Activision Publishing’s development studio, Treyarch, has just launched the Call of Duty Live Event Viewer for eSports on the PlayStation 4.
Fans can watch Call of Duty World League competitions directly in-game on the PlayStation 4. As part of Activision’s (ATVI) deal with Sony (SNE), the Live Event Viewer will not be available on Microsoft’s Xbox One. Sony gamers also receive all of the downloadable content for Call of Duty first.
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Mark Lamia, studio head of Treyarch, says Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 is a great game to play for the pros, but it’s also a great game to watch the pros play. “As someone who’s worked hard to bring Call of Duty to the competitive scene, for us as creators, it’s amazing to see the game being played at that high of a level with events like the X Games, and hopefully some day it will be played in the Olympics,” says Lamia.
The Live Event Viewer, accessed through the game’s main menu, will broadcast key Call of Duty World League Pro Division matches from Australia/New Zealand, Europe, and North America, in addition to other major eSports-related events. The Live Event Viewer will also be used for community-focused programming such as “Game with Devs” and Treyarch livestreams.
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SuperData Research CEO Joost van Dreunen says the integration of a live video feed directly into the game menu is the next logical step, as playing games and watching others play begin to merge.
“Rather than going to Twitch or YouTube, this allows fans of the franchise to stay within the PlayStation ecosystem, giving both Sony and Activision more control and insight on user behavior,” van Dreunen says. “More generally, we expect to see a consolidation at the top of the eSports market, as the largest titles will increasingly seek to vertically integrate to improve the user experience.”
Activision Blizzard launched its own eSports division last October and acquired Major League Gaming (MLG) on Dec. 31 for an estimated $46 million.