in these tournaments some questions.

How much does the hardware really matter? Does the hostess with the mostest damned to win, or does skill matter more than silicon? Do hardware underdogs win, or at least upset the well-endowed?

Presumably, if the gap between Box A and Box B becomes too great, hardware does matter. I doubt someone with a Celeron 300 and GeForce2 wins these tournaments very often, but how much of a gap does it take for it to really matter?

When these tournaments are run, is there any public record of who had what in the final rounds of a tournament?

If a skillful underdog does emerge, does that underdog show up with a much better system “donated” or “sponsored” by someone? Do many contestants get or end up with their weapons of mass destruction that way?

Is there anything else unmentioned that makes a difference in these games?

The Issue

In many sports, advanced equipment is indeed a decisive factor in who wins and who loses.

However, these tend to be unidimensional sports with only one relevant factor: speed. If the differences between winning and losing are minute, minute differences matter.

It’s by no means obvious that gaming inherently falls into this category. What is obvious is that there are certain parties with an interest in making it look like “It must be the shoes.” The shoemakers, or in case, those who make high-end equipment.

I wouldn’t be surprised if most winners or near-winners have overkill boxes. However, the question is “Are they good because of the equipment, or did they get the equipment because they’re good?”

This is a tough question. However, a lot of money rides on the answer, including (for some of you) yours.

If you have any insight into this, please send your comments to the special email address listed below.

However, if you do, and you’re speaking about yourself, understand that you’re likely a bit biased about this. Saying “I think I play better” doesn’t say much. Saying “I went from never even qualifying to regularly doing so in tournaments” means rather more.

We may get something useful out of this, we may not, but let’s give it a shot, anyway.

Ed

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