The 2018 LoL World Championships saw a major budget cut that has resulted in a unique situation for the event’s English casters - and Thorin had a lot to say about it.
Due to major budget cuts, English casters won’t be on location for the LoL World Championships. Instead, they’ll be in a Los Angeles studio - a long way from the event’s finals South Korea.
Esports historian and event caster Thorin disagreed with this development, citing the difficulties of casting remotely for such a large event in a fifty-two minute YouTube video.
“This means the talent won’t be as involved with the event as they would if they were on-site.”
He also had more direct words for the upcoming situation, referencing the need for casters to feel the crowd’s energy.
“I can tell you right now, as someone who’s commentated events, and as someone who’s been an analyst of events, that ain’t the same. Sure, you can hear all that, but it ain’t the same as feeling it. It’s not the same as being there.”
Riot games has cut its 2018 esports budget in an effort to “break even.” According to Riot’s global esports lead, Derrick “FearGorm” Asiedu, Riot has spent over $100 million on their esports initiative, and is now looking for ways to make the program more “financially sustainable.”
“...we don't want to continue to be in startup mode - we're now a mature business and costs need to be more in line with revenue in the future: Now that we've built something awesome, we're going to start exercising more discipline around holding ourselves to financial constraints as revenue continues to pick up.”
With this development came the news that LoL’s English casters wouldn’t be on site for the World Championships in Korea. Instead, the crew will work out of a studio in Los Angeles, streaming the event remotely.
Whether or not this development will affect the casters’ performance remains to be seen.