Esports coach looks toward the future of gaming


Donn Nauert, esports coach

Trevor Wall

Donn Nauert has been involved in competitive gaming since its beginning at arcades, and is still invested in the gaming scene. Nauert currently runs the esports club where students can compete in Super Smash Bros., and in the future, he plans to have more games ready to compete in for students that are interested, and take esports to the UIL level. 

“The goal for esports is to try and establish not only teams for competitions, but events where students can manage the tournaments, do streaming, shoutcasting and have an all round curriculum for that,” Nauert said. “Right now there is a lot of interest from students and the administration, and with TEA and UIL on the verge of approving esports, we are moving forward toward having everything work out, but slowly.”

Nauert is currently teaching Video Game Design, and strives to be able to teach more about video games from the production side.

“Right now, I’m really focused on expanding not only the game development side of the gaming industry, but to have game programming and web game development, and even move into AR and VR technology,” Nauert said. “That’s one of my goals, is to be able to expand that and have practicum for our year fours, and even work with universities and companies for internships.”

Nauert used to be the team captain for the National Video Game team, and competed in tournaments that were the beginning of competitive gaming. 

“You couldn’t be good in just one game,” Nauert said. “Now, you can be really good at League of Legends or Smash, and you can get your fame that way. But back then, if you wanted to win a tournament, you had to be good at a lot of games, because you didn’t know what was going to be in the tournament.”

Nauert was inducted into the International Video Game Hall of Fame for his scores in arcade games Cheyenne, Alien Syndrome, Gridiron Fight and Danger Zone, and even got Guinness World Records for these games. 

“I was nominated for my scores,” Nauert said. “The recognition from your peers, and being honored for your past achievements, can mean a lot.”