Former Blizzard, Twitch, and Riot bosses pour money into Rally Cry esports

    
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Following the exit of Mike Morhaime from Blizzard Entertainment last year – in a year when Blizzard found multiple ways to light itself on fire – many gamers mused on what he’d do next. A press release today makes it clear that he and his coterie of gaming exec pals are gonna keep right on doing what they loved: esports.

We’re talking here about Rally Cry, billed as a “company that will bring organized gaming programs to players of all ages and skill levels across the nation.” Morhaime – along with VP of global esports for Blizzard Amy Morhaime, former Twitch COO and cofounder Kevin Lin, and former CEO and cofounder of Riot Games Marc Merrrill – have poured money into the company to the tune of a $1.2M seed funding round.

Rally Cry is run by Adam and Tyler Rosen, who as gamers might recall originally ran Tespa before it was snarfed up by Blizzard and became the key collegiate esports organization in the west.

“Adam and Tyler are experts at creating both professional and grassroots programs to support players from around the world,” Morhaime says in the PR. “With Rally Cry, they are filling a very important void in the gaming landscape.”

Huh.

Source: Press release
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Robert Mann

If I had much respect for sports as they currently exist in the professional variant, then I might find esports a little less odd I guess. Also true if I actually enjoyed watching people play a video game instead of doing so myself. *I do somewhat enjoy solid displays of skill and athleticism to some extent in regular sports, but generally find the lack of actual rules enforcement, or the inequality of enforcement, to be a greater issue as it destroys my enjoyment of regular sports.* Esports though? If I’m interested in the game at all, I’d just rather play it that wait for somebody to actually impress me in any way.

To each their own, but I do think it would behoove our societies (globally) to practice some moderation with the money spent on these things.

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Sorenthaz

former CEO and cofounder of Riot Games Marc Merrrill

Former? Did he quietly jump ship or something?

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Bruno Brito

A press release today makes it clear that he and his coterie of gaming exec pals are gonna keep right on doing what they loved: esports.

I can’t deal with this shit anymore.

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Utakata

I’m not sure it’s shit when it seems to be lucrative in certain segmentd of the population. Kinda like illicit drugs or porn really. I just wish they had the passion with MMO’s as they’ve shown with broadcast PvP outfits. /le sigh

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Utakata

Edit/Erratum: …seems to be lucrative in certain segments* of the population…proper.

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Bruno Brito

It’s shit because it defines how the industry shapes up.

Why do we get MMOs with dubious systems at best, like weaponswap, action combat, terrible versatility in the name of a never-achieved balance?

MMOs should focus on things that allow their players to create their own fun and content. Systems like foundries, housing, transmog, until those systems are decent enough to make that MMO experience truly a immersive world. Then, MMO players will stop demanding tons of content every patch and devs will have time to focus on other systems again.

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jaif13

The devs make what sells. They need paychecks too.

If you disagree, have a go and make your game, see if it sells.

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Knecht_Rootrecht

Mike Morhaime was one of the biggest proponents of esports within Blizzard. The thing is that Blizzard put the cart before the horse with their esports program. I expect a similar fate to this one.

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Armsbend

1.2M between 3 very wealthy people?

300K is Like the equivalent of investing a few 1000 bucks.

Mike has a reported net worth of 1.8B. Investing 300K is literally risk free because it is the equivalent of investing nothing.

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Loopy

He should’ve invested it into my mortgage for some real impact.

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Life_Isnt_Just_Dank_Memes

I wonder what creative ways they have in store to fleece athletes of their money like all other sports organzations around the world do.

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Armsbend

get the best minds on it and make it so!

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Knecht_Rootrecht

I met him personally and he is as much of a good guy as any CEO can be. He lead Blizzard in the better times before Activision started to call all the shots.

That being said, I doubt he really understands the esports community and just pouring money into it won’t guarantee success.