In an incredible outpouring of support, fans, players, and pro gamers of Starcraft II, a real-time strategy game, banded together to help send a disabled but passionate Starcraft II gamer to South Korea, where professional Starcraft players are treated like NFL super stars.
Matthew “LookNoHands” Fink, a 23-year-old international relations major from Minnesota is a Starcraft II fanatic. The game is incrediblly competitive and to be a successful professional requires something like 400 actions per minute, resulting in what looks like a piano concerto being played out on a keyboard. But amazingly, Matthew Fink is able to play the game at a relatively competitive level with no hands.
Fink was born without a spleen, making him vulnerable to certain types of infections as an infant. Because of an infection, all four of his limbs were amputated when he was 18 months old. Fink claims that Starcraft puts him on a level playing field with all other able-bodied people and that is why the game is a confidence booster for him.
“Starcraft is meaningful to me because it is the first time I have ever had a chance to be on equal playing field with able bodied people without the need for major adaptations. Starcraft allows me to do so by rewarding fast thinking, creativity, and ingenuity over physical prowess,” Fink said in a post on the Team Liquid forums.
After graduating from Carleton College in Minnesota, Fink was awarded a Watson fellowship. The Watson fellowships gives funding to graduating college seniors that want to leave the United States and live abroad for a year simply to travel and live in places that are unfamiliar. The fellowship awards $25,000 to its fellows to live aboard. Fink, however, requires extra funding to help pay for personal care and attendants to help him perform day to day tasks.
Having learned of his plight, the Starcraft community is banding together to help Fink raise the money through a tournament fundraiser. The LookNoHands tournament has invited huge names from the professional Starcraft world including Ukrainian sensations White-Ra.
The tournament will take place on March 20-22 and will be streamed daily online.