Article by: Burt Carver
Cyber X Games was an event that boasted up to $600,000 in prizes and was supposed to usher in a new era of competative gaming. The largest prize ($100,000) for CounterStrike teams from around the world was offered at the event. A press conference during the event extolled the fact that the largest European contingent of gamers ever to attend a North American event was present, and the female category was well attended.
Everything was going well, until the event started. An excellent article can be found on NoFrag, summing up the event.
Several SNAFU's affected the floor, including cabling issues, a failed router on Steam, and connection issues that limited CS participation. The decision was made to pull the plug on many of the events, including the CS tournament. Obviously people were angered by the decision, and have been waiting for some comment by the involved parties.
Still no comment from the Cyber X Gaming camp regarding the cancellation of the Counterstrike Tournament, and people are getting impatient for answers. One sponsor I spoke to indicated they had not received any feedback from Cyber X regarding both the cancellation of the event and also the substantial sponsorship investment in the event. Rumours have put the sponsorship costs of both ATI and AMD into six figures, and they too are probably not happy with the situation. Questions have been raised about Valve's commitment to the event, as several issues with the tournament have landed squarely on their door step. Doug Lombardi from Valve commented in a Gamespot article about various allegations that were circulating during and after the event. This link was provided by Valve in response to a request for a comment. In response to the article, I posed several questions for Valve, as several items had not been addressed:
1. Was Valve supposed to have representatives @ the event? (As claimed by some on the gaming floor)
2. Was a request made by CXG to have a local Steam validation server?
3. Was a request made by CXG to patch the game for local play?
4. Did CXG request help for the event from Valve?
5. Did Valve have ANY representatives in Las Vegas? (Valve has stated that no one from Valve attended CES)
Valve has declined to answer any of the above questions. Seems a little odd that they would not want to clear the air over several contentious issues.
Another burning issue is the reduction in the payouts for the reduced set of CS games. One of the biggest selling features of Cyber X was the $600,000 in prizes to be awarded, which was dramatically reduced by the cancellation of the CS tournament. Where did the money go? I think that the entire gaming community requires answers, and as soon as humanly possible. Currently Cyber X is sitting with a black eye, and if it is self induced, let us know. If it is at someone else's hands, let us know that too so we can vote with our wallets.