- EA announces new Apex Legends tournament
- $500,000 to be allocated in prize money
- Krakow to host the event with the backing of Respawn Entertainment
EA games will host its first official tournament for Respawn Entertainment’s Apex Legends with a prize pool of $500,000 in Krakow, Poland this September.
EA Reveals $500,000 Apex Legends Tournament
Electronic Arts (EA) continues to pursue a new vertical in esports with the company announcing the Apex Legends Preseason Invitational, a $500,000 tournament which will continue the publisher’s efforts to consolidate the game’s status as a burgeoning competitive title.
The event itself will be held in Krakow, Poland. The city has hosted a number of important events these past years, including Intel and ESL esports initiatives. With the date set for September 13 – 15, the battle royale shooter will have a total pool of 240 players split into 80 teams.
EA will run the official competition as a joint effort with Respawn Entertainment, the company developing this Titan Fall-inspired battle royale. This is just a first dig in what could be a trove of competitive options for Apex Legends fans. The Preseason Invitational will come along with yet-to-be-announced competitive gigs sponsored either by third parties or directly by EA.
One of the events is ESPN’s EXP Pro-Am Apex Legends Exhibition. Yet, EA has not yet published any plans as to making competitive Apex Legends a recurrent, annual event, so the company is still tentative as to how the future goals should be set.
The Rules of Engagement
While it will be all about having a good time, ESL will land its Play platform to host the event. As to the event on-site, EA will provide teams with food vouchers and game merchandise worth $150. EA Senior Vice President for Esports, Todd Sitrin, had this to say as part of a press release:
“Today we officially expand EA Competitive Gaming through the addition of Apex Legends, owner of one of the biggest game launches in history that continues to be powered today by a passionate global community. The Apex Legends Preseason Invitational is the key next step in our esports journey.”
Mr. Sitrin has been instrumental to EA’s efforts to establish itself as a producer of quality esports titles, chiefly with the FIFA video game series. He also noted that what the company ultimately seeks is to captivate millions of viewers from all over the world.
Back to Apex Legends, the game made quite the splash in February and became the most played title overnight. As one player put it, “I went to be and by the time I woke up, everyone was playing Apex Legends.”
The game’s popularity did trail off moving forward however, with the quick fame brought about by the participation of Tyler “Ninja” Blevins and Michael “shroud” Grzesiek during launch dissipating.
So far, there have been three main tournament hosts in the face of ESPN, FACEIT and Twitch, with some events recurrent and others quickly disappearing. EA has a lot of work to do to give Apex Legends the esports status it craves. Viewership numbers are hardly sufficient – besides, they have been trailing off.