Even though everybody knows that girls really do play games, we’re still horribly underrepresented in the eSports arena… until now. The WPGI Women’s eSports League hits Australian shores from January 22nd, featuring six of the best female-only teams competing for their share of a $10,000 prize pool.
In a first for CS:GO tournaments in the region, the WPGI is offering match payments to players as part of the prize pool, making getting involved even more lucrative.
Stepping up to take part in this milestone event include female-only teams Athletico, Corvidae, Dark Sided, Incept, Mythix and Ravens. They’re facing off in a series of group stages culminating in a LAN final on March 5, 2017.
The project is part of Australian Esports Media Group, with AEMG Event Director James Cowan explains that he wants WPGI to both “change the competitive landscape” for Women in eSports, but also for Australia and Oceania as a whole:
For many years Oceania has been behind the global esports curve, but today we start to change that. Through WPGI we hope to set the standard for leagues not just here in Oceania, but worldwide.
Cassandra “Frisco” Francisco, Communications Specialist at AEMG says all the teams are excited to be a part of the new league:
It’s had a lot of negative backlash but we think it’s really crucial that women have a space to break into the industry without having to face harassment or extreme scrutiny.
But. WPGI is more than just an eSports tournament. The group also aims to “increase professionalism, diversity and opportunity in eSports” – particularly in the notoriously unfriendly CS:GO scene. As well as competitive gaming, players and community members will enjoy career development opportunities and legal assistance, while working together to build a sustainable future for female gamers.
To help with this goal, WPGI has partnered with Women in Games International (WIGI), who work tirelessly to promote the inclusion and advancement of women in the global games industry.
Jeremy Laverde, Chief Operating Officer of AEMG, explains the plan to build WPGI into a long-term hub for female gamers in the region.
I’d personally like to thank both WIGI and the six inaugural teams for sharing our vision and we look forward to a collaborative 2017.