South Korea-based esports organization Gen.G announced it will no longer pursue a franchise slot in the upcoming, city-based 2020 Call of Duty League.
Thank you to all of our @CallofDuty fans and to @ColtHavok, @DylanEnvoy, @JoeyNubzy, @MajorManiak, @Maux, @Nagafen, and @SpaceLy for an amazing year, we can't wait to see what you do next! pic.twitter.com/K043GUMc7e
— Gen.G Esports (@GenG) September 7, 2019
Gen.G has headquarters in Los Angeles California; Seoul, South Korea; and Shanghai, China. Among these locations, Generation Gaming – previously known as KSV Esports – has teams in games that include Apex Legends, Call of Duty, Clash Royale, Fortnite, League of Legends, Overwatch, and PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds. It was announced earlier this year, though, that Call of Duty would move to a franchise city-based league next year.
“This is likely not the final chapter for Gen.G in Call of Duty, but there will be time to talk about that down the road. For now, we pause to reflect on a memorable season,” wrote Gen.G in their statement. “Thanks immensely to all our fans in the CWL community. We look forward to seeing you again soon.”
While it participated in the most recent Call of Duty World League, the organization has “opted not to throw [their] hat into the ring” at the moment. Other organizations like 100 Thieves and FaZe Clan expressing concerns over the high franchise slot price upwards of $25 million; Gen.G’s decision to abstain from the league could be for that very reason.
Evil Geniuses, another organization that was a part of the CWL League, announced their exit from Call of Duty earlier this year. The organization’s name came into the light again when it attempted to make an offer for Echo Fox’s LCS spot. With higher viewership in League of Legends and a lower retail franchise slot cost, the LCS seems like an obviously better choice.
— Arnold [COO @SeoulDynasty | @Gen.G] (@arnoldwh) August 29, 2019
Gen.G has franchise slots in the Overwatch League and the League of Legends Champions Korea league already. This made it seem likely they would pursue a slot at first. While an alleged report surfaced in August that Luminosity Gaming and Gen.G were denied franchise slots, this news was soon rejected by Gen.G’s Chief Operating Officer, Arnold Hur. Instead, as both Gen.G and Luminosity Gaming own the Overwatch League franchises Seoul Dynasty and Vancouver Titans, respectively, the high-priced barrier to entry seems like the most likely reason.
Do you think these esports organizations would return to Call of Duty if the price lowered in the future? With a much lower viewership number than games like League of Legends and Overwatch, what else is Activision Blizzard counting on to justify the high franchise slot price? Let us know what you think in the comments below.
Follower of tech startups and finance. I write about esports in my free time.