Update (March 6th 2021): Thorin has stepped down from his position working with Flashpoint.
Thorin shared his thoughts in this video, explaining that Flashpoint would likely not run the ambitious activities it had promised to in the long-run:
Original article (February 6th 2020):
British esports personality Duncan ‘Thorin’ Shields says new CSGO league Flashpoint will lead the way with a ‘new and authentic direction’.
The outspoken journalist and analyst is on board as creative director and on-camera talent. He’s joined by fellow Brits Dan ‘DDK’ Kapadia (caster), James Bardolph (caster and FaceIT Media VP) and Freya Spiers (host, interviewer and FaceIT assistant producer).
Thorin has been speaking highly of the upcoming league as part of its official reveal this week.
He said: “I’ve seen every significant tournament and league in Counter-Strike history and progress in developing the format and tone of the broadcast has been painfully slow, primarily because it has taken years before creatives from the community were in a position to influence those aspects.”
He said in the video: “There’s going to be shoulder content to a level you have never seen before in esports. Forget just CSGO. Think of the UFC, the NFL, the great job the production staff do for those competitions to keep you engaged with them, beyond just the raw action happening.
“You are doing to see true analysis in a way you’ve never been able to at CSGO events before. They’re going to have the resources, the time, the space within the broadcast, their own distinct identities I’m going to help craft. This is such an exciting project.”
What is FlashPoint and how does it work?
Flashpoint is billed as the world’s first CSGO league owned and run by team organisations. It replaces previous tournament ECS and aims to offer fans a grittier show than what’s come before, taking inspiration from the likes of WWE wrestling and UFC mixed martial arts.
The new league – more a tournament series – launched this week and properly gets underway in March.
It was devised by top orgs, experts and talent to address the core issues threatening the future of CSGO esports: a lack of stability and long term investments and the ‘immediate threat to orgs of the establishment of a tournament organiser monopoly’.
Flashpoint will be played offline in a live studio environment with two seasons annually. The prize pool will be among the largest in CSGO totalling over $2m this year.
B Site Inc is the company funded by team organisations taking part in Flashpoint. It will maintain an open circuit championing new talent, with financial support for up and coming teams built into its infrastructure, along with safeguards to competitive integrity, meaning partner teams are not offered a permanent seat at the table.
The league is founded by the likes of MIBR, Cloud9, OverActive Media, Gen.G, Dignitas and c0ntact Gaming who have structured the league to provide solid revenue share potential.
FaceIT claims that players will receive the highest revenue share in esports, the largest revenue guarantee in CSGO, and will have equal representation to the teams on the league’s board of governors. FaceIT will of course act as league operator.
Each team in the league will be free to participate in tournaments outside of Flashpoint’s two annual seasons.
As well as Thorin and the other British talent mentioned above, others had a direct role in creating Flashpoint including casters Christopher ‘MonteCristo’ Mykles and Auguste ‘Semmler’ Massonnat.
The line-up is completed by Jason ‘moses’ O’Toole, Anders Blume and Sean Gares.
Dom is an award-winning writer who graduated from Bournemouth University with a 2:1 degree in Multi-Media Journalism in 2007.
As a long-time gamer having first picked up the NES controller in the late ’80s, he has written for a range of publications including GamesTM, Nintendo Official Magazine, industry publication MCV as well as Riot Games and others. He worked as head of content for the British Esports Association up until February 2021, when he stepped back to work full-time on Esports News UK and as an esports consultant helping brands and businesses better understand the industry.