Create the Future
of Fighting Games

The NYU Game Center has partnered with the Evo tournament to create an annual scholarship to study game design at New York University. The Evo Scholarship is open to anyone who is passionate about fighting games and eSports.

The scholarship is funded by subscriptions to the Evo tournament live stream and by a generous gift from world-famous fighting game champion Daigo Umehara.


How much is it?

The 2014 and 2015 Evo Scholars were partial sholarships, with the amount determined by purchases of the Evo Stream. Thanks to the continued support of Evo and Daigo Umehara’s donation, the 2017 Evo Scholarship was “All In”, a full-tuition scholarship. Future scholarship amounts are contingent on funding amounts.

Who is it for?

Anyone who wants to turn their passion for fighting games into a successful career in the game industry. The scholarship is open to both undergraduate and graduate level applicants.

How do I apply?

In your application to the Game Center, indicate your interest in the scholarship by checking the Evo box in the scholarship section of your application. You will also need to write a one-page statement discussing their relationship to competitive games, and your ideas about the design of the genre.

You can begin the application process by going here for undergraduate and here for graduate.

Unleash the Beast

In fall of 2016, fighting game legend Daigo “The Beast” Umehara donated the entirety of his $60,000 winnings from the Capcom Pro Tour in support of the Evo Scholarship. Explaining his decision to give away his prize money,  Daigo said, “I sincerely hope the money I donate will help the community thrive further.”


Past Evo Scholars

The first Evo Scholarship was awarded to Tony Kao, an illustrator and graphic designer from Chicago. Read Kao’s story in this Polygon article, “First Evo Scholarship from NYU Game Center awards more than $20K”. Tony was also interviewed by Lynda Baquero of NBC New York about his experience.

The 2015 Evo Scholar, Christian Sutton, known in the community as “Skisonic,’” is already an accomplished commentator, player, and ambassador of competitive games. Christian learned about the Game Center by attending our Spring Fighter Tournament. About the Evo Scholarship Mr. Sutton says, “I’m excited to come to New York and be inspired by a place that is constantly in motion. I hope to bring the hardcore, passionate spirit of competitive fighting gamers to the program, and I’m anxious to learn from people who may not even know how to throw a Hadouken but whose unique experiences might offer me a fresh perspective.”

Brian Chung was awarded The 2017 “All In” Evo scholarship. Brian is a longtime tournament and community organizer- including several years of running the Game Center’s Super Smash Bros. tournament Fall Brawl and the Game Devs of Color Conference. Sharing his thoughts about joining the MFA classs of 2020 Brian wrote, “I’m incredibly thankful for this opportunity. As a former player, teammate, and tournament organizer, I’ve seen first-hand the way that fighting games can create a grassroots community that builds, sustains, and grows itself far beyond what the developers could have hoped to achieve through their designs alone. That power of emergent community has permanently informed my sensibilities as a designer and responsibilities as a leader, and is something that I want to cultivate and share with others, as I myself grow.”


About the NYU Game Center

The NYU Game Center is the Department of Game Design at Tisch School of the Arts – where students come from around the world to study the design, production, and scholarship of games in a context of advanced critical literacy.

The Game Center offers a 2-year Masters of Fine Arts and a 4-year Bachelors of Fine Arts degree in Game Design that explores the design, analysis, and development of games as a creative practice. In our program, students create and study games to become industry leaders, independent game designers, critics, and entrepreneurs. At the Game Center, students find their voices as creative practitioners working on individual and group game projects, as well as through rigorous scholarly study of the theoretical and cultural aspects of games, all within the thriving community that is the NYU Game Center.


Fighting Games at the Game Center

The NYU Game Center has become a hub for fighting games in New York City through our annual tournaments. Our tournaments pair high level play with in depth lectures, panels, and screenings that celebrate the best of skill, strategy, and community. Our biggest annual tournament, Spring Fighter, has grown to include tournaments in many different fighting games and has featured conversations with Daigo Umehara, Seth Killian, Alex Valle,  John Choi, and Ricky Ortiz.

The NYU Game Center also hosts lectures, panels, and events all year round that explore eSports play and culture. Two of our biggest events from the past years include The New Meta, a panel that brought together women players, casters, and community organizers from Street Fighter, StarCraft, and Smash to discuss the state of gender and competition in eSports and the 2014 New York eSports Summit, where top figures in eSports, including Sean ‘Day9′ Plott from Starcraft, Travis “SotLTravis” Gafford representing League of Legends, Ryan ‘Gootecks’ Gutierrez of Street Fighter, and Rod “Slasher” Breslau of ESPN came together to discuss the current state of eSports.

The NYU Game Center also hosts a diverse range of events that span from indie game exhibitions to design workshops to forty-eight hour jams. Most events are free and open to the public. To see what’s coming up at the Game Center, visit our calendar and follow the Game Center.

The Future of Competitive Games

NYU Game Center students are bringing competitive multiplayer games to the forefront of the indie world both locally and nationally. SlashDash, a four person capture the flag game, came out of one of our undergraduate classes, went on to win the Audience Choice Award at IndieCade 2013 and was published on the Xbox One. Foiled, a two person dueling game, was developed by Gabe Cuzzillo under the advisement of faculty member Bennett Foddy, and earned a nomination as an Independent Games Festival Student Finalist. BADBLOOD by Winnie Song started as a MFA thesis, spent time in our Incubator, also won the Indiecade Audience Choice award, and was released in the fall of 2015.

The NYU Game Center’s annual No Quarter exhibition, which commissions designers to make new games for a social context, has given rise to new indie eSports like BaraBariBall, the volleyball meets Super Smash Bros game by Noah Sasso and Richard Terrell (KirbyKid), and Killer Queen, 10 person arcade strategy-action game by Nik Mikros and Josh DeBonis.

NYU Game Center students also make games in all kinds of genres, platforms, and styles from non-digital card games to single player adventure video games. To see more projects from NYU Game Center students check out our Games page!