It’s been a topsy-turvy road for mobile esports this year. While the entire world was riding high at the back of a stellar 2019 across mobile esports titles. However, 2020 took a turn for the worse with the worldwide lockdowns. Despite this, many mobile esport publishers quickly regrouped and organised some great tournaments that entertained us for the rest of the year and rewarded players with huge prize pools. In this article, we look at the top 10 mobile esports events of the year based on the prize pool.
After going through eight weeks of the regular season and several play-off matches, MPL ID Season 6 finally concluded in an epic grand final between RRQ Hoshi and Alter Ego. Indonesia's Mobile Legend Professional League MPL had its grand final take place on 18th October and brought together RRQ Hoshi and Alter Ego who fought in the ultimate battle for the crown and a prize pool of $300,000 or equivalent to 4 billion rupiahs. Both the teams went neck and neck and eventually, RRQ Hoshi ended up beating Alter Ego with a final score of 3 - 2. RRQ Hoshi has won MPL Indonesia for 2 consecutive seasons and became the first team to successfully lift the trophy for the third time. After 8 weeks of play and 3 gruelling days of the Grand Finals, RRQ Hoshi came out on top.
PUBG Mobile’s grand plans for 2020 were thwarted by the global travel restrictions in a big way, but that did not stop Tencent from reaffirming their strong commitment to the game’s competitive scene. This meant setting up the PUBG Mobile World League which was divided into two parts - East and West. PUBG Mobile World League offered a chance for the best teams in their region to compete with the best in their side of the globe. Each side featured a prize pool of $425,000. The PUBG Mobile World League East featured teams from SEA, South Asia, Korea, Japan, TW/HK/MO and Wildcard. Bigetron RA were champions of this tournament and won $155,000 while Orange Rock came in second and won $55,000. Futbolist won PMWL West and walked away with $116,500 while Loops won $107,500.
This year Free Fire saw some insane viewership spikes, bagging in a crazy 2 million viewers at peak. Free Fire Continental Series was the final event of the 2020 competitive season, replacing World Series. While this year’s world championship was trifurcated owning to ping issues, Garena still managed to pull off a Tier-1 worthy tournament for its Tier-1 players. Free Fire Continental Series was divided into three regions, EMEA, Americas, and Asia. Each boasted a prize pool of $300,000.
Sbornaya ChR won FFCS EMEA with Silence coming in second place and Stay Away came third. Team Liquid won FFCS Americas, while Santos e-Sports were runner up. EXP Esports won the FFCS Asia while King of Gamers Club and RRQ Hades came in second and third place. The winners of the respective FFCS won and walked away with $80,000, while took second and third place winners took home $50,000 and $30,000 respectively.
The tournament that wasn’t meant to be, Activision announced the COD:M World Championship, their first sponsored offline tournament for the game. However, last-minute changes meant months of qualifiers and hype couldn’t reach a satisfying ending. Nevertheless, the tournament still will remain one the biggest ones in recent history, thanks to its insane $1,000,000 prize pool, a first for the mobile game.
The prize money was later divided among its qualified teams in parts of $107,000 each, of which India’s Team Mayhem was a part.
In May of 2020, SAFEIS and ESL came together to host Gamers Without Borders, a Global Charity tournament for PUBG Mobile. The top teams around the world chose to donate to charity organisations which are focused on COVID-19 relief and research. 1218 won the EMEA segment of GWB and donated $250,000 to the International Medical Corps. GodLike won the Asia leg and also donated $250,000 to IMC.
The Chinese variant of PUBG Mobile, Peacekeeper Elite Championship, has always boasted a crazy prize pool with elite teams and amazing plays. This year’s PEC saw Nova Esports reign supreme after a tough fight from Royal Never Give Up, 4 Angry Men, and Tempo Storm who came 2nd, 3rd, and 4th respectively. All the teams combined took the cream of the insane $1,816,039 prize pool.
The PUBG Mobile Global Championship is the final event of the 2020 PUBG Mobile Season in which 24 of the best teams from around the world have been invited or have qualified for the event. The literal Mecca for all aspiring players of 2020, the tournament featured teams qualifying from PMPLs and PMWLs of their region. The tournament also featured a staggering $2,000,000, making it one of the most intense PUBG Mobile tournaments till date. The league stage of the tournament has concluded with the Chinese Four Angry Men coming out on top. Bigetron RA once again showed their dominance on the international stage and came in second place.
Now the top 16 teams will compete in an offline tournament from 21st to 24th January 2021 in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. Unfortunately, Loops has been disqualified from the tournament.
PEL 2020 is the official highest-level professional Chinese league of the "Peacekeeper Elite" a Chinese version of PUBG Mobile. Three seasons of the League took place this year with a combined prize pool of $3,755,727. All Gamers won Peacekeeper Elite League 2020 Season 1 while Nova Esports came out on top in Season 2. Season 3 was won by Four Angry Men who walked away with $444,842 in winnings.
The unexpected top mobile esport tournament of 2020 is the Honor of Kings World Champion Cup was organized by Tencent and VSPN. The tournament took place in China across Shanghai and Bejing. Due to the lockdown, The tournament only consisted of players who had been staying in China before the lockdown. Turnso Gaming won a whopping $1,933,821 beating out Dynamite Gaming who took an equally impressive $736,694.