Chaobology is Ken's sometimes serious, sometimes silly column on the latest news in gaming.
Esports continues to grow by the minute. Blizzard definitely knows that more than most; Hearthstone is all the rage these days and Starcraft is Korea's national sport. But one game that has eluded the eSports masses is World of Warcraft, their flagship MMO.
"I can definitely say that WoW 3v3 Arena right now is kind of hard to watch, in the form that it is," Kim Phan, Blizzard's head of e-sports, told PCGamesN. "And so there are things that we want to evaluate."
Mind you, it has everything to do with age. WoW is almost 10 years-old and I'm sure Blizzard's philosophy didn't have the intentions of supporting live audiences at the time. But looking at WoW, it definitely does have competitive merits. Top guilds have raced each other for years to garner the elusive "world first" titles and if you ask me, what pulls me in to watch WoW, at least at their community events, has always been the live raids.
"Ideas have been brought up like Battlegrounds. People enjoy watching live raids at BlizzCon," he said. "What makes something an eSport really depends on what people want to see. We are taking a close look into how we can better support eSports."
Blizzard already holds strong ties in competitive eSports through their other games. But what they can do to seperate themselves from the pack is taking what WoW has been known for in the MMO space, which are its great raids, and work around a system that ties that in. Sure, watching player versus player has been the pinnacle of competitive sports since the dawn of time but watching a mass group of players take on a massive boss? Totally new.
Now see here, eSports is always a two way deal. You have the "them", or the pro players, who accept the challenge and train hard to refine their craft. Then you have the viewers, typically labelled as the "us", who enjoy watching what they cannot pull of with ease. If World of Warcraft becomes more eSports friendly, it's safe to say that encounters will be better tuned to challenge the raiders (more so than they do now), all while maintaining an awesome viewship experience. Let's just things will get a lot flashier. Win/win if you ask me.
So what do you guys think? Yay or nay on World of Warcraft being more eSports friendly? Remember, there's more to eSports than just the viewing experience. I just like the fact that Blizzard is open to new ideas in eSports. The problem may come from the complexities of 10 to 20-man raiding but I'm sure there's a way.
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