Last Friday, we met Alexandre “Dach” Dachary, ZeratoR’s right arm, to talk about his duties, how they manage events and his vision of the market!
You can follow him here: Twitter

KYKLOS: Hi Dach! How are you? First of all, thanks for taking the time to give us this interview ! I know you are pretty busy at the moment.
Dach: Yes! It’s true that with all the events we are invited to and those Adrien (ZeratoR) wants to create on his own, it’s a huge amount of work but it remains funny!
K: The idea here is that you tell us about your activities, why you began the gaming adventure and your future projects.
D: So I started in Eclypsia, a small structure back then, as an intern. The aim was to create an information portal about gaming and open WebTVs after that. I became the editor in chief in order to define a relevant editorial line. Then, Rurk (creator of Eclyspia), offered me to do the same with the WebTV so I became program manager. My role was to create funny video concepts, to manage broadcasting grids with different showrunners. Then I had to do both. After 3 years and a half, I left the company to join ZeratoR. At the time, I was basically his Assistant. Even him didn’t know what he needed but as a freshly independant streamer, he knew he would need help. One thing leading to another, he started to professionalize, to create other projects and needed support to co-manage all his various companies. Be aware that he builds many start-ups in order to compensate for the moment when the streaming will potentially fall. Currently, I’m helping him in managing the brand, the streaming, event management etc. I work a lot in the shadow to handle tasks such as logistics, administration and starting new projects so I’m basically multitasking.
K: And more specifically; on what type of project are you working?
D: I’ll work for everything that involves the WebTV and the sponsoring, all the events where Zerator appears (LANs, TrackmaniaCup, Z Event), all the companies launched by Zera on themes that interest him, accounting, legal business, relationship with the stakeholders. I’m a relay between partners and ZeratoR.
K: And what do you prefer in all this?
D: We operate in an industry where everything has to be done. It’s growing and we can allow ourselves to be creative, launch new things that may become pillars in the future. And what’s interesting is that we can start crazy projects, and it will work. For example, Z Event (a reunion of 35 streamers during a charity stream for 50 hours) had a tremendous success, but when we launched it, we were just wishing people to like it. We do what we want, and thanks to the support from the community, to the specificities of the entertainment industry and to our ambition, we can do things we like, which are very different and interesting.
K: And, basically, how do you prepare an event such as the Lyon E-Sport?
D: The advantage is that we only participate in the event. So since we don’t organize it, we just have to gather a team for the stream, book the slots and entertain a stream, which is our specialty. And, for a long time, the LES was mainly a League of Legends event. Now there is diversity with the organization of a Fortnite tournament, our wish for a long time. For example, I’m the one who put in contact the LES manager with Epic Games team. Thanks to this, the tournament can happen, and it proves that if influencers start working properly, they can influence the market.
K: Alright. And about Zera’s future projects, what can you tell us?
D: So currently, we have two annual events. We have the TrackmaniaCup, and we are obviously planning a 2018 edition, in a different location, but it’s really expensive, we try to convince sponsors, and as usual, there will be qualifiers online and the final on stage and ZeratoR will design the maps. In addition to that, I’ve already started working on the second edition of Z Event, because we want at least another edition and eventually annualize the event. Our policy with Zera is to plan at least one charity event per year. We prefer to organize our own event, and this year we will have once again the support from the editors and the devs, we probably found a better location than last year and we may already have chosen the association. And Zera wants to start another project I can’t talk about yet. It’s just a will, there is nothing done for the moment, but we know that it will probably be on stage. The idea is new and fun, and people seem interested!
K: And you didn’t think about involving the community, for example in the cashprize?
D: I know that Zera doesn’t like DOTA for doing this because the cash prizes are tremendous et the editor earns a lot of money thanks to this. Like when you buy the in-game item at the cost of 7€50, only 2€50 are used to fund the cash prize. Here the cash prize was 22 million, which means Valve earned 44 million thanks to this.
K: Now that’s some good marketing tool!
D: Clearly! And Zera doesn’t like it because he considers, and I think he’s right, we ask enough from our community. We sell tickets, we have a shop, we get donations, subs, people participate a lot during charities, and asking money to fund the cash prize of our competition, it’s not fair! We know that they already pay their tickets. So we have to fund ourselves, with sponsors, professionals from the industry, to create an entertaining show without asking for people’s money.
K: Yes and we saw Riot starting doing the same thing. But is it really the cash prize that attracts people?
D: The difference between Riot, Valve and us, is that we are entertainers. They do pure e-sport. And since you have an important cash prize to attract pro-players and structures, you keep their support. And it’s important for Riot to have the support from TeamSoloMid or from sponsors like Coca-Cola or so. And somehow it proves that the public is hyped.

We are not in the same situation. We are here to entertain. So yes, entertainment has a price, like an internet without ads or research article in the press, and people have to accept to pay because of the high-quality content. We mustn’t force people to pay every time. People donate way esasier when it comes from them anyway. You have to put some barriers.

K: About Fortnite, Epic Games used the battle royal fashion and they are developing the e-sport on this game, but do you think the game is meant to last in the e-sport world?

D: I think that as long as you can compete against other players, e-sport is relevant. I’m not shocked, as long as it’s well organized, with good rules and people like it. Plus we have to take profit from the Fortnite phenomenon since currently, France is a leader in this game. French influencers boosted the title. Of course, battle royal is a fashion, initiated by H1Z1 and PUBG, but e-sport on Fortnite is relevant. The only difficulty was more on PUBG which has a more passive gameplay, where Fortnite is more nervous, dynamic and enjoyable, so it’s better for e-sport. It’s easier to cast, to get entertained. And it’s free! So the tournament at the LES won’t be the last one I guess!

K: Very nice! Do you want to add something?

D: I’m pretty curious to know where we are heading. I’ll discover the Dojo E-sport, created by Olivier Morin, showrunner of the Canal E-sport Club, and it’s community space designed for lectures, workshops etc. to discuss about the trends of the industry, and we will especially talk about the relationship between influencers and game editors, the interest of e-sport on TV and the possibility to see video games as an Olympic discipline. These are tough subjects to discuss where opinions diverge a lot. For example, I don’t want to see video games in the Olympics as far as I’m concerned. But to debate about having an international competition, countries against countries, especially for video games is attracting.

There will be people from the association France E-sport, created with Axelle Lemaire, we start talking about video games in the political world so some people start seeing opportunities and want to enter the market, so many things can happen! We must be proactive and support the development of the industry.

K: And on the other hand, it’s reassuring because we note how much the industry has changed, that it’s, no longer designed only for geeks in their room, now we are talking about stars, from streamers to pro-players and all the ecosystem has changed, which is crazy!

D: I think we are still geeks, but we became bankable. So people won’t be mean to us. I want to see where it leads us. If it could be a harmonious development of the industry, it would be awesome, especially in terms of job creation, but we can still face the defaults of every business where the people with the money will lock everything, prioritize themselves. The evolution of the market will depend a lot on this. We must stay focus because everything is happening in front of us without us knowing. Many things will change until 2020 so let’s stay focused!

K: Thank you so much for this interview, it was nice of you and thank you for all your answers. See you at the LES!

D: Thank you see you soon!

 

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