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NZ’s top video gamers take on the world’s best

NZ’s top video gamers take on the world’s best

AUCKLAND 29 October 2008 – 12 of New Zealand’s top gamers are set to battle the world’s best computer gamers at the 2008 World Cyber Games Grand Final in Cologne, Germany next week.

Elite gamers from over 70 countries will compete at the Koelnmesse Convention Hall on 5-9 November.

The 2008 World Cyber Games (WCG) Grand Final sees the top 700 gamers from around the world competing on video game titles such as Guitar Hero III (Xbox 360) and Warcraft III (PC).

World Cyber Games New Zealand Strategic Partner, Susan Baikie, says the NZ team, dubbed the eblacks, will be competing for a chance to win approximately US$450,000 in prize money.

Susan Baikie says the popularity of gaming increases every year. More than NZ$51.5 billion was spent on video games worldwide last year. In New Zealand last year more than NZ$100 million was spent, up 20 per cent over the past five years.

“The NZ World Cyber Games qualifiers in July showcased some of New Zealand’s best gamers and we’re looking forward to competing against the best gamers in the world. The eblacks have been training non-stop for this world-class tournament and are more than ready to battle at the eSports equivalent to the Olympic Games.”

Leading companies Samsung Electronics, TelstraClear, Microsoft and ASUS generous support for the New Zealand World Cyber Games allows the eblacks to compete on the world stage.

The eblacks will compete in a mix of console and PC games: Virtua Fighter 5 (Xbox 360), Guitar Hero III (Xbox 360), Halo 3 (Xbox 360), Counter Strike 1.6 (PC) and Warcraft 3 (PC). The team comprises 12 members, most of which will be competing in the grand final for the first time:

2008 eblacks team
• Feroz ‘evolution’ Brouwer Counter Strike 1.6 (PC)
• Bruce ‘infidel’ Lodge Counter Strike 1.6 (PC)
• Khaled ‘hellscraper’ Salem Counter Strike 16 (PC)
• Byron ‘simcore’ McLean Counter Strike 1.6 (PC)
• Ryan ‘toonz’ Campion Counter Strike 1.6 (PC)
• Hamish ‘kowi’ Parker Warcraft 3 – The Frozen Throne (PC)
• Connagh ‘IZeRo” Heath Halo 3 (Xbox 360)
• Kurtis ‘KurtiZ’ Papple Halo 3 (Xbox 360)
• David ‘Bob69er’ Beaton Halo 3 (Xbox 360)
• Ben ‘Zeth’ Price Halo 3 (Xbox 360)
• Mason "massi4h" Maddox Guitar Hero III (Xbox 360)
• Austin "wugga" Sedgwick Virtua Fighter 5 (Xbox 360)

With well over one million players from more than 70 countries, the World Cyber Games is widely regarded as video gaming's premier tournament. Featuring online and offline events held throughout the world, the year-long WCG series attracted more than 1.5 million competitors worldwide in 2007. The 2007 WCG Grand Final in Seattle, Washington broke new ground as more than 29 million people tuned in to watch the competition unfold in real-time, marking the largest global, live satellite broadcast for an e-Sports event. Additionally, the World Cyber Games was recently recognized by Guinness World Records for the World's Largest Video Game Competition with over 1.5 million competitors worldwide.

For more event details: and http://www,


The eblacks will depart Auckland International Airport on Sunday 02 November 2008, and will be waiting to board at the departure hall from 3:30pm to 4:30pm. If you wish to contact the team, please contact Susan Baikie, 027 320 2770.


About The World Cyber Games
The World Cyber Games ( is the premier blue chip global video game tournament and culture festival. First founded in 2000 to promote global harmony through e-sports, the WCG has grown steadily ever since. Behind the slogan "Beyond the Game" and with contestants from more than 70 countries expected to participate in this year's event, the World Cyber Games has developed into a true global phenomenon with arguably the largest prize amount at stake. The World Cyber Games prides itself on leading the "Digital Entertainment Culture."

Attendee demographics:

41% 16-24 years, single male, predominantly students.
36% 25-34 years old professionals with a high interest in IT.
23% 20-29 year old singles.


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