03/08/18: Tekken 7 is going big for 2018 with three major series

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It’s Thursday March 8, 2018 and this is your weekly early morning Esports & Gaming briefing.

BANDAI NAMCO Entertainment laid out a year of TEKKEN 7, partnering with Twitch, Red Bull, and ELEAGUE for events throughout 2018. This year’s TEKKEN World Tour will launch its eight-month season on March 16 at Final Round in Atlanta, with additional regional events taking place in Peru, Thailand, Hong Kong, Kuwait, Korea, Italy, Australia, Taiwan, and more. The top 19 players who have accrued the most Ranking Points will automatically qualify to compete in the TEKKEN World Tour Finals event which will be held in Amsterdam in November. The news comes in addition to other recent announcements that include ELEAGUE (TBS coverage with a four-part series begins on March 16) and Red Bull Conquest.

Speaking of Red Bull Conquest, the new fighting game tournament circuit will kick off on April 28 in Chicago with 15 qualifiers overall planned across the United States, as well as one additional online qualifier, to determine which region has the best players in Street Fighter V: Arcade Edition, TEKKEN 7, and Guilty Gear Xrd REV2. The circuit will culminate with the top regional champions facing off in a final showdown at the Red Bull Conquest National Finals in Washington, D.C. from Nov. 16-18, where one region will emerge victorious and claim victory as the best fighting game region in the nation. Red Bull Conquest Qualifiers will take place in Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Denver, Los Angeles, Minneapolis, Nashville, New York, Orlando, Philadelphia, Phoenix, San Francisco, and Seattle.
“TEKKEN 7 has emerged to become one of the premier fighting games driving the esports growth we are experiencing in the video games industry,” said Eric Hartness, Vice President of Marketing at BANDAI NAMCO Entertainment America Inc. “As esports continues to grow in popularity, relevance, and reach around the globe, BANDAI NAMCO Entertainment will continue to develop more blockbuster titles like TEKKEN 7 to provide exciting content for esports fans everywhere.”

ESL’s CS:GO Pro League is debuting an Asia-Pacific division with ESL and WESA recruiting Southeast Asia, China and Australia/New Zealand into Season 7. To support the expansion, ESL will begin the roll out of offline infrastructure, with Ulrich Schulze, Senior Vice President of Product at ESL, noting that “The APAC region has waited long enough for a proper inclusion in a global gaming circuit. We’re excited to see how expanding Pro League to this region will further significantly strengthen and develop the professional scene.” Overall, the ESL Pro League Season 7 Finals will now consist of six North American teams, with seven coming from Europe, and two teams from Asia Pacific. In addition, there will be one final spot saved for a region or country to be named later. That makes up the total of 16 teams that are expected to compete in May in Dallas.
Mobile game developer Supercell is launching a new Clash Royale League, inviting players to enter. The official in-game competition kicks off on March 14, with all players (age 16+ and level 8+) that get to 20 wins eligible to be drafted by a pro team.
Overwatch Contenders kicks off on March 11 at 11a, and Blizzard had – at press time – unveiled the European teams and talent locked in with 12 teams set to battle it out this season, including Team Gigantti, British Hurricane, Bazooka Puppies, Team Singularity, Eagle Gaming, and Mosaic Esports. Talent will be led by host Sam “TechGirl” Wright and Derry “Dezachu” Holt.
CD PROJEKT RED announced that the upcoming GWENT Challenger event will take place April 28th-29th in “Wieliczka” Salt Mine, Poland. “The change of venue for the April tournament, which was initially set to take place in the United States, continues the creative direction we established with the previous event in the series,” said Rafał Jaki, Product Director of GWENT, CD PROJEKT RED. “We want our tournaments to be as exciting to watch, as they are to compete in. To make that happen, we focus on finding the coolest places and ways to make the streaming experience as fun as possible,”
The first-ever MW eSports Showdown tips off today in Las Vegas with the Mountain West Conference announcing ESP Gaming would oversee event production, creative direction and staging solutions for the event, which will be held in conjunction with the MW Men’s and Women’s Basketball Championships in the city and feature esports teams from Boise State and UNLV battling in three esports games: League of Legends, Rocket League and Overwatch.
NBA 2K League moved quickly to address allegations of its first combine being rigged this week, as the league cut down 72,000 applications to 250 combine players. Screenshots surfaced showing one player’s direct messages on Twitter with Cavs Legion GM Anthony Muraco in which Muraco noted said that he wouldn’t let the player (who thought he wasn’t going to move on) “get snubbed like that.” The subsequent feedback prompted Managing Director Brendan Donohue to tweet out an open letter to concerned fans, showcasing screenshots to prove what happened, providing insight into the analytics tool used to break the field of 72,000 down to 250 along with the timestamps of the duo at the center of the controversy.
MLG locked in its talent lineup for the CWL Atlanta event, running March 9-11. With a $200,000 prize pool at stake, casters are slate to include: Ben ‘Benson’ Bowe, John ‘Revan’ Boble, Clint ‘Maven’ Evans, Joe ‘MerK’ DeLuca, Thomas ‘Chance’ Ashworth, Phil ‘Momo’ Whitfield, Rich ‘Rich’ Campbell, Jessica ‘Jess’ Brohard, Miles ‘Miles’ Ross, Guy ‘Blaze’ Spencer, Jamie ‘Dirk’ Ruiz and Chris ‘Tunn’ Tunn. In addition, the platform is bringing back Hot Mic on Friday, kicking off with Evil Geniuses.
Poland’s soccer league Ekstraklasa is teaming with Lagardere Sports Poland to launch an esports presence for the organization. “We see a huge potential in esports, that’s why we want to approach this topic professionally, and maximize the promotion of the league through virtual competitions,” said Ekstraklasa President Marcin Animucki. That’s why we chose to partner with one of the main world players in terms of eSports, and one with extensive experience. Together we want to create an attractive product for clubs, fans, but also for sponsors, advertisers, and broadcasters.”
Skillz is throwing “the largest charity tournament in the history of the industry,” open to all 12 million registered Skillz players. Proceeds from the tournament will benefit Susan G. Komen, the world’s largest breast cancer organization, with Skillz committing to raise at least $100,000. “As eSports eclipse the revenue and spectatorship of several offline sports, it is our responsibility to lead this nascent industry by example,” said Andrew Paradise, CEO and founder of Skillz. “One in eight women in the United States will be diagnosed with breast cancer in her lifetime, and by supporting Susan G. Komen the Skillz platform will contribute to change.”

This week, Stream Hatchet examined how esports organizations are utilizing influencers to promote their team brands. We’ve pulled the top 5 ranked teams in the NALCS, and parsed their total active streamer roster. Here are our insights:
  • Despite trailing behind Echo Fox in the NALCS standings, Cloud9’s new viewership on Twitch was 67 times greater than Echo Fox.
  • Teams with a higher number of actively streaming influencers generate exponentially higher new view counts (Cloud9, Team Liquid), with less of a reliance on a single streamer (100 Thieves).
  • Clutch Gaming had no Twitch viewership last week. The third ranked team in the NALCS has no active affiliated streamers.
Source : Streamhatchet.com

KFC is getting adding esports to its bucket, partnering with ESForce for KFC Battle, a ‘large-scale sports, cultural, and educational project aimed at young people’ that will include the launch of a KFC Esports Championship in Dota 2. The winning team from the tournament will nab a spot in the Dota 2 finals of the 2018 Russian Esports Cup, held by the Russian Esports Federation, as well as a trip to Europe.
Overwatch League’s London Spitfire are partnering with Logitech G for a one-year deal that will see the PC and console gaming gear brand serve as the official gear provider for the team. This marks the first major sponsorship for London Spitfire. The deal adds the Logitech G logo imprinted on the London Spitfire jersey. “We’re proud to begin a partnership with the Overwatch League’s London Spitfire. As major Overwatch fans, we’re excited to supply the gear to help them win big,” said Ujesh Desai, vice president and general manager of Logitech Gaming.
The National Association of Collegiate Esports is teaming up with gaming furniture maker Respawn Products to serve as the official gaming furniture provider for the 71 collegiate institutions with varsity esports programs across the United States that NACE supports. “Our partnership is the first step for us in providing a whole end to end ecosystem with trusted partners who our member institutions can rely upon to provide top-notch equipment,” said Michael Brooks, NACE Executive Director. “Just like traditional athletics, your facility is an important component for recruitment. More so, as students and administrators on campus continue to push for greater recognition of competitive gaming as a varsity sport, your arena is where your legitimacy begins.”
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VRstudios, a provider of commercial, large-scale, free-roaming, multiplayer VR solutions for Location-Based Entertainment businesses, announced the debut of VRcade PowerPlay, described as a “flagship, next-generation, competitive esport built specifically for LBE Arenas.” VRcade PowerPlay enables unrestricted physical action across the entire arena playing field and encourages incorporating competitive strategies and teamwork. “Everyone recognizes that eSports are increasingly popular and we believe that the release of VRcade PowerPlay is literally a ‘game-changer.’ It’s the next generation of eSports that adds true athletic activity over a large format playing field, and it can be deployed by any LBE operator,” said Kevin Vitale, VRstudios’ CEO.
Upstart streaming platform Caffeine announced a deal with ESL to bring live events, highlights, replays, as well as a brand new ESL talk show to the platform beginning with IEM World Championship Katowice, which will be livestreamed on Caffeine.tv/ESL_Live from March 2-4.
The National Association of Collegiate Esports signed a partnership agreement with Gamer Sensei to connect competitive collegiate esports players with a curated collection of professional coaches. The partnership between NACE and Gamer Sensei will better enable colleges and universities launching esports departments or expanding the number of games they compete in to find qualified coaches to lead these collegiate teams to victory.
Maestro is debuting Impact Scores, described as a brand and agency-focused rating system that applies metrics to interactive live streams, measuring viewership, engagement, viewer hours and monetization with a final score out of a possible 100. 

Cynopsis Esports is partnering with business publications Chief Marketer and Event Marketer to launch the Esports Business Summit (EBS)—a “first-of-its-kind conference, exhibition and networking experience for those interested in pursuing or expanding business opportunities in the burgeoning esports industry,”; featuring amazing networks events, sessions covering competition, production, sponsorship, venues and investment as well as a dedicated evening for the industry’s top esports awards. The event runs from Las Vegas from Oct. 1-3 and features an unprecedented board of advisors that include executives representing publishers, leagues, platforms, teams, brands and talent. A big thank you to:
  • Pete Vlastelica, CEO, Activision Blizzard’s MLG
  • Brendan Donohue, Managing Director, NBA 2K League
  • Robert Occhialini, VP of Esports Products & Technology, ELEAGUE/Turner Sports
  • Paul Brewer, Vice President, Global Sponsorships. ESL
  • Ken Hershman, Executive Chairman and Commissioner, WESA
  • Nicole Pike, Managing Director, Nielsen Esports, Nielsen
  • Matt Lederer, SVP-Marketing Communications and Strategy, Comcast
  • Josh Watson, Head of Esports, Psyonix
  • Ryan Fitzpatrick, SVP, Lifestyle Marketing & Branded Entertainment, NCompass International
  • Kurt Melcher, Executive Director-Esports, Intersport
  • Michele Morrow, On-air host, executive producer, actress
  • Ben Nichol, Head of Events and Business Development, NYXL
  • Caleb Fox, Business Development Manager for Games & Esports, Microsoft
  • Nathan Lindberg, Director of Esports at Twitch
More information ca n be found at Esportsbizsummit.com.

Blizzard laid out plans to celebrate the 20th anniversary of StarCraft, rolling out a slate of activations surrounding the event that includes: StarCraft is Life: A 20th Anniversary Celebration, a short film featuring StarCraft players from around the world sharing how the series has impacted their lives; a StarCraft Anniversary Live Stream; a Party Across Games; StarCraft Remastered; and salutes in other Blizzard games.
Ubisoft is adding video game development studio Blue Mammoth Games to its umbrella, subsequently adding fighting game Brawlhalla to its portfolio. The brawler is currently the most played fighting game on Steam and is among the top free-to-play games on PS4.
Find Your Grind, an organization dedicated to helping kids explore unconventional careers and alternative lifestyles, awarded its first ever esports scholarship to Jackson Liberty High School junior, Thomas Ferullo. FYG awarded the $5,000-scholarship to Ferullo at the John P. Stevens High School stop of the Jostens Renaissance Find Your Grind Tour, following its recent partnership with esports infrastructure company ReKTGlobal.
Superdata reports that the VR/XR is on the cusp of acceleration, driven by augmented reality and mixed reality, and will reach a combined $7.7 billion in 2018 across hardware and software. AR and MR revenue will more than double to $3.2B this year, with most of these earnings coming from mobile AR apps like Niantic’s Pokemon GO and the upcoming Harry Potter: Wizards Unite
Indie publisher Kongregate is launching a new downloadable games platform titled Kartridge. The store will be launched on PC this summer, offering premium and free-to-play games, as well as ad-supported titles. Developers will also be able to create their own store pages for their games.
Nintendo slated a new Nintendo Direct presentation for today at 5p, dedicated to upcoming games for Nintendo 3DS and Nintendo Switch and running around 30 minutes. The presentation will run on YouTube and include Mario Tennis Aces for Switch, Detective Pikachu for Nintendo 3DS, and Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze, Hyrule Warriors: Definitive Edition, Nintendo Labo, Project Octopath Traveler and Metroid Prime 4 for Nintendo Switch.

aXiomatic Gaming announced that Bruce Karsh, Co-Founder and Co-Chairman of Oaktree Capital Management, has joined the company as investor and Co-Executive Chairman. He will serve alongside: Chairman and CEO of Mandalay Entertainment and Co-Owner of the NBA’s Golden State Warriors, MLB’s Los Angeles Dodgers and MLS’s Los Angeles Football Club, Peter Guber; Majority Owner and Chairman of Monumental Sports & Entertainment Ted Leonsis; and former hedge fund manager and current Owner and Chairman of NHL’s Tampa Bay Lightning, Jeff Vinik.
Website esports.com named Arne Peters, formerly Vice President Strategic Relations at Turtle Entertainment GmbH, as an advisor to the platform. Philipp Geppert, co-founder of eSports.com, also switches to an advisory role, and Benjamin Fockersperger has departed the company.
Thursday, March 22nd  | 9am – 3pm| SVA Theatre, NYC
In addition to the awards program and winner screenings, hear from Attn:, CDW, Crowd Tangle, The Dodo, eshapTV, Facebook, Limbik, Lyft, NBCUniversal, State Farm, Time, Viacom Velocity and Volvo in these thought-provoking panels:
The Brands Speak
Building your Blueprint for Revenue Success
Short Form Behind the Scenes

ON THIS DAY in 1991: Capcom introduces Street Fighter II.
Trivia: In which sci-fi franchise would you find humanity battling Cylons? (Email chris-sports@cynopsis.com with your answer and be sure to include your name, company and city.)
Answer to Our Last Sports Trivia Question: “Prepare for trouble! And make it double!” Which franchise features the villainy of Team Rocket? Answer: Pokemon. Kudos: Chris Davies-Virgin/London; Danny Araque/NY; Luke Watson-Essential TV/NY; Alexandra Bacharach-Daddi Brand Communications/NY; Glen Ross/DC; Christian Perilla-Fusion/Miami; Tom Moore-Kalt Productions/LA; David Westberg-SAG-AFTRA Federal Credit Union/Burbank
Later — Chris
Roberta Caploe
Diane K Schwartz
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Media Communications Group
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Mike Farina | 203-218-6480
VP, Sales
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CYNOPSISJOBS – For More jobs, please visit Cynopsis.com

JOB OPENING: DIGITAL SALES DIRECTOR/Tennis Channel/NYC: Focus on leading all aspects of ad revenue derived from website, other interactive, mobile and emerging digital media properties related to Tennis Channel. 6+yrs exp in a results-driven digital sales/mktg or promotion role. Full info/apply HERE (3/15)


JOB OPENING: DIRECTOR, MARKETING/GSTV/NYC: Responsible for helping to define/mng execution of GSTV’s industry mktg strategy, incl: optimizing reach/engagement. 4-yr deg in PR, comm, mktg or journalism from an accredited college/university. 5-7 yrs of progressively resp mktg comm/PR work exp. Resume/cvr: Destiny.Crawford@gstv.com (3/14)

VP SALES/Newsy/NYC: Resp for providing strategic leadership & direction for building the Newsy brand as a leader in cable & over-the-top news ecosystems. If you enjoy setting revenue targets & leading a team to meet (or exceed!) those goals apply. Full info/apply HERE (3/13)

JOB OPENING: DIRECTOR OF GROWTH/Mashable/NYC: Drive growth/monetization strategies across commerce, SEO, newsletters & FB. Oversee team of growth producers. Work closely w/our SR editorial leaders & video team to grow audience. 6-8 yrs exp leading a growth team. Strong familiarity w/Mashable. Full info/apply HERE (3/10)

VP, CONSUMER MARKETING/The First Tee/East Coast: Oversee mgmt & dev of mktg plans & advertising from ground up. Sprvs creation/delivery of: live events, co. initiatives & projects connected to its affiliate ntwk. mktg the brand to generate exposure & increase engagement. 10+ yrs exp. Full info/apply HERE (3/10)

JOB OPENING: VP, CONSUMER RESEARCH/The First Tee/East Coast: Lead team to support quantitative/qualitative rsrch to help org understand lifestyles & behaviors of our target aud to inform bus strat. Resp for conducting rsrch & relevancy of our brand, its affiliates among kids & key insights about golf. Apply HERE (3/10)

JOB OPENING: SALES PLANNER/MUSIC CHOICE TV/NYC: Resp for development/fulfillment of integrated media plans & proposals across all Music Choice television platforms for advertising clients. 1-2 yrs media or sales plan’g/assistant at an agency or ntwrk. Solid understanding of media math. Full info HERE (3/10)

Manage the communication, design, implementation & administration of A+E Networks’ comp prgms inc: job evals, salary surveys, merit plng & yr end process. 3-4 yrs comp exp with emphasis on Workday exp. Apply HERE (3/9)

DIR, PAID SOCIAL MEDIA/A+E/NY: Develop & manage all paid SM campaigns to drive engagement & increase visibility of series across all platforms. 5+ yrs digital media plng exp w/emphasis in SM. Apply: HERE (3/9)

JOB OPENING: DIRECTOR, DIGITAL AD SALES/NASCAR/NYC: Mng significant territory/client base & monetizing NASCAR’s digital properties. Identify a digital ad sales strategy/business plan for their territory & sell programs to existing & new clients. 5 yrs of current ent or media ad sales exp. Full info/apply HERE (3/9)


Work with a team of experienced engineers to design and implement a wide variety of systems to support online games.
Senior Software Engineer C++
Rockville MD
Ownership of these systems, and troubleshooting or problem solving through entire development cycle.
Senior Animator
Champaign IL
Collaborate with multiple disciplines to ensure the best choices are made.
Senior Character Artist
Champaign IL
Work closely with other engineering teams to better understand their software, enabling you to adapt the platform to their needs.
DevOps Engineer
Austin TX
Perform discovery work with proof of concept and prototypes to evaluate new technologies, external vendor products, and lay ground work for solving complex problems.
Software Engineer– .NET
Cyber Coders
Irvine CA
Work with the architects to develop efficient Architectures
Digital Designer
Menlo Park CA
Work closely with our product and design teams to deliver new user experiences for iOS and Android.
Software Engineer, Mobile Oculus Companion App
Menlo Park CA
We built lightning tournaments, a feature that allows communities of players to queue up and automatically be entered into a tournament that they want to compete in for prizes without having to wait.
Software Engineer
Palo Alto CA
Create custom Qt and Unity Editor widgets such as curve editors, graph editors and debuggers.
Senior Tools Engineer
Telltale Games
San Rafael CA
Work with the Art Director and Designers to turn ideas into compelling and appropriate concepts for the game.
Character Concept Artist
Telltale Games
San Rafael CA
Work with modelers, animators, texture and FX artists to optimize the visual look of the cinematic.
Cinematic Lighting Artist
Naughty Dog
Santa Monica CA
Utilize bug database to identify and organize analysis of issues for games..
QA Lead
San Francisco CA
Creation and management of key marketing documents such strategy documents and product roadmaps.
Brand Marketing Manager
San Francisco CA
Design and implement well-engineered, reliable, maintainable, optimized and bug-free code.
Senior Gameplay Engineer
Cloud Imperium Games
Los Angeles CA
Strong analytical skills and experience working with large data sets including ingesting and organizing footage from multiple shoots and projects while utilizing an asset management system.
Senior Video Editor
Cloud Imperium Games
Los Angeles CA

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