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Esports officially arrives in Japan, home of game giants

George Miller

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Esports officially arrives in Japan
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A crowd cheers, banging on balloons, in front of glitzy stages, each with a giant screen. The rising stars at the sprawling Makuhari Messe hall are the quietly seated men in hoodies and T-shirts, with names like Noppi and Refresh, jiggling on buttons and grimacing at screens.

Esports has officially arrived in Japan.

Although Japan is home to video game giants like Nintendo Corp., Sony Corp. and Bandai Namco, massive game fans as well as individual star game players, it’s surprisingly behind the rest of the world in esports — professional game-playing recognized as a sport that’s vibrant in the U.S. and Europe.

But with talk that elite computer gaming may become an official Olympic sport, Japan is determined to catch up.

Esports has become a medal event at the 2022 Asian Games, a sign that mainstream recognition is growing. Global esports fans are estimated to number 500 million by 2020, according to game-market researcher Newzoo.

Japan Esports Union, or JESU, was launched Feb. 1 to promote esports, issue licenses to professional players in Japan, standardize rules and qualifications and support and nurture future players. The union has won the backing of Japan’s game software makers as well as technology companies, such as video-sharing niconico.

That means big money can be legally up for grabs at tournaments, expected to spring up here, with powerful sectors at work to make sure esports is booming in Japan.

Game Party Japan 2018, at Makuhari, in the Tokyo suburb of Chiba, began Saturday and continues through Sunday as the first esports event after JESU was set up. The biggest cash prize goes to the winner of mobile game Monster Strike at 8 million yen ($73,000).

One reason Japan fell behind the rest of the world in esports is that Japanese game fans tend to play solitary games, like role-playing games, in contrast to the contest-style games that thrive in esports in the rest of the world, said JESU Vice President Hirokazu Hamamura.

But the appeal of watching esports is much like regular sports, such as soccer or baseball, Hamamura and other advocates say.

It’s the story that is there,” he said.

Leopold Chung, an official with the International Esports Federation, or IeSF, which promotes esports, was at the weekend event to meet with JESU officials.

Chung said that anti-doping requirements, legal help with contracts and the protection of retired players are crucial. He believes esports holds potential for places like Africa because of the ability of digital technology to bring down borders.

Because of the technology, our communities are connected,” he said.

Even esports believers acknowledge hurdles remain before “Call of Duty” can become as culturally mainstream as the 100-meter dash. Such violent games would be out at the Olympics, for one. And the Olympics’ nonprofit banner may conflict with the commercial nature of video games, they say.

It’s a great alternative for children rather than watching TV all the time,” said Chester King, chief executive of British Esports Association and eGames, who is leading the push for esports to become a legitimate sport

“It’s like chess. You never get a parent saying to a child ‘you’re playing too much chess,'” he added, stressing that video games are good for mental fitness.

At the esports finals of “Street Fighter,” winner and star player Itabashi Zangief posed before cameras and received a trophy and cash prize, after smashing his opponent in a dazzling knockout on the screen.

I played a good game, but I need to work harder,” he told the crowd.

Akihito Sato, a 28-year-old salesman, who was watching, said the appeal of esports is how quickly the satisfaction comes, unlike other spectator sports.

When a match gets close, it’s so exciting to watch,” said Sato. “But it’s over in something like three minutes. It’s instant.”

 

Source: abcnews.go.com

George Miller started his career in content marketing and has started working as an Editor/Content Manager for our company in 2016. George has acquired many experiences when it comes to interviews and newsworthy content becoming Head of Content in 2017. He is responsible for the news being shared on multiple websites that are part of the European Gaming Media Network.

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Asia

Visa Travelcard, Wirex Brings Borderless Payments To APAC

George Miller

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Visa Travelcard, Wirex Brings Borderless Payments To APAC
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Next-gen Wirex Visa Travelcard set to transform APAC’s US$800 billion payments industry

Leading borderless payment platform Wirex announced the launch of a brand new next-generation Wirex Visa Travelcard at the Singapore FinTech Festival today. The multicurrency travel card will empower customers across the APAC region to seamlessly spend multiple crypto and fiat currencies, and earn crypto rewards wherever they travel. All cryptocurrency exchanges to legal tender fiat currency takes place before users transact on the Visa network.

Compatible with more than 150 currencies, the Wirex Visa Travelcard enables customers to link multiple fiat currencies, avoiding costly exchange fees during travel. Wirex card holders can pay their way at 54 million outlets around the world – anywhere Visa is accepted and free international ATM withdrawals. It also offers rewards customers with up to 1.5% back in Bitcoin on all in-store purchases through its first in the world Cryptoback™ programme.

Pavel Matveev, Wirex co-founder and CEO, said, “We’re delighted to be able to offer the full Wirex experience and empower customers across APAC to take control of their crypto and traditional currency. This unparalleled functionality and versatility makes the Wirex Visa Travelcard the perfect travel companion, whether customers are travelling abroad for business or leisure.”

The launch of the Wirex Visa Travelcard is part of a general expansion of Wirex services for customers in the region, which includes 19 secure, cold-storage traditional and cryptocurrency accounts, including USD, SGD, AUD, JPY, EUR, GBP, BTC and ETH among many others and access to industry-best OTC and interbank rates for crypto and traditional currency exchange. To allow as many people as possible to experience the Wirex Visa Travelcard and gain exposure to its innovative services, Wirex is removing fees, including account management and traditional currency exchange fees, for a limited period.

“We have witnessed an explosion in demand for hybrid fiat and crypto-enabled banking alternatives in APAC, where people need payments redesigned for the future, allowing them to unlock the value of their different currencies,” Pavel added. “The evolution of Wirex’s offering in APAC represents more than just the next stage in the platform’s growth strategy; it is a tangible example of our mission to provide a genuine alternative to conventional financial services by connecting traditional and digital ecosystems on one borderless payment platform.”

Since its creation in 2015, Wirex has established itself as a true pioneer in the payments industry with a number of innovative, world-first products to its name. It launched the first Visa card that allowed customers to convert and spend their cryptocurrency in the real world, and will soon release a revolutionary selection of fiat-backed stablecoins. Wirex is also known for its track record in business integrity and consumer protection, as it is one of only three cryptocurrency-enabled companies in the world to be granted a UK FCA e-money licence (No: 902025).

The Singapore FinTech Festival runs from the 11th to the 13th of November – you can find Wirex in Hall 4 at booth 4F29. The booth will include live registration for card services, and the first 2000 people to register with Wirex, order and activate their card will receive 20 Nano, one of the most popular altcoins in the APAC region.

About Wirex:

Wirex gives its customers the power to use their money, their way. By connecting traditional and new digital ecosystems on one borderless payment platform, Wirex provides an alternative to conventional financial institutions and empowers retail and corporate customers to buy, exchange, and pay using fiat and cryptocurrency. The company has over 3 million customers across 130 countries and has processed more than US$2.6 billion in transactions to date.

 

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PartnerMatrix to power AsianLogic’s Dafabet and Nextbet brands with agent system

George Miller

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PartnerMatrix to power AsianLogic’s Dafabet and Nextbet brands with agent system
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EveryMatrix is thrilled to announce a new partnership with AsianLogic to power two of their established sports betting brands – Dafabet and Nextbet – with a powerful and robust agent system. AsianLogic will employ PartnerMatrix solution to acquire offline players and expand their customer base.

Part of EveryMatrix Group, PartnerMatrix’s agent system enables bookmakers and casino operators to create easy to manage agent networks worldwide. The system allows the creation of multi-level structures of agents and can be tweaked according to the operators’ needs. AsianLogic will withhold control over the incoming bets while managing the network by employing real-time risk data.

Nikos Diakoumopoulos, AsianLogic Marketing Director, comments: “We are delighted to be working together with EveryMatrix, a company with great expertise in the industry. We are confident that our partnership together will be a greatly successful one.”

Levon Nikoghosyan, PartnerMatrix CEO, adds: “AsianLogic is one of the largest private operators in Asia and is highly respected within the industry. Signing with AsianLogic to cater for two of their biggest brands, Dafabet and Nextbet, is an important win for our team and we are proud to see large operators entrusting our software and the management of their valuable agent networks.

“With the PartnerMatrix Agents System, our clients can create an easy-to-manage agent network with little efforts and resources. Sportsbook and casino operators worldwide can assign agents to promote their business while keeping complete transparency and control over incoming bets.”

PartnerMatrix’s solution is built on two pillars, agent system and affiliate management software, and is currently used by over 80 operators to reach over 33,000 affiliates and 7 million players. EveryMatrix is among the few companies in the world to provide through PartnerMatrix a complete affiliate marketing and agent management system as a unified stand-alone solution.

 

About AsianLogic:

AsianLogic Limited  is a market leader in the online and land-based gaming industry in the Asia Pacific region. The company has a portfolio of long-established and successful online brands, many of which have been operating for ten years or more. The company currently employs over 1,000 people.

Dafabet has been present on the Asia Pacific market since 2004 and the brand is firmly established as one of the leading companies at the forefront of investments and developments within the Asian gaming market.

 

About EveryMatrix:

EveryMatrix delivers a modular and API driven product suite including a market-leading one-stop shop casino content aggregator and integration platform, a cross-product bonusing engine, a fully managed sportsbook and sport data services, a stand-alone payment processing product, and a multi-brand affiliate/agent management system.

To offer the services required by operators, the EveryMatrix products work together as an entire platform or independently and can be easily integrated with existing platforms to accommodate different types of clients from bookmakers to lotteries and, from existing large operations to newcomers. Learn more at www.everymatrix.com.

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China Imposes Curfew on Online Gaming for Minors

Niji Narayan

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China Imposes Curfew on Online Gaming for Minors
Photo Source: jstor.org
Reading Time: < 1 minute

 

China has imposed a curfew on online gaming for minors as part of the move to curb video game addiction.

Gamers under 18 will be banned from playing online between 22:00 and 08:00. They will also be restricted to 90 minutes of gaming on weekdays and three hours on weekends and holidays.

The official government guidelines include spending limits for minors. Gamers from 8 to 16 years old can spend up to 200 yuan ($29) per month, while those between 16 and 18 years can spend up to 400 yuan on their gaming accounts.

The new guidelines will apply universally to all online gaming platforms operating in China.

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