You may recall the interview we did with the African Cyber Gaming League a few weeks ago where we introduced you to two of the hardest working fellows in the South African esports scene, Clint O’Shea and Nick Holden. Well they’re back today to prove to you just how hard working they are, by giving us an idea of what they’ve got planned for the year ahead.
And just as an extra bit of evidence that they work hard, they said so many words to us during the interview that there will eventually even be a part three to this series. My word. Well, their words.
When we first approached the subject of their plans for the year and for ACGL going forward, Nick just laughed. We think it was to prevent him from breaking down and crying about the massive workload in front of him.
“We have too many goals for ACGL, that’s what Clint and I are thinking.
The essential principle is: Trying to offer as many tournaments as possible when there aren’t any tournaments available, offer as many growth opportunities as is available for players inside the country, and trying to put out content as well.
As far as Clint and I, we are only two people. We know we need more people involved to make sure these goals are going to be achieved.
There are a lot of plans, and unfortunately I can’t talk about them so much at the moment.”
‘Lots of plans’ doesn’t really tell us much about what’s to come, but being the enterprising, investigative journalists that we are, we visited their website to do some digging and some maths.
Make sure you’re sitting down for this: In the last two months ACGL have hosted 37 tournaments.
In December last year they hosted 39. In one month! How!?
If you look at those numbers, there is an argument that says that ACGL have slacked off since December and need to up their game, but you’d be embarrassing yourself if you tried to make it. Rather compare their numbers to any other tournament host anywhere in the world (GLHF: We can’t confirm that.) and you’ll see that they’re way, way ahead.
Recently they also announced their first season of tournaments, which will seem them hosting one night cups through until the end of April. So if you’re interested in dipping your toes into the competitive scene, be sure to check those out.
“As far as what our goals are for this year, we want to have at least two major showcase events. We want to be able to build some kind of international tournament in there. We want to keep on developing gamers where we can and offering as many varieties of tournaments as possible.
So, once again leaning on that principle of casting our net as far as possible, just so we can get more people incorporated in the esports environment.”
We think it’s safe to say the net has been adequately cast. 37 events in two months. Insane. While we’re trying to pull ourselves together, let’s move on to talking about the quality, and not just quantity, that the ACGL brings to the table. Two major events, with the possibility of something international thrown into the mix too. Heyo! Now that is exciting.
We were big fans of what ACGL put together at rAge. They got all the important things right, like impressing with their production, having ways to entertain the crowd between games, sticking to the schedule, and, probably most notably, they generated a hell of a lot of pre-event excitement by bringing out a big international caster. Which only helped up the level of production and resulted in this awesome clip, which is arguably one of the best to ever come out of South African esports.
ACGL proved to themselves and the public that they’re more than capable of putting on a large scale production. So now that they’re feeling confident, who knows what they’ll do next.
“So we also scratch our heads every time we look at photos, and we ask ourselves, ‘How the hell are we going to do that again?’”
Hmmm…looks like they don’t even know! Which only makes it more exciting, right? Well for us, not for them. They actually have to come up with something.
“But like I said we’ll try and build in at least two major events. We are currently in discussions with trying to source exactly what the plan of action is, and as these things get finalised you’ll hear it in the months to come. What we’re trying to obviously do is talk to communities that don’t get valued as much as others. We want to build in longer-term plans for them, so we can actually build content around them and highlight the players.
As far as topping last year; we’re going to try, we’re going to see what we can do. It is a definite big, big task ahead for us, but Benson, who was that international caster that came down, offered us a lot of lessons and a lot of opportunities. He sat down with us, he went through exactly what we should be focusing on with regards to production and all that jazz.
If anything, this year we are more organised in that respect. Not to say that we weren’t last year, it’s just that this year we understand what the expectations are. Last year was a big trial for us. It was from rAge Cape Town all the way to rAge Joburg.
It was a trial to see how far can we push this, and how can we do this more effectively, and how we can do this as much as possible. Because despite the hard work, tears and sweat, and sometimes the heart attacks that we both went through, it was worth it.
And I think stuff like the celebrity match up was crucial to highlight to the people within range to say, ‘Oh wow, there’s a face that I recognise and here’s an entrance for me into esports’. So yeah, touching wood at the moment that we can top it. I’m quietly confident that we can.”
Clint is so quietly confident he hasn’t even said a word in this part of the interview. But just as we promised Nick would talk more in part two, we promise Clint talks more in part 3.
Quiet confidence, which is our favourite kind of confidence, seems like the perfect way to describe Nick and Clint. They’re not in your face They’re not loud mouthed. They’re just getting on with the job and impressing everyone along the way.
We for three, because there are three of us, are very excited to see what they bring to South African esports in 2017.