Adult entertainment giant YouPorn is stepping into the eSports ring with the signing of DOTA 2 team No Broodmama, to be known henceforth as TeamYP.
Intense, frantic, back-and-forth action. Timing your explosive ultimates with your partners'. Ten-person piles of flailing limbs, tails, weapons, and energy blasts that leave everyone totally spent or completely confused. A hundred thousand viewers, watching online with bated breath. A digital playground. Vivid entertainment. Jungling.
When you think about it, the coming together of YouPorn and Defense of the Ancients 2 makes a lot of sense. The adult industry giant has thrown its hat into the eSports ring with the full acquisition of the DOTA team formerly known as No Broodmama. The players, who represent some of the best MOBA players in the US and Canada, joined Team YP (don't worry, all links on this article are SFW) last year, and they are now prepping to enter ESL-One New York this weekend as the first major tournament under their new name.
"We're especially excited about this partnership, for it's a validation of our vision for our future within the eSports industry," says Brad Burns, Vice President of Youporn. "Formed 1 year ago, Team YP is now looking to affirm its presence as one of the world's best eSports gaming organizations."
One has to assume Team YP are all master gamers, expert at one-handed keyboard usage. I imagine the "alt" and "tab" keys are worn away to blank spaces.
There are jokes to be made, of course, but in all seriousness this looks like a wonderful partnership for both adult entertainment and eSports - maybe gaming in general. As gamers, we see how eSports struggle to legitimize themselves to the public. The XXX industry is just as maligned, if not more so. If combining forces to achieve a shared goal gets results, I can't say I'd be disappointed.
Pornography has been making strides in the nerd world of late - Steam has gone from censoring overtly sexual games, to allowing an uncensored yuri game into its store. Porn streamer SugarDVD is bringing its service to consoles and SteamOS alike - maybe even Oculus Rift. Forget gaming - PornHub nearly got to film sex in space! So what if the crowd-sourcing fell short - the effort itself was thought-provoking.
Adult entertainment sponsorship of any kind of team is not especially new, but I wonder if this is the biggest team to feature a XXX-related logo. In my own city, at least one local touch football team proudly wears their Brazzers jerseys. At first it was silly; now it's simply accepted.
It should be noted that many gaming tournaments have policies against promoting blatantly adult material - so team jerseys don't mention the Youporn brand, specifically, let alone have its URL anywhere. There's no harm in being respectful, and frankly, everyone who could know, does know.
Team YP already has a Super Smash Bros. player on their roster - Bizzarro Flame aka Jason Yoon. His main is Ganondorf (My main is Ganondorf! Hi Jason!). We are really hoping they branch out into more fighting games, so we can finally find a use for all these "sexy joystick" puns in the Escapist vaults.
I'll put this one out to the commenters. What do you guys think about this? Is having a porn company sponsoring teams healthy for eSports? Are the two industries just going to hurt each others' reputations by working together?
This article has been edited to show that the acquisition of No Broodmamas happened last year