Saturday, September 21, 2013

Valken Cup: Half Full or Half Empty?

If a tree falls in the woods and there's nobody there to hear it does it make a sound? I suppose answers may vary depending on how tight one's grasp on reality is but there's only one answer to this next question. If a paintball industry leader hosts a unique invitation only event billed as the search for the world's best all-around paintball team complete with big money prizes but fails miserably to promote it does anybody care? The answer is not so much.
How do I know? Because it's happening right now. In fact it began yesterday. It's the Valken Cup. If that's news to you you're not alone. By invitation only 19 teams (that showed) are battling it out for world domination and the fat prize money. It appears at first glance that most of the teams that showed up were in the neighborhood (Left coast)--well, okay, Impact is there too as is X-Factor with at least a partial roster but the big money on offer didn't result in a big turnout. At least not one of high profile "pro" level teams. (Very likely conflicting sponsorship obligations come into play but even so.)
Part of the problem is probably the timing, given that the NPPL Las Vegas championships are right around the corner--I typed that with a straight face--as is the PSP World Cup with the Millennium's version of Cup having been held last weekend. For all but the jet-setting few it's an impossible schedule. The other part is the wretched job Valken has done of promoting their event. (I mentioned it in August and may be the only online paintball-related website to do so. Well, that's almost certainly an exaggeration but think back and try to remember all the press releases, social media blitz and forum threads dedicated to the Valken Cup. Can't, can you?)
Now that you know it's happening you can get some info at the Valken Sports Facebook page and at pbpromotionslive which has the daily schedules and scores. Yesterday was 5-man "woods" which were played on rec fields at the host site, Camp Pendleton's Paintball Park near San Diego. Today is 5-man pump on an airball field and tomorrow is straight up speedball. The team with the best combined score wins.
Just goes to show that having a pretty cool idea, 3 formats in a single event, fronted by a major industry player willing to pass around the cheddar doesn't automatically equal lots of high profile publicity or public interest (or even paintballers interest.) Me? Normally I'd be all about it but c'mon, it's Flugtag today!


Reiner Schafer said...

Damn it! I had no idea it was happening right now. I guess Red Bull didn't promote Flugtag very well! I would have taken the day off.

Anonymous said...

Promotion aside (with which I agree with you), I have to say as a player it's been a fun event.