Jason Lake: "CSGO has become far too EU focused as an esport"
Earlier today, messioso, Complexity's general manager, tweeted about the grueling travel schedule that his team endures throughout the year. Players flying from multiple continents and holding citizenship from different countries makes travel incredibly difficult. All that plus the long transatlantic flights that all NA CS teams must undergo to make the trip to Europe makes Complexity's travel a logistical nightmare.
After messioso's tweet was uploaded to the popular Counter-Strike subreddit "r/globaloffensive", Jason Lake replied with his take on his team's travel schedule.
More than just brutal travel schedules, Jason Lake argues that European events make it very difficult for North American teams to capture fans' hearts and minds.
For example, Complexity's do-or-die match at ESL Pro League, their most recent match, was played at 11:30 AM in Malta. However, for American viewers, the match started anywhere from 3:30 to 6:30 AM PST. On any given match day, by the time most Americans wake up, the majority of EPL matches have already been played.
In addition, looking at the distribution of top tier events, very few take place in the Americas. In 2022, it was only IEM Dallas and IEM Rio. In 2023, BLAST Spring Finals will be in Washington D.C., but that still is only a paltry three events. Compare this to the Paris Major, IEM Cologne and Katowice, both ESL Pro Leagues, BLAST Spring and Fall groups, BLAST Fall Finals, BLAST World Finals, and countless other smaller tournaments, all taking place in Europe or elsewhere.
Jason Lake's last point regards the health of the esports ecosystem, noting North America adds much more financially speaking than it receives in events and attention. According to Stratview Research, "The North American market held the largest share [of the global market] of more than 35.0% in 2021, with the U.S. at the forefront."
With North America supporting over a third of the esports environment, does it not stand to reason that the region should receive more in terms of events and opportunities?