ESP gaming has revealed it is planning to launch a UFC mixed martial arts style e-sports tournament series which will be called the World Showdown of Esports, or the WSOE. The plans would be to set up big fight style type of matches between the best players available and bring some UFC flare to e-sports while fighting in big tournaments over championships.
These cards for the WSOE would also be broadcast live from the ESP gaming PokerGO studio located in Las Vegas Nevada. Thus far, the only tournament to be announced is the PUGB Pan-Continental that will be showcased on Twitch from the 14th.
Details of the Launch
It will show 16 teams of four players that will compete for $100k in cash prizes. ESP Gaming released a statement on the same claiming they were bringing a new type of tournament to the gaming community ensuring every match would be a must-see event showing top competitors in a drama-filled showdown. The WSOE is allegedly highlighting compelling narratives in competitive gaming motivated by the essence of what makes traditional sports popular which is the players.
The WSOE is claimed to also represent what the gamers like about e-sports with the intensity set to the maximum. In April, ESP gaming got PUGB tournament organizer Auzom so as to assist with the operation of the esports events. During the year, the company formed a multi-year partnership with Super Evil Megacorp to take on the Vainglory Premier League. ESP also hired Richard Lewis, former Eleague host as the director of talent. He is being tasked with supervising the on-air talent at WSOE events.
ESP Gaming CEO Jeff Liboon claimed the WSOE focuses on the spectacle and drama concerning head to head competition between the best players in the world from a variety of genres and games across the mobile, console and PC platforms.
It would also catch players during the off-season in between the major league announcements. As opposed to round robin or bracket style e-sports competitions, the fight card style presentations of the WSOE are going to feature some of the best from each sector playing each other.
ESP Considerations on Entertainment and Competition
Now the closest analogy to the initiative from ESP gaming at the present in found in the fighting game community. On the first day of a number of tournaments, the organizers would hold exhibition matches where two pros and players that had rivalries in public would play matches against each other. The difference though is these exhibitions would not determine a champion for the event. Though there is not enough sufficient information on whether other gaps are going to be on tap under the new league, the idea has a lot of potential.
The organizers of the Esports tournament such as DreamHack and ESP have hosted events which have multiple games but the audiences do not always cross-pollinate so to speak. With the WSOE now comparing itself to the UFC, it would seem this would be about entertainment as much as it would be based on competition. The question facing ESP Gaming is whether the audiences are going to be satisfied though with the manufactured matchups as the main focus for the event rather than as a diversion.