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China Internet Gaming 2004 concluded in Beijing

Master-hands at internet gaming from across China gathered in Beijing last weekend to attend the China Internet Gaming 2004 (CIG 2004) event - the biggest of its its kind in the country. The competition delivers a message that internet games are not only the recreation choice of many youngsters but can also be a highly competitive and healthy sport. Our reporter Zheng Chenguang was at the award ceremony and filed this report.

The final competition of China Internet Gaming 2004 took place in Beijing last weekend. The gaming event is a combination of recreational activity and sports, digital software and marketing with electronic competition.

300 players who were selected from the preliminary contests held in 32 competition regions during the past 6 months participated in this year's event.

The gaming provides competitions in 8 online games, including the popular "Counter Strike" and "FIFA Football" and entertaining games like "Chinese Chess" and "Online Snooker". The participants are, in the main, young people between 15 and 33 years old as the games require high concentration and quick reactions.

Yang Shu-Chao, the representative from Guangdong Province says he enjoys playing the games very much. He was the winner of the Golden Finger FIFA game.

"I'm quite fascinated by the competitiveness and team spirits in the games. It has everything that a sport has. Now I'm still a student. But I hope to be a professional player after graduation. With more getting interested in the internet games, it will be quite promising."

And it seems that the games are not the exclusive preserve of boys, as more and more girls are trying their hands at online gaming. Cici from Beijing is one of the active participants

"Today I come here with my partners for an exhibition game not for competition. I started playing Counter Strike 9 months ago. At first I played it just to kill time but then I began to like it as I experienced joys and sorrows when playing the games and I got to know a lot of new friends."

Internet gaming has been popular in east Asian countries like Japan and Korea for quite a long time. Now it's becoming quite a trend in China.

China Internet Gaming, which started in 2002, is in its third year and is more sensational than time round ever. Themed as the "green games" and "healthy games" this year, the gaming is also seen as one of the measures the central government has taken to lead internet gaming in a healthy direction.

The government has expressed its determination to crack down on internet pornography and phone sex activity. But instead of simply blocking internet activities, it's probably more effective to give guidance to young people how to surf the internet safely and play online games.

Internet gaming is also said to be a good way to stimulate young people and children's interest in online activities , develop their intelligence, and encourage them to grasp modern technology.

People's Daily Online

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