World e-Sports Championship Games Seeks to Be New eSports Olympics
Just when you thought the realm of international eSports competitions in which one represents their country rather than their team or themselves disappeared with the closure of the World Cyber Games back in February, a new group has stepped into the breach to form a new international eSports competition.
Aegis Gaming Networks and the Global Mobile Game Confederation to start their own global eSports competition called the World e-Sports Championship Games.
Neither AGN nor GMGC are big names in the world of eSports. AGN is a Korean eSports event organizer that was founded by former WCG COO Bory Jun. As such, all that’s on their website is the WECG. Their co-organizer, GMGC, is a Beijing-based mobile game group “committed to building a global mobile gaming ecosystem.” I don’t know what that actually means either.
Given the involvement of the mobile gaming focused GMGC, the announcement press release says that mobile games will be part of the multi-discipline offerings of the first WECG along with PC and console games.
As was the case for the World Cyber Games, the World e-Sports Championship Games will also require players to qualify for the Grand Final by going through the national qualifying rounds.
WECG also plans to add a number of events not related to the Grand Final under their banner. There will be regional WECG Continents Championship and the WECG Global Challenge that will not require national pre-qualifiers or impose national restrictions (well,not on the World Challenge) for entry. An Open Bracket Tournament will be added to the WECG Grand Final along with the standard “Olympic-style” tournament.
According to WECG’s announcement, the first WECG Global Challenge tournaments will be held in July with the beginning of national qualifiers following that.
The biggest omission from that announcement was which games are going to be part of WECG. Okay, we’re missing other things like qualifying formats, national organizations running qualifiers, when and where the Grand Final will be and more. However, we’ve got an eSports tournament announced without any eSports announced as part of it. WECG will be holding a formal press conference with more details next week. Granted, I could have omitted the more before details in that last sentence.
One area that might worry everyone is the involvement of WCG’s Bory Jun. According to GosuGamers, the production values of WCG might have been the biggest issue leading to its downfall. Streamed video was only available at 480p while most major eSports competition are available at 1080p. Group stage competition was played in a Best of 1 format which is exceedingly rare and certainly doesn’t build the same level of tension as the usual Best of 3 (or more) formats do.
I do like the idea of the WCG and WECG. Big international tournaments built around national pride like the Olympics and World Cup are fun for everyone watching. The biggest challenge for WECG is making people care about it and making WECG matter. Going over the top with national pride and national identities for the teams will go a long way to help. As much as I say the games matter for WECG, the actual selling point is national pride. They have to make that matter to succeed.