News Digest 50: Top Gaming News This Week

6 August, 2020 | By Anzu


You won’t find a business more vibrant than video games and esports! We are fascinated by gamers and the way they propel social and economic growth. While all eyes are turned to them, they simply do what they love - they play. Meanwhile, find out what has been happening in this amazingly diverse community in our weekly news digest.



The Chinese social media giant Tencent is driving discussions to merge China’s biggest game-streaming platforms Huya and DouYu, where it already owns a 37% and a 38% stake, respectively. According to Bloomberg, such a deal would create an online giant with more than 300 million users and a combined market value of $10 billion, cementing Tencent’s lead in Chinese games and social media. Faced with rising competition for advertisers from ByteDance and its rapidly growing stable of apps, the WeChat operator would then run a highly profitable service akin to Amazon’s Twitch. Huya and DouYu would keep their respective platforms and branding while working more closely with Tencent’s own esports site eGame.



Blizzard Entertainment has confirmed that BlizzCon will return as a virtual event in early 2021, “far less impacted by the state of health and safety protocols for mass in-person gatherings.” GamesIndustry.biz reminds us of the fact that the publisher's annual event was cancelled in May this year, alongside many other events, due to the impact of the global spread of COVID-19. Nevertheless, Blizzard president J. Allen Brack says they are “really fortunate to have a passionate and engaged community” and are “looking forward to sharing what the teams have been working on for that event.”



The new gaming-focused network VENN has launched, and its founders say they are getting a good reception from both the advertising market and platform operators including cable companies. VENN will initially be on digital media platforms including Twitch, Twitter, YouTube, Facebook, and its own website, VENN.TV – and it will also soon be on OTT platforms including Vizio, Xumo, and Stirr. The new network is going to be more focused on the overall gaming world as opposed to specifically covering competitive gaming or esports, though the two areas naturally intersect to an extent, cites the Esports Observer.



Microsoft’s Project xCloud, the cloud game streaming technology, will be available on Android devices on Sept. 15. As previously announced, cloud-based gaming is part of Xbox Game Pass Ultimate subscription, which will remain $14.99 for the service, even with the added cloud gaming access. Obviously, Microsoft’s cloud gaming technology is not yet available for iOS devices, but the company appears to be working on it, as well as on a dedicated app to bring xCloud to Windows 10 sometime this year. Find more details and a partial list of games that will be available from the cloud on Polygon.



T1 Entertainment & Sports, the joint venture established between SK Telecom and Comcast Spectacor, announced that it has signed an expanded streaming deal with Twitch. The exclusive multi-year agreement, which previously focused solely on T1’s League of Legends team, will now apply to all of the organization’s players and content creators. T1 Entertainment & Sports has announced a spate of major deals so far in 2020, beginning with an exclusive apparel partnership with Nike back in January. Since then, the organization has added a gaming gear partner in Logitech G, a display partner in Samsung, and a banking services partner in Hana Bank. Additionally, T1 is one of five teams that partnered with automaker BMW in April, alongside Cloud9, G2 Esports, Fnatic, and FunPlus Phoenix. T1 is an enormous name in esports, so it’s no surprise to see the organisation expand its alliance with Twitch and keep all of its players and creators on the top streaming platform, concludes Esports Insider.


 
Anzu.io is an in-game advertising platform that brings real-world brand ads to video gaming and esports. Backed by BITKRAFT Esports Ventures, WPP, and Axel Springer Digital Ventures, Anzu redefines digital advertising through seamless integration of non-intrusive ads into the gameplay. Bringing real-time data and programmatic to the video gaming world, the platform promises native advertising, brand safety and ad viewability. Follow Anzu on LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter.