Esports just keeps getting better and better in almost every way possible with the most recent development being the move to put together player associations to cater for professional video gamers who play Counter-Strike: Global Offensive and Overwatch. Counter-Strike: Global Offensive’s association will include players in the FACEIT ECS as well as the ESL Pro. It is led by attorney Michael Doi and Esports broadcaster Scott “SirScoots” Smith.
In an interview with Sports Business Journal, Scott Smith said that the Counter-Strike Professional Players Association (CSPPA) will not be looking to establish itself as a United States Union simply because Counter-Strike players originate from many different parts of the world. However, the association will be working towards signing all of the 255 professional players.
“Every day I sign another guy,” he said. “I would say 70 or so have signed an official membership document that they are for the players association, are behind the players association, they want to be in the players association.”
There has not been any official news regarding the Overwatch players association but the officials have confirmed that formal details on the same will be availed in around four months. The Overwatch player association efforts are being led by former player and Overwatch coach Thomas “Morte” Kerbusch and sports labour attorney Ellen Zavian. It is reported that the Overwatch association is likely to be modelled after existing U.S. unions like the National Football League (NFL) Players Association.
“I don’t see this [players association] as any different than any other PA just because it’s eSports,” Zavian said. “So this isn’t something that will be a lighthearted step. This will be a big step.”
If the two associations are formed successfully they will be joining the Riot Games’ League of Legends players association that is ran by Hal Biagas. Esports player associations are still in the very first stages of development but many agree that it is certainly a logical step for competitive video gaming as it draws nearer to being a mainstream activity, just like traditional professional sports.