Here’s what I learned from CheckPoint S3E28 and S3E29.

Yeah, double post. Because holidays.

  • TV integration is half of the point of the Xbox One, isn’t it? This joke is trying to be funny. Eh.
  • Goth Kathleen on this episode? I don’t even.
  • Another DragonBall Z game that’s better than most of the television series? Standard.
  • Nintendo’s naming schemes for their first-party games reeks of some sort of Engrish that was corrected by native-English speakers for the sake of trying to save what’s left of Nintendo’s honor as a great gaming company. The only two titles holding that honor as close as possible are the latest Fire Emblem and Zelda titles for their 3DS handheld as far as I can tell.
  • I fully support CheckPoint being included in MSFT’s Xbox Live content plan for the upcoming year. They used to have Major Nelson and those two Brits do stuff on nearly a weekly basis. Why not bring those guys back? Oh wait–because Larry Hyrb is nothing more than a corporate mouthpiece and the two gamer tag show people weren’t funny at all.
  • More Nintendo news? STOP IT.
  • EA is just stealthily trying to rip off new IP to blow them up into the annual sequel plan, as most of their studios seem to be actually trying to make great new games for the latest generation, with this hackathon business.
  • Baww. But they’re Canadian, right? DEM JOKES, FOLKS.
  • Zach Galifinakis as Sonic? Comedy and game-to-film adaptations must be the two worst genre of movies that exist. Combining them surely creates a black hole of cinema, right?

  • A console commentary! Yaaay~!
  • Shin Megami Tensai 4 and Saints’ Row 4 as their games of the year? Boo.
  • ShiftyLook has some pretty funny stuff. The latest Scott & Kris creation is published there. And now a dating sim based on classic Namco properties’ characters? And the ship from Galaga is a romantic option? Is this the new CandyBox? It could be the new CandyBox.
  • A Tomb Raider card game for iOS? PASS.
  • A tie at retail but a clear win for the PS4 when you consider the second-hand market. Although the same number of systems have been sold overall… so maybe it’s still more of a tie, with the stipulation that PS4 owners are more likely to throw obscene amounts of money away in marked up prices.
  • Zoo… what?
  • A best-of-season sequence masqueraded as a finale review. Pretty good stuff.
  • DANCIN’

And the ultimate sad news: I’m not going to cover this anymore if it means having to watch Twitch videos-on-demand. Having to watch unskippable pre-roll commercials longer than 10 seconds is not acceptable. I hope they continue posting these episodes to YouTube.

A prelude to a few investigations.

The larger idea that prompted the above tweet is the following: is the viewership to players ratio for any given game a factor in esports marketing ventures?

I’d like to take a look at the numbers game, so to speak, behind esports events and broadcasts. What is coveted ‘critical mass’ behind the explosive growth and inevitable decline of a game’s viewership?

I want to try to understand this particular train of thought because I’m not sure there are many marketing perspectives from the video game industry’s side of esports. Perhaps that’s why Valve hid Dota 2 behind the beta invite wall for so long? Maybe that’s why Activision could throw a million dollars at Call of Duty one year and not do the same the next year? What gave Blizzard the idea that its much smaller scene could support the reformation of its World Championship Series events against its competitor’s League Championship Series? Why did Shootmania never ascend to replace Quake?

As with anything esports-related, the scope of the initial questions that has prompted me to look into things as simple as numbers has outgrown its initial goals over time. Of course, this also means taking the time to actually sit down and watch these events, something that I really haven’t done lately. Which series of events for each game should I start with? This is the crazy question I’ll have to answer first, really.

Maybe it’ll get me excited about esports again.

We’ll see.

The numbers game.

MLG recently released its self-collected statistics about its 2011 season regarding viewership numbers and other assorted facts about the three different games that it featured and the DotA-clone exhibition added to the second-half of the 2011 season. I added this post to ESFI referring to the press release and the infographic that is being distributed with the press release.

The infographic is a nice amalgamation of all of the little tips and factoids that might have been dropped into the press release itself and presents the information in a way that it doesn’t take someone reading the entire letter to everyone in the industry.

Throwing the numbers back at DreamHack might have given it a few badass points to play around with for next year, but it still remains the fact that the other events were better organized throughout the year of 2011. I know this is going to change a lot as we come into the new season for MLG 2012, but until then, do numbers really name the king of the leagues?

I’m not particularly sure that numbers can make that distinction alone. Sure they separate the NASLs from the MLGs, but to me, it seems like the competition at NASL Season 2’s final was more nail biting than most of MLG’s lesser events.

This year might not be the year of the numbers quite yet, but look out 2012.