Yesterday, 06.02.16, eSports in Ghana hit a very significant milestone, our first ever official engagement with the international eSports scene was achieved through an EASPORTS FIFA friendly match with SOUTH AFRICA. What made this event elaborate is the Support we received from our Sponsors, Surfline GH who have already revolutionized interactive online video gaming in our region. The Event took place at Surfline’s LTE lounge, OSU and with the provision of a dedicated link to compete with #TeamProteaSouthAfrica there was no doubt #SurflineTeamGhana suffered any disadvantage playing at the highest level. #SurlineTeamGhana had a dominant performance beating their South African counterparts 5 games to 1(5-1) and with that said it’s important we put every aspect of this achievement into perspective.
ESPORTS FUSION: OUR SPONSORS + OUR ESPORTS ORGANIZATIONS
World wide eSports has seen tremendous growth in terms its audience and revenue streams. From recreational, competitive and urban trends eSports offers the ability to reach a wide target audience. According to SuperData, the trend has already set the world wide scene ablaze with eSports raking in more than $700M in revenue and an audience of 188M viewers worldwide for 2015 alone. 85% of this revenue comes from prominent brands who need an alternative and innovative way to market their brands. eSports organizations such as Virtual Union aim at sparking a chain reaction which will create a similar story in Africa and will focus on establishing the raw relationships between brand visibility and the target audience that competitive video gaming offers in an effort to seduce prospective sponsors/donors to facilitate growth in our region. For now eSports in Ghana has taken a bold step by unifying under the umbrella of the Ghana eSports Association which serves to create synergy in the existing ECOSYSTEM.
The South Africa EASPORTS FIFA friendly is the first of many eSports events which is intended to trigger spectatorship for eSports in Africa. And with over a 1oo live & online viewers accessing the event at Surfline’s LTE lounge via twitch we can understand clearly what kind of potential the emerging scene holds. Delivering a target audience to a prospective sponsor leveraging on the entertainment quality of esports content to convert the experience into direct sales is a good look and that is ESPORTS FUSION.
SOUTH AFRICAN ESPORTS
South Africa has had an organized eSports scene for over 15 years with Mind Sport South Africa (MSSA) overseeing its development and growth. With an estimated 4000000 gamers nationwide there is no doubt that South Africa are the torch bearers of casual/pro gaming in terms of the raw numbers in Africa. What re-affirms their stature in the African eSports scene is their inclusion and participation in the World’s foremost eSports events which includes the Pre-Qualifiers in CWL via eSports League (Call of Duty World League)-EMEA Region [Pot Price for the Grand Finals=$2000000.00] and Pre-Qualifiers for HALO 5 World Championships-EMEA Region [Pot Price for Grand Finals=$2000000]. Not to mention Appearances in the ESports World Cup, ESWC (Paris Game Week in France). Engagement with South African eSports on any level has been a huge step for our strong but fledgling scene which can boast of its intrinsic quality.
06.02.2016, 15:30 GMT The atmostphere was electric at the #Surline LTE lounge as Pro-Players, Osbert “Osbee” Aidoo, Frank “Wonderkid” Adotey and Yaw “Ybee” Boakye tested the online link with their South Africa Counterparts.
06.02.2016, 16:00 GMT: Yaw “Ybee” Boakye vrs Jolene Bico
With a 1st leg(3-0) that did not define much between the 2 in terms of Skill level. Yaw Boakye imposed his high pressing game on Jolene Bico. Jolene had no answers to Yaw’s body feints and fake shots in the last third and conceded 8 unanswered goals in the second leg. With a match that highlighted Jolene’s defensive inefficacy, 5-Star Neymar, Speedster Douglas Costa and the High-workrate Willian were the Virtual Starts as Ybee took the tie 11-0 on aggregate. Giving Ghana two clear wins(2-0, Advantage Ghana)
06.02.2016, 16:45 GMT Osbert “Osbee” Aidoo vrs Bonga Zwane
Osbert’s defensive Counter Attacking style proved to be too much for Bonga Zwane’s Spain as he suffered losses in both legs conceding from set plays and penalties. The Ghanaian played his preferred Brazil side in the first leg and controlled the proceedings throughout commanding a greater part of possession and controlling the tempo of the game(3-0, Osbert Win, 1st leg). In the 2nd leg Osbert switched to Portugal and still imposed his style, only conceding from a defensive lapse. In the end it was another 2 clear wins for #SurflineTeamGhana.
06.02.2016, 15:30 GMT Frank “Wonderkid” Adotey vrs Kyle Turnball
In the final Match of the Day both opponents showed class by punishing each other’s defensive errors with Kyle’s explosive Argentine side shooting into the lead early in the first half. Frank answered with 3 goals with Kyle pulling one back and getting himself into the game. Wonderkid killed the game with a decisive 4th after a very cagey encounter in the last quarter of the game. With that Ghana was 5 games clear(5-0) Leaving the last encounter for Kyle to redeem South Africa. The youngster did not disappoint capitalizing Frank’s Defensive errors and going ahead 2-0 by half time. Frank Mounted pressure in the 2nd half changing to his 4-3-3 attack formation and pulled 1 back. In the End Kyles goal in the dying minutes proved decisive as #TeamProteaSouthAfrica won their first game(3-1).
5-1, And it’s #SurflineTeamGhana that walk away with the bragging rights.
On behalf of all eSports organizations who worked on this project(4 Change Initiative, Playbox LLC, Virtual Union, Gamers Republic, Rock Radio, Alisxta Innovations, Press Play) We sincerely thank our Sole Sponsor,SURFLINE GHANA for making this event a success. And we look forward to more engagements to sustain the momentum we have built with this event.
Kobina Ewusie Mensah(Virtual Union)