Esports and expertise: what competitive gaming can teach us about mastery

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Historically, much research and development in human computer interaction has focused on atomic and generalizable tasks, where task completion time indicates productivity. However, the emergence of competitive games and esports reminds us of an alternative perspective on human performance in HCI: mastery of higher-level, holistic practices. Just as a world-renowned artist is rarely evaluated for their individual brush strokes, so skilled competitive gamers rarely succeed solely by completing individual mouse movements or keystrokes as quickly as possible. Instead, they optimize more task-specific skills, adeptly performing challenges deep in the learning curve for their game of choice.


Arjun Madhusudan (NCSU)
Benjamin Watson (NCSU)

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