filled with challenges unique to the genre and game. And while the team of three had their shortcomings when measured against other professionals, their efforts were not without blazing successes, crescendo-ing and sustaining the tension of the moment in a manner worthy of the competition. The end of game one would leave no doubt that the ball was rolling. Transitioning back into easy commentary from the analyst desk, seasoned with interesting, wellproduced video pieces about the teams and their personalities would give the appropri-
...ultimately, much of what can be decried about the event can be chalked up to the simple fact that the young gaming company is sailing through virtually uncharted territory.
Good Luck Have Fun
ate amount of distraction as the next game set up. MonteCristo in particular seized his role as the knowledgeable personality with aplomb, providing as much insightful commentary as Lee Corso-esque moments of absurd hilarity. Quickshot grew into his role as the contributor and anchor of the broadcast, Kobe added welcome lightness to the discussion, and Doublelift and Krepo proved that yes, professional gamers do have personalities. Ironically, this is when the night became less interesting. That is to say, with production and personality rolling from strength to strength, the fears that Riot might not understand their responsibility as an eSports standard bearer were laid to rest with all hands rowing at full speed. Each game would feature the appropriate mixture of detailed mechanical discussion and play-byplay passion and intermissions would both
entertain and inform. But the defining success of the night may reside in the fact that (SPOILER ALERT) a 3-0 sweep felt relaxed, enjoyable, and hell, fun. No one could doubt how appropriate the venue, pageantry, and money spent were for the undertaking. The capacity crowd of the Staples Center, the crowd noise, the polish and shine of the production, and the electricity of the atmosphere dispelled any conception that eSports does not belong on the big stage. And ultimately, much of what can be decried about the event can be chalked up to the simple fact that the young gaming company is sailing through virtually uncharted territory. Piping broadcast commentary into the arena to explain the action is a challenge unique to eSports. Trying to effectively display every piece of relevant information for such a complex and nuanced game while still leaving a viewport for the action is a challenge unique to eSports. Balancing the casual and hardcore viewer, both vociferous in the event of their exclusion, is a challenge unique to eSports. At the end of the day, Riot walked into an arena that the greater public believed they had no Earthly right appearing at and put forth everything they had, and for that, we should be appreciative. But like the North American scene, the quality of fast-food beef, and the music of Ke$ha, they’ve got a long way to go before they reach the summit. The lessons were learned, the criticisms delivered, and the trophy raised. The ambitious crew has a year to improve upon their efforts, repair their sails, and venture deeper into the squalls of our lofty expectations. And we’ll be ready for them, as bitter and jaded as ever, fingers poised on keyboards, brows furrowed as Drake takes the stage, secretly delighting with kid-like joy in the spectacle before us. It’s the least we can do for the bastards who created Teemo.