China is a planet inside the planet, a unique country which is almost completely independent of the outside world in culture and economical ways. It occurred primarily because of the huge number of the Chinese nation - there are more than one and a half billion Chinese in China.
The Chinese esports market is the most profitable and largest among all, Chinese fans in total more than all European, American, Asian and CIS fans combined. That's why all game publishers are tried to invade China — it’s easy to make a huge amount of money for a very short time over there.
When we analyzed the game market in the Middle Kingdom, it became clear that the most accessible genre is shooters. Chinese play Overwatch — that is true, but many people don’t like it because of excessive cartoonishness. Fans of realism spend their time mostly in Crossfire — an outdated copy of Counter Strike. Crossfire was the most profitable online game in the world in 2013, and it confidently took the fourth position in the same rating in August 2017.
Counter Strike: Global Offensive is the most popular esports shooter in the world. It gathers a huge audience in Europe and America and the game closely cooperates with television (ELEAGUE), so CS:GO has a great growth prospects. However, CS:GO had a big problem — Chinese didn’t play it. Thus many CS:GO esports events fell greatly behind in amount of viewers against the other big esports disciplines. At the same time we have proofs that local audience were interested in CS:GO — PGL Major Krakow 2017: Asia Minor gathered almost 700k viewers. The grandiose ELEAGUE Major 2017 attracted 1.7 million viewers with only 500,000 Chinese, then in the summer on DreamHack ASTRO Open Valencia 2017 the number of Chinese viewers has become three times more than the western ones.
Chinese got full access to the Counter Strike: Global Offensive in September 2017. Release was pompous and bright — marketing department of Perfect world did anything to make CS:GO popular, starting with huge billboards and ending with pictures of half-naked models. If you want to make business at China you have to know rules — it is huge long-held market, so if you want to become the best you have to be the brightest. It is difficult to tell how mahe Chinese play CS:GO at that very moment or for the last week, there are no statistical services that analyze the number of players in China.
However, we can tell with certainty that the number of Chinese CS:GO viewers is growing. Not fast, but the trend is noticeable. In September, more than half of all spectators of esports events are Chinese - ESL, ESG and DreamHack. DreamHack Masters Malmö 2017 surprised most of all - 344k Chinese people against the background of 276k people not from China.
Perfect World and Valve started a great project. It's not easy, but it's just beginning. The reward for success is too great to be abandoned.