YouTube announces partnership with FaceIt

SK Gaming lift up the trophy in celebration at the Esports Championship Series Season 3. Provided by FACEIT

YouTube Gaming has announced a new partnership with FaceIt, a competitive gaming platform for players.

Earlier this year, YouTube partnered with the MLB to stream the World Series. It was a major step forward for the streaming brand into professional sports. And YouTube Gaming feels its technology can change how fans watch traditional sports too.

"There are going to be gaming features that could potentially benefit live streaming in sports and so forth," Ryan Wyatt, head of gaming content partnerships at YouTube, said. "For example, another partnership we did with FaceIt, when you're watching FaceIt with YouTube Gaming, you're able to see the stats and scores below the player, and you can follow the tournament bracket. There's a lot more information about what's happening about the tournament you're watching in real time."

Things will kick off on Dec. 15 in Cancun, Mexico, with the Esports Championship Series Season 4 finals in Counter-Strike: Global Offensive. Viewers who link their FaceIt accounts with YouTube Gaming can receive random "loot drops" for FaceIt points. Those points can be then redeemed for prizes, like in-game guns, gaming mice and keyboards. Loot drops will be distributed randomly, with a total of 15 million FaceIt points being distributed during the ECS finals.

Currently, the largest video game streaming platform is Twitch. It controls the game streaming zeitgeist, with many competitors struggling to compete. In May of 2017, YouTube and FaceIt announced a mutli-year exclusive broadcast partnership for ECS. YouTube is hoping that by engaging viewers with loot drops, it will drive viewership.

"We didn't set any specific goal in terms of viewership, I think in terms of looking at more than at a pure peak concurrent viewers, what we're going to be looking at is hours of content consumed by the fans," Michele Attisani, Chief Business OFficer and Co-founder of FaceIt, said.