The expansion of Beyond the Summit has been impressive to say the least. What started out as a humble crowdfunded Dota 2 casting studio has expanded into one of the largest companies in all of eSports, that has many full time employees and multiple different operations.
One area that has been the most successful for BTS has been events. Starting off with a handful of small scale Dota 2 tournaments, BTS has quickly expanded with many more tournaments and events, with hundreds of thousands on the line across multiple titles. First up was Smash Bros., with the best players in the world being invited to compete for one of the biggest prize pools in the history of the game. Now BTS is expanding even further by hosting the cs_summit, it’s first Counter-Strike: Global Offensive tournament with eight top teams attending, $150,000 to play for and a name that winks at the game’s history.
While the CS:GO scene is one that is rapidly growing, the cs_summit will function just like the company’s other 'behind-the-scenes' style Summit events.
There will be no massive stadium, no TV broadcasts and a distinct lack of suits. Instead the all the action will take place in The Summit house just outside of Los Angeles, and the casters will be chilling out on a couch.
This contrast to the typically smart and dapper casting desk you usually see at huge events is what makes the summit stand out, and may shake up your expectations if you’re used to a clean cut presentation – and there’s more to know too.
Here’s everything to expect from BTS’ first CS:GO event.
The casting is super informal
In the world of CS:GO, we have all got used to the casters dressing up in fancy suits, casting in pairs and then throwing back to the analyst desk that will have a host and some extremely knowledgeable analysts. None of that is going to happen at the Summit – well there will be some knowledgeable analysts – but that's about it.
Suits will be traded in for more comfortable wear, and shoes are strictly banned in The Summit house. The desk, is in fact, just a couple of couches, and casters stick around to analyse the match afterwards.
You can also expect your traditional casting pairings to get switched around, with mix and match panels and regular triple or quad casts coming your way. All of this makes things a little informal and casual, which sounds like a welcome change of pace – it’s like you’re hanging out with your friends, who are super knowledgable about CS:GO.
But the pros like to get involved
One of the best parts of Summit events is the informal casting and broadcasts, but what makes it even better is when the pros get involved.
Pretty much every other Summit event has had at least one match that has seen some of the best players in the world jump on the couch try their hand at casting. Sometime we even get a cast that is just the pro players, and no one else, which can be incredibly entertaining if a little disorganised.
With the teams that are heading out to LA you can be sure that at least some of the players will get involved on the desk, and try their hand at casting – whether they’ll be great is another question!
Breaks between games are still worth a watch
Some events are better than others for downtime between matches, but as The Summit literally takes place in a house that doesn't have all that much space, there can be some decently long breaks. But the guys over at BTS know this and are sure to produce a ton of content to keep us viewers entertained. From random game shows with unsuspecting pros to weird interviews that see one player interviewed by their team mate who is pretending to be someone he’s not, practically anything is on the table, and you’ll be constantly surprised.
Not every break has something new to show, and not every video hits the mark, but when they do, they are some of the best pieces of pro eSports entertainment out there, and we can’t wait to see what the team does with the CS crowd.
Secondary streams are sometimes more entertaining than the main stream
While all the main CS:GO action will take place on the main stream, chances are there will also be another stream or two going on with other activities.
Smash Bros. is a popular pastime when the pros aren't playing, so chances are that will appear on stream at some point, while games of Mafia or similar titles are also commonplace. With this being the first Summit for CS, we aren't sure how much of this will go down, or how willing the pros will be to take part, but if it turns out to be like the other events, then sometimes the most entertaining activities are outside of the main game.
With a bit of luck there will be Smash Bros. and other random activities going on (board games, anyone?) at the same time as the normal matches, and when things are done and dusted, we would love to see the big CS names get involved with a game of Mafia or two.
Bathtub interviews are a possibility
This is where things start to get a little weird. One of the most popular video series to come out of the Summit events is the bathtub interviews. No that isn't a typo. These videos see two people jump into a bath together to have a good old chat. Sometimes these turn out to be really interesting interviews and other times they get a little too uncomfortable, and become more of a comedy sketch. Either way they are always worth a watch.
As you might expect, getting people to actually agree to these isn't always easy, so there is a chance we won't get to see one. But knowing some of the big personalities from the CS scene that will be there,we wouldn't be surprised to see a few players jump in the tub.
The in-game action will be great
We may have made it sound like The Summit is just one big party for those attending but there is of course a job to be done. Each of the teams is heading out to LA to win, and they will stop at nothing to make sure they walk out as the first ever cs_summit champions – there is $150,000 on the line, after all.
Sure, there are a lot of extras and distractions around the event that will no doubt make it very difficult, but the real reason we will be tuning in is to see these teams face off in a completely different setting.
With a varied list of attendees, the competition could throw some great matches our way and will probably give us some surprises. There are a lot of great things about The Summit, but ultimately, the in-game action is what we are all there to see – you’ll be in for a treat.