Is the Battle Royale Genre the Next eSports Frontier?Nov 18, 2017 | 1 Votes by Mikhail 10 rate The battle royale genre has taken the gaming world by storm. With that said, would it be something we will see in the eSports circuits? Let’s see what the future holds:
ESports has gained a worldwide following, and it being part of the Olympics is being discussed. Although we might not see eSports players winning gold medals for their, the pool of potential games and events is rapidly increasing. First-person shooters and MOBAs are already a staple, and with that in mind, will we see battle royale games in eSports in the future?
Would it work?
Battle royals games follow a simple formula: 100 players are dropped in an island to fight using the weapons they find until there’s only one man standing. The play area gets progressively slower, and being outside it will cause health points to drop. It’s a simple formula, yet it works: millions of players are enamored with it. There are millions playing PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds and Fortnite Battle Royale, and they’ve taken the gaming world by storm. Note that both games are still on early access, so it’s likely we haven’t seen their full array of features.
Thing is, will this formula work? You have to consider the logistics and scale of a battle royale eSports event. You would need hundreds computers for each participant and at the same time, gather hundreds of them in a single event. The competition ladder won’t be just a single game: there should be multiple games for each contestant. Organizing it is mind-boggling, and it would be hard for organizers to think of a tournament format that would work well for everybody.
Nevertheless, a battle royale eSports event would be extremely exciting, and the chaos a 100-player arena presents is intriguing. Imagine watching an event with top PUBG streamers like Shroud competing with other well-known players for supremacy. It would all be complete with TV cameras and color commentary describing the action around the map. It would surely rake in viewers and capture the interest of its entire player-base.
With that said though, what would the competition format be for a battle royale game? You could simply gather the best 500 players on the planet and have them play a game each. The top 20 of each game would go to the finals, comprising the top 100. The winner of the finals will be then crowned the champion.
However, there are certain considerations you would need to keep in mind. The most notable would be if the overall format is enough to decide who the best battle royale player in the planet is. What if the fan favorite somehow was unlucky enough to drop in an area where countless other players are and managed to get himself killed early on? On the contrary, what if the champion simply won through sheer luck?
It would not be farfetched to presume that some fans will end up being disgruntled by the overall results of future competitions. You see, the the battle royale genre is a clash of gaming styles. Campers and those who avoid confrontation are usually the ones who survive until the smallest, while those who seek fights are the best-equipped, thanks to them picking up enemy loot. Imagine a camper with zero kills winning top honors against someone who notched a dozen. The outrage would be huge.
Squads and Duos
With solo competitions aside, squad and duo competitions would be a more viable option. Let’s say Epic Games, the creators of Fortnite, decided to hold a tournament for the top eSports squads. Each game, there would be a maximum of 25 squads, amounting to 100 players a game. There would be four rounds: the first squad that gets killed off gets 25 points, while the one that wins receives a single point. After four rounds, the squad that gets the least points will be crowned champions.
Future Battle Royale Games
Although Fortnite and PUBG are arguably games that would be perfect for eSports events, both are still a work in progress. Epic Games and Bluehole are still refining both before they can be fully released into the pipelines. Regardless though, you can say that they are highly successful titles, and with success comes opportunity. Some triple A developers would certainly want to cash in on the genre’s popularity, and they may probably create a BR game that would be a perfect eSports event.
One good example of a triple A title that would be a fantastic BR game is Metal Gear. The next installment, Metal Gear Survive, is coming in 2018 and is an online action-survival game. Though it’s more like a Metal Gear with zombies, its overall feel shouts “battle royale”. Apart from which, a Hunger Games-inspired title would be a fantastic addition into the genre. A first-person title, called Islands of Nyne, is in the alpha stage.
Overall, the potential for battle royale titles added into eSports events is massive, and we might see them come into the fray in the future. However, we will have to wait until Fortnite and PUBG to become fully-furnished before we can see them being played on the big stage. The future for the genre is bright, and eSports can make it shine brighter.