Black Ops 4 pro players are not happy with the League Play announcement - ft. Scump, ACHES, Parasite, and more - Dexerto
Call of Duty

Black Ops 4 pro players are not happy with the League Play announcement – ft. Scump, ACHES, Parasite, and more

Published: 9/Jan/2019 1:06 Updated: 9/Jan/2019 1:12

by Albert Petrosyan

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The Call of Duty community was sent abuzz on January 8 with the announcement of League Play coming soon to Black Ops 4 Multiplayer, but not everybody is happy with the actual format. 

After weeks of complaining from the majority of the Black Ops 4 player-base, Treyarch finally confirmed that the long awaited game mode would make its debut at the end of January.

The developers revealed that League Play will be made up of two significant components – events and scrims. The events will be designed to emulate the tournaments that pro players play, in that they will be intense and frequent but shorter in their duration, normally enabled over weekends of three-day periods. 

In between those events there will be scrims, which will essentially be an unranked Multiplayer playlist limited to the same official ruleset used by the CWL.

The purpose of these scrims will be for players to get competitive practice and hone their skills ahead of the events, which will be ranked. 

League Play in Black Ops 4 will be similar to regular public matches in Multiplayer but there will be restrictions based on the official CWL ruleset.

While the news of League Play finally being implemented has been greeted with extreme excitement by most, the positive reaction has not been as universal for some in the competitive community, especially pro players.

Many have questioned Treyarch’s decision not to use a ranked system for the scrims and have voiced their concerns and apprehensions about the scrims having the potential to be non-competitive, which would be counterproductive to the whole premise of League Play.

Many consider the League Play format in Black Ops 2 to be the best ranked game mode from all of the CoD titles.

Furthermore, seeing as this system is not exactly what the pros were looking for, the fact that it’s being released four-plus months into the game’s lifespan has them further incensed, especially since the actual ranked mode will almost only take place during weekends. 

That being said, here are some of the best reactions on Twitter from pro player who explain why they are not to keen on this type of League Play.

In addition to the tweets above, you can click here to view the reactions of hundreds of non-pro players who have been complaining about the League Play format on Twitter

Business

Activision in talks to reduce fees owed by CDL & Overwatch League teams

Published: 2/Dec/2020 22:14 Updated: 2/Dec/2020 22:35

by Theo Salaun

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Recent reports from The Esports Observer indicate that Activision Blizzard are in the midst of discussions to possibly reduce the amount the amount owed by Overwatch League and Call of Duty League franchises as part of their entry fees.

With all OWL and CDL plans derailed over the past year, Activision are reportedly trying to rework the hefty investments that organizations have made into their franchising opportunities. When the massive game development company pitched both leagues, neither was expected to be profitable in the short-term, but projections have taken an even greater hit due to current global restrictions.

A groundbreaking esports concept centered around the city-based model that is used in traditional sports, Activision required $20 million entry fees for the OWL’s first 12 teams and then fees in the range between $30 to $60 million for its next eight. For the CDL’s inaugural season, 12 teams needed to put up at least $25 million apiece, even more for cities that were in high-demand.

Now that the plans for local events have understandably shifted, neither league is expanding for their next season and ownership groups in both are looking for ways to save cash. As reported by The Esports Observer’s Adam Stern, this has engendered cost-cutting discussions with Activision’s latest new senior executive hire, Tony Petitti.

overwatch league 2020 event crowd
Ben Pursell For Blizzard Entertainment
One of the many avid crowds at Overwatch League events.

Petitti, formerly Major League Baseball’s deputy commissioner, was hired by Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick to a senior role involved with both of their leagues as the President of Sports and Entertainment. He joins Johanna Faries, a former National Football League executive, who brings a traditional sports perspective as the commissioner for both the CDL and OWL.

Given their experience with city-based sports leagues, Activision is likely aware of the profitability challenges that their current esport and sport investment groups are facing. As such, it should be no surprise that they are willing to have conversations about concessions that can make current projections fit closer to the original expectations.

As Stern reports, those discussions have included discounting some of the original entry fees: “one idea that is being weighed is reducing the amount of money they owe to the video game maker.” 

Call of Duty League LAN
Call of Duty League
Following in the OWL’s footsteps, the CDL also had huge enthusiasm for live events.

With Immortals Gaming Club selling their Los Angeles Call of Duty franchise to 100 Thieves and reportedly being interested in selling their OWL spot as well, many are wondering if franchise valuations have shifted.

Fortunately, it appears that the profitability projections have remained somewhat consistent despite current predicaments. As reported by Forbes’ Christina Settimi, 100 Thieves COO John Robinson would not set an exact figure on their LA Thieves purchase, but suggested that “franchise values have held up.”

Activision would likely want to avoid an exodus of owners, so these discussions to cut costs and protect brand health are reportedly ongoing.