Competitive Gaming and the Spectator

Over 11 million people concurrently watched the League of Legends World Championship last year, and LoL is only one game among many. DotA 2, StarCraft 2, Heroes of the Storm, and Counter-Strike all garner consistently high viewership, and fighting games like Street Fighter and Super Smash Bros. are steadily growing thanks to their strong grassroots communities.

But what about engagement? Looking further into the viewership statistics for LoL Worlds 2014, the average time watched per-viewer was only 67 minutes. Considering that the broadcast was over five hours long, it seems that most people aren’t paying very close attention to what’s happening. But this relative lack of engagement isn’t surprising, because League of Legends is a terrible spectator game.

Thoughts on Diablo, Botting, Trading, and Competitive Viability

Diablo 3, for all its terribleness on release in 2012, has actually developed into a pretty good game over the last year or two. I give a lot of credit to the dev team for pushing through and making something good out of a project that could have easily been abandoned. Since the 2014 release of “Reaper of Souls” and the introduction of Seasons, I’ve logged in each Season had a blast creating a new character, finding the best items, and slaying demons with a few of my buddies. It’s pretty impressive that Diablo 3 can call me back at all, considering how it initially violated the franchise that I loved so much.