The ESL UK [Esports League UK] are hosting their first mobile game tournament with a League of Legends: Wild Rift tournament this year.
Wild Rift is a modified version of the hit PC MOBA [multiplayer online battle arena], League of Legends, that brings the action to mobile devices.
The tournament will be the first time that a mobile game has featured in the ESL UK Premiership.
Partnerships Director at ESL UK, Dan Ellis, had this to say about the introduction of Wild Rift to the ESL:
“It’s a historic moment to bring a mobile title to the ESL Premiership. Wild Rift is the perfect game to deliver this never seen experience to the UK, Ireland and Nordics” [via ESL Gaming].
This is also the first time that players from the UK and Ireland will face off against players from Nordic Region competitors.
Culminating in finals held in June, the tournament will have a prize pool of £5,000.
To qualify, players must take part in an eight-team round-robin group stage and playoffs. These will take place in early April with broadcast coverage beginning on 20th April.
None of the tournament matches will be viewed by in-person audiences. Activision Blizzard recently restructured their esports division in a bid to move away from live events.
Though this tournament is a one-off event, we could see Wild Rift and other mobile titles return to the ESL if it is successful.
In a ‘League’ of their own
Riot Games celebrated the launch of Wild Rift last October and has since seen an average monthly player count of over 5 million players [via activeplayer.io]. While that’s a lot of players, it’s nothing in comparison to League of Legends’ astonishing 118 million monthly active users [via activeplayer.io].
Wild Rift isn’t the only new venture for Riot Games and the League of Legends franchise. Late last year, it was teased that an MMORPG [massively multiplayer online role-playing game] set in the League of Legends universe is in development.
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[Featured Image Credit: Riot Games]