Since its inception in 2014, nAvTV has been the go-to name in providing quality casting talent to the South African esports scene, playing a key role in growing the local shoutcasting industry into what it is today.
2017 marks an important time in the South African esports scene, with a number of new tournaments and organisers rising up to take their slice of the proverbial pie with organisations, like nAvTV, looking set to take on all of the challenges associated with a rapidly expanding ecosystem by the horns.
Telkom Gaming got the chance to sit down with the Voice of South African Esports, Devin “HellbirD” Rigotti, for some insight into how nAvTV has progressed since it’s inception as well as his plans for the future of the organisation.
First off, let’s take a look into a bit of history:
Devin “HellbirD” Rigotti: nAvTV started out when a need to manage shoutcasters for the DGL emerged. Initially the concept was quite straight forward: get people casting good games. However, as time went on, we came to realise that the industry was in need of additional skills and resources, so we expanded to focus on improving on our offering to cater for production, media, marketing and a broader sense of talent.
Telkom Gaming: Having been established to fill this niche, how did you go about growing nAvTV to what it is today?
HellbirD: Well, the first step was definitely making a home for casters, not only to ensure they were looked after when dealing with third parties but also so that they, in turn, could look after those third parties. In the early days, a lot of development went into their skills and our own skills in looking after the best interests of all involved. We made some mistakes, but we have grown a lot.
Obviously, a big part of this was getting the best Talent available; we had some strong names from the offset but we were very fortunate to have some new and old faces join us to create a roster that has always been reliable and produced those highlight reel moments. Today, we have improved even further and, as an entertainer myself, I am honoured to be able to stand beside these guys and girls.
After that, we looked towards the fringe items, as mentioned above, but, specifically, production as it had effectively been handled by casters themselves up to that point. We did some things I am pretty proud of, although it pales in comparison to what is available today.
Sam Hawes: With the esports industry in South Africa continuing to boom, and a number of new players entering the field, how has nAvTV gone about adapting to meeting the needs of the expanding scene?
HellbirD: It’s been great to see all these new faces doing some special things and it has changed the face of esports, but also how nAvTV identifies its place in the industry. The biggest change has really come with our offering for production: in the past, we would kit out a place with all of our equipment but, realistically, there are large studios and brands that work only in production and simply are more experienced and well equipped. There is one downside to this though as they often lack the expertise within esports itself to really produce the results they want, and that’s where nAvTV come in again. We have the right people to direct these events, lead the guys with the technical expertise and help the players and talent perform to the best of their abilities so, I guess in that regard, and although we do still often help out with equipment, we are more like a talent broker.
As for our media, marketing and talent, it has certainly seen some improvements and has some interesting surprises in store, but it’s mostly the same concept as in the past.
Sam: We’ve looked at your past in some depth (be sure to check out the South African Shoutcasting series, links below) so what we want to know is: What is next for navTV?
HellbirD: Well, I think by now you guys all know about me and surprises… This time around it’ll be a little less overt though: we have some new relationships, some improved ones and some unexpected ones that will be very beneficial for nAvTV itself and, as a knock-on effect, should improve the experience of spectators in general, however, as always, you will just have to wait and see for yourself. What I will say is this: I’m very excited about the prospects of both nAvTV and the greater esports environment; things are looking exceptionally positive and uh… I’m not the only one who likes giving people surprises… <‘;…;’>
For more insight into the South African Shoutcasting scene, nAvTV and the Voice of Esports himself, Devin “HellbirD” Rigotti, be sure to check out: