San Francisco, California, Feb 13, 2023, ZEXPRWIRE, eSports have become a crucial fulcrum of modern competitive competition. Once upon a time, LAN tournaments and online championships were a niche hobby in a brand new industry. Players like Fatal1ty in Quake were legends, yes, but only in their circles. The idea that gaming could produce serious competition and attract dedicated athletes or supercharged prize pools was laughed at.
Then came Starcraft. Its explosive mainstream success in South Korea led inexorably to the rise of a sophisticated eSports industry being broadcast on terrestrial channels for the pleasure of the viewing public. For the first time, big name eSports players became household names, and exceptionally talented individuals were lured in with the promise of massive prize pools and eternal fame.
eSports Has Entered the Mainstream
Now, eSports is huge, Games like Counterstrike and League of Legends regularly draw in millions of viewers for their global finals, Overwatch has its own franchise league, football clubs like Manchester City have their own eSports teams, and Starcraft 2 – 24 years after the original’s release – still packs out arenas for the GSL final.
It will continue. eSports is an ever-growing industry whose popularity looks set to skyrocket, with exponential growth predicted for the next five years. More people are gamers than ever before. A whole generation has grown up playing video games more than they went to the cinema. Many people have seen more matches of Rocket League than real football, and fans support eSports teams with more fervour than they support their local ‘real world’ teams. There is also far wider recognition of just how talented and dedicated the best players are, and how much they are worth.
The Long Tail of eSports Gamers
More and more players are also making a living out of their skills playing games, especially the very best at the top. The small issue is that, with centralised competitions and organiser-led events, only the very best can make a living. In gaming, as in life, there are usually very few prizes for second place, at least not substantial ones, and chances at income are periodic rather than continuous. Although, it’s worth pointing out that 8th place at a Starcraft tournament in 2011 won 25 $BTC, while the winner took home $10,000. That player was probably never so happy to have lost a tournament as then.
So, on that note, where exactly does Web3 fit into eSports? Why are most predicting that the blockchain will form the essential substrate for online competition, and what advantages does it bring?
The Advantages of a Decentralised eSports Architecture
First, a decentralised gaming and tournament environment has a chance at breaking up the massive cartel of eSports teams and organisers who currently monopolise the sport and take prize pools away from the players hands whilst also gating access to the community. Too often, loud personalities take participation slots at tournaments away from the most skilled, bringing the quality down for all.
A centralised tournament scene can lead to total community breakdown, too. Blizzard’s removal of LAN from SC2 is seen, despite its success, as a major reason the game lost out to its predecessor, Brood War, as the game of choice of the Korean gaming public at the time. If Web3 teaches us anything, it’s that community wins, but those communities do not currently have the tools they need to create transparent, fair competitions that are open to all and already underpinned by a powerful economy.
How Get Set Play is Changing eSports
Enter GetSetPlay, a DAO-powered eSports metaverse that pushes agency, value, and opportunity into the hands of the most important people – the players. It leverages the blockchain to deliver solutions that are currently not possible. The GSP Arena will play host to all the fantastic metaverse tournaments of the future, with an integrated ecosystem that connects directly to web3, and lets the long tail of eSports participants earn from being involved.
The GSP Arena will provide glicko-2 based instant matchmaking moderated and validated by the GSP community. Game results will be unimpeachable, verified by the network and – most crucially of all – payouts, which are smart contract based, are instant. It instantly solves one of the dark secrets of eSports – tournament payouts. Far too many tournament organisers have been caught with their hand in the cookie jar, or simply poor financial management, that leaves eSports professionals waiting months if not years for what is rightfully theirs. With the blockchain, payouts can happen literally as the game completes.
GetSetPlay will have premium and free matches. Premium matches will only be available to those who have $GSP – the governance token of the GetSetPlay ecosystem – staked, while free matches will require a participation fee. These fees go into financing the validators, matchmakers, bandwidth providers, and the entire systems architecture that makes tournaments happen. Previously, all of these costs, and all of this organisational headache, was borne by a tournament organiser themselves, sometimes at prohibitive cost. GetSetPlay decentralises that architecture and makes it accessible to all.
The result will be the likely proliferation of small and medium-sized fan-driven and community tournaments that can still attract the biggest and the best. By breaking down the barriers to genuine fair, competition, it lets the net draw in a more diverse group of potential players
The GSP Arena in the Larger GSP Ecosystem
The GSP Arena will also work seamlessly with GetSetPlay’s other verticals to create a truly holistic gaming platform that’s built for the modern generation. For example, winners of a GetSetPlay tournament may win a trophy in the form of an NFT, which can then be displayed in full virtual reality in the GetSetPlay Hall of Fame at the centre of the GSP City. Virtual reality stadiums will be packed with fans using VR headsets to watch the action. It will create eSports that feel less remote and unreachable and much more like a living, breathing ecosystem.
Matches will of course all be streamed live on the GSP Channel, a P2P streaming network that uses community bandwidth and effort to host and moderate streaming channels. Akin to the GSP Arena, it’s a decentralised architecture that emulates web2 services (like Twitch) and makes eSports and gaming fit for the web3 revolution that is going on.
All is Fair in Love and Games
GetSetPlay is a highly ambitious project that has already made significant strides in setting up the web3 gaming arena that will redefine eSports. Through it, communities can take control of their games, players can be rewarded for their skills, and everyone can get involved – with no centralised administrator acting as a rentier off the sweat and effort of their gaming communities. Web3 will redefine eSports; GetSetPlay already is.