Lord of the Steakzzz

People want coffee breaks in their work, I want line breaks in my previews.

HTML INJECTION! <br><b><?php msqli_query($conn, “DROP ALL TABLES EVER”?> (I’m actually scared to type in something real in the event that this really works). </b>

The thing about previews is that I usually take about 5 sentences before I even remotely hint at what I’m going to talk about. Because rather than be direct, I like to use my new-found expressive power (THANK YOU, WORLD WIDE WEB) to rant about my world view. Then lead into any points.

One of the things about having a smartphone is that I read a lot more. Unfortunately, I don’t have a subscription to the economist, and smartphone reading is really only restricted to short articles (unless you can read like, really quickly). The whole point of this sentence is to tell you that “once in a while I read gosugamers.net”, which isn’t something anyone needs to justify. It’s neither outrageous, interesting, nor does it carry much social stigma (unlike, say, “once in a while I put on a dress and dance to Village People”, (which I don’t)).

I love it when anyone talks about the Singaporean gaming scene, because I can go “look! Someone cares about something I care about as well!” It’s like if you were a lonely angler fish enthusiast and suddenly found another angler fish enthusiast. Imagine the joy.

The beautiful exotic exquisite angler fish

You can’t, because it’s impossible to imagine someone who loves angler fishes.

Anyway, I came across this article, with the title “A Look into the Singaporean Scene” (with respect to DotA). Here’s the TL;DR version (while it’s not my style to give TL;DRs, I recognize that I need to save my reader valuable time so that he has more time to spare on my long ramblings!):

Singapore once in a while makes a peck at the DotA scene, but then fizzles. National Service (NS) contributes to the high attrition rate, and so does the lack of support from pretty much anywhere. Thus the current Singaporean stars are inexperienced and unable to perform (I infer, by virtue of everyone older quitting or moving elsewhere, both literally and metaphorically).

Personally, I think it’s a Lord of the Flies (LotF) problem.

It’s safe to refer to Lord of the Flies (LotF) here, because I think more people have read it than Harry Potter. It’s not safe because so many people have read it that I’m bound to be caught getting my facts wrong.

Here’s a brief synopsis of LotF, with a liberal shift in emphasis. A bunch of kids end up on an island with no adults. They try to self-govern and have some sort of order, but end up fucking shit up and fucking up everything and doing fucked up things. The end.

The parallels between LotF and SG team e-sports? If you empower a bunch of kids, they’re mostly going to fuck stuff up. EVEN IF SOME OF THEM TRY TO DO GOOD, they end up getting squelched by the majority.

Unlike LotF, some of the fortunate minority can live long enough on the island to be rescued from it, away from the governance of the little kids who create rituals for killing pigs, vie for power within themselves, and shun anyone who disagrees with them.

Occasionally, an adult comes in and tries to do some good. Sometimes he tries really hard. But he soon realizes that childish innocence does not even begin to compensate for childish ignorance. This, of course, doesn’t happen in the book, because the one adult that does show up just looks around, goes “WTF THIS IS FUCKED UP”, and is wise enough to not bother trying (that one adult also has far more power than any of the kids, having a ship and all).

And while this is happening, Piggy is running around trying to do good but being scapegoated for all the horrible things that happen. Eventually someone has enough of him and pushes him off a cliff. Poor piggy. And Simon, in all his holiness, gets beaten to death. Because they’re kids and just want to do whatever they want to do.

PIGGY! And his glasses.

Too cryptic?

Yes, NS is disruptive and all, but it all boils down to that one point. The politically correct phrasing is “most of the talent is inexperienced.” The actual point is “the people with the power to do anything are kids.” One kid in a world of adults can be guided and channeled (Ender’s Game, anyone?). Kids banding together to govern themselves turns into a pretty horrible LotF-esque show.

That’s the LotF problem. Leave a bunch of kids to be stuck on an island to govern themselves, and they’re going to mess things up. To accomplish anything, the one sensible kid learns to become a hermit, sit on his own island in the middle of the lake, and eventually hop on the first boat he sees and sails away.

I could talk about demographics, and theorize about cultures and systems, but I’ll leave that for another day (IN OTHER WORDS, I PROBABLY NEVER WILL WRITE IT DOWN – but it’s a rant I’ve given verbally far too many times).


p.s. if you didn’t get the “Steakzzz” reference, which you probably didn’t, Steakzzz was Tofuboi’s old nick. Tofuboi was a rather influential figure in the SG DotA and then LoL scene. A lot of parallels can be drawn (the most obvious one being physical appearance) between him and the LotF character Piggy (the other less-than-obvious ones, much like contemporary art, require huge amounts of context, so I’ll leave them as an inside joke).

p.p.s. so I got news that SG LoL player Xinglei (interesting anecdote: at the start of SG LoL, Tofu dubbed him “definitely the best LoL player in SG”) has moved on to TPA (a Taiwanese team). This was after I started writing this post, and does seem like great timing.


p.p.p.s. there’s this category called “iceiceice” that I’m tempted to put this into, but that’s too much of a leap to make.

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