Team Focus: Who Are Fnatic?

Esports is on the rise and is becoming increasingly popular as more money pours into it. Today the Versed looks at one of eSports oldest teams Fnatic.

Set up by Sam Mathews when he was merely nineteen years old. Fnatic is now recognised as one of the world’s biggest teams, winning tournaments all across the globe. It has been fifteen years since his team were formed and it is closing in on their anniversary.

Sam was merely 19 years old when he helped to start Fnatic. As a far more mature man he has seen them recently celebrate their longevity with a massive £15 million investment. With that sort of money being injected it’s safe to say the future looks pretty rosy.

Love the sport

Sam was recently interviewed and gave his opinions on the eSports industry. He started by pointing out how he always loved playing video games and playing them for a career and running a business on the back of that is pretty much a dream come true.

Sam went on to talk about the industry and weather or not he was surprised at how big it has become. He claims that he saw the writing on the wall. He was able to see how gaming devices were developing and how the internet was growing. How it was becoming more entwined with our daily life and he saw it as a natural progression.

Tools to go mainstream

He then went on to point out how mediums like YouTube really made it possible for it to grow in the way that it has. Which makes sense. The ability to stream tournaments has undoubtably helped elevate the industry to the point where it is predicted in a few years time it could be valued at 3 billion.

Versatile

Fnatic isn’t a small time operation either. They don’t just enter into one tournament they compete in League of Legends, Counter Strike, Fifa to name but a few. They have also developed a massive following. Sam stated that the scale of it was insane, with the team having fans all across the globe.

The future according to Sam

Sam is an astute guy and he saw the rise of eSports coming. However he thinks (as most experts do) that it will continue to grow. He claims that traditional sports feel threatened by eSports, he also says they should do! He sees eSports as an evolution and much in the way that tapes replaced vinyl, and CD’s replaced that he think eSports will eventually usurp its physical cousin. A gutsy claim indeed.

Mobile platforms

He was also keen to talk about where he saw eSports heading. His thoughts are that mobile games will be included more and more. Certainly there has been a shift towards mobile gaming in general and there are already tournaments where you can enter via mobile or PC.

Protecting the business

He took the time to heap praise on companies that were monitoring their games to make sure there is no cheating (after all, we have all seen Pixels, right?) In order for the industry to thrive it needs to avoid controversies where possible. We have seen throughout history how scandals can really damage the prestige of a sport. And Matthews was effusive in his praise for game developers doing just that.

Ixnis to regulation

While he is glad these things are being internally policed he was quick to point out that he doesn’t want to see countries start imposing strict regulations. He feels that may strangle and stifle the industries growth. He pointed out that his own group had been allowed to flourish for fifteen years and that he hoped to see another fifteen years of growth as they help to develop the next generation of eSports athletes.

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