Algonquin esports team mRNA swept their way to a League of Legends championship and a $150 prize pool in the We Got Game college tournament on Monday, Feb 7.
There were two Algonquin College teams in the tournament. Both Algonquin mRNA and Algonquin C7 made it to the semi-finals, but mRNA went all the way to win the finals and take home the championship.
There was a lot of hype for Algonquin mRNA. Fans were heckling in the Twitch chat for Algonquin mRNA to start their game. The team never showed up on screen because none of the players were streaming, but fans were able to watch them through their opponents’ streams.
The Toronto-based We Got Game esports company has hosted four campus tournaments so far this year. Each tournament pits Ontario campuses against each other in a variety of games. All of it is streamed live on Twitch.
The tournaments weren’t always online. “We used to do them on campus every week.” said Alison Barnes, the events programmer for the Algonquin Student’s Association. “We’d have about 40 game systems in rotation all day. FIFA, Mario Kart, Smash Brothers. We even had VR.”
Barnes has been helping coordinate esports on campus for over four years. When the COVID-19 pandemic shut everything down, Barnes worked with We Got Game and the tournaments moved online. Now they have the opportunity to play against students from other campuses.
“It’s nice to be able to compete with other colleges and not just with themselves,” Barnes said.
Algonquin mRNA were hyped for the League of Legends tournament before it began. Augie Berganio, a police foundations student who goes by the handle n0t3d and a team top laner, has been playing League of Legends since Season 3.
“I was very OG guy. Most of my champions are OG,” he said. “I stopped for two years when I first came to Canada from Philipinnes. I didn’t have a PC or laptop. But now I’m back at it.”
Teammate Nick Dudar, who goes by Tay, has a similar story. Dudar is in the heating, refrigeration and air conditioning program and has been playing League of Legends for years. “I’ve been a gamer since I first got an N64,” he said. “I’ve been playing League for almost nine years, since the original seasons.”
Both Algonquin College teams dominated in the first rounds. mRNA knocked Cambrian College out of the tournament to face off with sister Algonquin College team C7 in the semi-finals.
It was a tough fight but mRNA moved on after taking out all of C7’s turrets. Then they faced off with the Niagara Neons in the finals. The Neons put up a tough fight but after nearly 40 minutes of intense gameplay, they fell. Algonquin mRNA were the undisputed champions of the tournament.
We Got Game will host the next League of Legends campus tournament on March 11. Fans can watch the streams live on Twitch at wegotgame_corp.