HU Storm Esports documentary to debut at 2020 PAX West Convention

A new documentary chronicling the trailblazing efforts of The Harrisburg University (HU) Storm’s journey to building a world-class collegiate Esports program will premiere at this year’s PAX West Convention on September 17 at 2:45 PM EST. The premier will be held in conjunction with the 2020 HUE Invitational, which has expanded to include an Academic Summit in partnership with InvenGlobal.

Set against the backdrop of HU’s quest to become an Esports powerhouse, “A Rising Storm” is a behind-the-scenes journey into how Harrisburg University has taken its Esports program from inception to domination in only two years: developing a star-studded coaching staff of ex-professional gamers; recruiting promising student athletes; and enforcing a rigorous practice regimen, strict GPA requirements, and even participation in a physical fitness program. Varsity esports players are offered full-ride scholarships, and graduates earning a Bachelor of Science in Esports Management, Production, and Performance are helping to fuel the explosive industry’s workforce.

“This documentary captures the grit, teamwork, and character it takes to field a national championship esports team,” said Chad Smeltz, HU Director of Esports. “Everyone involved in the team’s growth knows how hard we’ve worked to build an amazing culture, and we’re thrilled the rest of the world will get to witness that now too.”

Gamers and Storm fans can stream the live premiere of the 30-minute documentary on the PAX2 Twitch channel, available on the PAX event page. Viewers can also live chat with the director of the documentary, Adrian Selkowitz, along with Storm Head Coaches, Joe Gramano and Alex Chu, and Esports Program Director, Chad Smeltz.  Following the premiere, “A Rising Storm” will be available to stream worldwide on Amazon video, Apple TV and Google Play.

“We’re proud of the chance to not only shine a light on the incredible efforts of the players, coaches and staff, but also bring international attention to Harrisburg,” said Dr. Eric Darr, president of Harrisburg University. “This is truly a special moment in the team’s history and the history of Harrisburg University.”

“A Rising Storm” has been recognized at several film festivals, including PopCon International in Indianapolis, Seoul Webfest in South Korea and India’s Pune Short Film Festival.

About Harrisburg University Esports

Harrisburg University’s Esports Program is the university’s first and only varsity sport. The varsity team competes in some of the most popular esports games around the world, including League of Legends and Overwatch. Team members practice and contend in a state-of-the-art facility and receive full scholarships. HU’s Overwatch players are back-to-back Collegiate National Champions, and the HU Storm was named the 2019 Tempest Award Winner for Best Collegiate Esports Program. For more information, visit hustorm.gg or follow the University on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. You can watch the team live on Twitch.

About HUE

The Harrisburg University Esports Invitational (HUE) is the largest annual collegiate esports tournament in North America. Hosted by Harrisburg University and powered by Nerd Street Gamers, HUE brings together over 60 teams from colleges across the continent to battle for the Championship titles in Overwatch and League of Legends and a cash prize. For 2020, HUE will be completely virtual and streamed via HU’s twitch channel. For more information, visit HUEinvitational.com.