by Eswara Van Sharma

India’s first GeForce LAN event is underway in Mumbai, and it’s thrumming with action.

Over 500 gamers are battling it out for top honors in Counter strike 1.6, Call of Duty 4, FIFA 11 and Need for Speed MW. The action hasn’t stopped since the gates opened at 8am to throngs of guys and girls eager get a chance to attain gaming glory and compete for cash, Alienware laptops and lots of GeForce GTX cards.

I showed up at 7am and found a long queue of gamers patiently waiting to get in and claim their spot. I spoke to one group, and they told me they’d been standing in line for an hour already following an early morning 40km trip to make sure that they’d get to play. They were all looking forward to playing their favorite games on the fastest gaming machines powered by NVIDIA GeForce.

Eager gamers line up for GF LAN India at 7am
local time at the MMRDA Grounds in Mumbia

There’s plenty of action here for everyone. Gamers waiting to qualify and those knocked out early have a chance to get in some more practice and hone their skills in the 50-seat Freeplay Zone. There’s an almost carnival-like atmosphere here, with game jockeys making announcements, the MC conducting impromptu games and quizzes, NVIDIA partners running contests and raucous cheering .

The gamers are playing for some great incentives. In addition to a prize pool worth over $35,000, one lucky GF LAN India attendee will win a chance to play against Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan – an avid gamer himself, who also plays the same role in his upcoming movie, Ra.One.

A hush has fallen over the crowd as the two final Counter Strike teams take their places on the main stage and ready themselves for the final battle of the day. Everyone’s watching the huge screens and waiting for the action to unfold. I’ll sign off now, and join them as an exciting day of gaming draws to a close.

I may even challenge a few of these guys to a match, or two.