Melbourne Convention Centre transformed into battle arena

Australia’s second biggest esports tournament, Battle Arena Melbourne, took place over the weekend

It was an epic site as fans piled into the Convention Centre to watch their favourite players battle it out, esports style. Battle Arena Melbourne (BAM) saw players from all over Australia, and the world, come to Melbourne to compete for over AUD$25,000 in cash prizes. Games on offer included popular platform fighters such as Street Fighter, Tekken, Dragon Ball Z Fighter, and Super Smash Brothers.

A great array of titles on offer to play (Image: BAM10)

BAM is in it’s tenth year now and growing stronger. As Megan from Couch Warriors said “it’s awesome to see how far BAM has come and this is definitely the biggest and best BAM we’ve seen”. The team has gone all out and provided a place for Aussie fighter gamers to test their skills against the best in the world.

If fans weren’t around to see their favourite gamers compete, they could play all the games from themselves. It wasn’t an uncommon site to see people walking around with their own controller, or even arcade stick, in hand. One would simply find a free console, plug in their controller and away they go – challenging friends and randoms alike. Splatoo and Pokken were huge features, and in and Australian-first, Soul Calibur VI was on hand for gamers to demo.

Tried out the latest title in the Soul Calibur franchise. Loving the gameplay and the graphics are amazing!

And it wasn’t all about the games either. If games weren’t your thing, then there’s a heap of other stuff on offer. Artists from all over Australia travelled to Melbourne to show off their artwork and do some on-the-spot commissions. You could also drop by the Razer stand and try out all their audio gear, or swing by the ZQ Racing booth to sit in their comfy chairs. Then there’s the guys and girls from paintball to chat too if physical-world fighting is more your style.

Oh and there’s plenty of opportunities for photos in front of the awesome BAM media walls. Here’s the Esports Central team showing off our fighting poses

With a tonne of things on offer you’ll never get bored. Probably the best thing about BAM10 (from my perspective anyways), is seeing the community come together to support one another. Lalor from Razer talked about how “important it is for [Razer] to support grassroots events like BAM”. Ben from ZQ Racing said he “loves supporting community tournaments like BAM and seeing locals flourish”. Red Bull offered up their arena and kept everyone energised. Lewis from Twitch talked about what they are doing the support the community.

The Red Bull fighting cage also featured at PAX 2017

This was definitely the biggest announcement of the weekend. If you don’t like reading too much, then check out my video to see it all in convenient interview style, otherwise, read on!

Lewis from Twitch described how Australia is typically behind the eight ball (no surprises there). He went on to say “our internet here isn’t great, and then you have to factor in flights and accommodation if you want to go and compete big overseas”. So Twitch decided to help out. They are sending the best Aussie gamers – which happen to be Somniacs from Dark Sided (Street Fighter) and Chand NY from Kanga esports (Tekken) – overseas to compete in EVO, the most prestigious fighting game tournament on the planet.

Twitch will be paying for all their flights and accommodation so they can rep Australia at one of the biggest esports competitions in the world. It’s great to see Twitch helping out the locals and hopefully we’ll see them make it big.

EVO will be held once again in Las Vegas in August this year. We wish our Aussies well on their quest!

Well that’s all from me this time around. If you haven’t already, check out my video on BAM10. And don’t forget to let me know what you think, and tell me what you want to see or hear next time around.

Awesome to see people gathering around the ‘free play’ area to watch their friends compete


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