EEG: Hope you are having a great day! Knowing that one of the big influences in your life are video games, let me start by asking: how does a day in the life of a gamer like you looks like? How do you use your time, since the moment you wake up, till the moment you fall asleep?
Silviu Hotoi: Hey! That’s a bit hard to answer, really depends. Mostly I get up at 7:30 AM, take a shower and go to work (I work as a workforce/ data analyst at a multinational company). I get off at 6 PM and sometimes go for a drink (I laid off beers and coffee lately, so mostly tea), sometimes go for a walk and shooting some pictures (beginner photograph) or straight home. When I get home, I usually eat and take a shower and then I play until getting sleepy or tired. I don’t play League exclusively, I also play CSGO, OSU! and other MMOs like Lineage. When there’s a tournament coming up, I dedicate myself to League for a couple of weeks in advance.
EEG: Gaming is also a big responsibility. Especially when you’re in a competition and you also have other players that rely on you. Tell us about how you started to train in a professional manner?
Silviu Hotoi: I consider I started training myself in a professional manner when I took time to look at replays and analyze my mistakes. It’s different looking to the game without having to focus all the time at the map, CS-ing or micro play. I’m a bit of a perfectionist so even when I finish a game with a perfect KDA I take the time to look at the replay because I’m sure I made some mistakes that went through unpunished by the opponents. Oh, and as a note: I don’t consider myself a pro-player and not even semi-pro, but I do consider that I have the ethics and mindset.
EEG: It took something before video-games were actually considered “sports”, but nowadays we have real eSports competitions! I’m sure you’re very familiar with this kind of events. Tell us about your experience with them, your performances and share a few thoughts and insights.
Silviu Hotoi: My first contact with LAN tournaments were about 10 years ago when I started playing Counter-Strike 1.6 . I wasn’t in the top then, was merely a high skilled player running with the pros, but nothing fancy. I’m an extremely competitive player (all my friends can back that up, even the non gamer ones) so I liked the feeling. After the first season of League of Legends (I didn’t watch the championship series at all, didn’t even know that existed), the EU server split into EUW and EUNE, and there was a massive upcoming tournament. I gathered some local friends and we created a team. We didn’t practice or anything, we just checked-in at the event (hosted by ESL if I recall correctly) and started playing. We went to the only Internet Café in town and played for 12 hours straight. That was the first time I thought of myself “Hey, I can really do this”. Unfortunately, that was not the day. We lost in the quarter finals against Zombilau’s team (probably the most known player in Romania), but I was proud of myself. We got ranked top 8 of over 120 teams and it felt great. When season 2 started, I had some problems and wanted to focus on my studies so I quit League, only to get back in the middle of season 3, when I treated everything more serious. I started attending LANs when I got into college and even won a few, teaming up with my brother but lately playing with better ranked players. When I moved to Bucharest 2 years ago, I started going to bigger events and looking for better teams. Got first place on two events in Bucharest: Nexus tournament at Eastern European Comic-Con (teaming up with Trel, Vrow, Speedy and DeadliestHit, all known players in Romania) and LSE League of Legends tournament (Hosted by Polytechnic University of Bucharest, where I played for team Nexus Gamers Pub, teaming up with Alddy, Vrow, Xellos and CrazyBannana, again, all known players in Romania).
Regarding the atmosphere, and general feeling on LAN tournaments, it’s great. The fact that you’re friends with everybody from every team, but as soon as you enter champion select you’re enemies is great. Nobody takes it personally and that’s awesome.
EEG: Let’s imagine for a moment, that you’ve just been promoted to CEO at one of the biggest eSports Events in the World. What would you change, regarding the way these competitions work, or how would you organize it, having the free will to do so?
Silviu Hotoi: I don’t think I’d change much at all. The big companies are already hiring ex-esports pro players to manage big events or being esports directors and stuff like that. Esports events are organized by people of our kind, esports people.
EEG: Are there any people that inspired you? Or maybe any fictional characters from video games/comics?
Silviu Hotoi: I think I got mostly inspired by me, especially when I was failing. I always wanted to prove to myself that I can get to the top. Of course, I also get inspired by pro-player stories and quotes and all that.
EEG: A side question: what can you tell us about the so called “skin-industry” regarding the sums of money that can be made by selling skins? (ex CS:GO)
Silviu Hotoi: I think it’s great. Everything is as valuable as much as somebody is willing to pay for it. For example, if you just spent $500K on a Porsche, but nobody is willing to pay more than $10, that Porsche has $10 net value. It may worth more for you, but you can’t get your money back, can you? It’s the same with skins in CS:GO. If you have an unique Dragon Lore AWP skin and you put on sale for $10K, it’s worth absolutely $0 until somebody pays that up. And sometimes they do.
EEG: Is there any country in this world where you would like to participate in a eSports competition?
Silviu Hotoi: That’s debatable. Depending on what I would want at that time(I’m referring to regions, not countries in particular):
If I wanted the biggest competition, that would be Asia, there’s no secret that Korean and Chinese players are most skilled and practice the most.
If I wanted the “show”, that’s clearly North America, they have the best production.
If I wanted to play with the biggest blend of playstyles and mentalities, I’d choose Europe.
But if I wanted to play for the best crowd, I’d choose the Brazilian League, that’s the most energetic public I’ve ever seen.
EEG: One last question. Let’s imagine again. If you could move to any place in this world and stay there forever, what would that place be and what are the 4 things you would take with you?
Silviu Hotoi: I adapt really easy to any gear, so there’s nothing fancy, so I’d take my motivation, will and self esteem. No, leaving the deep talk aside, I’d take my computer, my internet connection (assuming there’s none) and my tea cup.
Do the right thing
James Ashton from Find My UK Casino says that affiliates and operators must be responsible in their approach to engaging players over the coming months
As an online casino affiliate that prioritises responsibility and compliance above all else, I was saddened to receive emails from several of our operator partners regarding a small number of publishers that have looked to leverage the on-going global crisis to their advantage.
These emails are reminding affiliates of the terms and conditions which they agreed to when partnering with the operator, most notably that all marketing activity undertaken must be responsible and compliant at all times.
For those that are not, they risk having their accounts terminated with immediate effect. And rightly so. Professional online casino affiliates do not need to rely on a global crisis to drive traffic to their sites – if anything, they should be taking additional steps to protect their players.
Since the UK lockdown came into force last week, we have seen traffic numbers increase. This, of course, is to be expected as more people are now working from home or not working but being required to stay at home.
This is good for us and other affiliates, and equally positive for our operator partners. But we all have to take a responsible approach and ensure that we go above and beyond to provide players with the information they need to make an informed decision about if and where to play.
This includes ensuring bonus terms and conditions – significant and full – are correctly displayed while also creating explainers about wagering requirements, the tools available to help keep in control of their play and how to ensure they play at licensed and reputable brands.
We are prioritising pages such as these over high-volume ranking pages that are proven to drive players from the SERPs to our pages and ultimately to the online casino brands we recommended. As a result, we have seen retuning site visitors increase over the past two weeks.
One of the most effective ways online casino affiliates can protect players at a time when site traffic and demand is likely to increase – at least over the coming weeks and months – is to only work with the best online casino brands out there.
These are not necessarily the most established brands or those that hold multiple licences, but those that go the extra mile to educate players about responsible gambling and provide them with additional features to manage their play.
As an affiliate focussed on the UK market, we only work with those that hold a UK Gambling Commission licence. Others don’t do this and some even actively promote brands that are not UK licensed to UK players on pages about Online Casinos Not On GamStop.
This is irresponsible on many levels, but amid the current climate is putting the most vulnerable at greater risk than ever before.
We also work very closely with our operator partners to ensure that all the content we create around their brand(s) is 100% compliant, and also seek feedback on other aspects of our site to ensure we are doing everything we can to meet the highest possible standards.
This is always important but particularly right now as people find themselves with more time on their hands but perhaps with less disposable income to spend. That’s not to say they shouldn’t play online casino, but affiliates and operators must do all they can to ensure they play responsibly.
There is clearly an opportunity to target the growing number of people being confined to their homes, but affiliates and operators must do the right thing and ensure they do not take advantage of the situation and use is to their advantage.
Affiliates and operators should be investing time and resources into helping players enjoy online casino play if that is how they want to spend their time and money, but in a way that is healthy and within their means both personally and financially.
So although I was sadden to receive emails from operators stating that affiliates should not be leveraging the current global crisis and using it to their advantage, I was encourage to see that they had taken serious steps to identify, prevent and punish those that are.
That being said, it is really down to affiliates to do the right thing in the first place and it seems that despite the tremendous efforts being made by regulators, watchdogs, operators and publishers, a small minority continue to act irresponsibly, doing untold damage to the rest of the sector.
Rescuebet Sports Betting Losses Rebate
In the last two decades, online gambling has seen a remarkable rise in numbers, both in terms of betting portals and users of these portals. Online gambling portals have transformed the way sports bettors place bets. Since online gambling is still a relatively new practice, the regulations vary depending on the jurisdiction. This doesn’t change the fact that the online betting ecosystem attracts more players every year only because of its ease of access and convenience.
All one requires to start placing bets online is an internet connection and a bank account. RescueBet is the leading online betting website in Malaysia that combines e-betting services with a diverse range of other entertainment services. Some of these services include esports, slot games, live casino games, fishing games, live scoreboard updates, and so many more so users can enjoy the world’s best online gaming experience.
One-Stop Betting Website
For online gambling solutions, look no further than RescueBets’ outstanding range of betting services. Integrated with Asia’s leading online sports bookies, Rescuebet ensures that all users have a safe, entertaining, and profitable experience. Rescuebet caters to a variety of interests, so finding the right game got much simpler and more accessible for a user. The sophisticated user interface is designed to allow moving from one section of the site to another extremely easy. This integrated platform enables users to place bets on any sport, be it tennis, golf, soccer, or horse racing.
RescueBets’ convenient interface allows users to access the marketplace online and place wagers on events taking place anywhere in the world. A user is always in control of how much they bet and they also get access to premium leads for the most popular games in the world. But it doesn’t stop there, there are also live in-play options which allow users to make changes in bets mid-game. Exciting promotions and surprise bonuses make sure that users don’t miss a chance to increase profits from their wagers.
Experienced bettors are already aware that the chances of getting better odds are higher online, and better the odds, the better the potential returns. Most professionals compare odds across various platforms to ensure they pick the best bets. Even slightly better odds can have a huge impact on your final profit and rest assured, RescueBet has a live updated compilation of the most competitive odds in the market.
Moreover, the site offers several prop-bets for a single event, so users never miss out on an opportunity to make their money back. Members can even access premium content through video web series, articles, and tutorials on relevant topics and popular events. This quality content is curated to help guide members of the RescueBet community to place the most successful wagers.
The sports betting market is one of the fastest-growing sectors in the world. International sports betting currently accounts for upwards of 40% of all gambling revenue worldwide, including lotteries, casinos, poker, or any other forms of gambling. Due to popular demand, one of
RescueBets’ most prominent attractions is its sports betting and especially the soccer betting services for which they are leaders in any European and Asian bookies. The website covers all matches and leagues from all corners of the world, including the English Premier League, Spanish La Liga, Italian Series A, Champions League, and the German Bundesliga. Users gain access to various helpful resources to guide their betting decisions. These include a regularly updated blog about the latest trends in sports betting, best soccer picks, and more relevant topics that keep users informed of the current trends in the marketplace.
Follow games and popular events through live scoreboard updates and interact with other members of the community and RescueBet executives to be further informed of your betting decisions. Each game has the potential to win at multiple junctures with RescueBets range of prop-bets. Winning these prop bets could add up to a decent profit by itself.
To encourage zealous bettors to continue placing big bets, RescueBet is the only online gambling platform that offers rebates on sports betting losses across all games. Rather than giving users fancy bonuses with high rollovers, RescuBet believes in giving users weekly and monthly rebates to build partnerships and motivate them to place more bets confidently.
So, How The Rebates Work?
Every Monday, RescueBet credits 15% of the week’s loss value back into a user’s account after a losing week. The site uses a fixed formula to calculate the rebate for each week. You can choose to transfer the corresponding amount into the RescueBet e-wallet, which holds these funds for you until they are ready to transfer it to a different provider. The result is, users have more chances to chase those big plays in the future.
The 15% losses rebate introduced by RescueBet aims to help users maximize their profits responsibly. Every time a member transfers funds from their rebate wallet to their game provider wallet, there will be a 10x wagering requirement before a member can transfer the funds to their main wallet. This means that the user will have to wager the combined amount of their deposit and bonus 10 times over before they can withdraw any of the winnings. Long-time users of the service ensure that RescueBet provides them with the best leads on profitable sports bets while also simultaneously allowing them to win at additional engagements of the site.
Other Betting Games
New users of the site can also explore all of RescueBet’s free casino games that do not require a buy-in to play. They can play these games without spending any real money and try the ropes at different games to determine what interests them most. With RescueBet, members stand to gain far more than just betting on a single sport. If you are looking to switch providers or to upgrade your betting skills, then RescueBet is the perfect platform for you. Give your betting toolbox a much needed revamp by visiting the RescueBet website today.
Leading betting affiliate sets sights on Virtual Sports market
In a historic shake up of the sporting calendar not seen since the Second World War, all major sporting events have been put on hold indefinitely.
With markets in turmoil, and traffic to online bookmakers and affiliate sites alike taking a significant hit, there is a lot at stake. Sporting events will eventually return, although it’s unclear exactly as to when.
It means that the iGaming community as whole needs to look to viable alternatives, although some feel that the present predicament actually provides opportunity.
“We’re aiming to turn this unique situation into one where we can adapt, learn, and hopefully come out of the other side in a much stronger position”, says Eskil Kvarnström, CEO of Leadstar Media.
Viable alternatives to sports betting
“We’re quite lucky in the fact that we’ve always set out to hold a varied portfolio of products that set their focus across sports betting, online casino and a number of international markets,” says Kvarnström.
Indeed that is the challenge for many betting affiliates and online bookmakers alike. How they act and react now could leave a pivotal mark in the immediate and distant future alike.
“One of the areas where we’re already seeing a significant upturn is in the realm of virtual sports, and that’s exactly where we’re setting part of our focus for the time being. It’s providing us with a great opportunity to improve in fields that might before have gone overlooked.”
A flagship product of Leadstar Media, BookiesBonuses.com, aims to provide the best overview of UK bookmakers for its users based in the British Isles, but also further afield.
“While Bookies Bonuses is primarily geared towards providing a great deal of information on online bookmakers, it is one of our sites where sports betting takes centre stage, although online casino does play an ancillary role in what it has to offer.”
It’s important to be reactive
Many sports betting sites are already seeking to develop their virtual sports betting products. The likes of Bet365, Betway and Coral have arguably the most advanced virtual sports packages on the market at present, while the BetVictor sign up offer has recently been updated to highlight its availability to players interested in virtual sports.
“We’re actually surprised that more online bookmakers aren’t yet seeking to promote their virtual sports packages given that we already know many of the major football leagues in Europe in particular are going to be out of action for at least another month or so. But that’s where we come in”, states Kvarnström.
The role of the affiliate
“In many respects the virtual sports market goes overlooked by many players who are interested in sports betting, simply because there is a constant availability of real-life events taking place all over the world at any given time.”
“We see our role at Leadstar Media not only to provide the best products for the consumer, but in being a key conduit of disseminating valuable information on distinctive areas of the sports betting and online gambling sector. It’s not just about what is on offer, but also how particular aspects of the market like bonuses and deposits methods fundamentally work in practice, and providing that information accordingly,” says Kvarnström.
“In many respects the virtual sports market is an untapped resource ready for development, especially in such unique times. Our company has a lot of experience in nascent markets across the world, such as Africa and India, so we feel confident we can inform and advertise to our users everything that virtual sports have to offer”.
In such unique and uncertain times, it certainly provides food for thought in how the iGaming sector as a whole will look to react, adapt and develop, and more importantly, what the landscape will look like when we come out of this period on the other side.
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