This is SUPERLATIVE: a podcast about watches, the people behind them, and the worlds that inspire them. This week, our host and aBlogtoWatch Founder Ariel Adams sits down with professional esports commentator and watch enthusiast, James Bardolf. To start the show, Ariel and James discuss the true size of the esports industry, along with the type of physical and mental skills that are needed to succeed within it. From there, the conversation turns to the business side of esports, and how marketing and sponsorship deals work for the world’s top teams and players. Given the numerous similarities that exist between esports and the traditional professional sports industry, Ariel asks James about the concept of flashiness within the gaming industry and how status symbols can exist within it, despite exclusively being rooted within the digital realm. The discussion then turns to the different ways that luxury watches can be organically integrated into the world of esports, both digitally and as physical items, before Ariel asks James if he thinks digital assets will ever be able to move across platforms from one game to the next?
After briefly discussing whether or not there are ways for recreational gamers to earn money to help fund their hobby, Ariel asks James about some of his other passions outside of esports, such as scuba diving and drone flying, along with how these other activities relate to his interest in watches. The two get into some of the details of Breitling’s drone racing sponsorships before exploring some of the various kinds of opportunities that exist for watch brands within the world of online games. James confirms that top-earning esports players are wearing the exact same types of luxury watches as other professional athletes, and the two get into a discussion about which watch brands would actually benefit the most from having a presence within the world of online gaming. Ariel then asks James what kind of watches he thinks should be made to promote esports partnerships, and if he feels that branding relating to a specific game or event even needs to be a prominent part of the design. To wrap up the show, Ariel and James discuss how there is never a way to only receive positive feedback, and how luxury watch brands can learn from the world of gaming to find ways of ignoring trolls and brushing off negative comments.
Stay up-to-date with James Bardolph:
- 01:15 — A look at the world of esports and the true size of the industry.
- 07:44 — The physical skill needed to play in esports and when the factors that cause people to retire.
- 10:23 — Sponsorship and marketing in esports, and how the money side of the business works.
- 15:35 — The concept of flashiness and status symbols within the world of esports.
- 20:29 — How luxury watches can be organically integrated into esports, both digitally and as physical items.
- 23:39 — Will digital assets ever be able move across platforms from one game to the next?
- 30:05 — Are there ways for recreational gamers to earn money to help fund their interest in games.
- 32:59 — Scuba diving, flying drones, and how James’ other interests relate to the world of watches.
- 39:45 — Breitling sponsoring drone racing and the type of opportunities that exist for watch brands within the world of esports.
- 43:00 — How esports is becoming more mainstream and how top players are now all wearing the same luxury watches as other professional athletes.
- 46:04 — What watch brands would actually benefit the most from participating within esports.
- 51:52 — What types of watches should be made for esports and should branding always be a prominent component of their design.
- 57:00 — How watch brands can learn from the world of esports and find ways to ignore trolls and brush off negative comments.
We’d love to hear from you with feedback or suggestions for future show topics or guests. Advertising opportunities are also available. Comment or contact [email protected].