In the history of eSports, it has been very rare where a sponsor actually engages a community beyond writing some checks and putting logos on jerseys. We are thrilled to announce that Ryan “DigitalRonin” Schlieper from Creative will be interacting with the coL Community on a much higher level. Watch for his blogs, forum posts, etc, as he asks YOU the gamer what you think about gaming, Creative, compLexity and more. Be sure to welcome him and make him feel at home!
Here is Ryan’s first blog:
So after over 2 years of development and countless hours of calls with the TV team, countless meetings to discuss specs needed to be met for integration for broadcast, new software and firmware builds, player feedback, designer feedback, management feedback…I went to the CGS website and rather than seeing the familiar dark black and red boxes with text…was met with an intense wall of white that looked like someone had literally scanned a fax onto the screen.
10 seconds into reading that scano fax graphic I started shaking my head.
Yep. The CGS had folded.
Strangely enough my thoughts jumped immediately to the players and managers who I like to think I had developed some kind of relationship with over the past year or so. I had not been able to establish this with everyone but had got close with many whom I was working with on the headset project for the CGS. I knew what their plans were…and most of them centered around the CGS which would help them go on to bigger and better things.
So yeah. That day pretty much a somber one.
There were lots of rumors about new teams…old teams….old and new merging, etc. The CGS had assembled a stellar cast of players and talent. Some of the messaging and methodology didn’t necessarily resonate with the hardcore gaming purists.
But at the end of the day…the CGS was a window for the mainstream to peek into what eSports was all about. This was what made it so interesting. Finally people would get a glimpse of the intensity and actual amazing focus that eSports requires to play at the highest levels.
So all that being said..the ride was a great one. I got to meet some of the icons of gaming that I had read about and watched from afar and learned a hard lesson at the end of the day.
All is fair in business.
The partnership was great. Lots of amazing talent was assembled merging the best of tech, broadcast, and hollywood pizazz in one place. A vision that was indeed ahead of its time.
Fast forwarding a bit I had kept in touch with a few of the former managers from the franchises who were actively circling the wagons and taking their teams under their wing to keep the dream alive.
So CES rolls around and the long days started. The thing that gets you through is interfacing with the community and talking about new (and old) products. The best thing about shows is the intensity of some of our fans. We’re talking about gamers that have had SoundBlasters in their PC’s since day 1.
At the show I met with many folks in the gaming scene. All types of teams. Euro, US, Asian, you name it they were there. Everyone looking for a way to keep the eSport train chugging along.
At the end of what seemed a whirlwind week (and one monstrous night at the Hofbrauhaus) we had decided on a name to go with.
Creative is the global sponsor of coL.
And my goal with that is to prove to the gaming community that Creative means it when we say we make products for gamers. We’ve done this for years now with our partner in Fatal1ty and advanced the viability of true gaming products in the PC market under the Creative Fatal1ty banner.
Anyone in product marketing for PC peripherals knows there’s money to be made in gaming. That’s economics 101. It’s the fastest growing segment in the PC industry. With the massive expansion of team sports and MMO gaming headsets are exploding as a market as well. Peripherals in general are a massive market.
But SAYING you’re about gaming and proving it are two very different things. And I’m one that believes that talk is cheap.
My goal with the CGS was to prove to those 60 hardcore gamers that sat in a room in front of me in Austin last year that we’re serious. We have a passion for gaming. It’s what we do and sits at the core of our companies DNA. We’re not just talking heads saying what the demographic wants to hear. We started this with our belief in Jon “Fatal1ty” Wendel and our award winning products in that line. I was amazed when one of the players came up and gave me a bro-hug and said “Man…thanks for doing this…it means a lot”. We had just schwagged out the players with full sound card setups and headsets with hoodies and shirts and seriously watching those guys (and girls) faces light up made my entire trip.
The simple fact is gamers are not dumb. They are in fact some of the most merciless people you can market to. If you get that “it” factor they love you…and if you fail at that…well you hear it all day on the forums.
So yeah. We’re here now. coL will be sporting our newest headset that we announced at CES this year very soon with the tech that was developed for the competitive gaming environment. Our Silencer tech. Not to mention it’s part of our best sounding and feature complete headset to date.
In case you haven’t figured it out by now. I’m Ryan and I’m in product marketing for headsets at Creative. I’m proud to be here as part of the coL collective…and looking forward to being an active part of this community going forward. I’m a gamer and we can get into more details on that later. I’m here because I believe in this thing that we all love to do…and I just happen to have a job where I can make and sell products that people like us want to use.
But like I said..talk is cheap…so let’s DO this.
PS: Sorry for the wall of text…this is my first blog and I had a LOT to say..haha.
You can follow Ryan’s blogs by subscribing to them here.