Ten years ago, video games were seen simply as a hobby where one could relax and play with friends. Now, it’s a multi-billion dollar industry that competes with other successful mediums such as summer blockbuster films. A 15-year-old boy recently used his years of gameplay practice to win a $2.3 million Fortnite tournament.
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Jaden Ashman, a 15-year-old boy from Essex, England, participated in a three-day Fortnite World Cup tournament at Arthur Ashe tennis stadium in New York over the weekend with his Dutch partner Dave Jong, the Daily Mail reported.
The two came in second place at the tournament, which awarded them $2.3 million to split between the two of them. His mother, Lisa Dallman, was there to see her son take home the second place trophy and the money, but she wasn’t always as accepting of his passion, which left the two at odds.
“Me and my mum, we clash quite a lot. Like, she didn’t understand how it worked, so she thought that I was spending eight hours a day in my room just wasting my time,” Ashman told the BBC following his victory. “So now that I’ve proved to her that I can do stuff, I’m really happy.”
Dallman explained how his gaming originally took a toll on her relationship with her son. “If I’m honest with you I’ve been quite against him gaming. I’ve been more pushing him to his schoolwork. I’ve actually thrown an Xbox out, snapped a headset, we’ve had a nightmare.”
She went on to explain the hardship she and her son had trying to get everything in order for him to even participate in the tournament. “And then leading up to the games, getting his visa, we had problems with that so we had a week of a nightmare,” she told BBC.
“Then the dog ate his birth certificate, so – and this is not a joke – this actually really did happen. And then my work messed up my wages, so three things went wrong before we started heading here so I knew we were on an even keel and everything was going to go right.”
Ashman, who goes by the Gamertag “Wolfiez,” plans to keep playing games and pushing his skills in additional tournaments. As for his winnings, Dallman thinks not much will change with his day-to-day activities.
“I think Jaden’s not really a materialistic person. He will have a lifetime supply of Uber Eats, and I think that will do him, to be fair. Just sitting there playing video games and eating takeaways, Jaden would be in his element.”