Roll 20 – Tabletop Gaming in UCC and Cork
Across UCC’s sprawling campus, there is a spirited and active gaming community that contains people of all experience levels. Tabletop gaming is exploding in popularity globally and Cork is no exception to this phenomenon, any aspiring adventurer or master tactician will have no trouble jumping right into an RPG or wargame once they arrive at UCC.
The primary organisation for tabletop gaming in UCC is WARPS whose Weekly Gaming events are a fixture of every Thursday night. Here, you can embark on fantastical adventures in an RPG campaign or test your mettle in a multitude of board games from the society’s huge library. The ubiquitous Dungeons & Dragons remains a popular feature and the society will be running an introductory session for anyone looking to get involved. D&D is far from the only RPG out there though and there’s plenty of variety to be found at WARPS with Cyberpunk 2020 and Vampire: The Masquerade being added to the roster in celebration of the upcoming video game adaptations.
If card games are more your style then WARPS also runs Monday Night Magic where you can begin (or continue) your journey with the world’s most popular competitive trading card game, Magic the Gathering. There’s no more satisfying feeling than outsmarting your opponent with cleverly executed trades and combos. Magic the Gathering has been running for over 25 years so it’s never too late to pick it up.
The local highlight of the year is undoubtedly WARPCON, set to take place during the second semester. The event, which is Cork’s largest gaming convention, brings together local and national tabletop communities for a weekend of fun and games. WARPS also run field trips to other national conventions, so you’ll get to escape Cork from time to time if you want.
Of course, the campus isn’t the only venue for tabletop gaming in Cork. The city offers multiple places for people to chill out and play board games, maybe even with a pint if you’re feeling cheeky. Tabletop (Castle St.) is one such establishment, located right at the heart of the city centre, it’s the perfect place to break out the dice while enjoying a nice coffee or pint with friends. There are a couple of other specialist gaming café’s in the city like Sandbox (Lower Glanmire Rd.) but any willing pub or café can become home for your party. Whether it’s inside or outside UCC’s walls, Cork is the perfect place to pursue this exciting hobby.
Frame Perfect – Video Gaming in UCC and Cork
Who doesn’t love the feel of a controller in their hands? Or the glowing lights of an LED keyboard, pulsing slowly in the dark? Video gaming is one of the most popular hobbies in the world and this trend holds true in UCC where many a gamer tries to forget their impending deadlines by playing the night away.
UCC’s very own Netsoc is where you can satiate your competitive video gaming needs at the college. With the introduction of online gaming, it’s not often you get to go out and play video games in such a social environment. Netsoc provides exactly this kind of atmosphere every Tuesday night at their weekly meetup where plenty of refreshments and competition can be found. You think you’re the best Smash player among your friends? You might soon realise that you were a big fish in a small pond and UCC offers stiffer competition. That goes for other games too, UCC has some legit Mario Kart players.
Tournaments are a common feature of the society and the sizeable prize pools mean they get very competitive very quickly. Don’t let this intimidate you though, everyone loves a good underdog story and you might just realise you’re much better than you thought.
This brings us nicely to the UCC Netsoc Rebels, the college’s very own esports team. Esports is becoming increasingly popular in both viewership and investment so it was very timely for UCC to pick up on the trend and form their own official team. The team competes in official Irish Collegiate Esports (ICE) tournaments in League of Legends, Overwatch, Smash, Counter-Strike, Rainbow Six: Siege and Rocket League so there’s plenty of variety and if you’re skilled enough, there may just be a spot for you on one of these rosters. In fact, many ICE tournaments offer divisional play which separates players by skill-level, making them more beginner-friendly.
Many students are likely to have their own consoles and PCs but if that isn’t the case, or you want a change of environment during your gaming session, Cork is well-stocked with gaming cafés. WebWorkHouse (Winthrop St.) is open 24 hours a day and is perfect for those late-night gaming binges when you need to grind out ranks. An alternative is 365 IT Hub (Patrick’s Quay) which has brand-new ultra-fast computers for all your gaming needs. So that assignment can wait, the controller (or mouse) is calling you.