Double trouble for soccer gamersGermans dominated the 2003 World Cyber Games, the online version of the Olympic Games held in Seoul for seven days last month. The country took three gold medals and two silver medals, showing exceptional prowess in FIFA, a computer-based soccer game.
The medals came largely thanks to Dennis and Daniel Schellhase, 19-year-old German twins. Both of the brothers, who play FIFA 2003, advanced to the final match. Dennis, the younger brother by three minutes, chose the British team. Daniel, who is shorter by one centimeter, played as Brazil. In a three-game matchup, each took one game before Dennis, with finesse, scored to win the $20,000 championship prize.
“Their play was so strategic. I really enjoyed the game,” said Kim Du-hyeong, a winner at FIFA in the 2001 games and a commentator this year. The JoongAng Daily caught up with the pair after the match. (Like many twins, they tend to finish each other’s sentences, which is why some of their answers aren’t attributed to one or the other.)
QYou guys were great players, and the spectators around you were interested in you because of the twins syndrome.
ADennis (“Styla,” 1st place): Truly, I was lucky. At the beginning of the tournament, we were just playing to reach the quarter, or maybe the semifinals, if we were lucky. But surprisingly, we got to the finals and we are just happy about that. I feel like I’ve accomplished something now.
Daniel (“hero_de,” 2nd place): I was really nervous before the match. As a matter of fact, I went to the bathroom three times before the match.
Who was the most memorable player you faced in the WCG 2003?
Choi Dae-han from Korea. His playing ability was amazing. Especially his defensive ability. He was just unbeatable.
What are you going to do with the prize money that you’ve earned (a total of $37,000)?
We’re going to buy presents for our parents and friends, hold a big party and get a nice decent car.
What was the most memorable moment in the final match?
Dennis: [It was] the great goal at mid-range which was shot by Beckham at around the 35-minute mark through the first half, and the tension in the last two minutes.
Are there professional video gamers in Germany like there are in Korea?
Yes, there are, although the leagues aren’t as large as Korea’s. In fact, we’re going to be the first professional computer game players sponsored by a company. When we go back to Germany, we’re going to make a contract with Fujitsu.
Do you practice a lot?
We practice for about two hours every day. Of course, we practice with each other.
What is the most popular computer or video game in Germany?
In Europe, shooting games are the biggest. Counter-Strike is the most popular, and FIFA is pretty popular, too. Starcraft is probably fourth.
Are you well known in Germany?
Yes, we are, among game fans. We won several local tournaments. The World Cyber Games is a dream for game players in Europe, and when we go back to our hometown, it will be like we’re joining the hall of fame.
by Kim Hyo-jin