Sliver.tv launched a platform that will let you view your favorite eSports matches in immersive 360-degree video.
ESports entertainment is a massive and growing industry. Millions upon millions of people enjoy both participating in and watching eSports competitions around the world. Just a few weeks ago, Valve held its annual Dota 2 tournament, The International, which featured a prize pool of more than $20 million. Valve hasn’t released the viewership numbers for this year’s event, but The International has been growing year over year, and the prize pool is generated by purchases made by the community.
It’s fair to say that Dota 2 is big business, but it’s hardly the only eSports game with a large following. Counter-Strike, through its various incarnations over the years, has managed to maintain a loyal following of millions of players for the better part of two decades and shows no sign of slowing any time soon. And League of Legends continues to dominate the eSports industry with 27 million daily players and 67 million active monthly players.
Sliver.tv’s patented software and algorithms can convert your favorite eSports professional’s matches into multi-camera 360-degree cinematic videos so that you can take in the action from other perspectives beyond the player's view.
Sliver.tv’s technology includes the “Virtual Camera Array,” which adds multiple 360-degree camera views, for the purpose of recording immersive replays, to games that don’t currently support VR. The company has also built an “Auto Content” tool that “crawls, indexes, and records” professional tournaments and players and “creates a database of top matches, players and tournaments” for you to enjoy later.
Sliver.tv’s technology also includes proprietary algorithms called “Hot Spot” that automatically compile a series of top plays out of the recorded footage, such as headshots in CS:GO or multi-kills in LoL to build a highlight reel of your best moments. Sliver.tv also offers a “Special Effects” algorithm that allows for slow motion or zoom effects to be added to the recording. It also lets you cycle from camera to camera so you can catch every angle of the match.
Sliver.tv said that it generates the 360-degree game highlight videos and makes them available within 12-24 hours of a given match's completion.
Sliver.tv is available now for Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, Dota 2 and League of Legends, but the company has plans to expand to further titles in the future.
To view the 360-degree replays that Sliver.tv’s platform creates, you’ll need a mobile device running iOS or Android and the Sliver.tv companion app. Immersive game replays can be viewed as panoramic 360-videos, or you can enable Cardboard view and take it in with your Google Cardboard viewer.
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Kevin Carbotte is a contributing writer for Tom's Hardware who primarily covers VR and AR hardware. He has been writing for us for more than four years.