UPDATE (September 24th): Nintendo UK has now signed a deal with National Student Esports (NSE) to launch the Super Smash Bros. Ultimate University Championship.
This will become a part of the NSE winter season, allowing players to earn points for their university as part of the British University Esports Championship. It will be an eight-week circuit, four weeks of 3v3 team tournaments and four weeks of 1v1 singles tournaments. Sign-ups will open on the NSE website soon.
The first tournament of the circuit will take place on October 10th and will continue weekly until the finals, which will take place at the British University Esports Championship live winter finals in December.
NSE will also be holding up to five Super Smash Bros. Ultimate regional university tournaments, which will accompany existing student regional events across the country.
The news comes after Nintendo partnered with Digital Schoolhouse for a separate Smash Bros tournament in UK schools (see below).
“Since launch, there have been many requests from students for Super Smash Bros Ultimate., so we are delighted to be able to add such a prestigious, sought-after title to the roster,” said Jonathan Tilbury, executive director at NSE.
Original article (published September 5th):
Schools and colleges across the UK will be able to take part in a new Smash Bros esports tournament, organised by UK games industry trade body Ukie.
The competition is being put on by Ukie’s education-focused programme, Digital Schoolhouse, which is also supported by the Department of Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) and Nintendo UK.
The Digital Schoolhouse Super Smash Bros. Ultimate Team Battle allows students to develop practical and soft skills with participation in professional esports roles, such as team hosting and production.
Nintendo is on board as the lead partner for the initiative, which focuses on play-based learning and industry best practice.
“We want to foster the development of skillsets within students which they can take with them into their future.”
Kalpesh Tailor, Nintendo
The esports tournament is expected to reach 60 schools and colleges, and over 6,000 pupils.
Kalpesh Tailor, head of communications at Nintendo UK, said: “Through Digital Schoolhouse Super Smash Bros. Ultimate Team Battle with Nintendo Switch, as well as through other play-based learning initiatives, we want to be able to provide young adults with fun and unique experiences that will form positive lasting memories as well as foster the development of skillsets within students which they can take with them into their future.”
Shahneila Saeed, director of Digital Schoolhouse, added: “We’re delighted Nintendo UK has agreed to throw its support behind Digital Schoolhouse. DSH has evolved enormously in just three years and their support means we can reach more pupils and teachers than ever with our transformative and inspiring programme.”
The most recent Digital Schoolhouse esports tournament, a 3v3 Overwatch competition, was won by King Edward VI School’s Overwatch team, Scorpions.
Dom is an award-winning writer who graduated from Bournemouth University with a 2:1 degree in Multi-Media Journalism in 2007.
A keen League of Legends and World of Warcraft player, he has written for a range of publications including GamesTM, Nintendo Official Magazine, industry publication MCV as well as Riot Games and others. He works as full-time content director for the British Esports Association and runs ENUK in his spare time.