Los Angeles-based esports and games media company Aggregated Media has announced the launch of A8 Esports, a dedicated esports and gaming channel.
For the network’s launch, Aggregated Media has accumulated a range of content partners including event organiser Super League Gaming, gaming media outlet Game Informer, and esports talk show network Preediction.
It’s been two years since the esports ecosystem in Southeast Asia began showing signs of accelerated growth, and the scene continues to thrive. The popularity of mobile titles has allowed SEA to be the epicentre of the discipline. The ease of access to technology and internet connection has allowed more of the population to be involved with competitive titles, thus increasing viewership. SEA even has its own ecosystem for titles that are largely unheard of in the Western world. Mobile Legends: Bang Bang is one of the region’s biggest titles, and has a thriving ecosystem behind it.
The region’s current and future potential hasn’t gone unnoticed. FaZe Clan and Team Secret both operate in the region. SEA also boasts the presence of esport entities Mineski, ONE Esports and eGG Network—all of which have been active in various verticals throughout the years.
Psyonix’s unexpected cancellation of the RLCS X World Championship, and its subsequent replacement with yet more regional tournaments, rocked the Rocket League community in April.
The eagerly awaited opportunity to answer the burning question – which is the better region – was delayed once more. And a battle of words ensued across social media.
But when British Guild Esports player Joseph ‘Noly’ Kidd called French star Evan ‘M0nkeyM00n’ Rogez “100% better” than US player Jason ‘Firstkiller’ Corral on Rocket League’s official podcast First Touch, words were no longer enough.
Pro player Slater ‘Retals’ Thomas from the all-American Spacestation Gaming line-up responded to the taunt, asking for an unofficial Guild versus NA match-up to settle the dispute once and for all. He also put $1,000 of his own money on the line.
Bren Esports handed Blacklist International its first loss in Season 7 of the Mobile Legends Professional League Philippines (MPL PH) following a wild come-from-behind win on Thursday, April 29.
On the verge of getting swept, Bren Esports displayed the steely nerves that made it the defending champion as it turned the tide and shocked erstwhile unbeaten Blacklist, 2-1, in their best-of-three affair.
Filipino Apex Legends gamers may soon play their favorite battle royale game on their phones after Respawn Entertainment and Electronic Arts announced that they will release a mobile version of the game later this month.
Chad Grenier, game director of Apex Legends, confirmed on EA’s website the first regional beta tests of the mobile version will be launched with a few thousand testers from the Philippines and India.
Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has become a part owner of Norwegian esports management company Ulti Agency.
The 48-year-old Norwegian, who scored the winning goal for United in the 1999 UEFA Champions League final, has bought a 12.5 per cent share in the company.
Solskjaer has spoken in the past of his enthusiasm for gaming, telling Norway’s national paper Dagbladet in 2013 how he used the franchise Football Manager to prepare him for his own managerial career.
The BLAST Premier esports league for Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (CSGO) has named Coinbase as its newest sponsor for the competition’s upcoming Spring Season.
Coinbase plans to use the collaboration to bring the world of esports closer to cryptocurrency through activations and player-driven content, according to the press release.
Coinbase branding can be used in the Spring Showdown, which runs from April 13th to 18th, as well as the Spring Finals, which run from June 15th to 20th.
The cryptocurrency network, which was created in 2012, will fund BLAST Premier’s broadcast segment “The Economy Play,” which features analysts dissecting and debating rounds in between matches. Coinbase will have its logo on the caster’s backdrop, as well as in-game animated branding and sponsor bars.
Coinbase joins the esports competition’s other sponsors, including EPOS, Shikenso Analytics, and CS.MONEY.
“Both esports and cryptocurrencies have a good association with technology and innovation,” said Oliver Clarke, BLAST’s Head of Brand Partnerships. BLAST Premier is watched by a global audience that is renowned for being tech-savvy.
“We’re excited to see how fans react to the clean, stable, and world-leading cryptocurrency exchange platform.”
The news comes after Evil Geniuses, a North American esports company, teased a future jersey collaboration with Coinbase on Twitter earlier this week.
Guild Esports recently signed a two-year sponsorship deal with sandwich franchise Subway. The multi-million-pound partnership covers 55 EMEA (Europe, the Middle East and Africa) markets. It also illustrates how geography factors heavily into esports sponsorship.
Ultimately, brands are looking for esports touchpoints that align with their target markets. And rightfully so, since effective marketing depends on identifying which consumers matter most to a business. The challenge, in esports, is understanding the nuances of fandom within regional markets.
Unfortunately, global viewership does not provide insight into how valuable brand association is at a local or regional level. However, eSports iQ audience analytics can illuminate how online game communities overlap with geographic areas. The result is a clear view of competitive video game consumption within a target market and/or physical territory.
Esports regions defined
“Place” or “location,” as defined in traditional markets, is less relevant in the world of online gaming. As an extension of game communities, esports audiences are also digitally native and, by relation, inherit certain characteristics. Brands and marketers need to know these similarities and differences – but at a market level.
On the other hand, markets exist in physical territories defined by regions – land areas with similar characteristics. In esports, similar game types attract similar audiences. As a result, geographic markets can be segmented by game genre interest – the same way that consumers are traditionally segmented by physical residence in cardinal directions like North, South, East and West.
AI-powered audience analytics enhance multi-dimensional visibility into esports fandom. This enables the concept of an esports region, such as MOBA esports fans in the United States (click image above to enlarge). The resulting combination of digital and geographic characteristics empowers brands and marketers to maximize their reach within an individual market.
Making it clear
Genre is a unifying feature across otherwise unique game communities. For instance, fans who follow the Call of Duty esports scene are, by relation, interested in first person shooter (FPS) games, even if they don’t follow another FPS title. Likewise, fans who aren’t interested in sports simulation games will not follow any of those titles. Esports regions help clarify these behaviors in key markets.
Grouping esports consumers by game genre interest within an individual market creates more cohesion and less fragmentation. Why? Once again, game content is a unifying theme across the overall esports ecosystem. For example, organizations sign top professional players who compete in events and leagues associated with specific game titles.
Additionally, game content is a major factor in the consideration of an esports campaign. See: FPS titles often feature gameplay with violent scenarios that don’t fit brand guidelines. Navigating these dimensions is essential to executing an effective marketing strategy.
Why it matters
Even in an increasingly digital world, location is a key demographic for marketing communications. And despite its inherently global nature, the same applies in competitive video games. Towards that end, distilling esports audiences into regions, based on game genre interest, is a valuable approach. Some benefits, include:
Sponsorship valuation – Solid valuations give sponsors confidence in the assets they’re purchasing, but there is no one size fits all, especially in esports. Still, the overall value should consider the size of associated esports regions in target markets.
Improved segmentation – Dividing large territories like countries into smaller groups is essential to effective brand positioning.
Influencer identification – Influence marketing is a fast-growing channel for reaching esports audiences. Identifying top influencers in esports regions helps pinpoint who can best speak to consumers in specific markets.
Audience analytics provide insights into the global esports attention economy. From there, esports regions help brands and marketers better grasp how competitive video game audiences translate into geographic markets. The outcome is more informed, data-driven campaigns and partnerships.
Prominent variety streamer Asmongold claims that he won’t stop saying the word “re***d” unless a Twitch ban looms over his head.
Asmongold brings his eccentric personality to his daily streams. Being a variety streamer, he isn’t particularly good at any game and for the same reason, his chat was very critical of him. Some harsh comments from his audience forced him to accept his unpolished skills in the game before calling himself a “re***d”.
His comments have landed him in hot water ever since, he said it defends himself from fans taunting him for being not as good in the new games that he tries on stream.
“If you guys have ever watched me play a new game that has any sort of complexities to it, you’d see that I’m like a r****d or something,” said Asmon. “Come on no ‘R word’? Listen, I think there’s nothing wrong with saying the word r******d, and I think the people that get mad about it are just f*****g stupid,”
“I’m going to keep saying it until they tell me if I say it they’ll ban me, alright?” he added.
Asmon thinks that there is nothing wrong in using the R-word to top it off he said he will continue to use it unless Twitch hands him a warning or a ban. As long the streaming service does not find it against their ToS, he cannot see any reason for him to stop using it.