一間電玩公司,重新定義運動產業

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Riot Games 這間公司,電競「圈外人」可能不太熟悉:它成立十年,只推出一款遊戲「英雄聯盟」,遊戲的年收入十六億美元,每天尖峰時間,有 750 萬 玩家同時在線。不久前 Riot 被 «Inc.» 雜誌選為「年度最佳公司」Company of the Year,Inc. 說,Riot 正重新定義運動產業。

League of Legends, or LoL, as the fans call it, is a team-based online game that has continuously created momentum since its (1) debut in 2009. It is free to download and play, while players can purchase extra characters as well as virtual clothing and accessories for them. The virtual goods yielded nearly US$1.6 billion in sales for Riot. Aside from the high quality of the game, credited to hundreds of artists and designers, what turned LoL into a global phenomenon? 
英雄聯盟,或像粉絲們簡稱的 LoL,是一款團隊對戰線上遊戲,2009 年推出以來至今聲勢不減。遊戲本身免費,玩家可購買額外角色,也可以幫角色添購服裝和造型飾品,這些虛擬商品為 Riot 創造的收益將近十六億美元。遊戲本身的高品質歸功於 Riots 數以百計的創作人員與設計師,但除了高品質,還有什麼因素讓英雄聯盟風靡全球?

The League of Legends Championship Series (LCS) is how Riot keeps the momentum going. Regularly scheduled events provide players a reliable source of income, and give fans steady opportunities to watch professional competitions. Dustin Beck, Riot Games'vice president of eSports, said in an interview:"We wanted to create a consistent league structure that is similar to FIFA, MLB or NBA. What that allows for is more fandom and more storylines around players, around teams, around (2) rivalries." Peak concurrent viewership for the 2016 tournament finals was 14.7 million.

Riot 以英雄聯盟冠軍聯賽 (LCS) 持續創造熱情。固定的賽程提供了玩家可靠收入來源,也讓粉絲固定收看專業競賽。Riot 的 eSport 部門副總裁 Dustin Beck 在一段訪問中說:「我們開始就想創造類似 FIFA(國際足聯),MLB(美國職棒大聯盟)或 NBA 的聯賽結構,以創造更多粉絲,更多玩家、隊伍、競賽的故事。」2016 年總決賽,高峰時線上同時有一千四百七十萬觀眾。

Riot has also been investing in the quality of their live events and streams. Today, League of Legends eSports fans can see (3) play-by-play commentary popular in traditional sports broadcast coverage. Likewise, Riot's announcers and analysts have all received extensive training, from basic speech best-practice to learning how to riff during technical errors. Many of these lessons came from a need to catch up to the rigor of traditional sports coverage.
Riot 
也不斷提升現場賽事和直播的品質。傳統運動賽事中普遍的實況解說,電競迷現在在英雄聯盟賽事也能看到。Riot 的播報員和分析師也接受廣泛訓 練,從基本的最佳講評實例,到出現技術問題時如何即興重複片段。其中許多課程都是為了掌握傳統賽事報導的精髓。

Inc. indicates that "LoL is not mass market. LoL is one massive niche. And as the world continues to (4) fragment and consumers spend more of their lives online, more gargantuan niches will rise up just like it --- with deeply passionate, demanding customers who devote large (5) chunks of their lives to a world apart from everyone else. The next great challenge for business is understanding how to reach them and talk to them, and Riot is out on those frontlines."
Inc. 雜誌指出,「LoL 不是大眾市場,它是一個大規模的小眾市場。世界持續碎片化,消費者又把更多時間花在網路上,更多類似的龐大小眾市場將崛起,有深厚熱情與高度要求的消費者,會把大量時間投入沒有外人的世界。企業的下一個巨大挑戰,就是去了解如何接觸這些消費者、與他們溝通,Riot Games 正是其中的先鋒。」

  1. Debut 初次亮相,首次登台
    He made his major-league debut. 
他在大聯盟賽事初次登場。
  2. Rivalry 競爭
    

Rivalry among business firms grew more intense. 
商業公司之間的競爭越來越激烈。
  3. Play-by-play(對比賽)詳細報導的
    
George enjoys being a play-by-play announcer. George 
熱衷於實況球評的工作。
  4. Fragment 碎裂; 碎片


    The plate broke into fragments. 
盤子碎了。
    Do not let the discussion fragment into a desultory conversation. 
不要讓討論支離破碎,變成沒方向的漫談。
  5. Chunk 大塊;大部分

    
The company owns a chunk of farmland near the airport.

那間公司在機場附近有大片農地。

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