All the regional Predator League games have led up to this one grand weekend in Tokyo, Japan, hosting the finals of the Asia Pacific Predator League 2022. Following the press conference, we had the chance to get more thoughts from Andrew Hou, President of Acer Pan Asia Pacific, with regards to the company moving forward, and of course, the Predator League itself.
Interview has been edited for clarity.
Andrew Hou has been in his position for over six years now, not to mention his lengthy tenure in Acer itself. After all this time, when it comes to the growth of technology, he acknowledges there are regions – such as Japan, besides the world at large – that are challenging to make inroads in. That can be either market share, or simply the development of tech itself, due to the different environments from nation to nation. Nonetheless, he believes there is still room to grow in the “younger” regions with greater potential, and thus, can expect greater change.
Considering most people would associate Acer with general consumer products and PCs, Japan isn’t necessarily a country known for PC gaming. This merely spells more opportunities for Acer, with Andrew talking about leveraging the company’s strengths through focused marketing. He names Chromebooks, monitors, and an increasing interest in SpatialLabs as places of growth.
“Trends show that PC is on the rise, so we will continue to invest in the league in order to boost our presence.”
To that end, I could extrapolate that the increased interest in PC is in part due to people being unable to obtain the latest consoles, and the fact that quite a number of publishers – and large Japanese publishers at that – are releasing PC ports. PC players have been able to get previously console-exclusive releases in increasing frequency – Sony Interactive Entertainment with Horizon Zero Dawn, God of War, ATLUS with Persona 5 Royal to name some of the more recent ones – showing that PC is definitely a platform of interest.
Speaking of, the Asia Pacific Predator League 2022 Finals being in Japan could be seen as an odd choice, more so for hosting Dota 2 games. Andrew reveals it to be part of a pitch, one to make a greater impact on the local Dota 2 scene within the country, realizing the game’s presence here is fairly minimal. Win or lose, that first step is what’s important!
When it comes to the tournament itself, there are no plans at this stage for the Predator League Finals to have long playoff periods. “The focus is on increasing local engagement,” he tells us. Regional tournaments can be extended to find the best of the best out of the national talent pool, and they’ll face off with their peers for a high octane weekend.
On that note, Andrew also makes a nod towards mobile games. He opens up the possibility of the featured games to be different for a future iteration, depending on industry developments. As it were, a “truly global” finals league, so to speak, will be a challenge when regionals can feature wildly different games. It’s revealed that the decisions surrounding game titles and venue were put up to internal vote, so who knows what the future might bring?
Thanks to Andrew Hou for his insights into where Acer, and the Predator League will go in the surely not too distant future. Needless to say, both ‘regular’ people like us and esports hopefuls will have our respective chances to partake in this greater ecosystem.
Do stay tuned, and watch all the games of the Predator League!