Okay, so here’s a disclaimer: we don’t actually need to talk about Rocket League, but I love the game, play it regularly, and I’m telling you right now that we do need to talk about it…at least a little bit. If I’d known that a game I love would be the next thing in eSports, I would’ve hyped the whole thing up in my earlier article about it. However, it’s true- Rocket League is a massive deal right now.
Earlier this month, Twitch announced that they were teaming up with Psyonix and Rocket League Central- the creators and community leaders of the game- to bring us the Rocket League Championship. Sure, there have been lots of Rocket League tournaments, some of which I’ve entered, some of which I’ve wished I could enter, and none of which I actually stood a chance of winning. But they were ESL or Gfinity tournaments- standard 3v3 competitive challenges that, if won, rewarded you with something around the price of £100. Which, presumably, is shared between all three team members. Not exactly the most exciting reason to enter a tournament and try and win. I mean, if nothing else, you earn yourself a bit of pocket money: you certainly can’t make a living out of winning these tournaments. However, this tournament is known as a ’75k’ one, which means that, if you win, you’ll get yourself some serious money. That money- £75,000- isn’t shared by just the winners. You can earn yourself a chunk of it by making it into quarter and semi finals, which still makes it worth entering, but obviously the big percentage and the bragging rights go to the eventual winners. That’s a pretty big deal!
Now, before I go any further, let’s get one thing straight- I don’t think I stand a chance of taking home any money. Not even a consolation prize. However, I am wise enough to realise that the tournament represents a huge leap of progress for the game and its community. The game needed to grow in order to be taken seriously, but this means that, not only is there money at stake- big money- but there’s also a reputation surrounding the competition that means only the best players will be attracted to enter it.
Counter Strike is still going to dominate the eSports scene because its been there for years, and some of the best and more lucrative competitions in gaming involve the FPS game, but let’s face it…Rocket League has been out for just about a year and already it has a 75k tournament attached to it. Counter Strike had its own little deals going on, but it never managed anything this big- not in such a short space of time.
I can honestly see the game becoming the next big thing on the competitive gaming scene. As a regular player of the game and a passionate member of the growing community, I can’t help but feel a sense of pride that a game I play for fun could actually be something more. People might start taking it seriously.