The weekend of January 13 was an unusual and exciting one for Japanese fans of Fortnite.
Highly popular Fortnite team Crazy Raccoon hosted their first Crazy Raccoon Cup which they announced on Twitter some days before. It was a huge success, attracting over 20,000 views and 50,000 unique visitor hits according to several sources and Japanese blogs.
Crazy Raccoon officially launched in April 2018 and has amassed a huge following in Japan through the livestreaming of its group members playing the free to play Fortnite: Battle Royale.
A representative of Samurai Studio who runs Crazy Raccoon stated during an interview with Japanese esports website Famitsu App.vs that the idea to organize the Crazy Raccoon cup was conceived thanks to the growing excitement of esports in Japan. Coupled with the phenomenal rise in popularity of Fortnite and the immense following Crazy Raccoon had cultivated, such a move only made sense.
With recent effort being put into re-examining existing commercial laws in Japan that place a limit on competitive prize pools for esports tournaments, it certainly bodes well for the future of Samurai Studio, whose goal is to hold this event once every month.
The first edition of the Crazy Raccoon Cup, however, had a prize pool worth ¥1 million (slightly over $9200) and even had corporate sponsors who pitched in for the prizes.
The Cup featured three rounds of Victory Royale. Depending on unique conditions, winners could stand a chance to win several unique prizes.
The winner of each Victory Royale receives ¥330,000 (about $3000). One of the live commentators, Bodca, was also playing the tournament and the first player who was able to kill him in each round could either get a goodie bag, a special edition custom PC or a pair of tickets to Okinawa.
The commentators would also nominate an outstanding player to win a year’s supply of Nissan Cup Noodles! Several other prizes included winning special T-shirts for killing the Epic Games Japan producer who was also a participant in the Victory Royale.
You can watch the entire stream here, but beware, it is entirely in Japanese:
Video credit: Crazy Raccoon
The fun and casual nature of Fortnite has made it truly accessible to a wide demographic of players. Organizing tournaments by leveraging the fun elements like how Samurai Studio managed to achieve with their Crazy Raccoon Cup is also an indication that there are perhaps different approaches for developing esports.
As the Fortnite World Cup approaches and a better playing format and competitive structure emerge, it will be a huge boost to Fortnite if more community-level tournaments like the Crazy Raccoon Cup get organized.
Thumbnail image credit: Crazy Raccoon