Category: eSports

13 May 2021

Italy Eurispes Report: ‘Our country pioneer for esports regulation’

The Eurispes Italy Report highlights the growth of esports in our country, on 33 percent of people who follow events based on video game competitions every day.

Rome – There is also talk of videogames and esports in the 2021 Italy Report drawn up by the Eurispes, presented at the Galleria Nazionale d’Arte Moderna in Rome today, May, the 13th.
Highlighting both the spread of the phenomenon and the increase in the number of people who daily follow events based on video game competitions in our country: 466 thousand (+33 percent compared to the previous year). And this user base spreads to about 1,410,000 (+20 percent), if we also take into account those who follow an E-Sports event several times a week.
The “Virtual sports in the year zero” sheet then reports other important figures.
It is estimated that the global esports industry will reach a value of $1.5 billion during 2021. In Italy, 8 out of 10 people declare that they have played a video game at least once in the last 6 months (Euromedia Research – Multiplayer.it). People mainly play from the smartphone (35.2 percent), from the fixed console (27.5 percent), from the Pc (20.6 percent).

Furthermore, there is a widespread idea that e-sports support the development of an open and inclusive environment (66 percent) (Nielsen 2020).

BUSINESS MODELS IN ITALY AND THE FUTURE OF THE MARKET – E-Sports in Asia (South Korea above all), the United States and the United Kingdom are now a consolidated reality; in Europe, the structurally “most advanced” country is currently France.
Three different kinds of gaming venues have been developed: Arenas, E-Sports bars and Lan Halls.
In Italy, clubs are emerging combining the characteristics of the classic bar or pub with those of a modern arcade, as a consequence of the growing diffusion of the ESports phenomenon in our country too. These are entertainment venues rather than training, where you can watch live competitions of the main “e-sports” meetings at national and international level. The challenge will be to understand which business model is the most suitable to our market.

THE ESPORTS RECOGNITION PATH – The International Olympic Committee stressed that the Olympic movement cannot ignore the growth of virtual sports, noting that competitive video games involve physical activity comparable to that required in more traditional sports. In the 2020 Italy Report, Eurispes emphasized the need to obtain legal recognition, in the field of sports law, of video games that reflect the values laid down in the Olympic Charter.
This would also make it possible to control risk situations, such as illegal betting and illegal behavior. With a note dated 22 May 2020, the president of Coni acknowledged that he had shared with the national council the report on electronic sports presented by the president of the E-Sports Italia promoting committee, which highlighted, among other things, the priority need of a representative subject of all national realities and in line with the principles of the sports system.
One year later, it should be noted that the recognition path has been traced, but the question of which electronic sports will be recognized under sports law remains open.
On this point, it should be noted that during a summit on 12 December 2020, the representatives of the Ioc provided some important information, making a distinction between four categories of video games: virtual sports in which there is the player’s physical activity; virtual sports where there is no physical element; games of fantasy and strategy; pure entertainment games. For the moment, the Ioc has urged international federations to recognize the first category, with particular attention to the regulation of fair competition, respect for the values of sport and reaching new audience. There is also an abnormal situation that is occurring in Italy: on the one hand, our country is very late, compared to France, Germany and Spain, as regards the development of infrastructures where you can play and compete with video games; on the other hand, on the institutional level, it is leading the way on a legal and regulatory level, thanks to the work of the ESport Italia – Coni Promoting Committee, the cooperation of Eurispes and some of the main Italian universities.

THE ITALY REPORT “FOR A NEW RECONSTRUCTION” – The Italy Report, now in its 33rd edition this year, is composed by six chapters, each of them offers a dichotomous reading of the reality examined. Each chapter is illustrated through essays and 60 phenomenological cards. Therefore, issues that the Institute considers representative of the current political, economic and social issues of our country are addressed through a dual reading of reality. The thematic dichotomies identified for the 2021Italy Report are: Continuity/Division, Oikos/Kosmos, Sustainability/Unsustainability, Science/Consciousness, Health/Illness, South/North.
The Report also deals with various other topical issues, through the phenomenological cards such as, for example, migration phenomena, the innovation capacity of Made in Italy, sustainable fashion, communication conveyed through social networks, E- Sport, the southern question, the professions of the future, the enhancement of human capital, the tax authorities and possible reforms, robotics and industry 4.0, ethical fashion, digital school, pupils with special educational needs, smart cities and new housing needs, infrastructures.
According to the surveys carried out, then, the tendencies of the Italians on many issues emerge. As regards the trust in institutions, for example, the President of the Republic, the army and the police, achieve an excellent result in terms of consents. The magistrature, the church and the trade unions fall. The work of regional presidents divides public opinion in half, with a predominance of discouraged people, yet many are asking for greater independence for the regions (54.7 percent), while the direct election of the president of the Republic is still not convincing.
People are pessimistic over the future of the country’s economy, yet for most citizens their economic condition in the last year remained stable, with positive signs about savings, even if mortgage and rent are heavier and the use of installments is widespread.
Europe seems essencial to get out of the crisis, but the widespread opinion is that Italy must count more as a member state. The confident prevail over the arrival of European funds, albeit slightly.
Even today, in the relationships between women and men there are too many differences in work and in society, the most discriminated are transgenders, homeless and gypsies.
As regards ethical issues, many Italians say they are for the protection of unmarried couples, heterologous fecundation, euthanasia and living wills, and against assisted suicide, same-sex adoptions, soft drugs and prostitution.
Speaking of health, if the mind market is today worth a billion euros globally and the Nhs invests little in psychological assistance, the data collected in the Eurispes survey indicate that in Italy one out of 5 interviewed (19 percent) have taken psychotropic drugs, in the last year 27.2 percent went to a psychologist, 5.6 percent to a psychiatrist.
As regards the Eurispes survey relating to eating habits, the stability of the number of vegetarians is highlighted, “without” diets and the use of vitamin supplements are very widespread.
As for animals, we find them in 4 out of 10 houses and the trend is to have more than one. The monthly expenditure that is dedicated to them, in 63.4 percent of cases, is between €31 and €100.

FARA (EURISPES PRESIDENT): “A PEACEFUL CULTURAL REVOLUTION IS NEEDED” – In the general considerations that open the Report, the Eurispes president, Gian Maria Fara, stresses: “The pandemic has questioned values, interests, choices, ethics, priorities, perspectives. It has redefined alliances, political borders, relations between states. It has imposed new economic and social paths. It has highlighted the fragility and delays of the system, inefficiencies and inability to manage complexity. It has shown the failure of magical claims of regional autonomies. But, above all, it has highlighted the need to rebuild a state identity, compressed over the years by a devolution downwards, to the Regions, and upwards, to Europe. At the same time, it has dismissed the idea that citizens can effectively replace – and at a supposedly higher ethical level – political institutions.
Covid is also the healthy ‘educational slap’ given by a grouchy father to scold the reckless son to a sense of responsibility. A microscopic virus has qualified the huge subject of the future as a ‘necessity’ and imposed on all generations the urgency to engage in the cultivation of long-term thinking.

The disorganized country, as it is today, is unable to meet the challenges that the pandemic has launched. Without a peaceful ‘Cultural Revolution’ we will be doomed to oblivion, to the loss of that little bit of identity left.
Meanwhile, intolerance, insecurity and the search for a possible future are growing, but above all the demand for a confident leader, to free the country from the uncertainty and approximation, with which it has been leaded since the beginning of the pandemic. The Draghi government – the result of the constant work of the President of the Republic – is the sign of the awareness, among the various political forces, of the gravity of the situation.
Contentious institutions, contradicting or distant from each other spread a sense of division where, instead, the perception of a ‘close ranks’ should pass at every level; hence, the general distress, the uncertainty of the present, the fear of the future. The arrival of the pandemic is part of a very difficult situation in a country marked by a deep economic and social crisis and a demographic crisis that reduces the number of births year after year. In short, an increasingly poor and old country which, at the same time, is experiencing the progressive weakening of the middle classes, the true backbone of democracy.

If, as Shakespeare said in Julius Caesar, ‘men at some time are masters of their fates’, this is the time to demonstrate it, by deploying all the wisdom, commitment, civic sense, spirit of cooperation needed, putting aside any personal interest.
The changes that are occurring in the notions of time, in the relationship between past, present and future are particularly important; as in the notions of space, in the relationship between local, national, international, between virtual and real. What future do we want to build?
The construction of future scenarios goes beyond a simple projection of the present situation: it requires a vision, an idea of ​​a possible future, a system of reference values, essentially a strong thought, able to guide our actions today towards a very specific direction. In this sense, the warnings of one of the fathers of strategic planning, Hazan Özbekhan, co-founder and first director of the Club di Roma, 1968, still apply today: ‘Planning is not projecting the present into the future, but the opposite, having an idea of future to be grafted into the present'”.

05 May 2021

Esports betting: Intema relies on the leading platform Loot.bet

Intema Solutions announces that it has entered into a binding letter of intent under market conditions with Livestream Gaming, under which Intema will acquire all of its issued and outstanding capital stock. Giving birth to a large new entity that promises to have a significant bearing on the future of esports betting. Livestream, in fact, is a privately held company based in Cyprus that owns Loot.bet: a server-based real money gaming platform licensed in Curaçao and a leading brand in the esports betting world. Although the operation does not closely affect the Italian market, since this operator is not authorized in our country, it is still a step to be observed with interest in view of the development of the sector, to understand and interpret the movements that are taking place in these months around the world of esports, through connections with the world of gaming.

Loot.bet is one of the global leaders in esports betting, with a focus on live betting and online gaming and building an exceptional product for its 450.000 registered users. Supported by a professional operational and software development team of over 50 employees, LOOT.BET is world-renowned not only as an established and reliable esports betting platform but also as a supporter of the esports industry. It is a regular sponsor of notable professional tournaments and teams and a partner of leading esports operators, studios and bright esports talents and influencers. It is also a proud supporter of the anti-corruption Esports Integrity Commission, helping the organization combat match-fixing and betting fraud, thereby contributing to the development and maturing of both the esports and the esports betting industries. For the year ended December 31, 2020, Livestream’s unaudited financial statements showed gross gaming revenue of 3.22 million euros (CA$4.8 million) and a net profit of 79,806 euros (CA$114,792), mainly from gamers in Europe and Asia.

“This is a pivotal transaction for Intema that will make us a leader in esports betting,” said Laurent Benezra, President and CEO of Intema. “LOOT.BET will be a significant part of our ecosystem, which now consists of not only esports betting, but also peer-to-peer gaming, esports tournaments and advertising through HypeX.gg, Advertiise and TheSMACK.gg. All are complementary drivers of our future revenue growth. We are excited to have these companies and their experienced teams within our family. We are now focusing on closing these transactions so that we can offer the best experience possible through fully licensed, safe and secure online platforms.”

“Intema was a logical next step for LOOT.BET to pursue its growth, as it will allow us to expand into new markets in North America and benefit from synergies with complementary businesses to drive more traffic and thus more revenue,” said Peter Zhalov, CEO of Livestream. “We are impressed with what Intema has achieved over a very short period of time. We see the potential once all the elements are in place, and we are thrilled to be part it.”

31 Oct 2020

GAT presents its calendar, face-to face and virtual events 2020 and 2021

3A Producciones, the organizing company of Gaming & Technology Expo, has prepared a varied menu of live and virtual events for the end of the year and the first semester of 2021, including in some cases, both modalities simultaneously.

Despite the crisis suffered by the gaming industry in all latitudes, there are encouraging signs of recovery. In Colombia, for example, the support of Coljuegos with the regulation of new games adapted to the situation and the reopening of casinos that show to date in some cities, up to 50% occupation, announce that, little by little, the economy of this sector could overcome the situation next year.

On the other hand, the social distancing has increased online gaming and has allowed to discover new spaces for young players or millenials as eSports. It is also expected that virtual worlds on 3D platforms will soon become part of everyday life in the global gaming industry.

After the successful execution of GAT Virtual Expo 2020 in one of Penta Marketing’s platforms, the effectiveness of this format for B2B and B2C events became evident. The hybrid marketing seeks to offer all the technological tools in the virtual and biosecurity protocols in the face-to face, allowing permanent contact and increase the dynamics of business between operators, manufacturers, suppliers and players, lowering costs and production budgets and logistics.

The Ministry of Health of Colombia issued the norm that adopts the protocol of biosecurity for business trade shows in the month of September. As a consequence of this directive and in agreement with the Cartagena de Indias Convention Center, 3A Producciones has set May 26th and 27th, 2021 to carry out Gaming & Technology Expo in that city.

José Aníbal Aguirre CEO of 3A Producciones says: “Colombia is moving very fast in the regulation of new games so that the player of the physical casino has alternatives of online games, like the live casino, remote bingo, instant lottery and soon virtual bingos. That is to say, at this moment, Colombia’s leadership and the amount of regulated games has no competition in the region. It is for this reason that we are betting on innovation with virtual platforms and to continue carrying out on-site events that comply with all the biosecurity protocols established by the National Government, now that the business fairs have been authorized. We reiterate to the exhibitors who had already secured their participation in GAT Expo 2020, a show that was postponed due to the pandemic, that they keep their stands for GAT Expo 2021 in Cartagena de Indias. On the other hand, we announce that we will make decentralized showrooms in several cities of the country so that manufacturers and land-based suppliers can exhibit their latest products to customers in their own territorial jurisdictions, directly and safely. To close this particular year, we are preparing a festival for the entire gaming industry, linked to or with interests in Latin America. A friendly meeting in 3D for an unforgettable networking, on December 10th and 11th, we are waiting for you all. Once again, I would like to thank Asojuegos, Cornazar and Fecoljuegos for their permanent support. ”

The calendar that 3A Producciones presents to the gaming industry in the form of hybrid marketing, is as follows:

Virtual Events: GAT Fest 2020 and BiVi Virtual Bingo, December 10th and 11th.

Face-to face events: Itinerant Showroom to be held in Colombia’s capital cities, in the months of March and April, 2021.

Hybrid event (presential and virtual): GAT Expo 2021 Cartagena de Indias, GAT Virtual Expo 2021, May 26 and 27, Penta Virtway platform.

08 Jun 2020

Esport after Covid-19: here is when and how the live events will start again in Italy

The image of crowded arenas or stadiums where thousands of electronic sports fans were gathering became a memory at the time of the lockdown: but shortly the show will continue. Undoubtedly, something will change, so let’s see what can we expect in the near future, based on the information we have collected.

Of course, looking today those images of super-crowded arenas during the main international eSports events, we risk being attacked by a sense of unease: due to the clear difference with the current rules of social distancing imposed in most countries, due to the Covid-19 pandemic. In addition to undoubtedly feeling some nostalgia for those times of authentic glory of esports competitions, able to move the crowds, going to create what we now call “gatherings”, but which however continue to represent incomparable moments of socialization: always at the base of electronic sports. Although the phenomenon has certainly not stopped during these months of general quarantine, being able to continue through the competitions in online mode, therefore remotely, it is clear that a (strong) piece of this activity is missing, represented by live events.
But nothing is lost, let’s face it. And even if live events, as will happen for concerts, fairs and all other “mass” events, will inevitably have to change in their management and logistical organization, they will soon return to shine. Albeit through new ways.

GREEN LIGHT FROM THE MIDDLE OF JUNE – But before seeing how we can go back to play live, let’s first understand when. As reported from eSportsMag.it, the Law Decree n.33 of 16 May 2020 gives the first information, which continues to forbid gatherings of people until 31 July 2020, while the Prime Ministerial decree with the new measures to contain the epidemiological emergency from Covid-19, in force since May, the 18th, gives a date for the restart of cinemas, theaters and shows: June, the 15th. But nothing will be as before. In the new provisions coming from the government, after the various calls of the music representatives to have a legislation, regarding concerts and events scheduled for this summer, indications arrive that can also be considered valid for the other events that bring many people together, including esports tournaments.

According to the new law text “Shows open to the public in theaters, concert halls, cinemas and other spaces, even outdoor, also remain suspended until 2020, June, the 14th – the text affirms – From 2020, June, the 15th, this shows are held with pre-assigned and spaced seats and provided that the respect of the interpersonal distance of at least one meter is ensured both for the staff and for the spectators, with the maximum number of 1000 spectators for outdoor performances and 200 people for shows in closed places, for each single room”.

Of course, according to the agreement signed by the government with the regions, depending on the progress of the epidemiological situation, the governors can stop, postpone or block the activities of the shows. On the other hand, the activities of dance halls and discos, outdoors or indoors, fairs and conferences remain suspended.

THE RULES FOR THE NEXT EVENTS – But that’s not all. To ensure that you can access shows, even outdoors, the organizers will have to follow 13 strict rules. It is mandatory to maintain the interpersonal distance of one meter, even among the players. Body temperature measurements must be made for spectators, gamers, workers and any other worker in the place where the competition is held, preventing access in the case of temperatures above 37.5° C.

The use of masks for spectators will be mandatory, as well as the use of suitable individual protection devices by workers operating in shared spaces and in contact with the public: therefore, mandatory precautions for all staff involved in management of a competitions. From technicians to helpers, trainets, etc. The organizers will always have to ensure appropriate periodic cleaning and sanitation of the closed rooms and toilets of all the places affected by the event, even among the different shows held on the same day. Therefore, specific cleaning of all the game stations and hardware used by the players must be provided, with particular attention to the sanitation between one game session and the next, and the change of players. Appropriate natural ventilation and air exchange and compliance with the recommendations concerning ventilation and air conditioning systems are also mandatory.

And again: regulations also require a wide availability and accessibility to systems for hand disinfection. In particular, the systems must be available alongside keyboards, touch screens and payment systems, encouraging if possible all forms of cashless payment. Absolute prohibition of eating and drinking and the retail sale of drinks and food during events and performances. Use of signs to enforce the physical distance of at least 1 meter also at the ticket offices and information desks, as well as outside the places where the races are held. Regulation also (and above all) of the use of toilets in such a way that social distancing is always provided during access. Electronic sale of tickets and access control, if possible, also in order to avoid aggregations at the ticket offices and access spaces to the structures. Communication to users, including through the use of videos, of the safety and risk prevention measures to be followed in the places where the show takes place.

INCREASE OF COSTS – All of this, as is clear, will lead to a significant increase in costs for the organizers of tournaments and esports competitions, who will have to spend more money to ensure that all 13 of the previous points are respected, so that a “live” race open to the public can be run. Those traditionally offered in arenas or stadiums. Therefore, we need to understand whether, after all, between costs and revenues, it will be worth opening or not.

Although some provisions can still be delivered in a sustainable way and so as some cost and also some responsibility can be relieved by the organizers, there is still the need to purchase a series of devices and accessories needed for the fulfillment of the rules as well as having to involve a significant number of additional staff to manage a race and ensure compliance with every prescription. In any case, it is advisable to contact companies skilled in occupational safety or trade associations, to be sure of fulfilling the various requirements in the best way and avoiding problems, taking into account the controls that will be carried out to comply with the rules and penalties provided for by the aforementioned decrees.

05 Jun 2020

Esports and business: 12% growth and great prospects in Italy

The phenomenon of esports as business is analyzed In the Digital Panel of GiocoNews.it and Esportsmag.it, also looking at developments in betting.

“We have been experienced a remarkable development of esports in the last year and a half. To understand the sector, we can “give some numbers” and set two main indicators. Audience is the first important indicator. It is made up of those who see the sector and there are 495 million fans worldwide and 1.2 million in Italy. However, there are 17 million people who make gaming and there are development possibilities. Year over year, it grows by 12% and is an excellent index for the hopes for the future. The other indicator is turnover and here estimation techniques need to be refined. We are talking of about 1 billion in global revenue but if in Italy video games invoice 1.7 billion, you will understand there is still much to do”. Laura D’Angeli, founder of esportsforbusiness, business advisory, revealed these numbers during the Digital Panel of Gioconews.it, organized together with Esportsmag.it, entitled: “eSports: not just gaming – The emerging business models in the eSports sector and development prospects“.

How is the sector growing? “From 2015 until today, there is a great growth. In 2018, 4.5 billion were invested in projects and M&A of companies operating in esports. We talk about developers, publishers and tournament organizers and teams and also media companies. In the latter period, Espn and Fox have acted as amplifiers to this phenomenon by bringing the streamers on TV from Twitch and YouTube. The investments went in North America, Europe and Asia and were distributed among the various actors. The teams exponentially grew from 2016 to 2018, from an investment to 18 for a total value of $18 million. This money helps these organizations in structuring and equipping with important tools”.

And legally? “The path of legal recognition will play a key role in market development. Gaming is a closed world that caters to the customer base of gamblers, but in eSports 70% of the revenue comes from advertising and sponsorships. And companies come from other sectors. Wealth is not only given by the product but by the content that is generated. It is a highly articulated sector and wealth is generated in its organization”.

Angelo Cito, president of the Italian Taekwondo Federation of CONI, speaks about the prospects in terms of regulation and the possible arrival at the Olympics. “I am sure that many aspects of eSports can be similar to sport. At the center, there is always the athlete. In recent months, very important steps have been taken, in Lausanne in the congress organized by the IOC, we talked about competitive video games and Gaisf was instructed to arrive to a proposal for the sports recognition of the sector and it seems to me a great step forward”.

From the words of Cito, the lack of a single international interlocutor that centralizes everything is clear: “I can assure you that there is distrust and at some point the IOC put Gaisf in charge to formulate a proposal about this world. There are no definite times but things are going fast. I repeat, for me it is a very important step”.

The lockdown saw the need to continue playing sports through eSports: “They were very important – Cito explains – as a federation we organized a Tekken tournament. Traditional sport was in a position to have to survive the lockdown and practically via electronic mode, because we could not practice it in the gym and on the playgrounds”.

When will admission and entry to the Olympics take place? “I don’t think Paris, but something could happen at the event. Also because the more the years go by, the more the new generations grow and the eSports will also become heritage of those who will occupy the political and managerial offices”.

The lawyer Luca Pardo, Founder of Ontier Italia, analyzes the legal aspects: “We are facing a global market which should be mainly observed outside national borders. The phenomenon of esports is equal to the technological revolution and artificial intelligence and we are thinking at a European level if not global one, and we hope to do that. For now, it is a sport left to negotiating autonomy and subject to public regulation, but something must be done in this regard.”

His overview of the European market is interesting: “France has regulated the authorization model for organizing an esports and gaming event and even adresses to the Ministry of the Interior. Status of players and prizes has also been regulated. This regulation is missing in Italy and the observatory is trying to frame the issue. IOC has so far excluded esports from sports, while the US has regulated what they wanted by trying only to attract professional players to their top events”.

We speak of business linked to the framing of the various aspects of the sector: “There is no single model but one for each stakeholder. We are moving towards the treatment of TV image and contractual rights. We have seen, however, that there is absolute lack of homogeneity between regulations, such as the Porsche esports Carrera cup which was framed as a competition or the eSerieA, which doesn’t provide for the application of advertising regulations but only the regulation of the sport end in itself. Other events are regulated in not exactly appropriate ways, such as sponsorship agreements with the organizer who recognizes sponsorship of the participating team. However, there are also tax problems. The association could be used for the only organization of a tournament or event. For teams, the employment relationship is totally free, so today forms of self-employed and non-dependent work are used, but it must be regulated here too.

For the CEO of Qlash, Luca Pagano, a true pioneer of the eSports sector in Italy and internationally there are many problems to be addressed in this phase: “The main characteristic is that the sector is very fragmented and it is difficult to tell it and to identify which are the fundamental points of the sector. Esports are not a phenomenon, they are not a trend but they are and will be part of the culture of young people. Yes, it is a business opportunity, but also a social interpretation and I hope for a regulation because esports are here to stay. I would prefer sports regulation and I think it is necessary to have a central body that forces the actors to sit at the table. The path of the Coni has got this aim. Foresight is needed to seat those who understand esports at the table. It is a product that resembles traditional sport but speaks a different language. It goes at the speed ​​of light, communication and new games change every six months, the rules of engagement change very quickly.”

An example? “The mobile product is already esports, but many organizations don’t take it into account and this changes everything and will change the storytelling and engagement methods. A few precise but central rules are needed when important capitals will arrive (and are coming) from companies not directly connected to esports, then we will have arrived at year one”.

Great attention also to the link with betting and matchfixing risk: “As Sportradar, we are putting in place the same tools that we use in sports and football to fight Match Fixing” Ferdinando Ferrero, Sales Director Sportradar, among the speakers of the panel, explains. There is a bit of chaos right now, because many don’t want to miss the train to understand how best to take advantage of the business opportunity. “Esports today are called to boost integrity and is produced through prevention and education. As Sportradar, we control the data of sports events to ensure integrity and we give greater importance to this by explaining to athletes the correct use of bets by preventing distortion. Growing in this, esports have a great opportunity if they can provide integrity.”

As regards betting, the data grew during the lockdown: “There was no sport but the volumes are modest, a few million turnover out of 1.1 billion of the total volume in Italy and there is a long way to go. At this stage, operators want to stay on the market and enhance the offer. Leagues will be crucial for this. But we have to start talking to an increasingly large audience because the audience is still very low in terms of age”.

The issue of integrity is fundamental: “And that’s what we try to do by adopting the same parameters that we use for sports. We only validate esports events that respond to our protocols and with our systems we check the betting flows so as to see if there are anomalies. Being esports electronic games, it is true, it is easier to control and possibly identify any match fixing problems”, Ferrero ends.

17 Feb 2020

eSports and soccer: in Italy Serie B arrives too, from February, the 29th

Even Serie B has decided to take the field and invest in esports, officially announcing the first championship, as Serie A and Lega Pro previously did.

It will be called BeSports, it will be a competition dedicated to eFootball Pes2020 and will see the participation of all the 20 teams competing in the Serie B championship, from Benevento to Livorno. The organization and management of the project was entrusted to Acme and Mkers, leading companies in the organization of events and activities in the esports sector, respectively.

The tournament will be divided into four phases
1st phase – From February, the 24th to April, the 5th, anyone can enroll to the selections to be part of the 40 players (two per team) who will then be called to play the first official eSports championship of the Bkt Series.

2nd phase – Qualifications will take place through 9 tournaments (on February the 29th, on March, the 1st, 7th, 8th, 14th, 15th, 21st, 22th and 28th) from which 36 winners will emerge. The other four will be chosen at Romics, an international festival on comics, animation, video games, cinema and entertainment organized in Rome, April 2 – 5, where B league will have its own space in which to organize tournaments. The drawing of the player-team match will also take place at Romics.

3rd phase – On April, the 9th, and until May, the 21st, the real championship will be played, with 19 home and away days, 13 of which are online and 6 live, with live events in the cities of the Bkt Series.

4th phase – The fourth and final phase, with the finals of the tournament: first and second classified and the two winners of the online playoffs will compete in the semifinals and final, to decide the winner of the first BeSports championship, the day before and in the same city of the playoff final of the 2019/20 Bkt Series.

“Needs change, tools are updated but the B is still in the side of its fans with the values ​​of all time, those related to territoriality and young people – the president of B league, Mauro Balata, says – The video game is a phenomenon much followed by children and the organization of events related to eSports in our cities, before and after the championship games, can be an opportunity to fill even more the stadiums. In fact, they represent an important global movement, with millions of views and with a truly remarkable revenue and visibility potential for our championship and sponsors. A real revolution inspired by the ‘Thinking modern’ of the B League, which focuses on clubs, fans and the new generations”.

“A new asset is added to our path – the words of the CEO of the Mkers, Paolo Cisaria – After being able to manage the Romics’ Pala Games, we are facing another important challenge and the opportunity to consolidate the positioning achieved in the esports sector.”

01 Feb 2020

2020: the year of eSports

There is no doubt, by now: 2020 will be the year of electronic sports, in Italy too, for the newspaper eSportsMag. Indeed, especially in Italy, because it is here that there could be the greatest developments in terms of entertainment and, above all, of regulation.

Of course, we know it well, the ultimately “explosion” of the phenomenon has been awaited for some time, as well as its effective regulation, which seems to have to pass through its affirmation as a real sport, perhaps through the formal recognition by the Coni. But this is precisely the point: after several months of work, negotiations and meetings, also at international level, now the moment of squaring the circle seems finally to come. With the new year that looks just like the season of actual turning point for esports.
Not only from the point of view of “show business” and, therefore, of competitions, where in any case important developments are expected: starting from the highly anticipated series of events promoted (and promised) by the Football League with the A eSeries, together with the “traditional” football  Serie A, which will culminate in a flagship event at the end of the season, probably during the Coppa Italia final. While there should also be developments on the second division series, with the B Series league that has promised developments, continuing to study the matter.
This time, the major developments are expected at the regulatory level. With 2020 that promises to be just like that of the definitive consecration of electronic sports as a formally recognized sport. With the green light that will have to directly come from Lausanne, with an announcement by the International Olympic Committee that will start the individual national federations and the task of establishing the federations dedicated to electronic sports in each country, paving the way for the entry of the new sport in the Olympic games, which will arrive in the American edition of Los Angeles 2028. While in Paris, in 2024, we will only see some anticipation, in terms of pure entertainment, with collateral events that will accompany the French Olympics, just to explain to the masses what esports really represent.
However, the official announcement or, in any case, the first step or input from the Ioc will only arrive in the summer: that is, at the end of the 2020 Tokyo games, considering impropring to introduce developments of this kind on the eve of a decisive competition for Asian sport and in that same Continent where esports represent a more than consolidated and widespread reality. Once the Asian games will be ended, however, the Ioc will be able to pave the way for electronic sports, thus inviting the various national federations to organize themselves in view of the Great Change which will probably culminate in Los Angeles: that is, in that California which has always been the cradle of technological innovation and (guess what) home of many videogame multinational corporations.
If this will be the scenario that opens up to the future of esports, as reliable institutional sources reveal to us, then we will have to wait a little longer before seeing in writing the final recognition of esports in the professional and Olympic field: but the preliminary work will begin already in the coming months. And besides, they have already started, as we have been writing for a few months now, revealing the movements that are hidden in the Roman Palaces of Sport. What is sure is that there will be nothing final before the green light of the Ioc arrives and its final indication: but the logic is to be ready for an imminent change and on this basis the representatives of the Coni and ont only them are moving.
Looking within the individual federations, in fact, there is a lot of ongoing work of approaching videogames: not only in football, but also in other sports. Just look at the Tekwondo Federation – which has always been particularly active and sensitive to the subject of esports – which has already adopted “its” official videogame at international level. And then, the players will have to get ready for the future. Together with all the stackeholders who already are the ecosystem of esports, who will be called to intervene, in one way or another, in the new sector.

17 Jan 2020

Eag Expo: esports in the arcades, but with training and connettivity

At the GiocoNews.it debate on videogames, organized within EAG, focus on training and connettivity.

London – The future of entertainment passes through the combination of electronic sports and arcades. This is what clearly emerges from the Eag Expo in London, the entertainment fair in progress at the ExCel exhibition center in the British capital, from the debate organized by GiocoNews.it, fully dedicated to esports and amusement.
The meeting, entitled: “Competitive videogames in a competitive market”, was attended by the managers of some leading companies in the segment, with direct experience in arcade activities, who illustrated the current developments and the trends that are emerging, showing however that, beyond the future, the union between these two worlds is already a reality and is giving great satisfaction to those who are investing in new technologies. For a decidedly cross-border phenomenon that is expanding, albeit at different rates, all over the world. Not by chance, three companies from very different countries such as Italy, Germany and the United States took part in the debate, through the proofs of Giovanni Antonioli Fantini, CEO of  Vae Victis and partner of Tecnoplay, Robert Fankhaenel, co-founder by Hologate and Jan Goetgeluk, CEO and founder of the American Virtuix.

In outlining their personal and business experiences on the various markets, some agreement emerged as regards some specific issues, such as the future of entertainment in the arcades (and not only) and the basic conditions that this type of activity needs in order to quickly and properly define itself. For everyone, what is needed is a change of approach by the operators of the arcades and the general entertainment industry, which in addition to having to invest in these new technologies must facilitate this new path by focusing on training and infrastructure.
“The esports phenomenon, which is having a big success among young and very young people, has yet to be fully understood for several generations – Goetgeluk explains – for this reason it is necessary to spread a competitive gaming culture through an educational activity that doesn’t concern only the players, to educate them to a reasonable consumption of the gaming and technology, but also the parents, who must not look at these activities with suspicion, but must enhance their educational and aggregation aspects, in addition to the entertainment operators, who must understand that the future now comes through here”.
The Vituix manager, in reporting the US experience and telling what they are doing in territory such as Las Vegas, highlights how important it is to spread the knowledge of electronic sports among the general public and how it is useful in this sense the introduction of the Esports “subject” in university programs, in schools more generally but also in places of aggregation and worship.

The Vituix manager, in reporting the US experience and telling what they are doing in areas such as Las Vegas, highlights how important it is to spread the knowledge of electronic sports among the general public and how it is useful in this sense the introduction of the esport “subject” in university programs, in schools more generally but also in meeting and worship places.
While the other essential aspect for the affirmation of this new market is the investment in facilities: “Certainly, if virtual reality and the augmented one represent the main development drivers for gaming and entertainment, which will have a strong and directed impact also on esports, it is also clear that these technologies require investments not only in terms of product but also in terms of facilities”, Fankhaenel explains. “It is therefore essential to have appropriate and above all stable connettivity. With 5G which certainly represents an opportunity but already today, current technologies allow us to offer advanced experiences, but they must be present in arcades”.

Fantini is also particularly sensitive about this subject: “It is important to highlight what the operators of gaming rooms must do at this stage to be able to assure a future: to propose new gaming forms it is necessary to have connected rooms and dedicated staff, who is able to create, develop and manage players communities, which are the basis of competitive gaming”, the developer explains. “These requirements have never been necessary until today with the current forms of gaming for children, but from now on, taking into account the relationship of the very young with technology, they become essential because what young people of today and tomorrow expect are these evolved forms of gaming and no longer the traditional gaming. And the operators will have to be prepared.”

According to Ian Donegan, chief reporter for InterGame magazine and moderator of the debate: “There is no doubt that the future of amusement passes through this type of technology and competition. These phenomena are now part of the lives of young people and the entertainment industry can’t ignore them. We already see it today with the success that products such as Escape Rooms and the various virtual reality experiences are having and with the boom in esports in general. It is therefore an opportunity that the sector can’t miss out and we are already beginning to understand how they can be exploited”.