Riot esports head declares Hong Kong controversy off-limits for Worlds - Dexerto

Riot esports head declares Hong Kong controversy off-limits for Worlds

Published: 11/Oct/2019 19:42 Updated: 11/Oct/2019 20:19

by Scott Robertson


John Needham, Riot Games’ Global Head of League of Legends Esports, released a statement on the controversy sparked by Blizzard banning a Hearthstone player for speaking out on the Hong Kong protests. In the statement, Needham addresses the decision to refrain from discussing “sensitive topics” during Worlds 2019.

Over the past few days, the eyes and ire of the gaming world have been focused solely on Blizzard Entertainment. This began when the company responded to a Hearthstone player speaking out on the ongoing Hong Kong protests by banning the player, stripping his Hearthstone Grandmasters prize money, and firing the casters.

The decision sparked outrage in the Blizzard and gaming communities, which caused #BlizzardBoycott to start trending. All of this just weeks before the company’s annual BlizzCon event.

But less than a day before the beginning of the group stages for the 2019 League of Legends World Championships, Riot Games and its Global Head of Esports John Needham released a statement that acknowledged the controversy and explained how it would be addressed during the Worlds stream.

In short, it won’t be.

In the statement, Needham reminds fans that “as a general rule, we want to keep the broadcasts focused on the game, the sport, and the players.” 

Needham writes that sensitive issues and topics like the Hong Kong protests “require deep understanding and a willingness to listen, and cannot be fairly represented in the forum our broadcast provides.”

“Therefore,” he continues, “we have reminded our casters and pro players to refrain from discussing any of these topics on air.”

While this is the first official stance delivered by Riot on the issue, it isn’t their first time acknowledging it. During the Play-In stage, the official Riot stream drew attention from fans when it initially appeared that they were purposely avoiding saying “Hong Kong” when referring to the Hong Kong Attitude team. LoL communications lead Ryan Rigney addressed those comments on October 9.

While Activision Blizzard has remained mostly silent on the blitzchung/Hong Kong controversy, other developers have weighed in with their stances.

Epic Games CEO and majority shareholder Tim Sweeney acknowledged that while Chinese megacompany Tencent is still a large shareholder in Epic, players will not be banned for speaking up on political issues while he’s in charge.

Fans on Twitter were quick to point out that Riot is in fact, 100% owned by Tencent. Tencent also owns a 5% stake in Activision Blizzard.

Call of Duty

Team Scump wins $50K Black Ops Cold War Twitch Rivals: Final results

Published: 24/Nov/2020 3:43

by Brad Norton


Black Ops Cold War may have only just launched but major competitions are already underway as some of the biggest names in Call of Duty joined up for a huge $50,000 Twitch Rivals showdown.

Twitch Rivals hosts some of the biggest online esports events out there. Gathering a mix of marquee streamers on the platform and some of the top pro players, they’re always huge events.

The latest installment put CoD in the spotlight thanks to the release of Black Ops Cold War. As players grow familiar with maps, modes, and weapons, some of the best competitors jumped right into tournament play.

From Nadeshot to 2020 World Champion Clayster and plenty more, many of the biggest names were involved. If you missed any of the action, we’ve got you covered with a complete rundown on the latest Twitch Rivals event.

Black Ops Cold War Twitch Rivals results

Once teams were drafted, it was time for the unique event to properly get underway. Divided into four sections, every squad had to play through two series across a variety of modes. Hardpoint, VIP Escort, Domination, and SnD were all in focus.

Opening rounds were simple best of ones, though the playoffs saw teams competing over a possible three maps. Some were more lopsided than others. Clayster blitzed through former partners on Simp’s team when it came to Hardpoint. Meanwhile, the opposite occurred when things switched to Domination, as Simp’s team won that portion without dropping a map.

It was a closely contested event right until the very end. Clayster, Simp, and Scump all led their teams to a single playlist win. It came down to SnD where Scump’s team took home the final remaining victory. 

How to rewatch Black Ops Cold War Twitch Rivals

The Cold War Twitch Rivals event took place on Monday, November 23 for North American talent. Things kicked off at 3PM PT | 6PM ET and ran through most of the evening.

While individual players were streaming their own perspectives, a dedicated broadcast was hosted by CDL talent Miles Ross, Thomas ‘Chance’ Ashworth, and Lottie Van-Praag. We’ve embedded this below for your convenience.

Black Ops Cold War Twitch Rivals Format

This particular event followed a unique format. At first, four captains selected their teammates from a pool of pro players and popular streamers. Once rosters were locked in, there were four unique brackets to play through, one for each mode.

Hardpoint, VIP Escort, Domination, and SnD were the four single-elimination brackets on offer today. Placing well within each bracket awarded a set number of points. The team with the highest number of points at the end of the day was eventually crowned the winner. A full point breakdown along with the final prizing can be found below.

Points per round

1st – 5 points

2nd – 3 points

3rd – 2 points

4th – 1 point

Prize pool breakdown

Team prizing

1st – $15,000

2nd – $9,000

3rd – $6,000

4th – $4,000

Prizing per round

1st – $2,000

2nd – $1,000

3rd – $1,000

4th – $0

Individual player bonuses

1st – $3,750

2nd – $2,250

3rd – $1,500

4th – $1,000

Black Ops Cold War Twitch Rivals Teams

Many of the most popular names in the Call of Duty scene were thrown together for this marquee event. Captains were determined ahead of time, however, as Clayster, Nadeshot, Scump, and Simp were all elected to lead a team of their own. 

The full list of players filling out each team can be found below.

Team Scump

  • Tfue
  • Aydan
  • Zoomaa
  • Scump

Team Nadeshot

  • IceManIsaac
  • Envoy
  • Destroy
  • Nadeshot

Team Simp

  • SuperEvan
  • JaredFPS
  • Karma
  • Simp

Team Clayster

  • Symfuhny
  • Tommey
  • Rated
  • Clayster