The Competitive Edge / by Evan Hirsh

Thomas Malooly has always been a competitor. Throughout his high school career, he played sports such as Baseball and Football, with a fierce no excuses attitude that push him through his athletic career. Back in June of this year, Tom was recruited to a professional team, but instead for a video game, Halo. Tom is on the forefront of a new competition known as e-sports. I had the pleasure of knowing Tom throughout high school, and he eagerly accepted my offer to interview over Skype.

Q: What made you want to get involved with e-sports?

A: So I started out, just basically as an athlete, and I’ve always had that drive for competition. I hate losing I’ve always been an extreme competitor. I’ve always been into sports, such as Baseball and Football, when I was younger I played Basketball. I guess it stemmed from sports. I would play games, but I never really knew there was a competitive scene to games. Now that I’m older, and I understand that, It’s made it hard to resist playing anything that’s competitive.

Q: So overall, you have School, play Baseball, and have a lot of activities outside of e-sports, how do you balance that?

A: I would say the best way to balance it would be to make a schedule. The more so that you can plan ahead and know that you’re willing to play the easier it’s going to be on yourself, in order to actually compete, play, and practice. Because I mean you have to do all those things. You can’t just solely compete and not play the game yourself, and expect it to keep getting better. I have baseball practice right now three times a week, and then we’re having fall games on weekends. The hardest thing is time management for sure.

Q: Which of your skills from traditional sports would you say transitioned best into e-sports?

A: The competitive edge definitely comes with you. You can’t really control it, that’s something that falls into place. On top of that, as a baseball player, you have to have pretty quick reaction time. Say someone hits a hard line drive at you, you have to be able to react quick. E-sports is the same way. It doesn’t matter if it’s a “Real Time Strategy” game, or an FPS game, you have to have that quick reaction, being able to react on the fly.

Q: Where do you see your future when it comes to e-sports?

As far as my future, it’s untold. I picked up a new teammate, we have this team of 4, we compete every Saturday in the open cup events and we [skirmish] several times a week. I’d say in the future, best case scenario, attend Las Vegas event, and I’m not going to say place top 16, but I can see us really making a statement as far as a game of Halo goes.

You can find Tom on Twitter as @EMP_SavageHCS