An Iowa State University business major and computer game addict leaves today (Monday) for the nation of Singapore to compete in the finals of the World Cyber Games. 21-year-old Josh Sievers of Polk City is considered one of the planet’s best players of the P-C game “Counter Strike.” Sievers says it’s a five-on-five commando game pitting terrorists against counter-terrorists.
There are two bomb sites on each level and the terrorist team has to strategically plan an attack, plant a bomb and get out alive. The counter-terrorist team has to stop them from planting the bomb or, once it’s planted and ticking, diffuse it within 35 seconds. Sievers is part of a team whose members are in far-flung cities — L-A, Dallas, New York and Montreal — but they all meet up on-line four nights a week for four hours of practice.
He says “In this game, you can’t have very many nerves. If you’re shaking at all, then you’re just going to get destroyed because you’re talking about moving a mouse over a mousepad and if you move it a millimeter too far than you’re going to miss shooting the other guy.” Sievers’ team won the world competition last year and split a 50-thousand dollar prize and he’s confident they’ll take the top prize again this year.
He says his mom and dad used to question the time he devoted to video games. His parents used to say he was only wasting his time but once he went to the first major world tournament, brought home some cash and started meeting people from around the world, they’ve come around and now “support me now, big time.” Sievers is known in the gaming world as “Dominator.” To reach the World Cyber Games, his team beat out 40-thousand competitors’ teams in the U.S. finals. This week’s world finals features the top teams from 67 nations.