How my idea became Minecraft’s biggest tournament

How my idea became Minecraft’s biggest tournament

Scott Major organizes the biggest tournament in Minecraft – the world’s best-selling video game.

The MC Tournament, known as MCC, returns this weekend with some of the most popular online personalities from around the world.

It started as a small idea in the head of the 28-year-old Scottish YouTuber, who said he was surprised when it grew to such a size.

Scott’s show hit a record audience during the Covid lockdown, when more than 900,000 viewers watched online.

With room for 40 competitors, Scott said he was suddenly “hitting people with sticks” who wanted to participate.

It all started in 2019 when Scott, known online as ‘dangthatsalongname’, wanted a new kind of Minecraft tournament – one that was well run and not too competitive.

“We try to focus on fun, so there’s no prize money for winning,” he said.

Winners get pixelated in-game trophies, commemorative coins and ultimate bragging rights.

He spoke to his friend ‘Noxite’ – the founder of Nottingham-based Noxcrew – who creates Minecraft content.

And in a few months the first Minecraft Tournament was born.

It is broadcast live on YouTube, Twitch and other streaming platforms.

Scott said MCC was “praised regularly” when it started, but as it grew in size and ambition, it brought new challenges.

Several Minecraft content creators, even Scott’s close friends, were on a waiting list for over a year to get involved

“Suddenly it’s overturned and that’s mentally taxing”, he said.

“Even if it’s just people online and it’s just words, eventually it takes a toll and it’s hard to just read good comments.

“I get severe anxiety through online spaces,” she said.

Scott attributed much of the criticism he received to the stress of the lockdown.

“I’m an openly gay content creator and I grew up in the west of Scotland, so I had quite a thick skin growing up,” he says.

“But suddenly there are these people who don’t like me, and my existence is shown to them every month.”

Scott considered quitting several times when he said it started to affect his mental health.

“We are not paid for MCC, it is done by our own love and drive for the game.”

“Even though I would have people bother me, the creators I knew and interacted with told me how much fun it was.

“That’s what brings people from different communities together and allows them to form friendships that they weren’t able to before,” he said.

Scott says MCC makes the previously separated Minecraft community feel more like one.

The tournament was like “a world-shattering moment,” Scott said.

“That’s always been my goal – bringing the community together.”

Minecraft was released by Mojang Studios in November 2011 and has now sold over 300 million copies.

Building block games have a huge following among kids and adults alike because of their sandbox nature – meaning if you can imagine it, you can create it.

During the MCC, players take part in eight different games in teams of four.

Some are influenced by other games such as bingo, Mario Kart and the TV game show “Hole in the Wall”.

“Noxcrew builds video games inside Minecraft,” he added. “It takes Minecraft to the limits of what it can do.

Scott organizes the MCC team and creator talent, while Noxcrew – a company with over 30 staff – handles the operational and development side of the event.

They use custom models, sounds and textures to transform Minecraft into an immersive game show.

Noxcrew co-owner Joe Arsenault says MCC started at an opportune time during the pandemic, right before the first shutdown.

“The Minecraft tsunami blew up and the game became very popular again,” says Joe

He described the MCC as “an entertainment project, disguised as a competition”.

“It’s challenging to organize something that is very competitive and has the integrity that you need to be an eSports,” added Joe.

“Minecraft is a stupid game, it’s just blocky guys with facial hair punching trees with their fists – it doesn’t make sense and we just accept that it’s fine.”

MCC competitor FalseSymmetry (also known as Katy) is the first woman to win the tournament four times.

The 32-year-old has been a YouTuber in the Minecraft community for over 10 years and thinks the tournament has had a positive impact on the game.

“Playing in the MCC is always an absolute blast,” he said.

“I don’t think there’s been any event I’ve played that I haven’t enjoyed.”

He added: “It’s helped bring consistency to competitive Minecraft play… as well as bringing so many creators together who otherwise might never have worked together.

“The amazing community around the game is what keeps it going,” he added.

After a five-month hiatus, the tournament launches its fourth season on Saturday 4 May.

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