Winter Game Fest Expected to Draw Thousands of Video Gamers

Photos by Erik Jepsen/UC San Diego Publications

Thousands of UC San Diego’s video game enthusiasts are expected to participate in the campus’s ninth annual Winter Game Fest, one of the largest free video game festivals in Southern California. The event will be held from noon to 10 p.m. on Jan. 17 and from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Jan. 18 and 19. The three-day festival, taking place in the Price Center East and West Ballrooms, has become a growing tradition at UC San Diego, each year offering more games, sponsors, prizes and fun.

The event also is one of the largest festivals of its kind, organized entirely by students on the Sixth College Tech Committee. Games and tournaments featured at Winter Game Fest 2014 will include Starcraft II, League of Legends, Halo 4, Call of Duty: Ghosts, Super Smash Brothers: Melee and more.

The event is free and open to the public; however UC San Diego students are the event organizer’s target audience, according to Adrian Wong, director of the Sixth College Tech Committee.

“In recent years, the population of videogame-playing students has been increasing at a pretty surprising rate,” Wong said. “Winter Game Fest is designed to embrace and celebrate this emerging gaming culture by creating an exciting and welcoming event that caters to this growing population of gamers.”

The festival will feature the latest videogame equipment and technology—there will be 200 computers set up to support tournaments for League of Legends and StarCraft, and six consoles will be available in the free-play game area for games such as Bio Shock Infinite, Little Big Planet, Just Dance and more.

The festival has become a highly anticipated tradition that has continued to grow since it began at UC San Diego’s Sixth College in 2006 with 50 attendees.

“UC San Diego students should continue to attend and show their support of the event because of its uniqueness,” Wong said. “Winter Game Fest is technically difficult to coordinate and, therefore, is one of the few of its kind.”

This year’s sponsors, which include Riot Games, TeSPA, and Kingston, will be giving away more than $5,000 in prizes.

According to Elaine Scott, a student life officer at Sixth College, the fest helps support Six College’s academic missions, which celebrates culture, art and technology. “Each game is an artistic masterpiece,” Scott said. “The amount of detail that goes into every character and the background environment is astounding. Technology of gaming devises continues to grow by leaps and bounds.”

For more information, go to the Winter Game Fest website.

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