The 20-team remote eSports tournament ran over five days, reaching football fans across the world.
EA Sports utilized Grabyo’s cloud video platform to deliver the FIFA 20 #StayandPlay Cup, a remote eSports experience encouraging soccer fans across the world to stay at home, during the COVID-19 pandemic.
At a time when no live sport was taking place, EA teamed up with 20 of the world’s foremost soccer teams to host a virtual FIFA20 tournament. Players including Trent Alexander-Arnold from Liverpool F.C, Vinícius Jr from Real Madrid and Phil Foden from Manchester City went head-to-head with other stars in a straight-knockout format.
EA used Grabyo’s platform to produce the entire tournament remotely. The flexibility of the Grabyo platform enabled EA to collaborate with remote guests and presenters on live broadcasts, as well as bring in video from the players themselves over the broadcast.
The Cup was broadcast live to EA’s digital channels on Twitch and YouTube, with the final also running on linear television via ESPN 2, delivered directly from Grabyo. This is the first time a publisher has used Grabyo to publish directly to linear television.
The tournament ran over five days and aimed to raise awareness and drive donations to Global Giving’s Coronavirus relief fund. The tournament concluded with Mo Diamy, from FC Kobenhavn, emerging victorious. The final day’s action also included an appearance from Arsenal legend Ian Wright.
The entire production was constructed in under 10 days, from inception to the start of delivery. EA’s dedicated server ran at 20 Mbps, allowing for 15 concurrent live streams and 45 concurrent users from EA to ensure smooth delivery.
One of the main challenges of broadcasting remote eSports events is replicating the high-definition viewing experience of playing video games at home. eSports audiences expect the same quality when watching across any device.
EA Sports used Grabyo’s advanced live-streaming capabilities to broadcast live in 1080p, at 60FPS to its social channels and ESPN 2. Switching between multiple live feeds, Grabyo Producer allowed EA Sports to broadcast live gameplay and easily bring in remote commentators, presenters and players competing in their own homes.
EA also delivered highlight packages and a round-up after each day, ensuring fans could engage with the tournament outside of the live action. These round-ups the best goals of each round and included fresh perspectives from sporting personalities such as Spencer Owen, eSports host and founder of Hashtag United, another Grabyo partner.
This is the second event EA has used Grabyo to deliver, building on the hugely successful Apex Legends Global Series broadcast. The agile and scalable nature of cloud-native production enabled us to introduce new features and capabilities rapidly to reach the quality and distribution needed by EA and Respawn Entertainment.
Producing a live eSports event in a cloud environment reduced the resources needed by EA to deliver the event. Access to Grabyo’s platform requires only a laptop or PC with an internet connection, and can be managed by a small team. Remote guests can appear on a broadcast using a webcam and built-in microphone on their device, using only a single browser link to join.