Posts Tagged ‘Jamal Nickens’

WCG Ultimate Gamers Mark and Jamal

Wednesday, July 8th, 2009
WCG Ultimate Gamer's Mark Smith (left) and Jamal Nickens (right) with BG's Tim Danger (center)

WCG Ultimate Gamer's Mark Smith (left) and Jamal Nickens (right) with BG's Tim Danger (center)

One of the neatest things we got to do at SGC was hang out with WCG’s Ultimate Gamer contestants Mark Smith (the big winner of the show) and Jamal Nickens (who ended up taking the SGC’s “Iron Man of Gaming” championship this past weekend). The weekend was spent socializing, watching them play some games, and even a night out to downtown Dallas Texas with the gamers and their friends where we demonstrated the only game we could probably take them at was “drinking”. On Sunday, I found some time to sit down with Mark and Jamal and talk about the show, girls, and games.

TDANGER: How did you two guys meet, it was obviously before the show right?
Jamal: Actually, it was a weird thing. We had both went to the same audition. I was the first person to arrive and then I saw Mark and I don’t know if anyone has said this but whatever… I’m like, “Alright, good, he doesn’t have a chance. Who is this dork?” *laughs*
Mark: Yeah, dude, I saw him with his Sonic pillow thinking, “Man there is no way this clown is going to get on this show!” *laughs*
Jamal: But we were the first two at the audition, I was like five in the morning, he was like at seven. It was intense. I was there sizing up people.

TDANGER: So you guys had not met before then? Not in any other gaming circles?
Jamal: Even at the audition we didn’t even talk. We just saw each other.
Mark: Yeah.

TDANGER: Talking about the show then, how many rounds of auditions did you have to go through?
Jamal:
There was actually two audition rounds. The first was like a prelim, there were game challenges, you had to fill out a survey, like a contract type deal, you had to interview, video interview…
Mark: Yeah, and then they made us play some games. They wanted to see if you talked trash to each other and that sort of thing. Then after that they did auditions in Chicago, Austin, New York and L.A. and out of all of those, they narrowed it down to like 40 people. Then they flew us out to L.A. and they had some really really intense auditions there.
Jamal: I thought it was like 60? They just sent half the people home the first day once you got to L.A.
Mark: Yeah, one guy they actually sent home because you weren’t allowed to leave your room without a handler and stuff because they didn’t want you talking to other potential contestants. Some guy was walking around double fisting beers, like you know, pounding them. They said, “No drinking while you’re there”. I don’t know what he was doing…
TDANGER: We wouldn’t have survived that (referring to Busygamer’s legendary outing on night one of SGC).*laughter all around*
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