Nintendo launch first national esports tournament for children aged 8-11

Let me compete, cowards

Nintendo is working with Digital Schoolhouse and Outright Games to host a national junior esports tournament for ages 8-11, featuring competitive Mario Kart 8 and more.

The tournament aims to “bring industry careers to life in the classroom” by having children compete on a mix of Nintendo Switch games. This includes Mario Kart 8, as well as Outright Games’ Crayola Scoot and Race With Ryan.

The aim of the Digital Schoolhouse Junior Esports Tournament is to encourage more children to consider careers in computing. Following a “successful pilot”, 55 per cent of teachers involved reported that children in the classroom were “significantly more motivated to study computing” after the pilot.

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Nintendo Junior Esports
Nintendo Junior Esports. Credit: Digital Schoolhouse, Nintendo.

As well as competing, the tournament offers children the chance to try out a variety of “real job roles” within the gaming industry, with one of the pupils involved in the pilot sharing that their “favourite job” was working on the production crew but they didn’t get a chance to host, which they were “really looking forward to”.

Kalpesh Tailor, Head of Communications at Nintendo UK, shared that “we have seen first-hand the positive impact this has had on pupils who have benefited from teamwork, strategy and social improvements.”

“It is great that we can deliver a tailored education programme using Mario Kart 8 Deluxe so primary school pupils can also engage and get hands-on experiences in a multitude of important roles developing and running a nationwide innovative tournament.”

A senior esports tournament for 12-18 year-olds across the country will also resume “shortly”, which will pit older kids against each other in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate.

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In other news, Ex Tripwire CEO John Gibson has released his first statement since being replaced for causing boycotts over his stance on a highly restrictive anti-abortion law in Texas.

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