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VIDEOGAMES AND ES­PORTS have been crit­i­cised as not be­ing com­pat­i­ble with the ethos of the Olympic games as they “[pro­mote] vi­o­lence and dis­crim­i­na­tion”, ac­cord­ing to the head of the In­ter­na­tional Olympic Com­mit­tee, Thomas Bach. Speak­ing to the As­so­ci­ated Press, Bach said “So-called killer games. They, from our point of view, are con­tra­dic­tory to the Olympic val­ues and can­not there­fore be ac­cepted.” How­ever, Bach has ne­glected to say which games in par­tic­u­lar he has taken of­fence to.

ES­ports have most re­cently been fea­tured at the Asian Games. Six ti­tles — Arena of Valor, Clash Royale, Hearth­stone, League of Le­gends, Pro Evo­lu­tion Soc­cer 2018 and StarCraft 2 (above) — were played as a demon­stra­tion sport, with plans to have eS­ports pro­moted to a per­ma­nent event in the fu­ture. Bach still needs con­vinc­ing, de­spite hav­ing won an Olympic gold medal in fenc­ing.

“Of course ev­ery com­bat sport has its ori­gins in a real fight among peo­ple,” Bach said. “But sport is the civilised ex­pres­sion about this. If you have egames where it’s about killing some­body, this can­not be brought into line with our Olympic val­ues.”

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