Local man is virtual deer-killing machine

JAY BOLLER | Updated 11/12/2012

Chris Fream won $15,000 in the 5th annual Big Buck World Championship arcade contest.

2012 Big Buck World Champion Chris Fream hoists Pappy’s Jug trophy.
Big Buck Hunter/Victor Jeffrys II

Minnesota's deer hunting season began earlier this month, but the most notable kills went down Saturday in New York City. That's where local Chris Fream bested 64 cyber-deer slaughterers in the 5th annual Big Buck World Championship, an arcade contest to find the country's top "Big Buck Hunter HD" marksman. A total of $50,000 was doled out over the weekend, including Fream's $15,000 grand prize. His final opponent was reigning champion Nick Robbins, a fellow Minnesotan, who earned $7,500.

Sara Erlandson of Beldenville, Wisc. won the women's championship portion of the two-day tournament; her winnings totaled $7,000. Also of note: X Games motocross star Travis Pastrana finished 58th.

So what does this back-to-back domination of the Big Buck World Championship by Minnesotans mean for the state? For one, our mastery of pixelated deer carnage is a testament to our time spent in bars, where the game is a staple. (Will we also dominate Lobster Zone tourneys?) Other than that, it's just another niche in which we can claim "The Twin Cities rank No. 1 in ..." Somewhere, the ghost of Louis Hennepin nods approvingly.