Seven years ago today, ConsoleGaming.eu was launched. Over those seven years we’ve certainly had our ups and downs, but I’d like to thank everyone who has been involved with the website through each of its incarnations, from Marco, to all of the staff (CG and EGL) and of course to the users for helping us to create a legacy.
Obviously there was a pretty large hiatus during those seven years, following European Gaming League’s purchase of the website, but the site that several of us spent months developing, is still in use today and I feel that is something worth recognising.
At the time ConsoleGaming launched, I was still at university, studying Computer Games Development. Fast forward seven years and I’m now working professionally as a website developer and have been for over five years. ConsoleGaming.eu literally changed my life and I’m not the only one.
I’ve seen countless users come and go, often leaving the website with experiences that they’ll never forget. ConsoleGaming.eu was more than a website, it was a community. We supported one another, and worked together to help increase the size of our community. We were like-minded people who were interested in this little known phenomena known today as eSports. Back then we simply called it competitive gaming. None of us were in it for the money, we simply had an interest that we were all passionate about.
When ConsoleGaming first launched, we started with just the forums, and during our first 24 hours, exactly seven years ago we had 800 users sign up. I was gob-smacked, I didn’t expect for the community to back us in such an incredible way. Our member count increased dramatically over the years and I was always grateful for the support that we received.
If you want to know more specific details about ConsoleGaming’s history you can find it all in my previous blog entries.
I personally put a lot of my time and life into the website during those seven years and it’s a bitter-sweet moment knowing that the code I helped develop seven years ago will soon be put to rest indefinitely. That’s not to say a new website isn’t necessary, it has been for a long time, but I do feel that the existing codebase has served us well, through thick and thin. We’ve survived data loss, several hack attempts and Brinklow’s infamous ban evading skills but most of all we stuck together through it all.
Over the years we have gone through many changes, including three separate iterations of the website, though at it’s core the website has remained the same. When we first launched, Socom 3 was in it’s prime, the PlayStation community was by far the most popular and Call of Duty: Modern Warfare hadn’t even been released. Fast forward seven years and everything has changed. League of Legends has since been released, quickly becoming the poster child for eSports, whilst Call of Duty has taken over the competitive console market and became by far our most popular game year after year.
Since European Gaming League bought ConsoleGaming.eu in early 2011, we’ve also seen a dramatic shift in the console of choice on the website, with the Xbox 360 emerging as the clear choice of platform for eSports. Now that we’re entering a new console generation for competitive gaming it’s going to be very interesting to see how the dynamic changes again in the coming years.
We’ve had some dark periods through these seven years, most notably when we lost our database and had to start over from scratch, and also when the site was abandoned following the change of ownership in early 2011. There were various reasons for this, but it was still very tough for us to recover from. Since then, we’ve managed to bring the site back to a very healthy position where we are now consistently getting over two hundred teams for our weekly one day cup tournaments. We no longer have the community feeling on the website that we once had but I do sincerely hope we can work on bringing that back to the website during our next chapter. Especially with games like H-Hour on the horizon.
There are countless numbers of staff and users who volunteered their time and helped make ConsoleGaming (and later EGL Online) what it became, unfortunately it would take me a very long time to name every single one of them, but please know that I truly appreciated every ounce of effort. In an age where eSports teams form and fall apart in a matter of weeks, it’s a testament to us all that we lasted this long. I’ll always be proud of what we managed to accomplish.
We will soon be entering a new chapter for the EGL website and I’m intrigued to see where the next seven years will take us. Will I even still be around in another seven years time? Who know, but it’s most certainly an interesting time to be involved with eSports.
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