eSports and Marketing: How Some Games Just “Die” due to Competitive Gaming

Written by Louis

June 4, 2014


It is without doubt that the Electronic Sports or Competitive Gaming is already, if not, starting to really go booming in the Philippines today, with Major Tournaments happening here and there, Big Events going on in major spots in the country. The potential is already noticeable as more sponsors and more players enter the fray by the minute and not only I.T. Based companies, but even Brands that are not even related to Gaming or to Computers at all. But still with the evidence of what was once a “scene” now turning into an “industry”, some companies just don’t get why they fail in using Electronic Sports as a marketing tactic.

Here comes “The List



Caught up in the Rush Hour where nothing is actually Moving

The growth happened fast, just a few years ago the Philippine Electronic Sports industry was just limited to a handful of gaming genres or titles, with the popular ones being Defense of the Ancients, then came Dota 2 and League of Legends, and as well as the classic Counter Strike. Overtime, with companies seeing its potential and starting to invest on it, more and more game developers and publishers also quickly recognized just how big it can possibly get and one-by-one entered the eSports fray.

Then came the recent era where more and more games from different genres also started to invest heavily in their way to becoming an eSport, taking a hitch on its fast growth, but quite the same as what happens in an actual “Rush Hour”, where people just wants to “Rush” into their destinations at the same time, the result became a heavy stagnant for these games as there was none of the expected BIG growth happened and nearly all of them just turtled behind the shadows of the still prominent titles.


It’s Cost Effective, or at least that’s what they say

Perhaps one reason why developers and publishers of new games invest their marketing funds in Electronic Sports is that they think that it’s “Cost Effective” in terms of achieving a bigger reach, knowing how players are just “into competitive gaming”. But what they don’t realize is that they are releasing new games, and new games, are, you know, new, no one’s heard of it before, no one’s even tried it before, so the question is “Who’d play in its tournaments?”. While it may seem that it is saving the publishers and developers some cash by a few bucks, the “effective” part from the term “cost effective” is easily dropped out since it’s most likely to not yield the needed results. And what’s worse, it could end up with the companies spending more than what was needed to market the game.



Cool Game, Good Prizes but Where’s your Community?

Now this is the main thing to recognize in the new aspiring Electronic Sports titles of today, most publishers and developers, believe that showing fancy cash is enough to market the game through tournaments but what they fail to realize is that they do tournaments on the early stages of a game’s release where there’s no strong community backing it yet, which brings us to the question raised on the previous entry in this list which is: “Who’d play in its tournaments?”. How can you do tournaments on a game that doesn’t have its own Community and is not even popular yet? Oh right, it’s because you want to use eSports to make the game popular and invite more players which is just, in a sense, plain wrong. Take for instance the most popular titles of Today: League of Legends and Dota 2, both of these games’ communities are composed of what was transferred or converted from their parent games “Defense of the Ancients”, another game title, deemed a pioneer of its own genre, that already had a strong community behind it and already had its own competitive scene running. Ever wonder why people started to switch into Dota 2 right after the first Million-Dollar Bonanza which was “The International”? It’s not just about the money, but it’s because the players have seen their idols play the game which in turn for fans and enthusiasts to switch to the game too. Community is that one big secret to be big in Electronic Sports and if a game does not have it then it might not even make it to reach the “popular” status, heck even being a stable Competitive Gaming Title.

And last but not the least, one thing that will summarize the previous entries of this list of reasons is:


They’re totally new, simple as that

These games are just totally new to the People’s senses, most of them have not been introduced to its gameplay, why it’s even “competitive”, and the community’s behind it is just low in number, using tournaments to promote games will only cause hype that will last for a few weeks, maybe even days but as long as players see that there are thousands playing the game itself they won’t totally switch. Electronic Sports is one booming industry to take part in with its huge potential, but for new games, perhaps a bandwagon produced by a huge number of community members prove to be a better marketing tactic rather than promoting it right away as a potential eSport.


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