World of Warcraft Raid Race Turns into Race for Viewers on Twitch

red bull rwf

Credit: Blizzard Entertainment

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World of Warcraft’s Database-Link-e1521645463907 raiding race to world first has transformed into a different kind of race for the upcoming raid set to release next week on July 16. In the past, raiding teams, referred to as “guilds,” have often strayed away from broadcasting their efforts as a way to keep their strategies hidden from others looking to finish the instance (a separate area inside the game with content that requires a large team to complete) first. 

(Note: for more details on how the Race to World First works, click here)

However, following the model set by Method at the beginning of WoW’s most recent expansion that came out in the fall of last year, a plethora of guilds are not only looking to fight the raid’s final boss, they’re looking to fight for viewers. 

Early this week, Method Database-Link-e1521645463907 announced plans to work with TaKeTV Database-Link-e1521645463907 for the upcoming “Eternal Palace” raid that they will be attempting to finish before anyone else in the world, and as a part of commercializing and broadcasting their effort, Method will include coverage of a number of other top guilds from different regions. 

Following the announcement, Red Bull Database-Link-e1521645463907, which worked with Method to produce coverage of the last two major raid races , unveiled its own separate plans to broadcast a race to world first that will include coverage of a couple of notable omissions from Method’s coverage. 

eternal palace

Credit: Blizzard Entertainment

Top North American guild Limit and one of Europe’s predominant guilds Pieces will have players live at the Red Bull Gaming Sphere in London to have their raid racing attempts broadcast similar to the way Method did in January. The big difference being that this time around, coverage will be on Red Bull’s own Twitch channel.

Related Article: How the World of Warcraft Raid Race Turned into a Business Opportunity for Method

For Method, the inclusion of more top guilds to coverage is welcome, and Method co-founder Sascha Steffens said that having more guilds stream while competing as a way to commercialize the race will help ensure the long-term health of the event. 

“A lot of people might not know how fragile the race to world first has been in the past because it’s often been a one horse race,” he said. “We want to spice it up. We want to change things. Livestreaming the race to world first will not only develop the competition massively, but it will also ensure its survival.”

“We need to work together as competitors in this race in order to make sure that it develops and it survives.”

The coverage that comes from Method’s channel will be fairly straight forward. In classic TaKeTV fashion, a rotation of broadcasters will be cycled through as casual commentators of what Method is doing while they are raiding during European time at TaKe TV’s studio. 

“We need to work together as competitors in this race in order to make sure that it develops and it survives.”

Unlike a traditional broadcast where commentary comes from behind a desk, casters will instead be sitting on comfy couches to give viewers a feel that they’re getting more intimate interactions than a typical esports or traditional sports broadcast. This style of laid-back presentation has proven effective for other organizers in the past such as Beyond the Summit and the Homestory Cup.

“It’s more of a feel that you’re directly involved in this whole race, rather than having a disconnect between the casters and the viewers and the players,” Steffens said. “We’re really trying to melt that disconnect.”

Steffens added that while it is Method’s stream, the guilds that are predominantly displayed on stream will depend largely on the time of the day and who is performing the best. If one guild is pulling ahead of the pack, that guild will likely be featured more on the channel. 

However, the wide array of regions from which guilds involved are coming from will play a role for Method’s coverage as well. The 24/7 raid race coverage will obviously involve a lot of watching Method live, but once Method is done raiding on a given day, the coverage wont stop. 

method race

Credit: Method

After Method gets done, coverage is likely to transition toward more North American guilds like vodkaz and Big Dumb Guild. While they won’t be in-studio, Method’s rotation of broadcasters will be watching co-streamed content of guilds that are playing remotely and provide content and commentary over top of their raid. 

As North American guilds taper off from raiding, Asian guilds involved will likely begin raiding for the day and coverage will move toward them, and European guilds will again follow that completing a rotation of 24-hour coverage. 

“We want to give viewers a comprehensive overview of what’s going on,” Steffens said. “The concept is fairly simple that we provide commentary. Hopefully, if someone wants to follow the race they don’t have to be on 10 different streams or 20 different streams. They can be on one.”

With Red Bull entering the fray, it looks like there will be at least two sources of aggregated live commentary and coverage of the raid race though. As opposed to just having one guild playing in-person at a studio, Red Bull will have players from two separate guilds, one North American and one European. 

This is by far the biggest cumulative production effort that has gone into covering a WoW raid race.

Similar to Method’s stream, Red Bull’s coverage will also include remote coverage of other guilds participating in the raid race that will result in 24/7 coverage, and a list of sponsors including AOC, ASUS’s Database-Link-e1521645463907 Republic of Gamers, Secretlab Database-Link-e1521645463907, and HyperX Database-Link-e1521645463907.

Last raid race, Method had its own slew of sponsors and partners outside of Red Bull, which helped produce the show at the Gaming Sphere in London where Red Bull is doing its own separate coverage this time around. 

This time around Method will be working with MSI Database-Link-e1521645463907, Corsair Database-Link-e1521645463907, Fanbyte, Discord Database-Link-e1521645463907, Secretlab, Runtime Database-Link-e1521645463907, and Twitch. Steffens added that the organization has also received verbal commitments for future races from a few other brands that could not commit to this one due to short notice.

While each production of the raid race will have its own nuances and special elements, this evolution and commercialization of what was formerly a grassroots esports competition shows the power and potential that community-driven events can have in esports.

This is by far the biggest cumulative production effort that has gone into covering a WoW raid race, and if it turns out to be successful in attracting viewers, the ramifications could be massive for the commercial development of an esports event that was previously kept secret from the public eye until just last year.


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