SMPTE 2020: 'Game On' to Focus a Day on Esports, With Technical and Creative Sessions Plus Live Competition


White Plains, New York

Industry Event Announcements

Sunny Branson

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WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. — Oct. 26, 2020 — SMPTE® today announced that there will be a full day's worth of esports programming on the final day of SMPTE 2020: "Game On", the Society's interactive and immersive remote technical conference experience scheduled for 10-12 November. On Thursday, 12 November, the event will offer presentations and live discussions about the convergence of esports/gaming and media technology and the unique requirements of the thriving esports industry. The concluding event will feature a Rocket League esports exhibition match – between Team Liquid, a professionals esports team, and RIT Esports – streamed live on SMPTEConnect's Twitch and YouTube channels. RIT Esports is a collegiate club at the Rochester Institute of Technology, where SMPTE has an active student chapter.

"We have lined up great sessions featuring a variety of creative and technical experts who work at the convergence of media technology and esports," said Sara Kudrle, vice president of education for SMPTE and director of marketing at PESA. "What makes this final day of the conference experience so exciting is that everything you learn about esports in earlier sessions will come together and come to life in a live, real-world esports competition."

SMPTE 2020: "Game On" Esports Sessions

What's It All About: The Heart and Spirit of Esports
This introduction to esports will explore both the human and technical aspects of esports competitions and all that precedes them. During this initial session, experts will explain the true nature of esports' success. The human side of the industry is all about nontraditional athletes having an athletic experience, bringing communities together, and creating new communities of followers. In addition, this session will introduce the "magical" infrastructure that enables teams to compete "on a level playing field" across large geographic areas.

Keynote: Visual Storytelling in the Age of Esports
Ian Sansavera of 1UP Studios will give attendees a closer look at the narrative opportunities within esports and the gaming industry. During his keynote on SMPTE 2020: "Game On" Esports Day, Sansavera will examine storytelling ranging from social-forward team content to intimate, episodic documentaries.

The Magic Enabler: The Esports Architecture
Infrastructure plays a key role in enabling dynamic team competitions to be played on a "level playing field." SMPTE 2020 attendees will learn about the different elements — the technology, production crew, callers, and many others — in this complex system. Chris Witmayer and presenters from Activision Blizzard Esports, Grass Valley, Ross Video, and Engine Media will discuss the architecture, individual technologies, and everything else needed to produce the magic of esports competition.

Boots-on-the-Ground Esports: Real-World Experiences
Building on the earlier session detailing the esports architecture under ideal, theoretical conditions, this session will focus on challenges overcome and lessons learned through real-world experiences. Experts will talk about issues they resolved, new technologies and innovations with the potential to be game-changers, and potential opportunities the esports infrastructure presents for more traditional content creators.

The Magic in Action: An Esports Exhibition
This final session will bring ideas and information from preceding presentations to life in a live SMPTEConnect Twitch and YouTube stream of a Rocket League esports exhibition match between Team Liquid and RIT Esports. Rocket League is a high-powered hybrid of arcade-style soccer and vehicular mayhem with easy-to-understand controls and fluid, physics-driven competition. One of the most critically acclaimed sports games of all time, Rocket League includes nearly endless customization possibilities, multiple game types, casual and competitive online matches, and more.

The full SMPTE 2020 program is available at

The Society is offering a $10 student rate and reduced rate for educators along with other special pricing discounts intended to ensure interested students and professionals worldwide have the means to attend and connect with their peers. SMPTE Members interested in subsidizing attendance can do so through the new Pay It Forward package.

The Society would like to thank its sponsors: 8K Association, the Alliance for IP Media Solutions (AIMS), ATSC, AWS, Constellation Charitable Foundation, the Immersive Digital Experiences Alliance (IDEA), Key Code Media, National TeleConsultants (NTC), Ownzones Entertainment Technologies, RIST, and Signiant.