The International Olympic Committee has revealed the roster of games which will star in the Olympic Esports Series 2023.
It’s an eclectic selection, to say the least. In an effort to connect to the prestigious Olympic Games, titles for the Olympic Esports Series 2023 seem to have been picked as digital analogs to physical sports. With the exception, that is, of Chess – the only title to fully embrace an alternate medium of competition.
The nine Olympic Esports Series 2023 competitions and the games they’ll be held in are:
- Archery (Tic Tac Bow)
- Baseball (WBSC eBaseball: Power Pros)
- Chess (Chess.com)
- Cycling (Zwift)
- Dance (Just Dance)
- Motor sport (Gran Turismo)
- Sailing (Virtual Regatta)
- Taekwondo (Virtual Taekwondo)
- Tennis (Tennis Clash)
Don’t be surprised if you don’t recognize many of the games on the list. The mishmash of titles includes console releases like Gran Turismo and Just Dance, mobile games like Tennis Clash and Tic Tac Bow, and even physical exercise systems like Zwift, which makes use of exercise bikes.
There’s a certain level of disconnect to imagining someone competing for a gold medal in Tennis Clash alongside a cyclist on a Zwift machine, but that's the reality the IOC has opted for.
Perhaps one of the most interesting inclusions is Virtual Taekwondo. There are plenty of solid fighting game choices out there for esports competition – even for replicating Taekwondo – but the IOC has taken a different route.
Created by World Taekwondo, Virtual Taekwondo uses a body tracking system which allows real Taekwondo fighters to take part in non-contact, virtual sparring. How well it actually works remains to be seen, but we certainly hope it’s a step up from the Kinect era of full-scale tracking..
The Olympic Esports Series 2023 will invite professional and amateur players to compete in qualification rounds for most games, culminating in a live final at Singapore’s Suntec Centre from June 22nd to 25th.
Head to the official Olympic Esports website if you’re interested in taking part.