The Las Vegas Legion recently opted for an unconventional approach to announce their new roster for the upcoming 2024 Call of Duty League season.
Eschewing traditional methods, the Legion unveiled their players through AI-generated images on social media. This decision has not been well-received, inciting a wave of criticism from various stakeholders within the eSports ecosystem.
*Pending League Approval pic.twitter.com/e3suqGXUPy
— Vegas Legion (@LasVegasLegion) November 12, 2023
One of the critical issues with the AI reveal was its accuracy, or lack thereof. Notably, player Dillon “Attach” Price was depicted with earrings—a feature he does not possess. Attach himself to X to humorously acknowledge the error. However, this instance highlights a broader concern about the reliance on AI for tasks traditionally reserved for human creativity and insight.
The response from the community has been swift and vocal. Tee Lily Hewitt, former content lead for Vegas Legion’s sister team, Vegas Eternal, expressed disappointment at the replacement of human talent with AI, lamenting the loss of creative opportunities for artists within the Call of Duty League. Similarly, Attach pointed out the strangeness of AI-generated images but remained focused on the upcoming competition.
The Vegas Legion’s use of AI for roster announcements is not an isolated incident in the world of eSports and gaming. Previously, an AI prediction of the Call of Duty League 2023 championship outcome made headlines for its accuracy.
However, the Vegas Legion’s approach has raised questions about the appropriate use of AI in the industry, especially concerning creative roles.
The impact on creatives
According to experts, the reliance on AI for tasks like graphic design and player announcements potentially undermines the role and value of human creatives in the esports industry. By opting for AI-generated content, organizations might be overlooking the unique perspectives and talents that human artists bring to the table, as well as the personal touch they add to team branding and fan engagement.
Other teams in the Call of Duty League have not hesitated to express their views on the matter. The Seattle Surge, for instance, took a jab at the Legion by sharing a picture of AI-generated trash cans, accompanied by a cheeky caption. This reaction underscores a broader skepticism within the industry about the unchecked use of AI technologies.
— Seattle Surge (@SeattleSurge) November 12, 2023
As the Call of Duty League progresses, it remains to be seen how teams will balance the allure of emerging technologies like AI with the proven value of human creativity. The controversy surrounding the Vegas Legion’s announcement serves as a cautionary tale about the potential pitfalls of over-reliance on AI in areas where human touch is crucial.
The Las Vegas Legion’s decision to use AI for their roster announcement in the COD League 2024 has sparked a significant debate about the role of AI in eSports. While AI offers exciting possibilities, its application in creative domains requires careful consideration to ensure that it complements rather than supplants human effort and creativity. As the eSports industry continues to evolve, finding the right balance between technology and human talent will be key to its sustained growth and popularity.