Sandbox Esports Announces LOL Fantasy Camp
Sandbox Esports and Sports Academy have teamed up to announce the creation of the Sandbox Esports League of Legends Fantasy Camp, a world class training experience for League of Legends fans to learn from and play with superstar professional players.
The Fantasy Camp will take place at Sports Academy, a top-notch training facility in Thousand Oaks, California.
The formal announcement of the Sandbox Esports Fantasy Camp is an exciting one for both Catalyst and the local esports community. With unprecedented access to professional players in the NA LCS, campers are certain to come away with both practical lessons and lasting memories.
Counselors at the Fantasy Camp will include Eugene “Pobelter” Park (Immortals), Zaqueri “Aphromoo” Black (CLG), Darshan “Darshan” Upadhyaha (CLG), Joshua “Dardoch” Hartnett (CLG), Trevor “Stixxay” Hayes (CLG), Choi “Huhi” Jae-hyun (CLG), Adrian “Adrian” Ma (most recently with Team Liquid), Choi “Locodoco” Yoon-sub (coach of Gold Coin United), and Alberto “Crumbzz” Rengifo.
This camp will be held at Sports Academy in Thousand Oaks, California, the only fully integrated, multi-disciplinary athletic training and sports medicine facility on the west coast. Combined with state-of-the-art technology, a biomechanics lab, sports science, and the development of mental fitness and acuity, our sport-specific and athlete-specific programs are designed to guide athletes toward their optimal state of performance. Leading up to the NA LCS Summer Split, CLG conducted two-week boot camp training at the same facility helping them jump to an early lead in the NA LCS Summer Split standings.
Campers will learn the finer points of League of Legends gameplay and strategy over the course of a three-day training program (from September 15-17), operating within a bootcamp environment modeled after professional practices. The daily schedule will include scrim blocks, VOD reviews, breakout strategy sessions, hand-eye coordination and reaction training, physical performance training, and sports psychology sessions. In addition to coaching, counselors will play with and against campers in one-on-one competitions and solo queue.
Campers must be at least 13-years-old, and will be selected via an open application process, which can be found here. Capacity will be limited to 30 campers in order to ensure an intimate and exclusive experience. The minimum bid that will be accepted is $3000. The application deadline is Sunday, July 23. Applications will be selected and applicants notified on August 1.
De'Aaron Fox Becomes HyperX Ambassador
HyperX announced a partnership with the newest Sacramento King (5th overall pick) and avid gamer De’Aaron Fox. As a HyperX gaming headset brand ambassador, Fox will be wearing HyperX gaming headsets while he streams his favorite games, Call of Duty: Black Ops III and Clash Royale on Twitch.
At Catalyst Sports & Media we represent De’Aaron and this partnership supports our agency thesis that traditional sports and esports are converging. The new generation of traditional professional sport athletes are an ever-growing group who have a deep passion for esports equal to their traditional sport.
The next generation of professional athletes will merge the large scale fan bases of both esports and traditional sports worlds bringing new opportunities for teams and brands that have not yet been developed. We are excited to act as a bridge between the two worlds as we help our clients establish themselves inside the esports ecosystem and beyond.
Rocket League Partners with NBC Sports for TV and Digital Distribution of Newest Tournament
Rocket League Developer Psyonix announced that NBC will be streaming and televising a Rocket League 2v2 tournament across their TV networks, including Comcast SportsNet Bay Area and international networks like Telemundo Deportes. It will begin on July 22nd with open qualifiers on the FACEIT platform and culminate August 26-27 with a $100,000 prize pool and Grand Finals.
Overall, this is a major opportunity for Rocket League to reach a much broader audience and diversify their loyal viewer base. NBC seems willing to embrace esports as they will not only cover the live games but also produce 40 hours of shoulder programming around this event (name: TBD) that Psyonix hopes to match the popularity of their marquee event, the Rocket League Championship Series.
However, several players within the Rocket League community have objected to the 2v2 format (standard RLCS games are 3v3) and the timing which overlaps with DreamHack Atlanta and the fourth season of RLCS. Many pros don’t believe they can play with their current schedules which Psyonix and NBC are apparently working to resolve.
Personally, I have always been a big fan of Rocket League and strongly believe in its ability to crossover and reach a mainstream audience when given the right platform. It combines the familiarity and simplicity of soccer (put the ball in the other team’s goal) while adding the fantastical nature of video games that isn’t possible IRL (flying and flipping cars using super power ups). Unlike other games like League of Legends that require pre-existing knowledge of the game to understand what is going on, a new RL fan can easily understand how one scores and wins the game and what would make a certain play amazing.
I hope NBC and Psyonix work out the scheduling issues for this 2v2 tournament so the top RL talent can participate and show the entertainment potential of this game and wow millions of new fans. While the 2v2 format isn’t the standard competition format, it is easier to follow for new fans and I believe this new tournament can complement the more intense RLCS as a fun alternative, similar to All-Star games for traditional sports.