How to Become a Professional Tekken Player
Electronic gaming or e-sport is growing in the sporting industry. In 2014 the prize money for Call of Duty (COD) championships hosted in Los Angeles (LA), California went up to a cool US$1 million, and gamers from all over the world participated. However, COD is not the only game that has become profitable – the fighting game, Tekken has also risen to become a thriving e-sport – spawning the era of professional gamers.
The Daichi Nakayama Story
One person who has made a career out of playing computer games is Tekken professional Daichi ‘NOBI’ Nakayama.
According to Nakayama, he wasn’t a very good student and as a result had to take extra tuition after school hours and this resulted in a very stressful study life.
“So for that reason I had to do extra tuition outside of school hours to keep up and as a result I was very stressed at time, which is why I first started going to arcades.
Coincidently during his first trip to the arcade, a Tekken tournament was underway and that was his first introduction to the classic fighting game. He said:
“Playing Tekken made me forget about my stress and feel comfortable. For the first time I also felt confident in what I was doing. And even after I finished middle school and moved to high school, I was still obsessed with Tekken.”
Nakayama said his obsession with the game resulted in him skipping classes just so he could go to the arcades to play.
“I felt like I would never concentrate unless I was playing Tekken.” he explained, “So Tekken quickly became a much more important part of my life than high school.”
Nakayama said he became so obsessed that he would be writing up strategies in his notebook during classes. He eventually had to drop out of class because of his fixation with the game. However, his education did not end.
“I still did home schooling online, but for the most part I was devoting my life to Tekken.”
When Nakayama completed home schooling, he applied to study programing at university and was accepted. However, he again had to drop out, but he was already an established Tekken gamer and competing in local tournaments.
His gaming prowess caught the attention Sugamo Namco Arcade who offered him a job – as a professional Tekken instructor.
“While I was working as a Tekken instructor, I was also giving private lessons,” he said. Nakayama taught more than 1,000 people in his first 3 years on the job.
Nakayama won the King of Iron Fist Tournament in 2015 and is currently ranked 6th in Japan. He has collected more than US$50, 000 in 4 tournaments.