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The GO Malta Esports Festival 2018

Starts: December 7th, 2018 at 4pm Ends: December 9th, 2018 at 7pm
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The GO Malta Esports Festival - GALLANTRY Malta

Gallantry Events will be partnering up with GMR Entertainment to provide the best Battalion 1944 tournament ever to date in Europe with a nice prize pool and the perfect offline gaming conditions for the participating teams. After their success in organizing a 16 team event in Budapest last July Gallantry Events will be joining forces to host an international and high-quality event during The GO Malta Esports Festival 2018. Starting with the physical venue itself, we’re taking gaming to one of the largest commercial centres on the island, that being the Malta Fairs and Conventions Centre in Ta’ Qali. All the competition will be hosted over 2,500 square metres of area! The central stage will match an incredible size, while spectators will also have the possibility to enjoy an Expo area and a Careers Convention area. A maximum of 16 international teams will head their way to the sunny island of Malta to participate in the Battalion 1944 Tournament, were friends and families can join the teams for a relaxing holiday. Casters and a production team over will also be present to broadcast the games online at a top notch level. The Battalion Tournament will start early morning at around 9am on Friday 7th December where teams will battle out each other in the group stage matches. Saturday 8th and Sunday 9th will be all about the elimination stage where the top teams will face each other and play on the biggest stage ever in Battalion 1944 history in order to crown the champion. Teams don't have to worry to search for Hotels, Transport etc since they will find all information one needs on our website, with very cheap and reduced rates for both. All one needs to do is get the team together, book the flights, check the website for all info and he is good to go to come to Malta. Due to the international coverage which the tournament will be treated with, it’s a fantastic opportunity for organisations to reach out internationally alongside a national presence. Thousands of viewers who will observe through the broadcast, while locals and foreigners will be present at the event - ready to witness some breath taking matches.  Be sure to visit the event website for more info regarding the battalion tournament and comment on the thread below if interested in joining.

The GO Malta Esports Festival - PUBG Open

At last year's GO Malta Esports Festival, Malta witnessed the first inclusion of PUBG competition on its shores as the battle-royale was only beginning to gain friction. Since then, the local playerbase supporting the title has grown exponentially as we've held further competition both locally and internationally. Needless to say, we'll be continuing support of the title in the upcoming MESF, with more stakes on the line than ever before.  The battle royale is one of the main components of the year's genre craze, as seen in other titles such as Fortnite and now, the upcoming Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 Blackout. These titles are different from each other, but all of which seem to be attracting the same player base. It consists of the basic BR elements, in which a large number of players, often reaching up to 100, deploy onto a set map from a passing carrier plane and select the desired spot to land on. Upon landing, the intense scavenging begins as players hunt for resources and weaponry to better their chances of survival in the constantly shrinking map. As the map closes in, forcing gunfights to ensue, player count decreases - this occurs until a final battle occurs to determine the ultimate victor, an exhilarating experience to say the least. This accomplishment may be achieved publically in the form of single, duo or squad teams. Since its initial craze, the title has been growing ever since.   To try to maintain the public's attention, the title has been subject to many updates; bringing in new maps, gamemodes, mechanics and reasons to play, while also providing access to mobile users and console from its PC origins.  Powered by BlueHole, the PUBG esports scene is growing steadily on the international horizon, although there remains room for improvement. Hence, we're constantly improving local PUBG competition, both locally and internationally.  First of all, the prize pool present is set to expand from its current standing. Sitting at a guaranteed €1500 at the moment, Gamers.com.mt is prepared to increase the prize pool should more than 10 squads be involved in the competition; more precise rules will be released at a later date on the tournament website. The venue for the specific tournament will be the BYOC Area, with a dedicated area for PUBG players, solely for the PUBG tournament and for PUBG players to reside and observe. For more information on how the tournament will work please the website.

Recap of the Blitzkrieg Masters Amsterdam 2018!

Gamers.com.mt has put in a tremendous amount of preparation for the world's first Battalion 1944 Major ever in the form of the Blitzkrieg Masters Amsterdam 2018, through our various interviews and content coverage. The best 16 teams in the world battled out for the $50,000 total prize pool, between the 27th and 30th of September. We've let the dust settle before breaking down how the first world championship of Battalion 1944 was. Roughly this time last month, we sat down and interviewed all team captains in preparation for the event. It added greatly to the tension, as every team confessed their intentions to win it all and listed out the top competition. Sadly, not all interviews could have been published as certain teams left the competition. Overall, as an esports journalist, I received a warm reception from the community as we all coordinated on a Discord server to ensure that everyone received their interview! Everyone was ready for an event.  And so it commenced, during that definitive weekend of competition, starting with pool play across all four groups. Within moments, bracket play was ready to begin with the following teams: Primal, LGC, Demise, Method, Entropy, 1UP, CRG, V.pro, nn, AVENUE, FE and of course, Endpoint. It should be noted that Primal was the only North American team still present at this point in the competition. Sadly, they quickly found the door in the first round of the bracket. Meanwhile, the Europeans continued competing until 4 were left for semifinals; Method, Demise, CRG and Endpoint.  Demise, who faced EndPoint in the final, had an equally impressive importance to arrive at the grand final, having only conceded one map up to that point, one less than EndPoint. Demise and EndPoint both swept their respective semifinals in the forms of Method and Comrade Gaming respectively, with the latter placing third. There isn't much to commentate regarding the final, except for the fact that it was a rather dominant BO5, in which EndPoint certainly deserved to be crowned the champions.  I had virtually sat down with Mark Horner of EndPoint, being the team captain - little did I know that it would be his team winning it all with him as the crowned MVP. Of course, many of our other interviews pinned the veteran team as a favourite for the event; safe to say that they filled those expectations. I do recall the interview as the most charismatic one which was conducted, with his clear intentions of winning the whole thing while I did have to edit certain words which couldn't be published, being much harsher than 'noobs'. Yet, such confidence may only be applauded after their victory, as "mark", "rEpIn", "synde", "cozje" and "reflexR" dismantled the competition, proving to be back-to-back champions.  Full tournament details can be found here. With the event complete, one begins to ask - what's next for Battalion 1944? Gamers.com.mt will be announcing something very exciting soon until then, congratulations to Team EndPoint! Let's see if we can grab an interview with the champions. 

The ePremier League - Inaugural Investment of a Football League in Esports

One of the most prominent football leagues in the world is, of course, England's Premier League, with certain powerhouse teams fielding fans and support from all over the world and embellishing high-quality competition. Many Maltese are quite invested in supporting some of the top teams. There's the Premier League and then there's the ePremier League? Haven't heard of it? It's a new idea fueled by the recent iteration of EA SPORT's FIFA.  Competitors investing time into FIFA 19, corresponding to those of British citizenship, can demonstrate their skills and represent one of the many Premier Clubs indirectly through the new ePremier League. Just like the field-played sport, a league will be carried out through the controller to discover a 2018-19 season champion - the first ever ePL champion.  All the curious action will require much less time than full 90 minute games; hence the inaugural ePL tournament will begin in January 2019, ending with March at the ePL Final to be broadcasted live on Sky Sports and Premier League social media channels. Note that online qualifiers will progress between January and March to skim down the registered participants through playoffs and group stages in order to arrive at 20 Premier League representatives per console. Registration opens on the 3rd of December through FUTChampions.com, with the chance of being the first ePL champion ever - winning prestige, prize and also some points to register into the FIFA 19 Global Series Playoffs.  This is exciting news for esports; one of the largest football leagues is recognizing esports for what it truly is - a different yet equal sport to that played with boots. It will be interesting to see how it develops over the years in terms of size. 

Project Eversio's New Black Ops 4 Team - 1 Week Left

We're always on the lookout to discover if local organizations are taking interest in new and upcoming titles, by creating teams and in doing so, taking a leap of faith in the future of the esport. That's what Project Eversio has done with their new roster for Black Ops 4, the most anticipated installment of the Call of Duty series for a while now.  Usually, we'd go ahead and list the four names that will be involved in the visceral first-person-shooter action of Call of Duty, but that's all changed. If it hasn't been made clear, the franchise which has embraced 4v4 competition ever since its conception, has decided to move up to 5v5 - perhaps to add gravity to strategy and position as seen in other shooters such as CS:GO. This has lead to an international rostermania, as four-man squads fumble around looking for the perfect fifth. The following are Project Eversio's new BO4 team members:  - Reuben Randu Grech - Owen Owages Agius - Josmar Boxer Chetcuti - Isaac LegendJoker Abela - Kieran Mischifer Parnis  Most of this team is rather familiar, as the first four names have been retained from the preceding installment in Call of Duty: WWII, each having their own great amount of experience both locally and internationally. The new addition is in the form of Mischifer, although Project Eversio are very confident in their choice of the veteran that's been competing since the days of Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare, placing top 8 in the CWL Finals Stage 1 Milan 2018.  The roster, as always, looks rather promising. Is this the year that we see a Maltese Call of Duty team take flight? If there's any Call of Duty that will provide the opportunity, it's Black Ops 4, which releases next week on the 13th of October. Gamers.com.mt cannot wait to organize the local competition for the title. 

An Opportunity in SIMRacing Broken Down by Justin Mifsud

Following our exclusive interview with the young Maltese SMIRacing talent of Bernard Vella, viewable here, Gamers.com.mt has decided to delve deeper into the realm of SIMRacing; especially that of Malta. To do so, we consulted one of the experts in the field, being a professional working with GT OMEGA RPM Esports, the company who's looking to build an academy for youth - World Pro Racing. Below is his statement in Maltese.  Justin Mifsud:  World Pro Racing torganizza tlielaq tal motorsport virtwali f’livel kemm lokali specjalment internazzjonali, se tiftah akkademja ghal xufiera kemm Maltin kif ukoll barranin. Wara is successi li kisbet barra min xtutna f’livell professjonali ta organizzazjoni iddecidiet li tiftah bieb iehor biex tghin lil sewwieqa li jixtiequ jiksbu karriera fl-Esports bhala xufiera professjonali. Din l-akkademja ser tkun qed taghti tahrig intesiv u fl-livelli differenti li jibdew min Amateur u jibqghu tilghin sa l-oghla livell. Wara hafna ezercizjji matul is sena, it team ta World Pro Racing ser ikun qieghed jaghmel testijiet biex jintaghzlu diversi xufiera li orew li huma promittenti u ghandom it-talent biex jaghmlu parti mit team professjonali GT OMEGA RPM Esports. L-etajiet jibdew min sitt snin u jibqghu tilghin il fuq. Dan it tahrig is sir mhux biss ghas settur ta l-esports pero anke biex ikun hemm preparamenti ghal tlielaq reali fid dinja tal Motorsport. Din tista tghin peress li f’Malta mghandiex fejn nipprattikaw u dik hija l-unika soluzjjoni li tista tipprattika it trakka li se ssuq fiha qabel it tigrija reali. Dan it tahrig ser isir onlajn sakemm jitlesta is Simulation Centre gewwa Malta. Kull xufier li jintaghzel huwa mehtieh li jkollu steering wheel kif ukoll il pedali, kompjuter u ovjament Internet. Ix xufiera li ser jaghmlu parti min din l-akkademja ser ikunu jistghu jigu f’dan il post u jigu imharga min xufiera ta esperjenza kemm fis settur ta l-Esports kif ukoll fil Motorsport reali. It tahrig ma jinkludix biss tlielaq fit trakkek, izda anka kif iggib ruhek ma xufiera ohra, kemm tkun prezentabbli u professjonali quddiem camera jew waqt intervista, kif taghmel promozzjoni tajba lil kumpanijji li qieghdin jissapportjawk. B’hekk wara dan it tahrig kollu ix xufier tista tghid li jkun komplut mhux biss li jkun tajjeb fis sewqan imma wkoll mid dehra u kif jippresenta ruhu fil publiku. Kif jista’ wiehed tapplika? Kull min ghandu computer, steering u pedali u ovjament internet jista japplika biex jintaghzel. Huwa importanti illi taghti deskrizzjoni dettaljata ta esperjenza li ghandek fis sim racing, kif ukoll l-amont ta hin li tista tiprrattika, biex tkun tista tigi maghzul fil categorija li hija addatta ghalik. Kull min hu interessat jista jibaghat email fuq academy@worldproracing.com u jhalli id dettalji tieghu. In English, it's quite simple. Basically, World Pro Racing will be opening an academy with the intention of developing professional SIMRacing drivers through weekly training and exercise. Age of entry is 6 up, with every applicant expected to have an internet connection, peripherals and of course, the passion to drive. Driving etiquette and professionalism is equally important to skill. Anyone who's interested needs to contact the included email.  We're very grateful for the breakdown from Justin Mifsud - this being an incredible opportunity for anyone looking for a start in esports racing. Gamers.com.mt quite likes the idea of it and is excited to view the professional SIMRacers that come out of it. 

Hating on Esports in 2018 - Breaking the Stereotype

School's in session, sadly enough, with a great portion of the youth dragging their heels back to the classroom. With that theme in mind, I fancy dishing out some education myself in response to the question - why is it that certain people are still against or 'hating on' esports in 2018? To discuss this, I'll be pulling on cases of this dislike both locally and internationally, while properly understanding the stereotype which still hangs on the term of excessive gaming.  In my eyes, everyone who lives in a country with an internet connection has been exposed to video games of some form at some point in time - it's simply inevitable. Whether be it through first-hand experience or watching others across the numerous platforms such as console, PC and mobile; everyone forms an opinion on it as an action. Gaming is the act of playing a game, for whatever reason that may be. Competitive gaming is the act of playing a game with the intention of competing against others for pride and prize - this is referred to as 'esports' as it embraces the mentality of sport in a virtual reality. In order to reach this level of gaming, heavy practice is required (just like in sports) in order to develop certain skills, hand-to-eye coordination and in-game knowledge to use in order to best an opponent and perhaps interact with teammates better. This is quite different to excessive gaming, the recently diagnosed 'addiction' courtesy of the WHO, which has pinned gaming as a possible mental addiction. Prior to the incredible scale which the esports industry has climbed, 'gamers' were stereotypically viewed as introverted loners locked up in their mother's basement- but although many would argue for this, those who are aware know that this stereotype should have died a long time ago, yet it just hasn't. Some people are still quite against the idea of esports, competing for prizes similar to and even larger than certain physical sports due to the fact that it's seen as lazy. Of course, Gamers.com.mt and anyone educated knows that esports is a battle of skill and strategy with a huge skill gap across the many titles and genres. Still, we have some way to go in order to properly defeat the stereotype.  What triggered my appetite for this topic was a recent event which saw sports fans rebelling against investment into esports. Occurring in Switzerland, a league football game between Basel and Young Boys was interrupted from both sides of the pitch as the two crowds united under a banner of rebellion against esports. In doing so, the match was paused and restarted as protests 15 minutes into games made further action impossible. Tennis balls and controllers were thrown onto the turf, a large "pause" button banner and other banners directly stating "esports are shit" were made visible in the stands and chants were sung. The crowd does not want their teams to invest in esports, it seems, for some reason. Perhaps they don't find esports to be equal to sports? At this point I'm hypothesizing since no arguments were displayed, just a strong resent for esports.  Another instance, which shows the more cynical approach which many take to esports, came thanks to the interpretation of Jimmy Fallon on his popular show. With the recent happening of a gamer appearing on the cover of ESPN, the American National Sports magazine, Ninja did not appeal to Fallon. Being a former esports player, it was shocking to see a gamer on the face of the magazine, a former esports competitor. Here's what Fallon had to say:  ESPN magazine this bi-week by Tyler ‘Ninja’ Blevins, who is one of the world’s greatest Fortnite players. He’s a video gamer, this is the first time a video game player has been on the cover of a major sports magazine. Some people consider this guy, Ninja, to be an athlete, because he streams for up to 12 hours a day and has, I guess, a lot of physical dexterity. And if that’s true, congratulations masturbating teens - you’re going to the Olympics! Fallon points at the controversial topic - are esport competitors considered athletes? Technically yes, but it's the interpretation of physical ability that divides most people. Although they do prepare, practice, compete for prizes either in teams or alone, an incredible hand-to-eye coordination is not enough for most people who expect whole body movement. However, lets take SIMRacing, a topic which we discussed quite recently thanks to an interview with a Maltese youngster (https://www.gamers.com.mt/news/851/interview-with-bernard-vella-the-young-maltese-simracing-prodigy) - wouldn't more people be convinced in that context that esports makes athletes? Isn't turning a resisting wheel in a precise manner not physically demanding? The couch potato mentality is strong here, frustratingly enough. Most competitors out there are actually quite self-conscious when it comes to their fitness, as gaming is a sedentary action. Next time you're watching esports content, look out for how many people fill-in this 'couchpotato' identity, not to make fun of them, but to show how wrong most people are - we've come to that point. Anyway, what's wrong with being a little overweight and an esports competitor simultaneously? Nothing, because the stereotype has expired. Fallon then goes on to talk about the extremely inflated topic of 'Fortnite coaches' to try solidify his argument. His large media presence is not encouraging.  We'll turn our attention to the local area, through the internet. Esports is still quite young in Malta, but with the help of companies such as us, Gamers.com.mt, it's on its way to continuously grow every year. Yet, some still find local resistance. On a certain Facebook post, the one in which we shared an interview with Kurt Aquilina, a comment with 88 threads erupted over the concept of esports. Certain people were fixed on random and untrue facts, such as 'esports is a detriment to modern society', and thoughts such as 'gamers are better suited for life on other planets' to paraphrase from Maltese. Many fought on behalf of esports, although it's safe to say that this mindset was set in stone. What was the point of this article? To highlight the modern treatment of the competitive gamer and the state of esports within people's minds using cases. Not everybody agrees with it - some people doing so without properly understanding it. When I get asked about my work and I reply with 'esports journalist' I do earn funny looks; most asking what exactly I write about. I explain and most will try to comprehend while others leave with the impression that I write about gaming, which is not too accurate. Yet, whatever happens, one can only imagine how much esports will grow within ten years both internationally and locally - maybe the stereotype will change by then.  We'd love to hear your contributions in the comments section down below! 

Blitzkrieg Masters Amsterdam 2018 - Interview with Method

The final team to form part of Blitzkrieg Amsterdam was none other than Method, acting as one of the wild cards involved. This season, they have fallen short of their expectations, finishing 5th to 8th at Gallantry Budapest while being knocked out of the 2 online qualifiers participated in. Still, Bulkhead is giving the veterans on the squad another chance to compete at the highest level of Battalion 1944. We've interviewed Ralph qwertYYY Balder, of 28 years, on behalf of his team to learn more.  1.) How are you preparing yourselves for the upcoming event, the first ever Battalion 1944 Major?  We are preparing by playing every map until we feel comfortable on it. We might try to go to a boot camp if we feel the need and have the time for it. 2.) For how long has your team been waiting for an opportunity to play Battalion 1944 at this level? I think all of us have a history of competing at the highest level in competitive games, especially the Call of Duty games. So, I guess we bring some valuable experience to the table which we're keen to make the most of in every situation.  3.) What are your goals heading into the event? What placing are you aiming at? We're not messing about - we are always aiming to win. I would say top 3. 4.) What was your experience in the online qualifiers? Where there any negatives and positives you’d like to point out? Having the qualifiers during the weekends was very annoying for us. We basically never had all 5 on to play the qualifiers. I would have rather seen a league and invite the top contenders of the league together with some other invites. Overall, a frustrating experience from our side, which could be improved next time around.  5.) From the online qualifiers, what is your team’s judgement on the level of competition at this time in the title’s lifespan? How much room for improvement is there?  I think there's an interesting combination of teams who are playing together for a while and some very talented new teams. There is definitely room for improvement, especially since teams are still figuring out what works best in the economy system. 6.) If not yourselves, what teams form the top competition for the first place spot? I think Comrade Gaming are looking very strong with their new lineup - I would watch out for them.  7.) Do you plan to keep competing in Battalion 1944 after the Major is finalized?  Yeah although we're not completely sure; it all depends on the plans that Bulkhead have coming up for us. 8.) How do you view the updates which have recently hit the title? Have they all been general improvements? MU2 has been great and has changed the game completely. They had pushed the sniper out of the meta which was a bad decision, but they seem to have fixed that now. 9.) What would you change, if you could, in Battalion 1944 mechanics, maps and weapons?  I feel like jump shooting in combination with the jump height is still too powerful in the game. Besides that the Carbine and Gewehr are way too spammy, you are forced to spam mouse1 like a madman in order to get the maximum fire rate, it feels very vulnerable to macros and probably favours certain mice too much. Maybe they should make the Carbine and Gewehr automatic rifles with a set fire rate. Map design needs a lot of work. Maps are lacking verticality and are way too chokey at the moment. For example Coastal could be a lot better when a first floor is added to T-house, that way attacking mid is less awkward and that would benefit the whole map. Making the maps less chokey would also be great for casual play, right now it takes a lot of coordination and team play to push out of the chokes - something that won't happen in casual play. 10.) Any advice for those Battalion 1944 rosters which are struggling to reach the level of competition needed for the event?  Build a team with players you are comfortable with. It's all about teamplay in Battalion 1944.  The roster of DAVY, knaller, toxjee, rEb1rth and qwertYYY simply screams potential - and they are yet to realise it. It's in a lack of results that the will of a team is tested most, if they can just stay together and learn off of each other, they can mend their earlier performances with a strong finish at Amsterdam. 

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