Last month, Alienware announced that it would be the presenting partner of Australia’s inaugural 2018 Gfinity Elite Series, a new esports tournament that will be launching this March.
Luckily, Attack On Geek was able to interview Ben Jackson, the Dell ANZ General Manager for Consumer and Small Business, and gain some insight on what this new partnership means for esports in the Australasian region.
- What does being a Presenting Partner of Gfinity Esports Australia mean?
Being a presenting partner of Gfinity Esports Australia means we get a chance to bring esports front and centre in a format that will benefit Australia esports fans and players alike. Fans will get the opportunity to watch the best gaming athletes in the nation competing for a big prize pool. We’re excited by the prospect of an unknown player rising through the draft and being selected to play on a professional team. It takes a lot of effort to be a great gamer so you might as well get paid for it!
The way we’re helping create this awesome experience for fans and players is by providing the hardware players will use during the Gfinity Esports Elite Series. Alienware products are known as high-performance gaming machines, so it makes sense that if we find a tournament we believe in, such as the Gfinity Elite Series, we would want the top gamers in the country to show off their skills on the best tech. For some of our pros, this could be the first time they get to play on an Alienware machine, which is exciting for us.
- What made Alienware decide to partner with Gfinity?
We’ve been monitoring the esports scene in Australia for some time now, watching its explosive growth around the world and in Australia thanks to a strong, engaged and passionate fan base. When we heard about Gfinity’s plans for Australian esports, we knew it was the right time for us to help them with their vision for esports in Australia. Gfinity has a proven track record of creating esports events that gamers love to watch. Their live stream broadcasts have been extremely popular in the UK, demonstrating that esports fans love the format of the event. Alienware’s partnership with Gfinity Esports Australia ensures Australian esports fans can experience the exciting format that the UK has fallen for.
We also felt that Gfinity was offering something unique to the esports landscape in Australia, and will continue to for the years to come. I’m talking about the clear path from amateur to professional esports player in Australia. The Challenger Series is now complete, and it gave unestablished esports players the opportunity to prove their worth to the six city-based Franchise teams competing in the Gfinity Elite Series. When the Gfinity Australia Elite Series kicks off, we could see some of these once unknown players signed to teams and making a name for themselves nationally and internationally. Few esport leagues offer such a clear path from amateur to professional.
- What is the current climate like for esports in Australia and how are Alienware involved in this space?
Esports in Australia, much like in other regions in the world, is growing rapidly. There are several games that have popular esports followings in Australia with weekly leagues or stand-alone tournaments broadcast live on streaming services. Some of these events can be viewed at live venues, but it’s not too common of a practice.
With the Gfinity Esports Australia Elite Series, we’re hoping to fill that gap. The live arena at the HOYTS Entertainment Quarter at Sydney’s Moore Park is going to be a location gamers can visit every weekend to share the joys of esports competition with each other in person, rather than over Twitch chat.
- What are Alienware’s goals/focus for the gaming industry in the coming years?
Alienware’s focus in the coming years is to further elevate the standards of esports in Australia. We want to help the esports community in Australia continue to grow by providing more opportunities for competition within Australia. This will create more competitive leagues in Australia, but also better prepare our top players to take on the best international teams.
Turning esports into a live spectator sport that fans flock to on a weekly basis is another goal for Alienware. Anyone who’s ever been to a sports event will tell you it is better in person. We want to help Gfinity Esports Australia produce an event that will create this same excitement when esports fans talk about how they watch matches. It’s the next big step we think the esports community in Australia wants to take.
- Do you think there is a market for esports in New Zealand? Will Alienware consider supporting any NZ initiatives?
There is definitely a market for esports in New Zealand! We’ve seen teams from New Zealand participate in ANZ and Asia Pacific tournaments alongside Australian teams and hold their own. New Zealand esports fans are just as dedicated to watching and supporting their favourite teams as Australian fans. Alienware is always looking for new opportunities, so supporting a New Zealand initiative is not out of the question.