The Truth Behind PGF: Official Statement from Philippine eSports Organization
After the conclusion of Pinoy Gaming Festival (PGF) 2014, some posts shared over social media began asking about the story behind the event; in particular, people wanted to know about the partnerships behind the scenes in response to a slew of criticisms on the event’s logistical shortcomings.
In response to the feedback from the community and audience present at event held last weekend at the Mega Trade Hall in SM Megamall, eSports Inquirer interviewed the Philippine eSports Organization (PeSO) Executive Director, Irymarc “Tryke” Gutierrez, about his thoughts; what really happened at SM last weekend?
eSports Inquirer (EI): With PGF — one of the most respected eSports events in the country — concluding over the weekend, posts from observers and some of the participants over social media criticized the event, pointing out some of it’s misgivings and logistical faults. We would like to ask you for your input on this. What truly happened over the weekend?
Tryke: First of all, I want to thank everyone who came and supported the event. To our partners Ozine and Mineski for making this event possible despite the short amount of preparation. I asked the people around about what they think of the event and told me that they enjoyed it especially the games and the shoutcasting. Those won the raffle definitely enjoyed more than the others. I know that we lacked in terms of exhibitors and booths but this was because it’s hard for sponsors to commit since its short notice and there are numerous gaming events during this quarter. I mentioned in my FB page that PGF for me is one of those events that built the foundation of eSports here in the Philippines and I didn’t want to give up on it so easily when I was given the opportunity to help rebuild it. I dont know if its the right decision but i wanted to give it a try.
Organizing the event was a huge challenge. The idea was to try to recreate the brand together with a new mix of content which are anime, toys, mobile games, esports and cosplay. The idea was great but time was not on our side. Working with Ozine was a great experience cause I learned about new things especially how cosplay, anime and card games can go together with what we have been doing for the past years. Personally I think we did good but theres a lot of room for improvement and with more time for preparation people can expect a product like never before. No organizers of anime and cosplay as good as Ozine has ever worked with an organizer for eSports and the potential is unlimited in my opinion. [sic]
EI: Some observers pointed out the delays in the program were particularly bad for the ladies’ Dota 2 tournament. Can you shed light on what happened?
Tryke: The biggest problem for this year was we had a huge technical problem in day 1 which resulted to 4 hours of delay. Organizers know that a 4 hour hole in your scheduling is very hard to fix and this resulted to contingency plans and thus the girls tournament was affected. I want to apoligize to all the girl teams who suffered from the delay. I know the amount of sacrifice that all girl teams give for the game thats why i wanted them to have a place where they can showcase their skills but with what happened we had no choice but to adjust especially regarding the stage schedule. In the end, not all games who were supposed to be featured were featured but we managed to finish all the tournaments properly and most of the people even congratulated me for a successful event. Though ive been reading some bad feedback and articles about our event this is all i can say to all of you. That was our best given the short time to prepare, i just wanted to save the brand that was a huge part of eSports the first mall event, the first SMX, the first WTC the first of manyy things. I read one comment saying this was a result of one idiot trying to salvage a brand that was once prestigious to many. To you, i’m that idiot. If being called an idiot is what you can call a person who didnt want to give up on something special to him so be it. [sic]
With the eSports industry in the country steadily gaining mainstream attention, more and more high-profile events are in demand by the community of players, teams and individuals. Though details may be improved upon after each event, the growth of the scene in recent years is undeniable as more and more events vie for the public’s attention.
For PGF to remain a bastion of the eSports industry in the country, it will need the help of not only the efforts of event organizers willing to carry on its traditions, but also through the attention and patronage of the fans and audiences who enjoy everything it stands for.
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