Paul “ReDeYe” Chaloner is in South Africa, and will be hosting the DGL Master Series tournament at rAge Expo 2016.
For those who don’t know, ReDeYe is a world-class eSports commentator and presenter who has hosted multiple top-level gaming tournaments, including The International 2016.
This isn’t the first time Chaloner has been to South Africa however, as he was here to host the Telkom DGL Masters announcement show at the beginning of the year.
MyGaming caught up with Paul “ReDeYe” Chaloner to get his perspective on South African eSports and competitive gaming.
South African eSports
The South African competitive gaming scene is tiny in comparison to the massive International environment.
Chaloner explained that the international scene has a lot more money involved.
“The primary difference between the two is the money involved. Age is also a factor, as the international gaming scene has had longer to develop,” he said.
Regular prize money and increased publicity are the most important factors that could lead to the growth of eSports in South Africa.
“There is no reason why South Africa can’t catch up to the international level,” said Chaloner.
Despite having a vast amount of experience hosting eSports at the highest international level, Chaloner said that hosting a competitive gaming tournament in the less eSports-aware environment of South Africa would be no different.
“I don’t mind explaining the competitive side to the audience a bit, I treat the DGL Masters Series the same as any international tournament.”
Although the competitive gaming scene in South Africa is growing, it still needs support from a variety of sources, including sponsors, tournament hosts, and players.
“Telkom are doing a fantastic job, but they can’t do it alone,” said Chaloner. “Companies need to understand that they can get a lot out of eSports.”
Chaloner says growing the South African eSports scene to an international level will involve a combination of investment, publicity, effort, and time, but it is certainly possible.
eSports has grown into a worldwide phenomenon, with regular tournaments that boast prize pools of over $20 million.
Chaloner says that 95% of 16-30 year olds are interested in eSports, making it an ideal platform for reaching a demographic resistant to traditional advertising.
Companies have invested heavily in eSports overseas, and this reflects on player skill and earnings as well.
“Many players are now earning 6 figures a year, some are earning up to 7,” said Chaloner.
The international eSports scene encompasses a number of competitive games. We asked Chaloner which were the most difficult to shoutcast.
“All games are hard to cast, especially in comparison to sport,” said Chaloner. “In video games you need a much deeper understanding of the game.”
“I would say StarCraft 2 and Dota 2 are the most difficult to cast, due the level of knowledge required and the endless possibilities presented by the games.”