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IEM Rio Major: Home crowd vs competitive Integrity cover image

IEM Rio Major: Home crowd vs competitive Integrity

#News

For a short while, ESL removed the X-ray and the radar for fans at the venue. Is this the right solution?

The IEM Rio Major is the first CS: GO Major in Brazil and has finally opened its doors to fans. After a long journey wherein the Major has been postponed, canceled and announced again, CS: GO fans across the world finally got a glimpse of what it means to have a Major in Brazil.
IEM Rio Major was initially scheduled to take place in March 2020, but as the world came to terms with the pandemic, Valve postponed the Major to later in the year, hoping things would settle down by then. But as we all know, the Major only took on a more dramatic turn and spread throughout the world. Even as countries started scrambling for COVID vaccines and restricted global travel, Valve canceled the Major. It was simply impossible to hold a Major on the scale of a CS: GO Major in these trying times. 
Earlier this year, Valve announced IEM Rio Major for 2022. ESL announced the venue for the tournament and immediately Brazilian fans expressed their disappointment. They wanted the event to take place in a stadium, one they were confident they could easily fill. With even pro Brazilian players weighing in on the controversy, ESL decided to expand the scope of the Major. 

Fans galore at IEM Rio Major

The inaugural IEM Rio Major matches started at 11 am local time. However, fans have been waiting outside the venue since 7.15 am, more than three hours before the games start - for the biggest CS: GO Major of all time.
For many Brazilian fans, CS: GO is kind of like a religion. They have played Counter-Strike religiously over the past few years and an event at such a scale coming to the region is a momentous occasion.
The first day of the CS: GO Major saw thousands of fans at the venue. And despite the high number, there were reports of fans being unable to reach the venue due to a truckers’ protest happening in the country. 

A Home crowd audience vs Competitive Integrity

The boisterous crowd did present some problems for ESL who could not control some sections of the live audience shouting crucial in-game information to the players. With the voice decibels super high, players reported they could clearly hear the crowd at the event giving directions. These directions would often be in Portuguese making it difficult for the organizer to clearly catch the culprits and take action.

If they think everything we're saying here are callouts then maybe they should learn some Portuguese. I apologize to the world's biggest audience that we can't enjoy the game the right way

Gaules to fans live at the audience

ESL removes radar for live audience

ESL’s solution to restoring competitive integrity was, unfortunately, lowering the experience for the home crowd. They removed the radar and Xray on for the live audience, a move that was not well-received by the Brazilian community.
Here’s a rough translation of the clip as done by Redditor /u/savarinho
"Apparently the biggest CS:GO coverage in the world can't watch games with radar and xray on for lack of structure from ESL, that can't manage to have dedicated feeds on-stream and in the arena. If they think everything we're saying here are callouts then maybe they should learn some Portuguese. I apologize to the world's biggest audience that we can't enjoy the game the right way, but we are used to things being always more complicated for us. They will never understand what it feels like to be brazilian. Someone from the production team go ahead and translate this fucking shit so they know what we're talking about!"
To be fair, the audience shouting player positions and giving information is not new at IEM Rio. Previous tournaments have seen the audience giving out player positions by shouting or making noises. However, this is probably the first time that a tournament organizer has removed the X-ray and radar at the venue.

To be honest, there is a crowd problem in every esport, in every tournament

Gaules’ criticism of the event’s handling is valid. A blanket ban on the X-ray and radar for fans at the venue significantly impacts the experience for Brazilian fans. Previously tournament organizers have removed fans who shout out crucial information to players on stage. To be unable to do that in Brazil, due to lack of personnel speaking Portuguese seems to be a mistake. 
Regardless of this incident, ESL has since restored the X-ray and the radar at the venue. Hopefully, fans will rein it in at the venue and allow teams to play the game fair and square. 

It’s a party! 

"This moment in the major today is really to celebrate, the whole world is watching the party that you guys make here, the whole world is seeing how Brazilians are passionate and different, continue on with the show that you guys are doing, there are 14 days in the major, let's fill up this place no matter the team

FalleN in an interview has a message for Brazilian fans.
For Brazilian CS: GO fans, they brought their trademark flavor of celebration and enjoyment to the venue. In an interview with Gaules, FalleN had a message for fans.
"This moment in the major today is really to celebrate, the whole world is watching the party that you guys make here, the whole world is seeing how Brazilians are passionate and different, continue on with the show that you guys are doing, there are 14 days in the major, let's fill up this place no matter the team," said FalleN. "Let's not just honor Brazilian teams, it's also the life of the other guys too, the guys from Cloud9 that won today and many others that you guys like, big Jame saving an AWP, all these guys, it's their life, and you can be sure that you guys here in the crowd make their lives more special."
The IEM Rio Major is currently underway. Sixteen teams kicked off the Challengers stage and only eight teams will move ahead to the Legends stage. 
Rohan
Rohan
Editor | Twitter @rohan_esports
Started esports with Dota, moved to CS, then OW, back to Dota 2 and now a bit of Valorant. I love city-building games, have spent hours in Cities:Skylines only to have the traffic defeat me. Love travelling, an admirer of fine movies, writing a sci-fi novel in spare time and coding (Javascript)