For gamers in the AU wondering what’s on in Sutherland Shire and across the country, the recent boom in Esports broadcasting, as well as the competitive video gaming industry across the country has been nothing but good news. A boom that was brought upon by the by recent upgrades made by the National Broadband Network.
There have been some criticisms regarding the network’s power, rollout and costs, but general consensus seems to be that many across the country see it as an improvement. Even the Australia eSports Association (AEA) say the same, with President Darren Kwan saying that the new, faster network speeds were a huge help for eSports, saying that, thanks to the NBN’s improvements, eSports has had a more level playing field, with players able to equalize their connection speeds, critical in competitions where matches are decided by split-second decisions.
Mr. Kwan says that the rollout has also strengthened the AU’s eSports economy, allowing for even bigger prize pools due to more players being able to train and compete online.
Back in May, the Intel Extreme Master (IEM) Sydney 2018 became one of the largest eSports events in AU history, with 16 teams competing for a $310,000 prize pool in Counter Strike:Global Offensive. Mr. Kwan says that salaries and wages have gone up, not only for players, but also their support staff, coaches and managers.
More than just the players feeling the benefits, the NBN network rollout has also been a boon to the broadcasting side of eSports. For gamers wondering what’s on in Sutherland Shire and across the country, there are now more options for watching their eSportevent of choice, whilst live-streamers have had a more stable business to work on.
Live-streaming demands high performance in networks, moreso than what online players need thanks to the rigors of broadcasting a live-stream.
Micheal Roberts, a live-streamer and commentator for the Heroes Global Championship ANZ, the AU’s premier league for Heroes of the Storm, one of the biggest eSports in the world, says that the new network rollouts by the NBN made his dream job a reality.
The NBN, meanwhile, has been less than happy with what the eSports industry’s been up to, thanks to gaming’s heavy toll on network bandwidth, with NBN Chief Executive Bill Morrow telling a parliamentary committee back in June that online gamers and live-streamers were bottlenecking their networks. Morrow has suggested that a fair use policy, which will cap data usage for gamers, could help deal with the congestion issue.
Mr. Kwan replied that gamers were just using the services that the NBN were providing, same as everyone else, and that the consolidated internet speeds had bolstered the AU’s interest in the gig economy.