eSports, you’re doing it wrong 
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Yolanda Green
July 19, 2013 at 3:00 pm

homer facepalm

The MSSA and MWEB are hosting their first official online Inter-Regional tournament. Teams representing Johannesburg and Cape Town respectively will take each other on to promote a competitive attitude “down to Regional levels”. There are so many flaws in this plan I don’t even know where to begin, here’s to being hated for being honest.

As you all know I’m the eSports Correspondent at Lazygamer, I’ve written several articles being positive about the MSSA because I truly wish the community well. Today I can’t say that I can see how this “test match” will benefit or grow our community.

I sincerely give credit to people who put in the effort to come up with new ideas, not all of them will work though. I feel like this Inter-Regional test match is pointless for the greater local community.

The “press release”

I’d like to tell you when this event is going to take place, but like the absence of many other details, the email I received from my boss (forwarded MSSA email) didn’t contain this information. In fact, the general lack of effort put into typing it up is quite shocking, starting with the subject: “City of Cape Town vs City of Johannesburg opnline Inter-Regional Match“. Errr, I’m sorry what? I assume it’s mean to say “online Inter-Regional Match”, let’s carry on reading.

“Mind Sports South Africa ((MSSA) in partnership with MWEB are holding the first ever official Inter-Regional Test Match.

The Inter-Regional Test Match will take place between the teams that represent the City of Johannesburg and the City of Ape Town.”

Ape Town? Really? Okay then. I suppose a few spelling mistakes aren’t that bad. I have been asked to write about the event, but after reading the email I realized that this wouldn’t be possible unless I wanted to write a piece of garbage. The email does not say who the teams are representing each city, it does not say whether the teams are still to be decided or how they will be decided. It doesn’t say when this is happening or who may apply to take part in it. To clarify, the email is sent as an “invitation”, to what I’m not sure. It might be to play in the event or to spectate it, who knows.

Why this event is pointless

Over 4000 gamers in South Africa compete in online competitive gaming tournaments. Only a hand full of them consists of line-ups who actually live in the same city or province, because, well, it’s online. From what I can tell based on previous events, this Inter-Regional test match will require teams to all be from the same city (region). No doubt to promote the idea of teams competing with such line-ups. If you’re expecting the community to start playing in teams with these types of line-ups, it’s not going to happen. There might be that select few that did so for a previous MSSA event in order to become a national team, but I don’t think that number of teams even cover 1% of the community as a whole. This means that the MSSA isn’t hosting an event aimed at the local community as a whole, or aimed at helping the community grow (Something which every one claims to be doing.). They’re hosting an event for a select few teams. Teams who are affiliated of course. Regional line-ups completely defeat the purpose of competing online.

Competing online has always given gamers the freedom to play in teams with the people they feel are the best match, or that make the team the best it can be no matter where they live. In any online team chemistry is really important, you can’t just pop five gamers in a team and expect them to do well. It just doesn’t work. The team has to “gel”, if that makes sense at all.

The email also says the following:

“The MWEB sponsored Inter-regional event will begin with a short Awards Ceremony where top local gamers will be receiving their Colours.“

No, top local gamers won’t be receiving their Colours, top affiliated gamers will receive their Colours. If we want to be able to make such statements as “top local players” we have to be talking about top players in the whole community, but that isn’t the case here. As with all other MSSA events, only gamers who are affiliated with the MSSA may receive those Colours. I presume that it will be Provincial Colours. This too was not defined in the email. 

The event will take place at Monte Casino’s The Hive for Johannesburg and the MWEB Cape Town Auditorium for Cape Town. Which makes me wonder why Johannesburg gets an awesome venue and Cape Town doesn’t… I’m sorry, “Ape Town”.  The teams will be competing in Black Ops 2 for Xbox and FIFA 13 for both Xbox as well as PS3. Black Ops 2 teams require four players for the competitive Search and Destroy mode. Judging by the size of The Hive and the size of the teams, I think it’s safe to say that the amount of teams competing from Johannesburg will be at best two, with a couple of solo players for FIFA. The venue isn’t very big at all. This means that around four teams will be competing in the entire test match. If that, it’s very possible that it will only be one team from Johannesburg, and one team from Cape Town. So I guess my last question is, why so much fuss for a hand full of gamers to compete in a tournament structure no body cares about, that really does nothing for the community?

Some might wonder why I’m putting all of this in an article. To be frank, I’m just tired of things being done half arsed. If we don’t show the public how badly things are being done and point out the flaws in eSports nothing will ever get better. I’m appalled by the email I got as it was poorly written and didn’t give nearly enough information about the event. Only because we (the local media) are expected to write about it, and if we don’t people say we don’t care, but if we do there’s no way in which we can produce a decent article from the material we’ve been given. It has happened before where most of the local media received a press release about a national Battlefield 3 team from the MSSA, where the players’ names, aliases and surnames were incorrect. After which the team captain had to contact us personally to correct it. It’s up to us to do more research to double check for information, but let me just show you the only link available for more information about this particular event: http://tournaments.mweb.co.za/index.php.

I like bacon and games, and occasionally I say something coherent about it. I'm not old or cynical, and I'm not the Dork Knight. I AM SHE-RA! Wait, what?

  • Trevor Davies

    I suppose I should be offended by “Ape Town” but all I can think is Ookookooook ook ook EEK.

    • ElimiNathan

      SOAB

    • RinceWind

      Oook?

    • Ultimo_Cleric N7

      Cant be offended by this. I mean how childish does someone have to be to put that in their official email “invitation”.
      There is a word for people who act like this on the internet. They are called a “noob”. You would think I would have said “troll”, but to be a troll you should actually be smart and good at what you do…..

  • Skyblue

    Epic fail! You have to wonder how MWEB feel about these guys sending out unprofessional, error ridden mails with them being touted as “partners” in this endeavor.
    I won’t comment on the actual competition because it looks like an absolute joke and I’d be surprised if it works at all.

  • Admiral Chief Groot Wors

    Ag nee foook man

  • Lardus

    Wow, really sad to hear this! Those bastards! Quite well written article though. Very well written actually :)

  • TiMsTeR1033

    So does that mean my Mad skills in Halo are useles! :P

  • caponeil

    hear hear! I am generally not impressed with the so-called “E-sports” gaming community in general. As far as I am concerned, most people that I have dealt with are conceited dumbasses! (Generalization probably)

  • RinceWind

    As I said to you earlier Yoland, I have to deal with this everyday too. Let me see if I can find the email… Edit: Ah, here we go…

    “Hi Nicholas,
    I have a lot of tree’s growing through my sponsor a tree project. We give to tree’s to school and places in need of tree’s.
    So the partnership would be if you need any tree’s for any school projects that you are doing in Highveld area, Basically the inland provinces.
    As you work with municipalities I will also offer my help if you need to tree’s to be planted in streets and parks. Yet, the recommended height and size of the tree’s to be planted in these area need to be: height 2.4 m and the thickness of the stem needs to be 10 cm. The tree’s growing here grow for two years from seed then get planted in the schools. The tree’s are roughly under 1m in height and stems 4cm.
    Do you think any of these activities wood work with you?”

    I kid you not!

    • Andre116

      *Yolanda

      • RinceWind

        lol and love how you come out the woodwork :P

        • Andre116

          I try.

    • hairyknees

      Don’t lie..l. wood work was a totally clever and intentional pun xD

      But you could read wood work as doing some sort of carpentry, the opposite of planting trees. Instead, you wood be killing the trees to make some stuff!

      *gasp*

      • RinceWind

        HAhAHAH! YOU GO TOO FAR!

    • Yolanda Green

      say whaaaaat? O.o

      • RinceWind

        This was from a subsidiary of a local government 0-O

  • http://www.lazygamer.co Gavin Mannion

    Actually the email didn’t specify Black Ops 2 and actually said Black Ops

    It also looked like this

    • RinceWind

      This makes me ragead, which is a mixture of RAGE and SAD. Man, what are they trying to do?

    • Ultimo_Cleric N7

      Pathetic. No really, did a primary school child write this? “Professional” job there lads……

      • Trevor Davies

        I think I know

  • http://www.redeux.org.za/ Werner Morris

    This needs a stronger word. This is both bad and wrong. It shall be badong.

    • Trevor Davies

      Save us Chosen One!

  • FSR

    “Black Ops 2 teams require five players for the competitive Search and Destroy mode” have you watched any competitive COD? It’s almost always 4 v 4… justsayin…

    • XaXas

      PC is 5v5 tho.

      • FSR

        “The teams will be competing in Black Ops 2 for Xbox”

    • Yolanda Green

      Yeah that’s correct, guess I was just so worked up I used the PC specification instead of Xbox. Apologies.

  • fc boonzaaier

    WTF? Only xbox and ps4? It feels like the master race is being left out once again on the GOLD!!!! Just look at the amount of PC players playing DGL for BO2, this is silly…

  • Robert Infy Hart

    Some things never change. Fortunately for eSport there are other organisations in SA who spend less time writing press releases and more time improving their events.

    • Warwick Candle Parris

      Who could you possibly be referring too Infy??

    • Yolanda Green

      yeah I don’t think you can call what we got a press release, even my writing isn’t that bad unedited :S

  • hairyknees

    *Sigh*

    These people do tend to forget logistics with regards to location. I love my Dota 2 team, but if we ever were to become pro enough to partake in the big tournaments, I’d have one hell of a problem.

    I am from Joburg, I have another from Jhb too. I have 2 from Knysna, 1 from Paarl, and 1 from Cape Town. Granted, Majority are closer to Cape Town than I am, but what if we were to be invited to some event in Johannesburg? It would be a nightmare.

    I really want e-sport to grow… GROW DAMN YOU!

  • hairyknees

    Oh and Ape Town xD hahahaha wtf!

  • Lag_Beast

    HOORAAAH! the truth comes out, this is what many gamers have been saying for ages about MSSA. Thank you for finally showing people their true colours. Love it !

  • Richard Scott

    Hi Yolanda. I respect you and appreciate the help you have given with eSports in the past. but I have something to say.

    The top players are the ones that competed in the various competitions that were held. Yes, MSSA did not advertise their JHB Regionals correctly as they should have and I had a big gripe with the Cape Town regionals too, but Mweb have put a nice boot up their ass since and I feel they pushing it in a better, much needed direction. The JHB LAN that took place was a bit of a joke, but never the less it happened and top players have come to be and are representing. The Cape Town regionals that happened was a much different story, even though there was a major short notice the turn out was much bigger and had more support. In the end it’s up to the gamers that want to be noticed and become a “TOP Player” to get their asses off the couch, create awareness and go to events like this to grow and improve the community.

    This can only go up, bigger and better if the support is there. I was in a frantic rush to get my entry to win a ticket to Cape Town’s venue as I know it’s going to be an awesome event tonight. I was fortunate to get in and can not wait to show my support with like minded people, and from past events the Mcave is the place to be.

    Also I think you need to do a little more research with regards to competitive scene details before slandering “Black Ops 2 teams require five players for the competitive Search and Destroy mode” umm.. not quite sorry..

    If I made any spelling mistakes I’m sorry cause as you know I’m from Ape Town..

    • frikkenator

      eSports in general, even internationally (the west) is managed really poorly, bar a couple of major events. Everyone wants eSports to grow, but for that to happen there needs to be a level of professionalism applied, and this is very, very far from professional.

      This is not a case of “just have a whole bunch of shitty events and it will grow”, rather have a couple of massive, well planned, well managed events to show that eSports is up there with the rest of them. Then only will people start paying attention.

      I live 5km away from Monte and I won’t even waste the 10mins it’s going to take me to get there.

      • Richard Scott

        I have mixed feeling with your comment. Companies and sponsors are not willing to invest in events if there’s not enough numbers, remember that’s how business goes. look at 2upgamers in Cape Town, they have become bigger and bigger each time around and have JHB and Durban gamers begging for something like that up there too.

        For a level of professionalism there needs to be money backing it up, I on the other hand don’t like the way MSSA run their club, where they only advertise to club members about the events, but I think that has, if not will change. As I can’t imagine them not seeing the flaw and I voiced myself with that not too long ago before the Cape Town regionals.

        If you really are a clan that wants to be serious, then one should be in the know, and not hearing about events too late. The serious competitive scene is more underground that it should be, but that’s changing with help of companies like Mweb that’s giving much needed exposure.

        • frikkenator

          The thing is, the numbers are there, it’s just that no one actually knows how to put a proper event together. If you can have an event that is well managed, with proper marketing then I’m convinced that the sponsorships will flow in. The trick is making the event enjoyable and accessible to people who are not in the scene, and then marketing it to them as well.

          My problem with Mweb trying this is that they know absolutely nothing about gaming or the community. Hell they can’t even run proper servers for games, so they have lost the support of the gamers. Their CS server have always been horrible, their Dota 2 servers are a friggin disgrace. They literally just slam their name onto things in the hope of getting some advertisement off of it.

          The upside is that despite (not because of) all of this, it is still growing, and hopefully someone will go balls to the wall and make something happen.

          • TheDisagreeMan

            LoL I don’t think I can disagree with you more.

          • frikkenator

            Good thing then that you raised all of those important points you disagree on.

          • https://twitter.com/jGLZA_b00 jGLZA

            I don’t know how many events you have attended recently but I can assure you that recent events have gone from strength to strength and whether you like it or not MWEB have had a helping hand in most of them.

            Each LAN event is getting better, correcting mistakes from previous ones with each iteration. Yes there are still problems with venue’s not being suited for LAN’s but that’s where sponsor’s need to come to the party and help out.

            I can’t comment on their servers (all I know is that their GOW3 servers worked a charm when they were still running) but even their online tournaments & ladders are extremely well run and well supported. MWEB certainly know a thing or two about gaming and community and in those sectors that they may be lacking they are actively getting people that know what to do to help out.

      • https://twitter.com/jGLZA_b00 jGLZA

        It’s kind of a catch 22 situation with regards to eSports events. On one hand we all want them to be professionally organised top class events but you have to keep momentum going in the community and that means regular events else teams and players lose interest.

        Locally we still heavily rely on online competitions but if you go abroad most top teams hardly ever touch online and instead move from LAN event to LAN event (especially when it comes to console) and that is a standard we need to work towards.

        But imo, locally we’re still in a trial & error phase where event organisers are still trying to figure out what to do, what not to do and how to do things at events. No local event is at a level we want it to be yet but they’ll get there.

    • Argentil

      Are you the author of the email? Sure looks like it.

    • Yolanda Green

      Hi Richard, I realize I made an error with 5 v 5. PC teams require five players instead of 4 v 4 for Xbox, as I’ve already replied to FSR I apologize for the mistake.

    • https://twitter.com/jGLZA_b00 jGLZA

      Fully agree with you Richard. It’s a major disappointment to find out that in the only job the MSSA had to do they failed spectacularly but then again I’m in a big disagreement with how the MSSA runs things in general. I support their motive and idea’s but their execution is sorely sorely lacking!

      Yolanda, you say that you doubt teams will change into more geographically friendly line-ups? Well I’ll have you know that earlier in the year before the COD Champs in LA it was recommended to the console clans to shuffle their line-ups into more geographical units and move over from PS3 to Xbox360 and the response was very positive. Quite a few players switched platforms and clans started either merging to accommodate players in the same area or simply breaking up and reforming. Line-ups aren’t perfect yet but the community has certainly shown their want to compete. As a result the Cape Town regionals was extremely well attended and the Cape Town team was indeed a fair representation of the best Cape Town has to offer.

      • noxville

        Yeah, but the MSSA also insisted that for Dota 2 national trials (for example) that all of a team’s players live within 50km of each other, otherwise they’d have to pay for costs associated with getting to a single venue (mind you, that’s to qualify to play over the internet with Romania).

        So, within the context of the single situation at hand of ‘Cape Town vs JHB in Blops 2′ – sure it makes sense (by design) to have geographically close players, but in the sense of most eSports, it’s completely ridiculous, *especially* given that most competition is done online.

        Of the 17 teams invited to The International 3 (the biggest and most prestigious Dota 2 tournament with > $1.6 million prize pool for a single event), only 5 of the teams are from a single country, the other 12 are from more than one country (including both the 2011 and 2012 winners Na’Vi and iG).

        So whilst you indicate that in the single context of console gaming for regionals it makes sense to be in a geographical proximity, that doesn’t really apply to the vast majority of eSports (in South Africa, or around the world), and any organization which pushes for such changes clearly doesn’t understand the community at all.

        • https://twitter.com/jGLZA_b00 jGLZA

          Well the idea of teams living within close proximity of each other
          isn’t exclusive of teams living far apart, it would just most likely
          have been more difficult or expensive for them to get to the venue. I
          believe the recommendation was made simply to make things more simple
          for clans and teams.

          This was of course proved inconsequential
          when players from Johannesburg, Durban and Port Elizabeth flew in for
          the LAN tournament at Trenchtown in Cape Town two weeks ago. Which is a
          similar situation to which Na’Vi and iG would be in in the example you
          used as I assume all members were present at the venue for The
          International 3.

          As to why the MSSA would actually restrict teams to location, I dunno, another example of the MSSA being the MSSA???

          • noxville

            Yeah, so my reference to the top international teams being not in the same country is just a reference to the fact that the top international eSports competitions have nothing to do with country-versus-country or region-versus-region competition, it’s entirely focused on the best players working together regardless of geographical location.

            Sure, for some events people might be willing to pay for costs associated with getting to an offline event, but to imply that players should play in teams with other people who live close to them is just foolish and short-sighted. Players should constantly be playing in the strongest teams possible if they want to compete at the highest level and that’s not necessarily someone who lives in the same city as them.

            The MSSA policy about 50km is just there so that they don’t have to pay for the national team to all congregate in a single location to play test matches, which given the fact that they’re likely the only ones who actually care about the team being in a single location, is a massive waste of time. Either, it’s going to prohibit a top team from participating in national team trials (like Immersion Bashers), or it’s going to mean that organiations/teams are going to have to make their own way to a single location to play in an online event.

          • https://twitter.com/jGLZA_b00 jGLZA

            Ah yes but that’s the debate of national entities versus franchised/private entities which all sports suffer from. It’s a different argument.

          • noxville

            All the big traditional sports are under national entites (mainly federations). All the big eSports are private/franchised.

            The MSSA is pushing for federation-based approach for eSports.

            Spot the issue.

          • https://twitter.com/jGLZA_b00 jGLZA

            Yeah a definite no-brainer there but things could change…
            With certain countries finally acknowledging e-athlete’s as proper sporting professional’s who knows what could happen?
            #WishfulThinking

          • noxville

            I don’t see *why* things should change. Allowing teams to choose any player in the world is just removing barriers from the top level of competition. The majority of events occur online, only LAN events and finals of some bigger online events are held onsite (and these are a very small majority), and so being in separate countries is just a needless limit.

  • Warwick Candle Parris

    Lets just be honest here. I have been receiving emails from the MSSA for about a year now since my clan became affiliated and this email has more info in it than most of the others.

  • [DVG]AsMoDeUs

    This is even more poorly organised than the DGL. What are these people thinking. When will we start doing something worthwhile in our community?

    • Warwick Candle Parris

      Please enlighten us as to why you think the DGL is badly organised?

    • Lag_Beast

      Someone woke up and smashed the crack pipe early it seems.

    • Lag_Beast

      Dont hide [DVG]AsMoDeUs :) dont be afraid to speak your mind bru !

      • [DVG]AsMoDeUs

        My apologies, not hiding, was just a really stupid thing to say, thus deleted. Perhaps I did hit the crack pipe too early, and my comment made no sense, I actually have nothing bad to say about DGL. My bad :)

    • Jaco Groenewald

      DGL is doing a lot right and they have a lot going for them. But they are neglecting some parts of the community. By some I mean CS:GO in particular. It might be the smallest community, but it has a lot of old faces. These people have played games competitively from the beginning (of the local scene) and will someday move to another title if they have not already. Will they really play DGL in the other title if they think it is being run the same? Sadly they will, there is nothing else.

      The DGL needs support, but not in player numbers; they need people who actually do it because they are adding value to the community, more PR backing from within the community and from outside and a solid system to organise all of this with less effort.

      I support DGL with their flaws because there could always have been nothing else and that would have been far worse.

      • https://twitter.com/jGLZA_b00 jGLZA

        The DGL are doing many many things right and I applaud them for that. The written coverage for the matches in their leagues are top notch, really top stuff but they have seemingly dropped the ball on a few recent developments.

        With the number of sponsors and backing they have been getting I can’t fathom how they still don’t have weekly streams of matches running or at least some video highlights of some sort. Yes I know most if not all the clans do this themselves but they really shouldn’t need to that. They are there to play and win games anything else they do is beyond their call to duty.

        If the DGL doesn’t have a centre stage and live stream going on at their Grand Champs at rAge this year, then I don’t know…

        • noxville

          There *is* excellent DGL coverage of Dota 2 (~15 matches a week), and there’s been casting of some of the big CS:GO matches over the last season. LoL and Blops also has some coverage, but I’m not certain how much that covers every week (it’s infinitely easier to setup casting in-game for CS:GO and Dota 2), and you don’t need a 10mbit line to stream.

          Some of the streams of the big local Dota 2 matches have received ~1500 viewers, even some international people tuning in to watch.

          The Do Gaming Championships venue hasn’t been announced as far as I know, but rest assured that coverage will be good.

          • https://twitter.com/jGLZA_b00 jGLZA

            Excellent news, I look forward to watching.

            p.s. Yes sorry I’m aware of the Dota2 coverage, been watching a few myself.

        • Jaco Groenewald

          I agree that the coverage was great on all but CS:GO. There are the odd few that try to promote it like lag_beast, phantom and lately zDrag, but that is about it. I think it is more because of the people in the other communities contributing more.

          I doubt the grand champs will be at rage. There are many far more suited locations. I just hope there is enough marketing to get the people who want to watch either to the event or on the stream. After all for sponsors, it is a numbers game.

          • noxville

            The issue I think with CS:GO is that there are not as many people actually interested in watching competitive games in the same way that 1.6 was so actively followed. Even if you look at Twitch during large events, CS:GO has like 5-10% of the following Dota 2, SC2 or LoL gets.

          • Jaco Groenewald

            I agree 100%. And cudo’s on your coverage of Dota 2 (if I’m not mistaken). We need more people streaming, but I hope that will come with better internet. I wasn’t talking as much about streams, but articles. I go on DGL every day, looking for the CS:GO articles but end up reading BLOPS2 and LoL news.

          • noxville

            Well, although you’ll probably not ever look at this.

            :)

            Hope you enjoyed the CS:GO coverage at DGC.

          • Jaco Groenewald

            I enjoyed the event and streams quite a bit. It was a great move forward for competitive gaming, even with the technical glitches. People will learn from them and do it better next year. Thank you for all the effort you put in to make it all a better experience.

  • Logan

    And the MSSA wonder why they have so little support – Mr. Webster, please spend more time making a good impression rather than hoarding nothing – cause if you keep this up, all you have is nothing

  • xeRa

    Good ol’ MSSA. Also, can’t we get over this console phase. :/

  • Estian

    I’m sorry to hear about this whole thing… it’s sad.
    I can’t speak for anybody at the MSSA obviously… but I just.. can’t say that I agree with the whole “affiliation” argument being brought up by this article.

    • Yolanda Green

      I’m surprised that people think I’m against affiliating or that the article is even about affiliating. I’ve directed people to affiliating more than once in my articles, I even host the forms from my personal Dropbox open to the public https://www.dropbox.com/home/Public/MSSA%20Affiliation

    • noxville

      The ‘affiliation model’ only works when there’s a very clear advantage to being part of said organization over not being part of the organization. The biggest, most successful events in South Africa (in terms of player numbers, prize pools, quality of competition, etc) are not MSSA events.

      It is often touted that the MSSA “is there to serve it’s members”, but situations such as the national Dota 2 trials fiasco (part of which was covered in an excellent blog by Polarfluke – http://polarfluke.co.za/index.php/community/latest-blogs/376-a-brief-history-of-polarfluke) just totally indicate otherwise.

      The MSSA’s approach is that they view themselves as providers of the top events in the country. The top players historically have mostly ignored the MSSA, simply because there are other free, more competitive and higher rewarding (prize-wise) competitions. There is also a huge historical backdrop to this story dating back to the MSSA/AGASA disaster of 2010 which is significant in why so few people trust the MSSA. Now, for the more astute reader you’re thinking “oh gee boy, this guy is an idiot, he hasn’t discussed PandaTank, the MSSA helped him loads”. Sure, PandaTank is by far the biggest success story out of the MSSA (assuming you exclude a local Starcrafter who went over to the IESF, lost all her games and still got paraded through the streets as a girl gaming messiah http://mg.co.za/article/2013-01-11-gaming-kids-parents-be-consoled), but most of that success is through completely hard work put in by PandaTank, and completely unrelated to the MSSA. Sure – he is the best local SC2 player (statistically), but I think that the MSSA itself can have almost no claim to his success. It would be nice for PandaTank to back up these claims, but owing to his Protea contract with the MSSA, he almost definitely can’t publicly do so.

      The South African eSports scene without the MSSA would be completely stable, either the same as it is now or possibly slightly better, but a South African eSports scene without any subset of {MWEB/DGL/Megarom/Steelseries} would be a lot worse than it is today.

      So yes, the affiliation model *can* work, it’s just that nobody in South Africa has ever got it working, and given the stranglehold that the MSSA seems to have on the SASCOC eSports attention – it probably won’t change until the MSSA dies out or some competent bunch take it over.

  • Ricardo

    All this article proves is that once again, Lazygamers is uneducated about eSports and that you haven’t bothered to chat to Colin Webster from the MSSA. In fact you have no clue what you are talking about, but its rather your own pretty arrogant opinion.

    The fact that you need to base your arguement on a poor email is pathetic. Sure the email is bad, but if you knew anything, cared to investigate or even did one google search you would have found fantastic articles on the event on the Mweb gaming site and on Zombiegamer.

    Everyone has something to say, but sadly the only guys putting in effort to improve eSports in SA by supporting the MSSA are the console community guys and Mweb.

    The coverage you guys offered on the COD champs was terrible?! How can someone who got a free trip to LA be so clueless about console eSport and then moan about writing about eSport? I’m sorry but I have lost all respect for Lazygamer as a reputable site. If you want to become a tabloid then congrats. You’ve got it going!

    I mean really? You didn’t even bother to attend the event?! Go home Yolanda – you are doing it wrong!

    • frikkenator

      Are you serious? I assume you are referring to that 2 page long MWEB sales pitch that mentions something about a tournament?

      A quote:

      “There are 20 seats up for grabs to this event and you can grab one by participating in our “Tweet for your Seat” campaign!”

      20 seats?! Either this is a REALLY small event, or (and I’m guessing this is the case) it is aimed solely at the press to further punt MWEB. The same MWEB who can’t even give us proper local servers.

      The comments from the MWEB/MSSA guys (both of you) on this thread are mind boggling.

      eSports in this country is a joke, barely held together by the doGaming guys. No one cares about colours, the guys who want to compete internationally are already doing just that.

      • Ricardo

        So what have you done to improve SA eSports? Have you supported any events financially, with your organizing support, participation or anything? Please I’d love to know.

        Like Telkom doesn’t run dgl for sales and marketing hahaha

        • frikkenator

          What I do or don’t do is irrelevant, but if your company claims to be the be all and end all of eSports then you should put your money where your mouth is.

          Of course Telkom does it for marketing (hahaha?) but they do it right. By attaching your brand to something, and then doing it WELL, you establish your brand with the audience. Do you see them forcing Telkom down everyone’s throat with an event press release? They run a tournament, they run it well and by doing so they build rapport with their clients.

          I challenge you to show me a single article on the DGL site that punts Telkom again, and again, and again. As this article om Gamezone does. Just one.

          MWEB signed up for this, and they’re not delivering. They signed up for giving us Dota servers, and they’re not delivering. They signed up for giving us CS servers and they didn’t deliver.

          No one forced them to do any of this, but if you want the exposure, you pay the price.

          FYI I do participate in, support and evangelise SA eSports which is why I’m so frustrated.

          • Ricardo

            You sir have missed the plot. For someone that lives 5 minutes from the venue you are a true supporter and evangelist ;) I can see.

            You have gone soooo far off topic in your replies that it is as meaningless to me as this article itself.

          • Nick

            The typical response of people with no rebuttal.

        • noxville

          Telkom *sponsors* the DGL, it doesn’t *run* the DGL. Sure, their end-goal of sponsoring it might be entirely what you’ve said – a marketing exercise, but so what? The DGL has, in every situation I’ve seen, made the correct decision in getting more people involved in eSports. They’ve expanded titles based on demand, seen the benefit in providing coverage of the competitive games, and they give away a lot of money at DGC every year to the top teams (obviously a huge thanks to all the related sponsors). There’s no signup fee’s, there’s no contracts you have to sign indicating that you can’t make public statements telling them how bad they are; and if you want to leave, you leave.

          I’ve been involved in SA eSports for only a short while, but in that time I’ve seen the local competitive DotA competitive scene slowly die. Twilight League Season 5 had only like 18 teams, daNNy Cups maxed out at 8 teams a week, and THE INTERNET (a team involving the Bashers and Bravado teams in Dota 2) lost both their games in the ESWC Online Qualifiers. Then in comes the DGL along with Dota 2 release, and they cultivated the local scene into the biggest Dota 2 league from a single country in the world (115 teams). This isn’t just by fluke (no pun intended). I’ve seen MWEB are also completely supportive of the local gaming scene (including Dota 2), and their only poor decision is teaming up the MSSA. In a few months/years when MWEB realises that partnering with the MSSA was a bad idea, we’ll see another article skim through the local gaming headlines and most people will be thinking “I told you so” …

          frikkenator: your point on the local Dota 2 servers is somewhat irrelevant. The servers are owned by Valve, MWEB just host them in their datacentre. If you want more servers (i.e. less spiking on overloaded servers, less wait times finding a server, etc), then you should speak to Valve.

    • Yolanda Green

      Aww Ricardo, you’re really sweet :) As you are accusing me of not knowing anything, I’d like for you to do some research on who I am :P

      I’m afraid you mistake the purpose of this article. It is not about me doing more research, its about the quality of the material sent to the media. Why are we getting these types of “press releases” in the first place? Why is it necessary to have to go “Hey, I got this email, but what the hell are you saying?”. Surely we can expect better from an entity that has existed for many years. I am not basing my argument on a bad email, the fact that regional line-ups are more of a stopper to competitive teams than a benefit, has nothing to do with a bad email.

      Three points where brought up here:

      1) The absolute disrespect and disregard for media by sending error ridden “press releases”.

      2) Hosting an event for a select few gamers in a manner that is testament to how little is really known about the gaming community.

      3) The perpetual tendency to conveniently write things in such a way as to depict this community is owned or run by an entity that really only influences a tiny percentage of it.

      I have in fact written articles to try and promote the idea of affiliating as I’ve thought it could benefit teams greatly in certain aspects.

      As for the COD champs in L.A, I was unable to attend as I was eight months pregnant and not in shape to travel abroad, we did however send Darryn who worked his behind off that weekend. May I please direct you to our coverage:

      http://www.lazygamer.co/xbox-360/team-xtaz-goes-to-hollywood/
      http://www.lazygamer.co/xbox-360/world-class-showdown-at-the-call-of-duty-championship/
      http://www.lazygamer.co/xbox-360/team-xtaz-jumps-into-the-fray-tonight/
      http://www.lazygamer.co/general-news/the-call-of-duty-championships-day-1-results/
      http://www.lazygamer.co/general-news/the-call-of-duty-championshipday-2-results/

      Now please tell me again how our coverage was terrible and how I didn’t bother to attend just because I don’t give a crap.

      As for supporting the console community, we have always made it clear that any one that wants us to report on their teams or events are more than welcome to contact us. When a local Battlefield 3 team competed in an international PS3 tournament we were more than happy to report on it. We also did some coverage on the Gears of War tournaments that went on as well as Halo.

      • Purple_Dragon

        Game. Set. Match.

        Nailed.

        I love it when you say, please check out our coverage here…

  • bluegoon

    http://i.imgur.com/EWFzV.gif

    But seriously, 57 comments on an article about competitive gaming in ZA is good news! Means people care enough to complain and argue!

    Yolanda, you are smart, can you please tell me which console sees the most competitive action in ZA?

    • Yolanda Green

      Teams compete on both PlayStation 3 as well as Xbox 360. Can’t really say who sees the most action unless you go and calculate the numbers :P

      I know that players play FIFA 13 on both platforms, Forza 4 on Xbox, GT 5 on PS3.
      Halo http://halo4.mweb.co.za/ as well as Gears http://gears-live.mweb.co.za/.There is a decent player base for Gears as well as Black Ops 2 on Xbox.

      • bluegoon

        Nice, thanks, wonder how big the fighting game community is in ZA, I want to turn into a SFIV stoner.

  • Theo Steenekamp

    Rage and hate in the comment section!! Here have a potato. Hope you calm down.

  • Guest

    All i read was bla bla bla TO HELL WITH DURBAN PEOPLE. EHJBFBOKIUBEJHEGKHB!!!
    !

  • Anon

    To be honest, I have nothing constructive to add to this discussion and I am not offering any sort of rebuttal. I just want to express my sadness at this situation; as someone who has been passionate about gaming for nearly two decades. On the one hand, I am grateful that there is an entity out there who professes to represent the interests of gamers and who orchestrate events for “the community” to compete in. On the other hand, I want that entity to operate efficiently, and for the right reasons. No half-heartedness. It is so easy for bureaucracy, vested interests, and commercial politics to pollute an otherwise altruistic agenda. Thus this article has me torn between supporting the MSSA and rebuking it for its inefficency. I truly want to see an esports scene that is organisationally sound, HONESTLY represents the interests of the community, and is altogether accessible for all gamers. This is rather idealistic but, I believe we should strive for nothing less. Unfortunately, this falls outside of my ambit of influence. Maybe this might change in time. But for now, I wish the best for those who can make a change. People like me do appreciate your endeavours and do support you albeit from a distance. Stay strong and keep up the fight :)

  • Rags

    Why in Heavens name is a FPS game played on console? I like the idea of JHB vs CPT, we had some good Quake 3 and UT matches like this. :D

  • Desmond Kurz

    Dear Yolanda, it’s a pity that the unfortunately formatted email from MSSA distracted you from inquiring about the event from any of those involved because the event was actually a big success given its objectives, which was to:

    To attract a strong non-gaming media audience to the event by presenting a gaming event in a format which was familiar and therefore, palatable by that audience (hence the choice of a very familiar rivalry: North vs South / Cape Town vs Johannesburg).

    The reason for this was that this media’s coverage on eSports to the non-gaming and casual gaming elements of the general public would help further spread awareness of eSports and online gaming, leading to further growth in this area.

    The event successfully drew no less than 6 TV camera crews from shows including SABC Sports News, Espresso, Hectic9nine, Stargist, Next48hoursTV and SABC Sports Buzz . I am not aware of
    any eSports event that has drawn as many TV crews. It was particularly great to have those youth shows – maybe a new generation of gamers will be brought into competitive gaming!

    There were also other non-gaming media representatives there including Carl Wastie from Goodhope FM who was an amazing MC for the event. The event was also mentioned on 5fm (thanks KB!).

    If we solely targeted gaming media, we are already “preaching to the converted”, so creating an awareness with the non-gaming / casual gaming audience via these channels is particularly important if we are to extend awareness and through it grow eSports and online gaming.

    I trust this makes more sense now for you. You’ve had me on Skype for many months, so please don’t hesitate to drop me questions in the future.

    As far as community goes, our site and tournaments are driven by the community and if anyone has suggestions or ideas on how to grow eSports and online gaming in SA, I’d really like to hear from you. Just drop me a mail at dkurz@mweb.com

    Please note that the opinions expressed in this are those of the author and not MWEB Connect (Pty) Ltd

    • noxville

      I have a suggestion to improve SA eSports, which I don’t mind publicly posting.

      You work for MWEB, which is owned by Naspers. Naspers also owns Supersport. So why don’t you have a chat to your sister company, and see if they can provide coverage of the local eSports scene? There is a big event held every year that has the top South African gamers (no barriers to entry such as needing to belong to an affiliated federation or having to pay yearly subscription fees, or needing to qualify at some provincial LAN event). The undisputed top teams in the country will be there at a single venue, there’ll be live streaming on the internet for people who aren’t there who want to spectate, and also an area for people to watch live. Oh, and did I mention lots of prize money?

      Because anyone who *actually* cares about South African eSports will be at that event and I’m sure that you, of all people will be there Desmond. For Desmond, you are an honourable man, so are they all, all honourable men.

      • GabeSA

        hey noxville check the following regarding Friday’s coverage: MWEBNorthvsSouth coverage: SABC News tonight SABC 3 between 6:30-7:30pm and + Stargist- DSTV channel 150- 23.07@ 7:30pm. that give you the idea of what Desmond and his team have accomplished for the eSports.

  • http://otherwiseandoffbeat.blogspot.com/ Han Cilliers

    Oh gawd the terrible grammar, let’s draw a line through the whole event, I mean, grammar is EVERYTHING. TBH though, really Colin, bemorepro. Then understand the purpose of an event, before thrashing it. I mean, as a journo, if you look at events through just your own understanding of the culture, surely you might miss a few important aspects (as explained by Desmond). *Facepalm* to that terrible press release and this shameful article.

    • Lag_Beast

      In my opinion the problem isn’t Mweb but rather the fact that they are backing MSSA. Your time and money would be better spent running your own competitions and not that of MSSA’s. Imagine a man who has been a carpenter for 15 years decides to one day try and weld and do steel work ? Its gonna be fkn shocking he may know furniture but he sure as hell doesn’t know how to weld – back people giving back to the community that aren’t asking for a thing in return people like Fluke running polarfluke and Dogaming League who are running a free service for more gamers than MSSA would even be able to service/handle. Thank you for the exposure for gaming etc etc, while that is an important aspect so is making sure that the level of play is sufficient. Imagine organising a school vs school rugby match and then trying to tell people who watch super15 that this is top level rugby – they will laugh in your face. Focusing on marketing is only 50% of the focus, so props but at the same time you have failed eSports in SA.

  • Come On

    As usual, LazyGamer (more specifically Yolanda) slamming people who are actually doing something. I have yet to see you promoting a local get together/tournament/expo unless it directly benefits you.
    Please stop crying ‘community’ when all you are really interested in is making sensational headlines.

    • FSR

      THIS!!! x 1000000… Sorry to get in the way of the circle-jerk that the comments section of LG has become… but when you actually do something positive towards the growth of eSports (and not some half-assed, “ugh, do i HAVE to write about this mooooom?” followup article), then shout “community” from the rooftops.

  • GabeSA

    To say the least, the amount of coverage for this event far exceeds what the initial expectation was. The author had identified poor spelling elements as her main focus, or at least it seems so. I understand that she calls the idea of the event or planning thereof poorly done, but if this was the case, how could so much media coverage has been provided for at the event, with what is clearly such a large success. eSports is in its infancy in South Africa, and there is always the starting point and I think that the event on Friday has added a huge stride to achieving a larger contingency of new and experienced gamers. I feel the negative impact of such an article only does what we want most to avoid, and that is to prevent future sponsors from making such events more successful in the future. Perhaps Yolanda never got a real invite, or maybe she just didn’t know what actually happened at the event, and if she had spent the time doing so, instead of creating such a negative article and focused on what was eventually a huge success (ask anyone who was ACTUALLY there), then perhaps she would have had more of a valid source to contribute in her article. Yolanda, it is your negative approach to these events that simply make it less likely to achieve its very goals. Here are some huge comments here, and whilst they are valid based on the information you provided, they are not based on the effect or outcome of the event, which is a pity. I sincerely hope that the grammar and spelling is improved in future, because I wouldn’t want the future of eSports to come down to it. If, and I can see you are somewhat, contributing to the industry – make it positive but also call a spade a spade. There were some issues, but ask yourself, when last did you attend a gaming event (No not RAGE) where such coverage was clear for all to see. If that doesn’t provide solid exposure for eSports and its future, I am not sure what will in your book.

  • Purple_Dragon

    Funny some of the comments are like “shame the poorly written email distracted you”.

    My question is, how do you fuck up a simple email? That is the starting point.

    If you get a poorly written email or advertisement or whatever, chances are you will not go any further.

    A bad example, if you get a poorly written email extolling this new scheme that allows you buy gold cheap what will you do? Will you “research” it further to see what a great deal it is or will you just disregard it?

    Yolanda isn’t trying to “ruin” things, she is actually interested in furthering things.

  • Wtf101

    Back in the day when I studied Public Relations, I was taught that a press release has to be the best of the bunch, as your press release will be fighting for space with a lot of other press releases, and that poorly written press releases will end up in the rubbish bin.
    At the end of the day, you are projecting your organisation’s image, and right now, I honestly do not believe that this is the best SA has to offer…
    (I know I am late to this article, but I usually give esports articles a miss. No reflection on the author of these articles on Lazygamer, but I do not do onlinge gaming as a rule…)

  • SA eSports fan

    Its drivel like this that will stop esports from growing in SA. Every time someone falls down, someone has to put a damper on the situation, cast a negative cloud over it and point and laugh. Then the negative just folllow

    Oh boo fucken hoo a press release was sent out with typos. Lets tell Sky and CNN, so that everyone can know.

    Sure the local scene is not the English Premier League, but pointing that out every time something goes wrong is counter-productive

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