Posts Tagged ‘Digital sports’

A Team Won Dota 2′s International, Plus Misc. Thoughts

By Alice O'Connor on July 22nd, 2014.

Newbee lift the Aegis, a shield inscribed with the names of winners.

So, The International 2014 is over. Newbee gave fellow Chinese team ViCi Gaming quite the drubbing on Monday to win $5,028,174. Competitive Dota 2 was broadcast on the ESPN cable sports network. Are digital sports now mainstream? Is this It, is this The Moment? No, of course not.

This year’s International has widespread attention because of that honking great prize pool of $10,930,814, the spectacle, and the novelty. Minor details like who won only matter on the day to most. So today, any old Tuesday, why post about it? The International 2014 will still matter in days, weeks, or months because of where loads of that moolah came from: fans. Valve are crowdfunding arena-filling tournaments and gamifying fandom. And somehow making that not awful?

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Wizard Manager 2014: Dota 2 Launches Fantasy League

By Alice O'Connor on May 15th, 2014.

Scanning my Dota screenshots folder, evidently I save a lot of hilarious jokes.

While many developers will talk about treating digital sports like ‘real’ sports, only Valve have fully realised that a real sports culture needs real sports fans. More than simply watching and playing games, sports fans idly think about matches, have favourite players, identify with teams, and will tell everyone who’ll listen that they know better than teams’ managers. Dota 2 already sells virtual team flags to wave, virtual wizard shirts officially endorsed by famous players, and virtual sticker albums to collect pictures of your favourite boys. Now Valve are having a real crack at another sports culture staple, fantasy leagues.

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