There is no doubt that one of the great things about being in Taipei for Computex is the chance to get involved with some truly world-class overclocking. This year’s Computex probably attracted as much in the way of OC talent that has ever been assembled in one place. Big hitters like World No.1 8 Pack and others including der8auer, Vivi, Xtreme_Addict and Dancop to name just a few, were enjoying the island of Formosa, thanks to sponsorships and partnerships with local vendors, many of whom also hosted overclocking events and competitions throughout the week.
The real highlight from an overclocking perspective was doubtlessly the HWBOT World Tour event which kicked off during the days immediately after the show. The World Tour event was hosted at the Taipei Maker Bar located right in the heart of the city, just a few minutes’ walk from the local computer market. The event ran continuously (24 hours around the clock) for three days and was backed by a host of sponsors including ASUS, ROG, HyperX, Seasonic, Dimastech and OverclockingTV.
For an indepth look at what the World Tour event offered, check out the after-movie below.
One major motivation for the World Tour is to create a real social mixer where many of the overclocking scene’s key members got the chance to mingle. You could see several like-minded conversations going on between people who usually only communicate via the Internet. If ever you needed proof that flesh and blood interaction is the elixir of friendship and respect, this was it. By the end of the first day, you had as many as twenty to thirty overclockers from around the globe bonding, sharing, competing and generally having a real good time doing the one thing they absolutely like doing most in the whole world. A total of twelve canisters of LN2 were booked ahead of time, none of which was wasted.
Aside from the social aspect of the event, there were also two overclocking contests running throughout with plenty of cash and hardware prizes up for grabs. The ROC Showdown and the HWBOT World Series.
ROG OC Showdown Area
The ROG OC Showdown Area was a space where World Tour participants could show off their overclocking talents on a specific set of benchmarks with thirteen specific targets including 4x World Records, 7x Global First Places and 2x Hardware First Places. Four seats were made available at the ROG OC Showdown Area for participants to compete and try to break records. Cash prizes were awarded to the overclocker who held the specific target at the end of play; USD $750 for a specific World Record plus USD$250 for any Global First Place, or Hardware First Place.
As this was the first time most attendees had gotten their insulation-paste smeared hands on with the newly launched Nvidia GTX 980Ti (graciously provided by sponsors ASUS), we kind of expected a few records to fall and in the end there was plenty to celebrate. At the end of play three new world records were broken plus a global first place – perhaps not surprisingly this involved two of the scene’s biggest hitters; der8auer (Germany) and 8pack (UK), taking home all four honors which included US$2250 in cash prizes.
The three world records were achieved on Catzilla 1440P (56,747 Marks), Catzilla 720P (94997 Marks), and 3DMark11 performance (53,396 Marks). The Global First Place was set on Catzilla 720P with 94,044 marks.
Official ASUS Announcement: http://rog.asus.com/426712015/overclocking/hwbot-world-tour-2015-records-broken-at-rog-oc-showdown-area/
HWBOT World Series Contest
During the World Tour event, overclockers were allowed to reserve their own bench spot, doing so also made you eligible to compete in the HWBOT World Series competition. Competition stages and hardware limitations were identical to the previous two World Series competitions held earlier this year (Canada and France), with points on offer for the OC-ESPORTS Official World Overclocking Ranking Season 2015. The three stages were SuperPI 1M, Target Score, and Cinebench R15.
Here’s a look at the leaderboard as it stood at the end of the contest:
HWBOT World Series Contest Page: http://oc-esports.io/#!/round/ws15_asia
Congrats to Lucky_N00b (an his notoriously infectious smile) who’s dominant display meant he walked away with 92.2 points and the top cash prize of $1,680 USD. Here’s a look at how the prizes were distributed:
- 1st Place: Lucky_N00b won US$1,680 and an ASUS Strix GTX 980 Ti
- 2nd Place: bboyjezz won US$1,120 and HyperX DDR4 Predator
- 3rd Place: Bruno won US$560, ASUS ROG Rampage V Extreme
HWBOT World Tour 2015: Nurturing the Future of Overclocking
Talking to Pieter (“Massman”), the organization is actively trying to nurture and grow the OC community while also trying to promote it as an e-sport. Last year saw the launch of a new competitive OC website, OC-ESPORTS.io, a platform which makes it easy for all levels and abilities to compete. It also introduces the notion of an overclocking season and introduces leagues for Novices and Rookies who can compete against each other throughout the year with standings scrapped as the new season begins each year. By having regular contests for all levels HWBOT is trying to create a new generation of overclocker, drawing new talent to the fold and expanding the sport exponentially in the process.
The HWBOT World Tour had stops earlier this year in Canada and France, held in tandem with major LAN Parties to expose the sport to the broader gaming community. These events included not just contests, but also live OC workshops were experienced overclockers demonstrated some basic system tweaking skills to gamers who would appreciate having the knowledge to boost performance with a few simple setting adjustments.
The upshot is that 2015 will see more overclockers competing in more contests than ever before. Just hanging around the World Tour event last week has given me the impression that overclocking is as alive and healthy as it ever has been, thriving at both professional and amateur levels.