Product/ServiceOMEN - VIDEO GAME
Category A02. Applied Innovation
Name Company Position
Daniel Douglas Edelman Creative
Paul Taylor Edelman Creative
Indy Selvarajah Edelman Creative Director
Kirsten Mackenzie Edelman Account Director
Myles Cameron Edelman Technical Director
James Herring Edelman Influencer Lead
Rhodri Morgan Edelman Influencer Executive
Steffan Martins Edelman Account Executive
Enfys Dickinson Edelman Production Lead

Why is this work relevant for Innovation?

eSports is one of the most innovative and technologically advanced sports in existence. The sheer technological feat that’s required to create the games, host the tournaments and beam it to millions around the world – awe-inspiring. So you would think that coming up with a simple (yet awesome and truly unique) tournament format would be easy? Wrong. This submission is the story of our journey to create one of the most ambitious, unique and game-changing innovations in eSports tournament formats.


Background: Esports is the fastest growing sport on the planet. Huge audiences gather for massive esports tournaments around the world. OMEN by HP (HP’s PC gaming brand) is a relative newcomer (>3 years). They want to be the no.1 PC gaming brand in esports by 2020. ‘The OMEN Challenge’ has been a part of HP’s brand experience and activation programme for three years, using the traditional eSports tournament format. Esport tournament formats are formulaic and expected. 100 players fight-to-the-death until there is a single victor. A points-based system over three days makes final scores predictable. Brief: Create a new tournament experience for OMEN Challenge 2018 to make an impact at Gamescom, in Cologne, Germany. They wanted to move away from gimmicky stunts used in previous years and increase credibility amongst programmers, influencers and eSports fans. Key metrics: Engagement Further growth of awareness and consideration of the OMEN by HP brand.

Describe the idea

We developed a world-first tournament format which reinvented the game, providing new experiences for players and fans. Top gaming athletes partnered with top fans, through a social media recruitment campaign. We started player-pairs with a pot of cash to protect. They lost a % of that pot every time they were killed... and every-time they killed someone, they got their victim’s share. This mechanic changed the entire psychology of play. Being too successful made you a target. Players who were getting hammered could turn it all around in just one kill. Those playing a semi-conservative strategy could come away with the riches. ‘The Bounty’ – an extra cash incentive placed on the head of the winners from the previous round created further drama. No longer a zero-sum game, it became an uber-strategic spectacle of unexpected twists and turns, with players having to think in new ways.

What were the key dates in the development process?

Development Start - 04 June Stress Testing – 6 to 18 August Setup and Simulations – 20/21 August Live Event – 22/23/24 August

Describe the innovation/technology

PubG is one of the world’s largest games but until now there has been no way to pull live game data without manually watching the game. This causes huge delays in scoring systems - typically 15min - and often by the time the closing leaderboard is out, all the excitement has already died down. We required a real-time leaderboard for viewers to be able to follow along with our brand-new game mechanic. We used game logs to create the first ever real-time PubG leaderboard that was able to pull data and update the leaderboard in a matter of seconds. This involved servers on site that were monitoring the game play and creating a dynamic leaderboard that was shown live to thousands of viewers. The system was built in NodeJS with Mongo databases to store and process the millions of game data points collected. We had a total of 5 servers running to monitor the action with a small team of manual validators keeping track of the action and ensure the data was correct. The system also allowed us to assign player bounties and update important information about the game in real-time.

Describe the expectations/outcome

We were aiming to have a system that could refresh the player scores within 2 minutes, we were able to get the time down to less than 10 seconds. This allowed us to flag to the game admins and commentators when to switch to the leaderboard and what statistics to highlight. The system was a huge success and worked smoothly throughout the 3 days it was running. The professional players and admins all commented on how fast the scoring system worked and how they had never experienced a leaderboard that was able to achieve what we did. They were hooked!