|Thursday November 30, 2023
Good morning! It’s Thursday and this is your early morning Esports and Gaming brief.
Embracer Group has laid off 904 employees amid financial struggles in 2023, the company revealed. The game development and nerd culture holding company continues to reel after a $2 billion outside investment fell apart earlier this year. Embracer has closed studios including Volition (makers of the Saints Row series) and plans to sell portions of the business including Borderlands maker Gearbox Entertainment.
The cuts, which amount to 5% of Embracer’s workforce, are part of a larger scaling operation for the Swedish company. CEO Lars Wingefors said additional headcount reductions will take place as leadership attempts to “transform Embracer into a leaner, stronger company.” The company’s Q2 presentation shows a reshaping that is emblematic of larger shifts in the games industry this year as businesses try to right-size after swelling of staffing during the gaming boom of the COVID-19 era.
“Our people are what make up the very fabric of Embracer,” Wingefors said during that Q2 event. “For me personally, it’s crucial that the programme is carried out with compassion, respect and integrity.”
|COMPETITION AND GAMING NEWS
The Snapdragon Pro Series Powered by Samsung Galaxy is bringing its Mobile Masters event to Sao Paulo, Brazil, league partners ESL FACEIT Group and Qualcomm announced Wednesday. Mobile Masters, a $400,000 mobile esports event featuring international Call of Duty: Mobile and Garena Free Fire tournaments, will take place April 12-14. The league has experienced noteworthy growth this year, according to a statement, with 3 million registered players – a 50% increase over last year – and twice the watch hours of its inaugural year. More than 1 million of those players hail from Latin America, which was added as an SPS region in 2023.
In case you missed it, T1 and League of Legends GOAT Lee “Faker” Sang-hyeok further cemented their legacy with an unprecedented fourth League of Legends World Championship title. The South Korean squad and its legendary mid laner added another Summoner’s Cup to their trophy case on Nov. 19 with a 3-0 sweep of China’s Weibo Gaming at the Gocheok Sky Dome in Seoul. The win pulled Faker and T1 even further ahead of the pack in terms of Worlds titles won; T1 already held the most-ever championships for an organization with three, all earned with Faker in the mid lane, prior to this month’s title.
Cyberpunk 2077 overhaul has paid dividends for developer CD Projekt Red, the company reported in its most recent earnings call, with 4.3 million sales of the game’s Phantom Liberty expansion since its Sept. 26 release. The expansion, which came alongside a holistic revamp of Cyberpunk 2077, has reshaped the narrative around the once-fallen franchise that failed to meet consumer and critic expectations on release in December 2020. The company also recently settled a class action lawsuit put forward by investors that alleged CDPR misled its stakeholders about the state of Cyberpunk 2077 leading into the initial launch; CDPR paid out a $1.85 million settlement to close the class action, which was filed just two weeks after Cyberpunk 2077 went live.
|SPONSORSHIP & ACTIVATION
Enthusiast Gaming is partnering with BUXOM Cosmetics for a Fortnite activation, the companies announced. The collaboration, known as Only Up Buxom (Checkpoints), aims to highlight diversity in the gaming space and women’s participation in the games community. The Fortnite map features “an obstacle course inspired by Buxom Cosmetics products,” according to a statement. Enthusiast Gaming plans to host an all-women kickoff tournament known as Battle of the Babes today at 6 p.m. ET on Twitch to celebrate the launch, with Luminosity Gaming creator Jenny “JennySmiles” Simile hosting.
Gen.G and game studio Super Storm are collaborating for the launch of Super Storm’s flagship title, Storm Striker, in North America. The South Korean studio will work with Gen.G, which fields esports teams in the country but has a sizable presence in North America as well, to build awareness of Storm Striker. The title, a multiplayer online battle arena-style first-person shooter title, launched Nov. 16 and will feel familiar to esports fans. Gen.G plans to work with Storm Striker to support its community platforms like Discord, promote it amongst Gen.G’s partnered collegiate programs and amplify the game via creators like former Overwatch pro Becca “Aspen” Rukavina.
Gaming entertainment company Misfits is partnering with Mars Petcare to promote its TEMPTATIONS cat food brand. Misfits and Mars are collaborating on a pair of in-game Minecraft experiences, known as the TEMPTATIONS Cat Cafe and Purrsuit, with Misfits building additional awareness via its creator network.
International gaming conference Gamescom is launching an event in Latin America in 2024 that will bring together the organizers of Gamescom and Brazil’s BIG Festival. Gamescom Latam will take place June 26-30 in Sao Paulo, Brazil, the company told GamesIndustry.biz, and attempt to leverage the region’s rapidly growing (and already large-scale) games audience.
Eminem’s Fortnite Concert: Tapping into Nostalgia for a New Generation of Streaming
As Fortnite gears up for its latest event featuring Eminem this weekend, the event is not just a spectacle of music and gaming but also a strategic move to engage diverse generations through nostalgia and live streaming.
Fortnite’s history of hosting virtual concerts with artists like Travis Scott, Ariana Grande, and J Balvin has primarily appealed to a younger demographic, with Travis Scott’s concert reaching 2.4M peak viewers. However, Eminem’s entry represents a deliberate attempt to expand viewership by targeting a different age group, likely to tune in out of nostalgia. The announcement of Eminem’s appearance for the final day of Fortnite’s Chapter 4 Season 5, leaked on November 21st, has already generated a buzz, particularly among older fans who grew up with his music.
The concert signals a bridge between generations – connecting those who reminisce about Eminem’s early career with a younger audience that associates him with Fortnite’s dynamic world. This blend of nostalgia with modern gaming culture is a powerful tool in live streaming, as evidenced by the 336% spike in Eminem’s Twitch mentions following the leak.
Read more on Stream Hatchet’s blog.
|Cynopsis Sports Media Awards 2024
Entries for the Sports Media Awards 2024 are open! Ready to recognize a company or campaign across production, marketing and technology for their hard work and innovation?
FIND OUT MORE HERE
YOUGOV LIVING DATA INSIGHTS
Does genre played affect game discovery?YouGov Profiles data shows that means through which gamers find out about different games are largely similar across the different types of games they play, with a few noteworthy exceptions. Indie gamers, for example, are noticeably likelier to learn about new games from online shops (63%) and gaming personalities (55%) when compared to other genres. Meanwhile, FPS gamers are the most likely of the lot to find out about new titles from friends (49%), especially when compared to sports gamers (39%).
NRG Esports is returning to Counter-Strike, the esports organization announced. NRG, which will field a roster in the esport for the first time since 2019, revealed a North American roster featuring former NRG standouts Damian “daps” Steele and Vincent “Brehze” Cayonte. The launch of Counter-Strike 2 continues to present opportunities for new and returning organizations who hope to take advantage of a fresh slate and growing audience for CS.
North American esports and gaming lifestyle group 100 Thieves is leaving Apex Legends esports, the company announced. The move, following layoffs at 100 Thieves and the company spinning out its drinks business Juvee and its game studio, comes as the North American organization focuses on making each of its esports teams at least break even, vice president of esports Jacob Toft-Andersen said in a message in the 100 Thieves community Discord. “We had a team for the 2024 season that we were super excited for, but it felt wrong moving forward,” he said.
Gen.G has revamped almost its entire League of Legends roster following a quarterfinals exit from Worlds 2023. Only mid laner Jeong “Chovy” Ji-hoon and bot laner Kim “Peyz” Su-hwan remain from the 2023 squad as Gen.G brings in a different batch of stars to bolster its Worlds title chances in the coming year.
Development studio Absurd Ventures is scooping up former Rockstar Games staff as it prepares to move forward with its multi-pronged production approach. Absurd Ventures launched in June with Rockstar co-founder Dan Houser, who left the company in 2020, at the helm. Houser has brought on longtime Rockstar colleagues Lazlow Jones (announced as an Absurd Ventures co-founder) and Michael Unsworth (Head of Story & Creative Management), according to a report from French outlet BeGeek, as it prepares to dive into games and traditional media development, including film, TV, and comics.
ByteDance, the creator of TikTok, is shutting down its Nuverse game publishing brand, leaving the future of Mobile Legends: Bang Bang developer Moonton up in the air. ByteDance has been courting buyers for Moonton since early November, according to Reuters; MLBB, a wildly popular game in Southeast Asia, holds multiple spots among the top 10 most-watched esports competitions of all time. Nuverse also develops Marvel SNAP, one of the most successful mobile game launches of the year and DICE Awards Mobile Game of the Year for 2023.
Game development platform Unity plans undergo another round of layoffs, with around 265 people impacted, according to a report from Reuters. The cuts, which follow the company’s massive “runtime fee” controversy earlier this year, amount to 3.8% of Unity’s staff. The organization, which bungled its launch of a fee system based on lifetime downloads of games and revenue earned for Unity-built titles, is still seeking revenue streams to staunch the bleeding amid a market reset for the games business.
Reedpop is looking to sell the games journalism portion of its business five years after its purchase of the assets. Reedpop bought Gamer Network – the owner of Dicebreaker, GamesIndustry.biz, Eurogamer, Rock Paper Shotgun, and VG247 – in 2018, with the goal of operating the publications alongside a hefty events business that included PAX and multiple international conventions.
|Cynopsis Reaching Audience in 2024
Media industry experts will go live on Thursday, December 7 – one week from today! – to answer burning questions about optimizing ad strategy. The Reaching Audience in 2024 Virtual Conference will cover everything you need to know about those clicking ‘play’ today. Don’t miss it!
REGISTER FOR FREE
Destiny 2 released its latest seasonal update on Tuesday. What is the name of that season? (Email [email protected] with your answer, and be sure to include your name, company and city).Answer to Our Last Trivia Question
At the halfway point of the NFL season, which team has the best win/loss record – and which has the worst? Answer: Eagles and Panthers. Kudos: Dory Petsrillo | Locality, New York; Jim Himmel | TCB Media, San Clemente, California; Creed Heilskov | ImOn Communications, Cedar Rapids, Iowa; Michael Goodman | Radio One Atlanta; Tom Moore | Kalt Productions, Los Angeles; David Westberg | SAG•AFTRA Federal Credit Union, Burbank, California
Grow in billings, income, and experience on a team that continues to lead our industry. Take your career to the next level with a company that is transforming cities and delivering on our promises to our clients and to our long-standing Municipal and Transit Authority partners. Full info HEREACCOUNT EXECUTIVE
Grow in billings, income, and experience on a team that continues to lead our industry. Take your career to the next level with a company that is transforming cities and delivering on our promises to our clients and to our long-standing Municipal and Transit Authority partners. Full info HERE
ACCOUNT EXECUTIVE, AD SALES >>
FUSE MEDIA/NEW YORK, NY: Support the Ad Sales team by prospecting, selling and expanding the Company’s advertising revenue base. The candidate will have a strong media sales background with a network of industry clients and prospects as well as establish a book of business and exceed pre-established activity and sales quota utilizing CRM tools to document sales activity. Full info HERE
ACCOUNT EXECUTIVE, EAST COAST ADVERTISING SALES
THE ALLEN MEDIA GROUP
Responsible for coverage of assigned advertising agencies and clients specifically dedicated to representing AMG linear, digital and streaming platforms. Also grow and maintain existing clients as well as prospect and close new business. Work closely with clients and advertising holding companies ensuring AMG is a ‘must-buy’ for advertisers. Full info HERE
TV ONE NETWORK
Communicate the value and brand strength of the Network to advertisers and agencies as well as create compelling presentations that convey the benefits and features of TV One programming and the TV One viewing audience. Full info HERE
TV ONE NETWORK
Manage the delivery and arrival of commercial content working closely with Manager of Commercial Operations to resolve conflicting traffic instructions as well as oversee maintenance of E-faxes and storage of client files. Responsible for entering original account data and revisions into the traffic system. Full info HERE
AD SALES COORDINATOR
TV ONE NETWORK
Establish business relationships with agency counterparts and internal departments including: Pricing and planning, inventory management, marketing, traffic and billing, also fulfill advertiser allocations requests, ensure stewardship delivery in accordance to deal guarantees, send commercial airing times, and update clients of programming. Full info HERE
DIRECTOR, CORPORATE COMMUNICATIONS
Execute communications objectives and develop strategies to elevate Hallmark Media, its workforce, and business entities. Evaluate existing communications program in the context of its ability to support strategic planning and operating objectives. Minimum of 10+ years progressive PR/Communications Industry Experience. Full info HERE
Represent Future Today, selling an expansive portfolio of O&O CTV apps, inclusive of HappyKids, Fawesome, The LEGO Channel, FilmRise, Blippi. 5+years selling linear/streaming/OLV exp req.Biz dev position inclusive of direct, pmp/pg.Solid relationships; agency & client. Full info HERE
NYC, Hybrid, Remote
Communicate the value & brand strength of Urban One Networks to advertisers & agencies. Create compelling presentations that convey the benefits & features of our programming and the viewing audiences. Proactively keep clients informed of pertinent account and network information. Min. 4+ yrs national advertising sales or equivalent sales exp. Full info HERE
VP/HEAD OF ADVERTISING SALES
Lead, manage, develop, and grow Ad Sales teams. Attract and retain the best talent. Work with leadership team to set, achieve, and grow revenue targets across OOH, Digital and Experiential. Instrumental in driving the team to exceed all expectations and goals. 15+ years’ experience in advertising, media, and relevant sales management roles. Full info HERE
Achieve revenue and growth targets across linear and digital. Identify and execute strategies which result in exceeding revenue targets. Develop and execute effective sales strategies that showcase as well as maximize overall revenues for the overarching National Sales division. 7-10 yrs exp. in advertising, media & relevant sales management roles. Full info HERE
SENIOR AUDIO/VIDEO PROMOTION PRODUCER >>
WHYY/PHILADELPHIA: Produce best-in-class promotional spots, accurately reflecting WHYY’s brand mission, from strategy through management approvals. Write killer scripts for audio and video to engage audiences. Organize promotional spot production schedule for video and audio spots needed for TV, FM, digital and social platforms. 10-15+ years’ experience. Full info HERE
DIGITAL DIRECTOR, NEWS >>
WHYY/PHILADELPHIA: Develop a cogent strategy for developing and publishing WHYY news content across social media and emerging digital platforms. Convey and create SEO, social media and digital best practices in concert with the digital staff with the focus of informing and developing the newsroom’s digital muscles. Five or more years of journalism experience. Full info HERE
SENIOR STUDIO TECHNICAL MANAGER
Technical manager for live, studio, productions/events. Provides technical oversight, support, solutions, troubleshooting, and in-house technical resource. Functions as Studio and Tech Manager for Studio and Tech Manager for remote productions, on-site and off-site corporate events. Requires 5-7 years production technical management experience. Full info HERE
SENIOR DIRECTOR, DIGITAL CONTENT LICENSING
Negotiate, draft & review agreements for owned & operated platforms/services, third-party platform. Exp. in digital media, content licensing (domestic/international), linear & on-demand rights & distribution, Privacy & Data Security preferred. Min 5 yrs of exp. supporting digital media at media company or streaming platform. Full info HERE
FAMILY ENTERTAINMENT TV
Represent FETV & FMC to media community via ongoing communications & relationship building. Maintain & develop strong working relationships w/both agencies & internal departments in support of sales efforts. Work w/sales management, pricing & planning to achieve quarterly revenue goals. 5+ yrs media sales exp. preferably in cable TV- agency exp. +. Full info HERE
BUSINESS PARTNERSHIPS AND DEVELOPMENT EXECUTIVE >>
HEARST MEDIA PRODUCTION GROUP/CHARLOTTE, NC: Proactively identify, research, and develop new opportunities for our family-friendly programming blocks on ABC, CBS, NBC, The CW, Telemundo, & other media & digital/social outlets. Support creation and present strategic, cross-media concepts to multiple stakeholder groups that meet our client’s business objectives. 8 + yrs of business dev. exp. Full info HERE
HUMAN RESOURCES DIRECTOR >>
BIG FISH ENTERTAINMENT/NYC/NJ: Coordinating onboarding for all new hires.
Administering the benefits and payroll changes for employees accurately.
Maintaining an efficient filing system—paper and electronic, for employee and company records related to their job functions. Building a successful bridge between management and employees. 7 yrs entertainment exp. preferred. Full Info HERE
DIRECTOR, MEDIA SUPPLY CHAIN OPERATIONS >>
PBS DISTRIBUTION/ARLINGTON VA, Hybrid: Oversee media systems operations, including daily operations as well as development and implementation of overall media supply chain. Work with external vendors and internal stakeholders on design and implementation of hardware and software solutions for media systems. 7+ yrs of work exp. in the areas of television, media, or consumer products. Full info HERE
TV/VIDEO SPONSORSHIP-PRODUCT INTEGRATION SALES REPRESENTATIVE >>
GAME ON MEDIA SOLUTIONS/Remote: Game On Media Solutions is looking for an independent business development oriented sponsorship sales representative. Focus will be on TV/Streaming project opportunities for brands that include product integration and placement. This is an Independent Contractor performance compensated opening. Attractive fees can be earned for closed deals. Full info HERE
BRAND ASSISTANT >>
THE LEDE COMPANY/NYC: Full-service communication, strategy, and social impact consulting firm, specializing in corporate, brand, entertainment, and nonprofit sectors, is seeking a Brand Assistant to join the Brand team in our New York office. The Assistant will play an integral role in supporting accounts for a wide variety of Fashion, Beauty, CPG and Lifestyle clients. Full info HERE
TALENT ASSISTANT >>
THE LEDE COMPANY/LA: Full-service strategy, communications and social impact consulting firm, specializing in corporate, entertainment and nonprofit sectors. We are looking for a Talent Assistant to a Talent Publicist in Los Angeles. We are seeking enthusiastic candidates who can work in a fast-paced environment, are driven & have strong communication and writing skills. Full info HERE
EXECUTIVE PRODUCER FOR NATIONAL POLITICAL SHOW >>
BAHAKEL COMMUNICATIONS/CHARLOTTE NC: Develop and oversee the production of a daily or weekly national political show that covers the most important political news and events of the day. Develop and execute strategies to increase the show’s audience and engagement. At least 5 years of experience as an executive producer for a political show or similar program. Full info HERE
EXECUTIVE PRODUCER OF NEWS/ENTERTAINMENT >>
BAHAKEL COMMUNICATIONS/CHARLOTTE NC: Oversee all editorial and entertainment content, news production and presentation. Responsible for day-to-day operations of the show: producing, writing, and guiding creative. Develop content for the News @ TEN, plan, assign and create production schedules. 7 years of experience as executive producer or show producer. Network experience preferred. Full info HERE
|OTHER JOBS OF INTEREST
Guide and mentor a team of producers and program managers across development of a major AAA game title from early development to launch and beyond.
Sr. Director, Production (Unannounced Project)
Collaborate cross- functionally to guide products from conception through launch, growth, and eventual retirement.
Product Manager – Gaming Gear
City of Industry, CA
Guide and mentor a team of producers and program managers across development of a major AAA game title from early development to launch and beyond.
SR. Director, Production
Establish business relationships with third party and cloud hosting providers, customer support, quality assurance, NOC and localization.
Head of Game Operations
Orange County, CA
Work with the core features of UE5, such as asset streaming, memory management, module and plugin loading, and the task graph.
Senior Engine Programmer
Orange County, CA
Scale our Edge Data Center and hardware infrastructure at a time of incredible growth for our business.
Technical Lead, Edge Operations
Create and execute existing automated test cases and maintain automation suites to ensure testing coverage.
QA Automation Engineer
San Mateo, CA
Serve as an expert in instructional design and emerging delivery methods, continuing to identify ways to deliver courses and consulting offerings that are both engaging and delivered in an efficient manner and drive the right learning outcomes.
Senior Talent Management Partner
Provide clear and helpful answers to developer inquiries via forums and email and solve technical problems and suggest viable workarounds.
Develop innovative, complex, and visually stunning visual effects and work closely with our designer, animators, and programmers to implement effects.
Senior Real-Time FX Artist
Work with the animation team to help develop new animation systems and improve existing ones and integrate new animation technologies from and into the game engine.
Senior Software Engineer (Animation) – American Football
Design and manage live content, campaigns and features that maximize acquisition, engagement and monetization throughout the product cycle.
Sr. Lead Game Product Manager