DraftKings just released a new Arcade Mode as of yesterday morning, which is where you select one pitcher and five batters. The response has been all over the place on Twitter and while I very much applaud the efforts of these sites for trying new things, I believe this to have come at the wrong time. A release of a new game type that reduces the skill level it takes to win and increases the luck involved with everything that is going on right now for DFS legally, just feels like a poor decision overall.
I get it, it’s a fun new game type and is being marketed really well currently and might help keep casuals engaged with the new game types. However, the game is designed with more complexity in scoring while making it simpler only in terms of the amount of players you have to select. We as players have been asking for innovation though and I don’t want to seem ungrateful for the efforts. I love that the sites are trying new things and are willing to bring new things… it just feels like a cash grab play at casual fans.
Let’s take something you guys already started and make it a complete product–Leagues. I wrote something on a personal blog some time ago how leagues was just a glorified private contest organizer and reminder system. I think the idea has merit and is over 80% of the way to where it could make a huge impact.
Seasonal Daily Leagues
That’s right, let’s bring back a seasonal discussion into DFS for a moment. You can keep the great benefits of daily alive while also participating in a seasonal format. We did it manually last year with a group of friends and it was great. The group enjoyed it, injuries only plagued us if they happened in game and we won money at the end of each slate and at the end of the year. I would love to see this game setup on a larger scale.
So here’s how we did it (for NFL):
- Some pre-set dollar entry for the entire season.
- Weekly prizes for top X%.
- Seasonal prizes for top X%.
It’s really that simple. Remove this desire to collect payment each week and simply collect one time for the season with the ability to win cash prizes throughout the season. Most seasonal leagues between friends usually cost between $50 to $250 for the season. We had ours at $50 to try it out with $25 weekly payouts to 1st with a total of 15 players. The payout schedule is irrelevant for the purpose of this post and can easily be figured out later.
Of the 15 people who played in this league, I believe only five of us played DFS on a regular basis. I was able to get 10 new players to DFS through this format and they enjoyed it because it had aspects of seasonal associated with all the benefits of DFS. Several of the newer players to DFS are still playing almost a year later.
This format might only work for NFL and maybe MLB but it’s at least something that would differentiate you from the market and potentially grab all those seasonal players and show them what DFS has to offer. You can mix it up and do mini contests and mid-season contests too. Mix it up, have fun with it and stick to the core of the game.