Our first few weeks after the official launch of AnyKey have been packed to the brim with exciting opportunities. We supported the Intel Challenge in Katowice where we saw eight teams compete through the group stages to provide some of the most exciting CSGO matches of the weekend. It was standing room only during the nail-biting semi-finals between top North American teams, CLG Red and Team Karma, and then an unquestionably strong showing by WRTP (now acquired by Team Secret) against Team LDLC brought together top teams CLG Red and WRTP for a strong Best-of-3 finals. Despite the intensity from CLG Red, WRTP won the Championship without losing a map, proving their dominance in the global women’s CSGO scene.
As an appropriate post-mortem follow-up to this event, we then took the AnyKey message to the Game Developers Conference in San Francisco on March 15th where Director of Initiatives Morgan Romine joined up with CLG Red player Stephanie “missharvey” Harvey to give a talk about Running A Women’s Esports Tournament. During this 30 minute shared discussion, the two esports veterans talked about women’s tournaments as an important stepping-stone for women into main esports tournament events, while emphasizing that women’s tournaments should only be part of the overall solution to building the women’s competitive scene. They made the point that the ultimate goal of diversity initiatives like AnyKey involves a vision of main events that includes men and women competing on the same, big stages.
For a detailed summary of this GDC talk, Arthur Gies from Polygon did a great overview. And for more thoughts about diversity in esports and the role of women’s tournaments in the larger strategy for growing a diverse competitive scene, watch this Yahoo Esports interview with Morgan. We expect this question about the value of all-women’s tournaments to continue being an important point of discussion in AnyKey’s upcoming activities.