Much of what I'm going to say in this article is old news. But the conclusions are something I don't think I've heard anyone articulate, yet. The CCL has been more than a successful event in HoTS esports. It is the best event in HoTS esports to date. Maybe that sounds weird to some people. The HGC's production value, stakes, and viewership outdoes the CCL's, right? Yes, the viewer experience from HGC, and the financial incentives to participate in that league were greater in almost every aspect. But was it good for the community in the same way? Was it a healthy success?
When Esports encounter great success, it's because lots of people all over the world feel passionate about the same thing at the same time. It's a global – or at the very least national – concerted effort toward success. The League of Legends esports scene hasn't had tremendous success (at times even eclipsing certain traditional sports in viewership), because Riot Games told the scene to be big. League of Legends grew organically, from LAN tournaments held in people's basements to filling stadiums the world over, by virtue of its popularity, not enacting a corporate plan of becoming something, but on a natural path toward its future heights. The HGC had all the visual hallmarks and calling cards of a successful esports scene – but it lacked the most important thing an esport can possess. The HGC's community was smaller than its ambitions; ultimately, it was unsustainable.
In stark comparison, the CCL has emerged from the inner workings of the community itself, and has been sponsored from sources that aren't lured by a big corporate pocket book, but are genuinely convinced by the business model and the passion brought by the community to the league.
The CCL has also had the highest standard of play maybe that we've ever seen. It's impossible to truly compare the standard of play from HGC to CCL, the game's been completely changed more than once since then. There are those within the community who think that the meta of the HGC was the best meta the game's ever seen. But the game has become more unique since then. No other MOBA has a perma-unstoppable hero in their ranks, and certainly none have a meta where you can win a professional game with a two-headed hero – looking at you, WildHeart.
A million dollar investment is hard to be grateful for when there's no long road to attaining it. The $20K+ prize pool of the CCL feels like a miracle, and it's being treated like it's ten billion, when the $1 million + from our corporate overlords was easy to take for granted, because it came from nowhere. We know where every penny of the CCL's prize pool came from, by and large, because it came from our pockets on the strength of our passion for the game's community.
With greater community investment, the CCL does more with less. With less monetary investment, the CCL makes more hype. With less viewership and advertising, the CCL creates a stronger bond between them and what they see on screen. (See: It Don't Stank) It's hard to find people who love the game more than the personalities and their followers who have stuck with HoTS through the Dark Ages and have come out the other side to find the CCL, a coruscatingly hopeful prospect compared to the dismal alleys of late 2018 and almost all of 2019.
Hello there! My name’s SinfulStClaire — Sinclair for short. I’m a content writer for WildHeart Esports. If you enjoyed this or disagreed with this, be sure to drop a comment and follow me if you want. Feel free to find me here:
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