Local senior competing at the Call of Duty World League Championship this week
Many would scoff at the idea of playing video games professionally, but for a local high school senior from Rockland, it’s a reality.
Seth Donskey is part of the professional Call of Duty team “Projekt Evil”. The team will compete at the Call of Duty World League Championship this week at the Amway Center in Orlando, Florida.
Call of Duty is one of the most popular video game series to date and has amassed a large competitive scene. This tournament has a $1,500,000 prize pool, with the top team taking home $600,000.
The tournament will be streamed online and will likely have over 100,000 attendees coming to watch in person.
Donskey, who goes by the gamertag “Glory,” and his three teammates will have to compete against 31 other teams in a double elimination tournament for a chance at the grand prize.
Donskey and his team had to qualify for the World Championship at a last-chance qualifier tournament in Columbus, Ohio earlier this summer.
This all started for Donskey when he was around 15 and he decided to play in a Call of Duty Tournament. He did well at the event and he started getting offers to play on professional teams.
“Initially we were skeptical because some guy was offering him money to play on his team but then we researched it and it was legitimate,” Ron Donskey, Seth’s dad, said.
Once he got his parent’s on board, he quit playing the sports he was involved in and focused on honing his craft as a Call of Duty Player. Donskey says that he has had a lot of team changes since he started playing professionally.
Last year, Activision, the company that publishes Call of Duty, switched partnerships from Xbox to Playstation. With this change came an 18-year-old age minimum to play professionally.
Donskey had not yet turned 18 so he had to take last year off. After turning 18 this year, he signed a contract with Projekt Evil and has been training and competing with the team ever since. He said the team has been scrimmaging other teams going to the event everyday.
“[We] get on at 4 p.m. every day and scrimmage up until 3 a.m.,” Donskey said. “[We] play about five hours minimum to 13 hours a day against different teams going to the event”
Donskey said that he believes his team could do very well at the event if they play to their full capabilities. He believes that if everything goes well they could win the entire tournament.
Much like professional sports players, pro gamers gather quite a few fans. Just from the time that Donskey has been playing professionally, he has gathered almost 10,000 twitter followers. He says that sometimes people will ask him to take photos with them at tournaments.
Looking towards the future, Donskey said that he wants to continue to play professionally for as long as he can. Also like professional sports players, pro gamers generally only play into their late 20’s.
“I consider this short term money, its not like a career, its like a short term career,” he said. “But I want to do this for as long as I can.”