The Skyesports Champions Series concluded on the 5th June Sunday. The whole event set a benchmark for LAN events across the nation, with players being welcomed traditionally, putting up billboards across the city, and giving the teams and the players the respect and appreciation any athlete should get.
Two people leading the Skyesports Champions series Chennai LAN operations were Shiva Nandy, Founder/CEO of Skyesports, and Gnana Shekar, CMO of Skyesports. Along with the entire team of Skyesports, Shiva and Gnana hosted one of the best LAN events in recent times.
We were fortunate enough to talk with them and discuss Skyesports and expansion plans and what went behind organizing one of the most critical South Asian valorant tournaments of the year.
Being presented the opportunity to conduct a tournament as a qualifier for Stage 2 VCT APAC Challengers, Shiva and Gnana felt excited and appreciated for all their work for the last year towards making esports, especially Valorant, a prominent IP in India.
The format they adapted was to ensure no teams with significant achievements from past tournaments feel left out, and along with that, new teams should get a chance to prove themselves in South Asia. While Skyesports did develop the format, Riot approved the format and endorsed it.
According to Shiva and Gnana, the most challenging part about hosting a LAN in Chennai was the communication gap and the fact that people weren’t aware of the scene yet. The weather made it very hard to start the events early as the heat was relentless, and it was tough to make things work at the venue.
Also, they had to ensure that teams had at least 15-16 hours between the matches so they didn’t feel exhausted while playing the game. Skyesports was very accommodating to the players and fulfilled all player needs for a fair competition as tournament organizers.
As mentioned earlier, the delays were something they tried their best to change but a culmination of all the factors. As the events progressed, the delays were reduced, and the event was a huge success.
Gnana and Shiva explained the main reason behind doing a Streamer showdown which is yet to be done in VCT, what to make content creators feel like players and give them the experience of an esports athlete, as they are one of the most critical factors behind the Growth of Valorant and gaming in India.
The streamer showdown winners, Baap-Beta Gaming, were awarded a trophy, something utterly unheard of. The content creators would have felt extremely special with Velocity Gaming’s CC fa2, reminiscing his old days while carrying the trophy.
While responding to the watch party questions, Shiva said the content creators were already at the venue. Most of them were already streaming in multiple languages, so the watch parties seemed unnecessary.
Starting with South India, Skesports is now responsible for tournaments across India and South Asia. As for the future, they plan to bring esports to all the states of India, and all the cities, with the next being Hyderabad, a part of the Souvenir Series.
They also plan to expand to Southeast Asia and conduct inter-regional tournaments in APAC first and the world eventually. They are approaching this step by step and are taking the battles they can conquer.
On a concluding note, Shiva and Gnana thanked the community, the fans of Valorant, and the teams for their efforts and support. They were overwhelmed with joy with the amount of love they received for SCS Chennai, with the peak viewership reaching 30k, which is impressive.
Shiva, Gnana, and Skyesports were terrific hosts and really did put on a fantastic show for the people watching and the ones physically present. With the next Souvenir Series in Hyderabad in August, they would be better and make it a huge event for everyone.
Thank you, Gnana and Shiva, for the fantastic experience. You were the most amazing hosts, and I hope you guys organize more such events and make esports and Valorant as big as any other sport in India.