A cohort of gaming veterans are developing a devoted gaming and esports network that puts the focal point on professional streaming celebrities — a channel referred to as VENN.
VENN, which stands for Video recreation Entertainment & News Network (pity we couldn’t paintings the G in there because we had been so close to having a community known as “VEGEN”), might be an MTV of sorts for esports and gaming-based personalities. The co-CEOs of the community encompasses Ben Kusin, previously director of recent media at Vivendi Games, and Ariel Horn, the esports manufacturer at Riot Games and Blizzard Entertainment.
VENN would be like an antique-school tv community — Horn and Kusin have repeatedly likened it to MTV — retrofitted to cater to gamers and esports fanatics. Speaking to TNW, each stated they desired to create a 24/7 news community for a completely particular target market:
Our audience is at the intersection of gaming and amusement, after which this Gen-Z and millennial generations… We’re catering to and raising [this audience of] two hundred million people an afternoon looking YouTube for gaming video content, or the 20 million subscribers Twitch has. We accept as true with those are formats that may be multiplied and produced in a manner that’s just like traditional tv.
That picture, of gaming media extended to a professional TV degree, is one Horn and Kusin each said countered the problems they noticed so far inside the enterprise. While talking with me about the now-mythical Fortnite movement with Ninja and Drake, Kusin agreed with me that the flow was allow-down a chunk by way of production values: “You’ve were given something so effin’ epic approximately Drake and JuJu and Travis Scott and Ninja on a move, yet you can barely listen any of them. You are sure as hell couldn’t see them. Imagine a layout in which they all are in a room with a stay studio audience in an opposition? Could you believe what that might look like it? It’s high-quality.”
While both Horn and Kusin were brief to guarantee me that’s a hypothetical and wouldn’t necessarily occur on VENN (both zipped up like handbags while requested approximately precise programming), they did say that they’re constructing two studios, one in New York and the other in Los Angeles. Both said they felt this will give the gaming network something it lacked:
Where does gaming stay? There’s no natural home for it at the moment. There are publishers, there are venues doping up that maintain esports activities. But there’s no 24/7 live venue that covers the gap. We’re giving a bicoastal way for humans to congregate and enjoy the enterprise.
While it’s too soon to mention who would be appearing on VENN, Horn and Kusin did deliver preferred thoughts on what (and who) we ought to count on to see: “We’re working on codecs across game suggests, fact tv, streaming, docuseries, information, and bringing it collectively with the quality skills you see these days. We trust the casters, the creators, the esports athletes, the streamers — we accept as true with those are the celebrities of nowadays.”
There’s a few reality to the perception that gaming in fashionable ought to gain from having a significant focal point: esports has lengthy suffered from the reality that it has no relevant governing body regulating it. That’s one of the reasons it’s supposedly been barred from being a part of the Olympics. It also can make it elaborate for people who desire to make gaming and esports their primary form of amusement — in the interim, you could be compelled to go to up to four or 5 special sites to peer the whole lot you may need to look.
There’s also an attraction to having a platform that particularly focuses on the seasoned streamers. It makes it easier to fold collectively likable, bankable personalities and advertisers, a procedure that’s heretofore been extremely disorganized. Communal gaming and esports have blossomed mainly in homegrown gardens, agencies of game enthusiasts united by way of a single shared hobby. VENN exists, as a minimum in element, to convey those organizations collectively, to be “a unique media emblem to unite a fragmented media market.”
Its creators plan to distribute VENN as a way and wide as possible, which include to YouTube, Twitch, Hulu, and Roku. According to Horn and Kusin, they intend to release in 2020.