Esports in South Africa sometimes appears to be an under-explored arena, with a general lack of education and understanding as to what it actually is, even though it’s grown prodigiously in other parts of the world. A good example is the rise of Dota 2’s The International, which is now vying to be one of the most lucrative sporting competitions across any code on the planet.
Although there are myriad reasons for this, some of the major issues stem from simple miscommunication, a lack of infrastructure, and a basic misunderstanding of what exactly esports is. The somewhat stunted growth of this market locally has done little to inspire confidence in investors. While a few highly professional local events and tournaments have paved the way for a bigger esports environment in SA, we’re not quite there yet.
Enter Bravado Gaming and NAG
This year’s rAge will see Bravado Gaming and NAG stepping up to the proverbial plate, ready to pitch their ideas on unifying this phenomenon for South Africans, so that a central point of communication and awareness may one day be achieved.
In a joint collaboration, NAG and Bravado Gaming will be running an esports activation at rAge, with three days of scheduled talks that’ll be open to anyone and everyone to attend.
“As an individual who has worked with some of the best esports athletes, brands and businesses on this continent, I’m happy that we’ll be working side-by-side with NAG to establish and perform a three-day activation that will be aimed at creating awareness in a variety of gaming and ecosystem topics. We want to ensure that we can push out different messages from different angles in order to answer a lot of unanswered questions. We want to build an interactive environment that will allow people not to just see, but to listen and experience,” comments CEO of Bravado Gaming, Andreas Hadjipaschali.
“I’m very happy to announce the NAG partnership with Bravado. We’ve seen these guys and girls grow from participating in the very first Counter-Strike tournament that was hosted at rAge by Arena 77 many, many years ago, to become one of the top teams in South Africa and beyond. Who better to guide and teach a new generation of esports professionals? I’m excited to see what comes of this initiative,” says Michael James, Senior Project Manager, rAge expo.
The fun starts here
The format of these activities will be from an educational and informative aspect, and will include 20-minute talks on different subjects like the business behind running an esports team, the benefits of becoming a pro-gamer, team dynamics, accessing sponsors, and more.
During the breaks, visitors will have the chance to jump on the Alienware PCs and monitors (and if you know anything about Alienware hardware, this should turn your legs to jelly), as well as pick the brains of the pros to take their first steps toward bringing their bravado.
“Bringing Your Bravado” is about more than the simple whittling away of hours behind a screen. It’s about learning a new culture and adapting to its rules. It’s about educating people about a platform that the modern world is fast embracing. It’s about being the best you can be in a new world.
Hadjipaschali adds: “I believe that general social and competitive gaming is understated in our country. The problem isn’t the market, it’s the collectivity of the market and the way this information is portrayed. Together with NAG, we’re going to work on this initiative in which social and competitive gamers, semi-professionals, esports athletes and tech enthusiasts will understand the message in clear light on how to further whatever bravado they want to achieve.”