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By alice 'ali' lew
Jan 29, 2009 03:10

So from 2000-2002, I spent most of my time lounging, playing, and working at Cyberhunt, "my" internet cafe. At this time, internet cafes were blossoming literally on every corner, with kids packed inside them and a wait list that went on for days. Lan centers took advantage of this growing trend and $1,000 tournaments were becoming a weekly occurence.

My group of friends and I would go to a couple different lan centers depending on our current location. As we became regulars at other lan centers, we became recognized by other lan teams in the area. This is where we got most of our match experience from. Other lan teams would schedule scrims versus us in person and we became more acquianted with other top tier lan teams around the area. This is how I was introduced to Jennay and Mishl, the founders of GX3.

During this time, mIRC was barely getting popular, so many teams got their practice by calling other lan centers to see if their lan team wanted to scrim. Because of this process, many "gamers" in Socal became better acquianted and actually became good friends, as I was with a team named PODED.

Cyberhunt and PODED were competitive rivals, but were friends nonetheless. Through PODED, I was introduced to Jennifer and Mishl, who were competitive female gamers like myself. This was the first time I ever met a female gamer that was on the same page as me. Who would have thought we would build a dynasty that is still holding strong today?!

Randomly, the first time we met was at a bowling alley. It was the first time I ever met any of the PODED people. We had just finished scrimming CS and wanted to compete at something else, so we met up at the local bowling alley and duked it out..... GG right??? LOL

Jennay and Mishl sat me down and talked to me about the uniting of female gamers around America. They had been intriguied hearing about my competitive nature from their PODED friends and insisting we make some type of team. On top of it all, they insisted I be the leader of it. I was not only flattered, but excited to have found females with the same vision.

In Feburary 2002, Girls Got Game (GX3) was created. I believe it was Mikey (Method) So that convinced the girls on the name. This was when mIRC was just getting popular for me and I would meet Jennay and Mishl online regularly to play together.

The beginning of GX3 was a definite learning experience. We allowed basically any female gamer to join GX3 and HONESTLY, actively looking, we were only able to get 6 girls total! This proved to us the scarcity of competitive female gamers. We were merely looking for fun/semi-competitive females with passion. This happened almost 7 years ago so is it bad that I can't remember who joined the team first??? -_- ugh...

I know I'm starting to ramble now so I'll tell you guys about my first successful sponsor and ESWC 2004 next time. Pretty sure I have some pictures from that event also..

picture: GX3 REUNION IN LOS ANGELES, CA (2004)
L2R: leila (DBABY), jennifer (JENNAY), mishl (MICHELLE), carol (SNUGGLY), mary (LITTOGURL), alice (ME!), ash (ASHLEY)

ali -- my CS HISTORY

By alice 'ali' lew
Jan 18, 2009 12:04

Tales from my CS beginning to present day. I'll try to capture as many stories as possible through my blogs!
I was going through my folders today and I found a lot of old CS and tourney pictures from like 2004 to now. I figured you guys might have a good time looking at old pictures and hearing some old stories so here I go. :)

I started playing when I was a freshman in high school at 15 years old. While living in a town 10 minutes from downtown Los Angeles, the Counterstrike scene really boomed with lan centers opening up on virtually every corner. A definite hotspot for teenages during the time, Counterstrike was a hit from the start in southern California. Lan centers were filled from open to close with ridiculous waiting lines. The year 2000 proved to be a big year for upcoming southern Californian stars.

I started playing counterstrike first at a lan center called Game Structure. Right away, intimidation rushed through my body, and the fact that this video game was male-dominated went through my mind immediately. I was constantly fustrated because I had a hard time picking the game up. It pissed me off that I couldn't remember how to buy different guns. The first gun I was taught to buy was the para, and it was my favorite gun for the first couple of weeks, until I realized it was the most expensive and took way too long to reload.

I was instantly addicted and everyone knew. I began to call my friends to go play instead of them begging me. I would make the decision to ditch school and to go to the lan center instead. Though now that I think back and realize how poor of a decision that was, I can't say that I regret it at all. All those hours of pubbing and bunny-hopping on de_dust was just too much fun!!!

Because of my obvious dedication to GS (Game Structure), they recruited me on their lan team and let me play for free. In a way, this was the first sponsor I ever got. This opportunity gave me the chance to really improve my skills and through hard work and patience, I really started to shine. Being a regular, I started getting recognized as a solid player in the server.

My group of friends (all male) and I literally ran lan centers. We would be the best in the server and eventually acquired 3 different lan sponsors at the same time. These lan centers recognized the boom of gamers and started hosting tournaments. Representing their name, we would go to these tournaments and compete for the $1000 cash prize.

At this time, mIRC was barely getting popular. I remember customers at the lan center would ask me to go on IRC for them and help them find a scrim. The majority of gamers at this time weren't even playing scrims. The jam packed lan center would spend their time pubbing in a server on dust or italy (my fav). I don't understand how I was able to pub for 12 hours a day nonstop. Spicy cup of noodles was my best friend back then.

I learned alot during this time in my gaming career. Being "sponsored" by these lan centers, I helped them run the store in exchange for free lan time and a guarenteed computer. Dedication and loyalty was key. Lan centers were literally popping up on every corner. The community was growing right before my eyes, but I never thought it would grow to the phenomenom it is today.

2 years later, in 2002, I would meet 2 other female gamers that would change my life. WIth the same vision for female gamers worldwide, we would build a dynasty then named Girls Got Game, now named SK Ladies. Though representing a different name, I can honestly say I will never forget where I came from. From GS, to GX3, to MTV, to SK, this gaming journey has been nothing short of incredible.

I know sometimes I ramble... but want me to tell you about it? :)


By alice 'ali' lew
Jan 13, 2009 14:19

PICTURE: ESWC 2004 - my first time in Paris! :) L2R: mary (littogurl), carol (snuggly), michelle (mishl), me, ashley (ash) I think I have one for every year I've been there...
Time has honestly gone by so fast. Now that I stop and REALLY think about it, I truly have been playing this game for a long time. I started playing this game in 2000 and led GX3/SK LADIES since 2002! And sadly, every single year, we had to replace at least one player from the roster. This year though, it’s really different. The girls on my team are young, they're fresh and hungry, and I can really see potential in the future for this team. We know we just need to focus, build good teamwork, and talk!

The search for a 5th player has been ongoing. We have basically narrowed our search down to 2 remaining players and will be making our decision at the end of the month. We will be joining the highly anticipated new ESEA League so you can get updates on our matches on this site! Our first time together will be early February while we bootcamp at the new SteelSeries office and prepare for the busy year. Hopefully I will be spending Valentine's Day with my loves in Chicago. :)

The new year looks optimistic for American 1.6!!!! Finally! I have been waiting for CGS to just take a poop and give the opportunity for veteran players to come back to 1.6! Source totally killed the American community and now that CGS is dead, I am happy to say that the American scene might look a lot more interesting this year. American LAN tournaments are really starting to become a frequent occurrence so we look forward to attending some throughout the year.


By alice 'ali' lew
Jan 3, 2009 03:21

Just a personal reflection on the last few years with SK.Ladies
I've led this team for the last 6 years, going on 7. these last 3 years, we've had to go through roster changes, replacing 2 veterans with 2 new recruits, and battle our way back to being at the top of our game. Being an American based team, it has always been hard to distinguish whether we were at the top of the female chain or at the bottom.

It's common knowledge that the North American female scene can be said to be obsolete. With no real competitive female teams, SK ladies have always took much pride in competing with the best North America has to offer, often playing against top tier players and teams. Although the teams goal is ultimately to be the best, and not just the best female team, we have always supported the female community with high hopes that more females would show their faces in this male dominated scene.

With the departure of 2 veterans from the SK ladies team, it only makes room for 2 new faces. One is a girl named benita, who has been on the team for the last 2 years but was unable to play at ESWC because she was under 16 at the time. The other is yet to be decided but our search for a new 5th continues and we are getting closer to a decision which we will announce shortly after we decide. :)

As said before, the North American female scene is so small! It has not been difficult to find girls with potential that were interested in joining but it has been heartbreaking to have to weed out the stronger of the group from the rest, and crush some dreams in the mean time.

The departure of potter and jane might come as a suprise to some but it was inevitable to the team especially after a couple incidents that occured during this past summer. In regards to jane who had just graduated, she had decided she no longer had the same love for the game as she did before. People grow up, things change, and shit happens. We know she'll be so successful in her life and wish her the best of luck.

Potter on the other hand, found a new home with PMS where she will be joined by missharvey and 3 others. Though a little bittersweet, I can only wish them the best of luck and hope that we will meet each other in the finals this coming ESWC.

We've planned a bootcamp at the new steelseries office in chicago during the end of this month so stay tuned for pictures, vids, and blogs!

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