Article written by Jake Heath. Photo accredited to St. Cloud State Esports.

Gamers on campus have been busy competing in a two-week-long esports competition called Building Battles.

Three of SCSU’s dormitories have joined in on the competition including: Mitchell, Shoemaker, and Case-Hill Hall. This competition consists of three dorm halls on the SCSU’s campus. The dorm halls that are competing are Mitchell Hall, Shoemaker Hall, and Case-Hill Hall.

There are two separate tournaments, one for Mario Kart, and one for Super Smash Bros Ultimate. Each contestant went head-to-head with their dorm hall members. If they place in the top three of their dorm tournaments, they will move on the final competition against the top three from the other dorm halls in their respective game. However, if you are among the top three in both Smash Bros Ultimate and Mario Kart’s tournament, you will have to choose which tournament final you wish to compete in.

Chase Neukam, the director of esports at St. Cloud State University, is hopeful to soon get a trophy for each tournament winner to display in their dorm hall. He hopes that the Building Battles competition will grow a friendly competition between the three dorm halls.

Neukam is a newer face on SCSU’s campus. He began his career in Spring 2023. “SCSU didn’t want to shotgun start esports on campus like other schools wanted,” Neukam states about choosing SCSU. He describes a shotgun start as jumping in right away for the money. Instead, SCSU wanted to build the program slowly to ensure its lasting and successful impact on campus and culture

Sage Rus, a freshman at St. Cloud State University took part in the Building Battles. Rus won the first-place title for Mitchell Hall’s Mario Kart tournament. He ended up finishing fourth overall in the Building Battles final that took place on March 28, 2024. Rus was not a stranger to this kind of competition. Back in fall 2023 he was the Mario Kart overall tournament champion.

Rus states that he has tons of fun competing in the Building Battles competition and would without a doubt take part in the competition again.

“It is not competing for yourself but doing it for your entire dorm hall,” Rus states about competing in the Building Battles competition. “There isn’t any pressure coming from your dorm members, the only pressure you feel is what you put on yourself.”

The Building Battles in the Fall only had Mario Kart as the game for the tournament, but in the spring they decided to add Super Smash Bros Ultimate into the mix. The competition has grown since last semester.  Rus says that the skill level may have increased between the tournaments, but it is still a friendly environment and meant to be fun.

Jason Palmberg of Mitchell Hall took first place in the inaugural Super Smash Bros Ultimate Building Battles final. Case-Hill Hall resident Sam O’Brien took first place in the Mario Kart Building Battles final. Each participant of the Building Battles final received a t-shirt color coded by the dorm hall they represented.

If you live on campus and are looking for something to do throughout the school year, keep an eye out for the next Building Battles competition. Even if you are not into video games, it is still a great way to make friends and have some fun.

Secured By miniOrange