After checking out the COD Championship last weekend, we picked up a few insider tips from the best in the biz (at digitally shooting people). And since we're such good people, we're going to share the top ways you can up your game. Just don't snipe us.
Know Your Role
Anyone can go lone wolf, but the difference between you and the best players in the world is the same thing our old gym teacher emphasized: Teamwork. Playing your part is a huge key to success. If you're not willing to do that, expect to hear some shit from your team.
You don't get many second chances in the frenzy of tournament play. The surest way your team will wind up a loser is by not getting those kills on the first try. Our new motto is "Headshot or Death."
The Lay of the Land
Map knowledge is paramount. Just like situational awareness may save your life on a real battlefield, the spoils go to the well-prepared. Discovering shortcuts in traversing a map, finding long firing lines, and ducking cover when you're firing at the enemy are huge advantages whether you're mowing down noobs or competing for million dollar prizes.
Obviously, when you're only carrying a limited amount of weapons, it's important to make the most of what you’ve got. Gunning down enemies is how you'll get 90% of your kills but, throughout the tournament, we watched well-timed, well-placed grenades make all the difference, even if they're launched from halfway across the map. Just like in the NFL, sometimes you gotta throw a Hail Mary.
The best COD players we've seen have more right to trash talk than anyone else on on Xbox Live but, surprise, they actually don't. Instead, they spend their time calling out opponent locations as they relate to map landmarks and keep their team organized by announcing shifts in defense and position. There's always time to call your enemy's mom a used-up, bass-mouthed hooker when the next match is loading.
The Spoils of War
The teams at the 2014 Call of Duty Championships are playing for a million dollars in prizes, courtesy of Xbox and Activision, but there are tons of ways to make a buck off your gaming skills nowadays. If you're serious about competing or just want to test your might in order to put some spare change in your pocket, the CoD: Ghosts community app is an avenue worth checking out, and local competitions are happening all the time. Hey, who wouldn't want to quit their day job to do what they love?
Hot Video Game Broadcasters
Or at least some of them are. We love you Jessica Chobot and iJustine! Call our people and we'll set something up.
Actual sports commentating is an industry overflowing with guys who want to be the next Dick Vitale. ESports takes just as much skill and is actually more fun to listen to, especially when you're dropping player handles like "Scump" or "Rambo." Take that, Johnny Football.
We Love to Watch
Hopeful future competitors and amateur newbies alike can tune in on any number of channels to get their live stream fix of the games. Not only did droves of people show up to watch the COD Championships live in Los Angeles, millions of people streamed the action directly to their laptops and consoles this weekend. You can see some of the best recaps of the tourney’s matches at Major League Gaming's site.
Play COD, Support the Troops
COD enjoys a huge user base the world-over but they're also deeply involved in helping US veterans with their Call of Duty endowment. The COD Championship 2014 was a big platform for Hire Heroes USA, an organization that helps US veterans find lasting careers in the work force. Nothing helps you shake off the sting of a lost match better than the warm and fuzzies you get from knowing you’re making a difference to someone in real life.
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Drinking in FPS knowledge, straight from the source.