Well it’s about damn time someone did, am I right!? Riot, masterminds behind the money making juggernaut MOBA, League of Legends, will be bringing the first ever-professional eSports league to Oceania.
The weekly league will see 8 teams duke it out over the course of a 7-week split, with wins counting for way more than bragging rights, as the top five teams will remain in the league with the bottom 3 facing relegation.
Oh, I forgot to mention. This is the pro-leagues we’re talking about now and bragging rights don’t pay for those fancy team track suits and truck loads of Redbull! So let’s talk cash. OPL (Oceanic Professional League) teams will click vigorously for a share of $64,000, with individual players receivng a ‘match fee’ of $100 for every game they play in.
“We have some amazing talent in this region and they are only going to get better in a professional league,” explains Daniel Ringland, esports manager, Riot Games Oceania.
“Our ultimate goal is to see an Oceanic team win at Worlds,” adds Ben de Rider, esports Co-ordinator, Riot Games Oceania. “We’re not on the same level as some of the larger regions yet, but you should never underestimate a bunch of Aussies and Kiwis.”
The Split 1 Champion of the OPL will be heading to Turkey to represent Oceania in the International Wildcard Invitational. Victory in Istanbul would secure them a place in the Mid-Season Invitational against the best teams in the world.
The champion of Split 2, running from May to August, will be representing Oceania in the Wildcard Qualifier for a place at the World Championships.
Needless to say, this league will truly put Oceanic players into the game- poor pun fully intended. With eSports popularity growing at a rate Ebola would be proud of, this couldn’t have come at a better time to present our local guys and gals with an opportunity to click with the best of them!
OPL matches for Split 1 will be broadcast live on Mondays and Thursdays from 6pm AEDT, with the first round starting this Thursday February 5.
You can tune into all the matches at www.twitch.tv/riotgamesoceania.