SINGAPORE: Some of the best e-sports teams in the world will come to Singapore in June next year to play for a prize pool of US$1 million in the final qualifying tournament of the Dota Pro Circuit (DPC), organisers announced on Wednesday (Dec 18).
The Singapore Major will take place from Jun 20 to Jun 28 at the Singapore Indoor Stadium and will have the same prize pool as other tournaments in the game’s Major Championship Series. It will be organised by ONE Esports and PGL Esports.
Points gained during tournaments of the Dota Pro Circuit will determine the top 12 teams that play at the grand finals The International. This year's prize pool for The International was US$34 million - the largest pot for any e-sports tournament.
“(The Singapore Major is) the last major of the Pro Circuit, which means that the fate of many of the Dota 2 teams will be determined during that week and weekend,” said ONE Esports CEO Carlos Alimurung.
“It’s a really exciting time to be observing Dota 2 and a lot of the compelling storylines and storytelling that we’ll be doing are really going to culminate that weekend.”
There are five majors per season and they are held in different locations every year.
This is not the first time Dota 2 Majors are being held in Southeast Asia. A major was held in Kuala Lumpur last year and another was held in Manila in 2016.
ONE Esports and PGL Esports are currently heading up the Dota 2 World Pro Invitational in Singapore this week, with the world's top teams invited to play for a US$500,000 prize pool.
The event is backed by sponsors such as DBS Bank and Lazada. The Singapore Tourism Board (STB) is also providing financial support to both the World Pro Invitational and the Singapore Major.
“Leading e-sports events are increasingly becoming a motivation for travel,” said executive director of attractions, entertainment and tourism concept development at STB Jean Ng.
“This will not only profile Singapore as a destination of choice, but augment our ambition to develop Singapore as a premier tourism and e-sports hub.”
Ms Ng said that STB hopes to reach out to a younger audience through the media platforms and channels that e-sports are streamed on.
Preliminary matches on Wednesday for the World Pro Invitational this week were viewed by more than 700,000 people on streaming platform Twitch.
The event is also distributed by Huya, Huomao, Maincast, and Malaysia’s eGG.
Ms Ng said there is more to come beyond the Singapore Major.
“This is also the start of a series of major events we'd like to test and assess the appetite for travel for e-sports,” she added.
“It's through events like that, that we can better understand the profile of these gamers and fans and hopefully in future continue to bring in events that will appeal to them, and help motivate travel."
STB will bring in the gaming trade show gamescom in October, the first time the tier one event is coming to Asia.
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Ms Ng said while it is game developers who decide where major tournaments are held, proving that Singapore can host major e-sports events will attract organisers of other prestigious tournaments to bring their titles in.