How Bountie Can Change Online Gaming’s Current Ecosystem
Esports. That’s a buzzword we’ve been hearing all day since the Counter-Strike series, the Quake series, and the WarCraft series (and its Dota mod form) made it popular in the late 90s. And yet it’s the one that draws the most attention.
Let’s start with a general consensus of esports’ parent: gaming (stats by Newzoo).
(i) the gaming industry earned US$106.4 billion in revenue in 2016 and managed to hit beyond US$116 billion by the end of 2017.
(ii) The industry also has an impressive projection of +8.2% compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) from 2016 to 2020. Basically, it’s just growing because of people showing huge interest in console, PC, and mobile games.
Now that you have a scope of that, here is a breakdown of esports:
(i) The esports industry has reached about US$696 million in revenue streams in 2017.
(ii) That is a 41.3% increase since 2016, with analysts projecting its numbers to reach an outstanding US$1.5 billion.
(iii) The mainstream audience has begun to pay more attention to the field. With 46 million unique online viewers for the Intel Extreme Masters Katowice World Championship 2017 tournament, that was broadcasted to the huge US$24 million prize pool for Dota 2 The Internationals 2017 tournament; esports is incredibly relevant in this day and age.
In short, there are no signs of this specific movement slowing down and showing signs of oversaturation yet.
However, the reality is that this only caters to a small percentage of the gaming populace worldwide, much less in Southeast Asia. There are a lot of talented Dota 2 and Counter-Strike: GO players out there, but there can only be a few who can do what teams like Mineski, Fnatic, and TNC Pro do.
It’s their lifeblood, and they put in a lot of hard work while fending off the pressure of being in the spotlight. They love it, but not all of us can do this. Yet we want to.
The revenues and viewership numbers are inspiring and show signs that esports is not going the way of the dinosaur anytime soon. In fact, these numbers mean that esports is, and will be, a huge market for people to jump into, that may possibly generate huge returns.
What if there’s a way to stay away from that spotlight? What if that other percentage, the 90% who are decent and have the drive to play well but cannot commit to such a “glamorous” lifestyle, can earn money nonetheless from their skill and passion?
Perhaps it can even be a full-time thing for these gaming souls if that new ecosystem and new platform can pull this off. A new lifestyle that can even help open more business opportunities and create jobs as an added bonus.
This is where Bountie comes in and, hopefully, changes the current gaming landscape for the better in Southeast Asia.
A Lifestyle Revolution in The Making?
In a nutshell, Bountie is a startup that is creating an upcoming platform that enables gamers to get paid playing games. This is completely different to entering a major esports tournament because (i) all Bountie tournaments are easily accessible online affairs, and (ii) all participants will get some form of winnings.
All you have to do is go online, turn on the game, then turn on the platform side-by-side. What can the platform do? It can help find the best players to match you up with for your team, help find players with similar skill rankings to fight against to keep the playing field levelled and give you your well-deserved wins into your account if you and your team manages to secure victory.
These winnings are predominantly in the form of a new cryptocurrency called Bountie Tokens, and work just the same as highly-trusted cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum. You can trade them for fiat money or for online purchases. But most importantly, it is the entry fee for all Bountie-sanctioned tournaments. The startup also plans to host “free tournaments”, whereby players without Bountie Tokens can participate and just prove their worth and valor to win them in the game of their choosing.
Apart from that method, Bountie Tokens can be:
(i) bought on Bountie’s platform, won by being on the top 10 Bountie gaming leaderboards list.
(ii) accumulated by doing Bountie daily quests (winning 10 games, getting 50 kills in a row, and so forth) and participating in referral programs,
(iii) won from promotional and marketing giveaways.
Bountie itself is creating an ecosystem that caters towards the gamers, publishers, distributors, and Bountie itself. It will be funded via advertising, sponsorships, tournament fees, sales commissions, tournament API, and more.
Gamers just need to worry about winning, while publishers and distributors make sure their games work prim and proper. Bountie will handle the backend that connects everything and makes sure gamers get their due. After all, what is the point of such a lifestyle-altering system if our base players and users aren’t getting paid for what they’ve trained hard and smart for?
On the flip side, creating such a platform means opening an untapped business opportunity; instead of catering to the aforementioned 10%, you help out the 90%.
Gaming for Coin, The 2018 Way
Bountie will be able to support any game that has competitive and multiplayer modes: Dota 2, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, PlayerUnknown’s Battleground, Fortnite, Overwatch, and more. Bountie’s platform will be able to generate its own tournament and leaderboard system.
All profiles under Bountie will be protected by blockchain technology. This isn’t the first time blockchain is being used for gaming: Enjin Coin helps make microtransactions easier and secure to pull off. Some games don’t allow in-game trading, so a platform like Enjin Coin can make it doable without any fear of bad transactions or fraud happening due to blockchain making that particular virtual ledger transparent for all.
Bountie plans to use blockchain in a more competitive manner; it can help search for better players to team up with and worthy opponents to compete with. The tech and its smart-contracts can also make all transactions and transfers in Bountie safe with no fraud or third-party charging fees or any of that nonsense in your standard online gaming platform-slash-distribution service.
Imagine your gaming profile being divvied up into multiple versions of a safeguarded ledger. The decentralized system in blockchain is one instance that separates Bountie from the rest.
By creating and building better players on Bountie, the startup plans to have these players take the next step: participate in bigger offline tournaments with bigger prestige and bigger glory. The startup is not taking pro players away from that high-level esports scene, although they are free to participate on the platform if they choose so. The startup is catering for the 90% out there who want to be in the top tier esports scene, but cannot fully commit to it. If they are fully motivated by this new lifestyle and ecosystem from Bountie, perhaps they too can aspire to go beyond that.
Even if they cannot reach that pinnacle of esports, at least the fallback plan isn’t as harsh, and they don’t have to stop gaming as a job. Think of Bountie as a safety cushion for people who still want to be playing and winning games as a day job that doesn’t require much travel, if any at all. Bountie is covering that sizeable niche who are willing to continue playing for Bountie Tokens and then cashing them out when the time is right.
Men (And Women) On A Mission
The 16-person team at Bountie are highly motivated and are actual gamers, so they know what they are doing with the platform and its long-term vision. CEO Lex Na is a former WarCraft III: The Frozen Throne professional player in Singapore back in the game’s heyday. CTO Darren Lee usually plays a lot of Overwatch in his spare time.
The startup is also chipping in to help out esports gaming teams like Team Impunity and Girlaxy. The former team are renowned for placing high in world-class Vainglory tournaments while the latter team champion and empower the female gaming space in the Singapore region, hosting all-girl tournaments like Eve of Legend.
On top of that, gaming brands like MSI Gaming, Logitech, DXRacer, and Creative, as well as esports bodies like SCOGA, are also partnering up with the startup to realize their vision and help the gaming and esports side of things. In fact, Bountie is getting advisors from Twitch.tv and esports luminaries like Marc Bell from MogulArena to make sure its app works as intended while also realizing the lifestyle it is going to shape.
CEO Lex Na feels that with these names on board, it adds a huge level of credibility to Bountie and how realistic and feasible its plan is. “We used to be gamers,” said Lex. “That’s why we want to change this landscape to cater to both the gaming community and ourselves. That’s why we need legitimate gaming partners to help us. That’s why we want to make this idea come through and continue for 5 years and beyond. All this is motivation enough to create a platform where you get paid doing what you love.”
“We want to incentivize gamers all over Asia to keep playing games while also creating this new lifestyle. No one so far is building a product that incentivizes day-to-day gamers to earn money doing what they love. We want to build a product for ourselves to enjoy at the same time as well. The drive is there.”
A New World Gaming Order
In the end, Bountie is certain that this is what gaming and esports needs: having its audience do what they love while getting more financial stability out of it. If Bountie fulfills even half of what it promises on its public white paper, like its grand plan of opening an esports arena to further accentuate the ecosystem and making the platform work on mobile games the following year, then the future of gaming and esports in Southeast Asia is looking grand.
If you wish to contribute to this new and exciting kind of vision in gaming, take part in Bountie’s Initial Coin Offering that is scheduled from 2nd June to 13th June. The pre-ICO period is 29th April to 2nd June, with a great incentive of 15 percent bonus Bountie Tokens up for grabs during this period. Head here for more information.