Introducing Yoshi’s Invitational

Discussion in 'Articles' started by Dawg, Jan 31, 2017.

  1. Dawg

    Dawg Co-Founder Co-Founder NPA 7 Champion

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    Article Here: http://www.trainertower.com/introducing-yoshis-invitational/

    Today it was announced that Markus Stadter (@13Yoshi37) would be hosting an invitational here on Trainer Tower in an attempt to grow Pokemon as an esport. Most of the discussion on this has taken place on Twitter and I would like to provide an outlet for people to provide feedback, thoughts, predictions, or anything related to this invitational here as opposed to being confined to 140 characters. Keep things civil, and grimerposting/anything not contributing to a healthy discussion will be deleted.
     
  2. BreederBen

    BreederBen Member

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    I feel as if us "the community" should have been able to vote on players playing in the tournament rather than 8 selected who we donate money to. Feel as if its a bit of a "boy group" you may call it. I also don't like supporting wolfe when he is attacking the community the way he is.

    No malice intended but this is how i feel.
     
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  3. GreenGogoatttt

    GreenGogoatttt Member

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    i personally love the idea of seeing 8 high level players duke it out to see whos the best, but i think the way this is run holds it back.

    he made a tour, picked himself out of 1/8, and asked people to donate money to a pot, where the funds don't go anywhere productive. i think the tour would be much better if the funds went to charity or a nice cause instead of a small group of players.

    while i do not think the intentions were to steal the vgc community's money, i definitely think thats the impression some people got. i think its a great idea just not done the best it could of been.

    also sejun is the most expensive dlc LOL wtf is up with that
     
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2017
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  4. Stratos

    Stratos Well-Known Member

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    I'm not casting doubt on motivations—I'm sure that patting himself on the back was never what yoshi intended. He wanted to have a highly televised invitational tournament with a prize pool that brings the hype. But you have to realize that hosting a very small invitational and then trying to crowdfund a huge pot bonus, and then making yourself one of the few players in the invitational is a problem. As the tournament organizer, giving yourself a shot at the pot bonus the community is providing, while excluding other people from having an equal chance as well on frankly arbitrary standards is just a problem. This tournament would be cool if the player selection process was different; either whoever selects the players should be ineligible to play, or it should be a wide vote.
     
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  5. cobalte

    cobalte Member

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    out of curiosity - how many people would be ok with this if there was some sort of qualifier allowing others to play (hit that like button can we hit ONE MILLION etc), or are there other issues that this does not solve

    the other option would be partial charity donation

    this is just from my perception that the problem people have is the dollar bills and handling of
     
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  6. pookar

    pookar Active Member

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    hi! this event seems to cause a lot of weird discussions on twitter but I wanted to offer my viewpoint on this. it's okay to disagree with it, but there are lots of positives and negatives about this event.

    one point of contention is the 8-person format. I've seen people upset about this, but for one i think this is irrational. Esports, notably Hearthstone, often have events where the invited players haven't "Earned qualification" and are invited due to popularity. Luckily, for VGC, most of the popular players are actually pretty good players too! There is nothing wrong with events wanting to draw viewers. The hypothetical next event could be a 16 person event, with 8 challengers from a separate tournament, or more invitations, but you need to set a foundation if you want to make this a consistent thing to draw people to actually watch your event.

    the other, more dynamic and contentious point, is the prizes/money. Amalgame's pool isn't the cause of contention, but this "gofundme"-esque "get sejun to play for 1k" community pool. A lot of people are skeptical of this, and to be fair, why wouldn't they be? Just a few years back, there was a wolfe gofundme that nobody saw any product of, questions about whether markus really tried vs wolfe at worlds top 4, just a lot of questionable pooch in the past, is all I'm putting out there, and people probably won't say that in public because it's taboo. I'm definitely not saying "don't profit or raise money for events", but this particular situation just seems exploitative for the community. There is ALSO no reason that people can't profit and raise money while also contributing to the community, so at the same time it isn't fair to berate your popular content creators for trying to put their passion to work either.

    I love this idea of the invitational, I want this to work because it is actually a good idea, it just doesn't seem fair to attach a "gofundme" to the event before it even gets off the ground.
     
  7. Carson

    Carson Well-Known Member

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    While the premise of this is great, it looks like a failed version of the Smash Summit. If you don't know what that is, the 10 best Super Smash Bros. Melee players were all invited to a house for a few days for a tournament. Then, the community voted on the last 6 players while donating to various stretch goals and pot bonuses. The problem with this tournament however, is that the players were already chosen. It doesn't give people much incentive to donate when they do not feel as if they are influencing something. If this tournament were to expand to 16 players with the last 7 being voted on as a community with Sejun still being the stretch goal, I think it would be perceived by the community in a more positive light.
     
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  8. Dane

    Dane Well-Known Member

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    My Thoughts

    I definitely appreciate a streamed tournament featuring high level play, and I am willing to support efforts like this. I understand tournaments like this can be difficult to run and top players are quite busy with real life an preparing for in person events. For that reason it makes sense to me as to why the first tournament of this kind would be small and open mainly to high-level players that are close friends. If other subsequent tournament run after this features a similar small group of friends I'd be concerned but since this is first tournament organized by these players I'll give the player selection for this tournament a pass. In the future I'd expect a more transparent selection process so we know that this isn't just a way of letting a small group of players keep cashing in off the pot.

    The donation system however I don't really understand. Even as someone who has the money and is willing to use it to support the community, I don't really see a reason to donate to the tournament. My $25 donation will just make someone's winning $525 instead of $500/ I don't see how that gets me as a donor involved at all (unless I want some gastlies, bronzongs, or want to pony up a lot of money for face time with the players) If I'm going to just give money directly to content creators like that I'd rather do it through a stream donation or something. When I think of a well run donation system, I want something that actively engages me as a donor. Something like smash summit were the money donated goes towards getting specific players into the event. I don't think something like that is feasible right now with the current size of the VGC community but it captures a general idea: a good donation based pot should engage the donor. This is why a lot of people on twitter suggested a charity tournament, that would engage donors by having them get to give money to a good cause while also helping to show support for some top level VGC Play. I'm not really sure what the answer is here though, it's hard to build a good donation system and its also hard to enrich the pot just off entry fees because toy either need high entry fees or a lot of players and that can really stretch out the length of the tournament

    All in all I'm very happy to see more content from you guys recently, and would be happy to support (especially when you guys do streams when I'm not at work :) ). I'm sure its frustrating to see something you've worked on be poorly received, especially when people contribute the short comings of the tournament to malice when they are just as likely to be due to timing, logistics, and experience in running tournaments like this. I think something that goes a bit under the radar in all this is that wolfe put up $100 of his own money for this tournament so the quick rush to malice seems misguided, even if the pot reaches $1000 he has to win the tournament >10% of the time just to break even on average. I hope you will take the time to listen to some of the valid concerns raised about this tournament, and use this as a learning experience rather than seeing the complaints as attacks from whiners. We all love the same game (80% of the time) and would like to see some more hype tournaments
     
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2017
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  9. AbruptFury

    AbruptFury New Member

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    Ok. I've thought about this, and this invitational does make sense. The people who would be attending it are well-respected VGC players. Showcasing the best of the best could certainly be a good way to get people into VGC. But I feel like there should've been some discussion with other VGC players and fans about this before it was thrown together. The donation prizes aren't really tempting until the later ones. Who doesn't want to be coached by Markus, Aaron, or Wolfe? The question of where the money is going is an important one. People want to know what they are supporting. So I'd be interested in hearing it. There was a little criticism from Wolfe earlier about immaturity amongst VGC players. I can understand it, but those are the people from whom the money is would likely be coming from. So insulting them isn't very wise.

    In the end, this is their idea after all. They will proceed with it as they wish. Just don't be surprised when it doesn't get backed.
     
  10. NightLight

    NightLight Member

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    First off, i just wanted to take a step back and say that we're all on the same team here. Us as a community should be working together in making Pokemon more recognizable as an esport. And i feel like we're doing a really good job so far. I wanted to recognize ZeldaVGC's Melbourne tour for being absolutely amazing. And i also wanted to recognize Smogon's VGC tour for also being run amazing. You both really outdid yourselves.
    I like to stay impartial on these sorts of things, seeing as how getting in little arguments isn't gonna make our problems magically go away at the end of the day. But i did want to point out that there's no way Markus would host a VGC tour asking for our money, if it wasn't benefiting us in some way. Sure there's the prizes that go along with donating a certain amount of money, but that doesn't even matter when you take a step back and look at the big picture! They're trying to create lots of attention and much needed exposure to VGC as a whole through the streams and media coverage going along with it
    If you disagree for whatever reasons you have, then that's completely fine. Everyone has their own opinion / reasoning. Nobody's telling you that you have to donate. Just try your best to avoid conflict, because that's not helping anyone!
     
  11. blubobebabi

    blubobebabi New Member

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    I'm sure Markus didn't make the invitational with any bad intentions, but here are my thoughts on it as a new player (that many others have already pointed out):

    I understand that an "Invitational" means that only players with invites can play, but I don't think that people should donate to so few players, and especially ones that they haven't chosen and may not support. The "prizes" for donations are pretty outrageous. I mean, $15 for a breedject? The coaching sessions are...ehh but the most ridiculous one would definitely be $1000 for Sejun to play. It's almost like this is solely for the players' profits.

    Markus said this is supposed to "get some exposure for the players" but the ones in the invitational are already pretty well-known within the community and are successful enough without donations (I assume so given how many tournaments they attend per season). I think it would be better if it featured lesser known players who battle for prize money to attend tournaments that they may not be able to. This can show that the community wants to give each player a fair chance and not just bump the popular players even more? Idk this probably sounds really offensive but how else could I put it? I'm sure it's great for viewership since they're so popular but it's a letdown for those who don't have any exposure or experience. The Melbourne Challenge held by zeldavgc (sorry don't know real name) was a better tournament for growing the community because as long as you paid the entry fee, you pretty much had an equal chance at winning prize money. In conclusion, what I'm getting at is the lack of equality structured in this invitational.

    I'm a huge fan of most of the players in this tournament, but I wouldn't support it since it mostly seems to benefit the players. This is still definitely a good idea for helping Pokémon grow as an eSport, just not executed correctly. My thoughts might seem really negative but I do see the light in this.
     
  12. Giddy

    Giddy New Member

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    The Invitational is a really great idea from a spectator standpoint and to grow the community but the way it's being executed is not so great. Asking for donations which go straight to the winner's pocket feels forced and and too soon for such a small community, the donation rewards was at least a half decent way to get around this but the rewards themselves are pretty bad.
     
  13. Team Rocket Elite

    Team Rocket Elite Member

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    Why is Amalgame pledging money to a tournament with no Japanese players? I'm not a Japanese player so maybe I am completely off base here but this just seems strange to me. I feel like their time and money is better spent on tournaments that actually help promote communication between Japan and the rest of the world.

    Where's Arash? I know 8 players isn't a lot which means big names get cut. Even considering that, I still have to ask. Where's Arash?

    How much of the donated money will go into the prize pool? Matcherino's FAQ ( https://matcherino.com/faq/ ) says they take 4%. Will all of the other 96% go into the prize pool?

    In regards to the complaints about rewards and stretch goals. I think the organizers largely run into one of the problems VGC has always had: "What non-cash prizes can you give to VGC players?". I feel like the result of trying to deal with this problem are a bunch of Patreon style rewards except they are being marketed towards more than just hardcore fans. As a result, they fall flat and perhaps even look a bit insulting. But what else are they going to do? It wouldn't surprise me if they have boxes of Pokemon TCG cards to give away but I'm not sure VGC players want those, either.

    Sejun Park as $1000 DLC? I think that was meant as a token stretch goal that was never meant to fail. It doesn't seem like there's a fallback plan if it doesn't work. Would they really cut Sejun and run a 7 person tournament? I doubt they would want to do that.
     
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  14. blarajan

    blarajan Well-Known Member

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    Okay, I'll put my money where my mouth is and actually post my thoughts as to my problems with this tournament and why the "smogon squad" has been as opposed to this tournament as has been demonstrated on Twitter. I guess it was insulting to the participants and organizers, but without someone sparking the fire this was not going to get the attention it deserved.

    I don't have any qualms with an invitational. Invitational tournaments in and of themselves are not problematic. Hosting this tournament among yourselves, getting hype players involved, figuring out a prize pool or whatever incentive structure gets you all to play seriously, and showing off those sets is all fine. I don't mind that, at all. I also don't mind pay-to-play tournaments. Or, things like the Smogon VGC tournament, which has a cash prize with no entry fee. Whatever tournament structure you want, that's fine. I don't care who the participants are at all.

    My problem with this tournament, and why I made the Twitter comments that I did, is all of the issues with this tournament become actual problems because the community is being requested to contribute financially for this tournament (and the "donation incentives" are just pandering to your popularity, nothing more). The limited invitation, how the participants were chosen, the fact that the community can't be a part of the tour, the host choosing himself, that most of the players are individuals who would make money playing this game anyways, etc. on top of the tournament not even being completed yet ($1000 before the 8th player participates?) etc. don't matter UNTIL YOU ASK FOR FUNDING FOR THE EVENT FROM THE COMMUNITY.

    I get it, we don't have to participate, we don't have to fund it, whatever. However, everyone involved is a reputable, popular player with a substantial fan base. If you all advertise this as a good idea and as for community development, then your large fan bases will agree with you and think this is a good tournament. New users who don't know any better think this is a good tournament.

    So what happens if the community funds this tournament? It's rather limited in value, honestly, and seems like a tenuous attempt at disguising a "let's make top players more money" tournament. At this point, we get matches among friends as content, when we could likely expect many of these players to stream together or battle each other for YouTube content anyways. Besides that, we get no benefit outside of nonsense like breedjects. And, your word that this is good for the community.

    I just don't see how this is good for the community. If the players involved are refuting the idea that this is just a cash grab because they don't care about the money, then I can't figure out why the community is being requested to pay for this tournament. I want to be wrong, but I just don't see how this is beneficial at all right now when it seems like a tournament that closed its doors for the community except for a dollar-bill sized hole.
     
  15. Darnell Washington

    Darnell Washington Member

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    1/8 =12.5% so that's already > 10%

    This is the type of stuff you learn in big bidness school.
     
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  16. Muhammad Nazmi

    Muhammad Nazmi New Member

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    This is bad honestly
    1. Where will all the prize money go?
    2. We need a tournament similar to ZeldaVGC's tournament instead not some weird invitational that will only make the Top players more popular, to grow as a community newer players need exposures to the scene, Open Tournaments is the answer
    3. Rewards are too expensive, why would any of them wanna pay $30 just to play with Markus?
    4. Sejun is the most expensive DLC ever.
    5. VGC Community needs to learn a lot from successful esports community such as LoL, CSGO, Dota 2 etc.
    6. And lastly why is Markus even inviting himself in the tournament? A host playing in his own tournament????
     
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  17. squirrelboyVGC

    squirrelboyVGC Developer

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    I was going to comment but then I realized blarajan hit the nail on the head.
     
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  18. makiri

    makiri Well-Known Member

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    Quite frankly this is supremely disappointing and I'm afraid will scare people off of doing crowdfunded things again in the future. I think at the base there is nothing wrong with the ideas, an exclusive invitational for people to watch would be exciting. Once you get past that though there are problems on problems.

    One of the biggest issues I have is the host playing in the tournament. If there is one thing that I wish people got from all the tournaments I ran is that hosts should not be playing in the tournament they host. I qualified for one of the NBI but I relinquished my spot. It is very weird putting your name on the tournament, asking people to pay for the prize pool, then inviting yourself. Its almost as if you don't care about "the community" and just want to make a quick buck for you and your YouTube channel. It is very gross and I can't support something like this.

    Say what you will about some of the incentives, it is difficult to create incentives for the VGC community, but breedjects of a Pokemon for $15?

    Maybe if Yoshi and Wolfe recused themselves from the tournament I would be much more on board, but as it stands this is entirely a "tournament" for self promotion and entirely self congratulatory.

    And I think the most important thing on the minds of everyone, where in the world is the footage that we all donated to Wolfe several years ago? With his track record already very iffy, why should we support you again?
     
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  19. liquidmonk

    liquidmonk Well-Known Member

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    I think a decent number of arguments in here make a lot of sense and it may be that the manner in which the crowd-funding was executed isn't ideal. That being said, I think the initial response on Twitter to the announcement was completely out of hand. Pokemon has always been described to me as a tight-knit community, but what I saw today was hardly that. Rather than give Markus the benefit of the doubt on a project he'd clearly been working hard on and let him explain his thought processes, the community quickly ganged up on it, even so far as to call the event "scummy" and proceed to follow up with a flood of memes. From my perspective of someone who only put in a small amount of work into the event, it was incredibly disheartening.

    Having talked to Markus prior to the announcement of this event, I can assure you that his intentions were not that of an easy cash grab. Quite frankly, winning this event full of talented players probably means a lot more than whatever the 1st place prize would have been. I know the term "grow the game" is a meme these days in this community, but this event was part of a larger plan to do just that.

    I don't want to put words in Markus's mouth, so I won't try to explain the reasoning behind most of the decisions he made for his tournament. But one thing I want to point out that no one has really touched on is the invited list of players. These kinds of events are largely restricted to players who have capture cards. If you have an eight-player tournament, at least seven must have capture cards for the event to function.

    If there's any silver lining or any takeaway from this whole situation, it's that conversations about controversial topics are much more suited to forums rather than Twitter. The back and forth on Twitter was heated, charged, and honestly quite hurtful. Meanwhile, for the most part, the discussion here has been well-reasoned, calm, and collected. Hopefully this thread can be the start of a trend of civil discourse within the community.
     
  20. kingofmars

    kingofmars Well-Known Member

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    If this isn't about the cash, don't have the players that were preselected pocket 100% of the cash that you expect the community to put up.

    I know that this isn't about greed from you guys, but I just cannot understand how you looked at this and went "yep this is a great structure that everyone will approve of"
     

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