Eyedentity Entertainment, a South Korea based game publishers, has announced a major investment in a new eSports brand. The publishers already have experience with eSports, after developing Dragon Nest, a minor MMORPG hit. The publishers announced 50 billion won – about $44.59 million – will be spent on the business.
According to reports, the new business will be called World eSports Games & Leagues. Eyedentity Entertainment said that they will be spending the money on developing an infrastructure for eSports in South Korea. The majority of the money will be spent on arenas, as well as professional players and teams.
In a statement, Eyedentity Entertainment seemed excited about the opportunity. CEO Guo Haibin speaking of the investment said:
“We will strengthen investments in eSports and pour about 50 billion won into this business. We plan to spend the money in building new eSports arenas and fostering new professional gamers and teams.”
Four Different Tournament Types.
The WEGL will host four different kinds of eSports tournaments. In a press release, they said these will be: Premier, Game Star, Super Fight, and Nations. The Premier and Nations tournaments will be what many fans are used to. Game Star and Super Fight, however, are set to bring a unique perspective to the eSports world. The tournament is set to be similar to WCG Ultimate Gamer. Game Star and Ultimate Gamer are billed as survival gaming tournaments. Possible similarities between the two shows are the only speculations at this point, though.
Super Fight will take inspiration from the likes of WWE and UFC. Super Fight will include the likes of title matches and more rivalries. Obviously, this should be a pretty unique show for viewers. Instead of the traditional rivalries that develop between teams, Super Fight looks like it will focus on more concrete concepts. This is where the WWE and UFC inspirations come in.
At the announcement, Eyedentity Entertainment insinuated that this could help relations between South Korea and China. In a report, Kim Byung-kwan, a lawmaker of the Democratic Party of Korea, agreed with the assessment. Kim Byung-kwan noted that relations between the countries have stressed for the last years. He also added that this has been to the detriment of South Korea’s culture industry.
At the announcement, Kim Byundg-kwan spoke of the difficult relations between the countries. He spoke of how he hopes these relations will improve, though. In his words:
“The exchange of gaming culture between Korea and China has slowed down with the Chinese government’s drive to exclude Korea’s culture industry since the deployment of the U.S. missile defense system here. I hope the WEGL eSports events will improve the relationship between the two countries.”
eSports Culture Trade.
According to the announcement, this olive branch may open the door for more of a culture trade between the two countries. The possible relationship between the two countries isn’t surprising. Combined, the pair has a stake of 23% in the eSports market. South Korea was one of the original pioneers of the community. Over the past few years, China has also seen its share of success in the community.
Building a relationship between South Korea and China is a deliberate choice by the WEGL. This will be for reasons you mightn’t be expecting, however. Shanda Games purchased Eyedentity Entertainment, formerly Eyedentity Games, back in 2010. The reasoning behind the purchase was to help incorporate Eyedentity’s development capabilities into Shanda Games’ online game platform.
Regardless of agendas, this is set to be a good thing for both eSports fans and professional players. Should everything go to plan, it will only be the beginning of so much more. As of yet, there aren’t any announcements about when the tournaments will take place. Given the amount of time it takes to get everything in place, fans shouldn’t expect the tournaments anytime soon. Eyedentity Entertainment also hasn’t announced when construction on the arenas will begin. They also haven’t mentioned what kind of professional players they will be scouting.