Riot Games Promises "World-Class" Wild Rift Events for Southeast Asia
Riot Games hosted a virtual conference ahead of the Wild Rift Southeast Asia Championship. Matthew Wong-Stewart, who is the Community and Channel Lead at Riot Games’ SEA division presented the show and talked about the upcoming event. The Wild Rift SEA Championship will offer a prize pool of $200,000 USD. The SEA Championship 2021 trailer was also debuted at the conference. Here is everything you need to know about the upcoming event.
What to expect from the Wild Rift SEA 2021 Championship
Wild Rift’s SEA Championship is just the start of the game’s esports in the region according to Chris Tran, who is the Head of Esports (SEA, Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Macau) at Riot Games. Twenty-one of the best teams in SEA will compete from 14th September to 3rd October at the event for a prize pool of $200,000.
Tran said that the publisher is very happy with the response Wild Rift has received in Southeast Asia. It wants to continue providing local esports experiences. Wild Rift esports’ popularity in the region has led up to 1.28 million peak daily unique views for its events in SEA. Riot seeks to grow in the region through collaborations with local governments and associations.
There will be three stages of competition for the Wild Rift SEA Championship 2021:
Stage 1 - Play-Ins: 14th - 19th Sept, 2021
Stage 2 - Group Stages: 23rd - 26th Sept, 2021
Stage 3 - Main Event: 30th September - 3rd Oct, 2021
The publisher has also promised “world-class tournaments where local talent can compete against other regional teams.” The end goal of Riot in Southeast Asia is to create a sustainable environment for professional teams and talent to thrive.
Riot Games’ vision for Southeast Asia
Riot Games' General Manager (SEA and Taiwan), G. Justin Hulog talked about how important mobile esports is in Southeast Asia and the publisher will be looking to expand esports in the region. The publisher is also expanding beyond video games as it sees itself expand to lifestyle, music and mainstream entertainment.
Hulog revealed that Riot seeks to grow its studios in Singapore and Hong Kong as part of its expansion strategy in Southeast Asia. The publisher is also looking to hire country teams for the Philippines, Indonesia, and Malaysia. Live events is something that is also on Riot’s radar and fans can expect more events like “Wild Rift: Honeyfruit in Bangkok.”
The publisher revealed that 80% of gamers in SEA are on mobile and Riot wants to capitalize on the large audience through “global competitive excellence” via regional esports events. Southeast Asia is one of the most important regions for Riot Games as it was the first to receive access to Wild Rift and it is also the hub for Wild Rift esports with events like the SEA ICON Series.
Wild Rift may become Riot’s first “truly global” esport
Riot Games revealed that while it has been in the esports scene for over a decade with League of Legends, Wild Rift might be the game that is truly global by reaching out to gamers in all parts of the world. According to Leo Faria, Head of Global Esports at Riot Games, Wild Rift will have its own new ecosystem that is separate from League of Legends. The publisher will focus on creativity and global operations separately for Wild Rift in not just Southeast Asia but throughout the world.
To achieve global presence, Riot Games will be working towards expanding its presence in western regions with a mobile-first approach like SEA. Riot also wants to optimize esports spectatorship on mobile devices and work is being done to enhance the viewing experience for esports fans. Finally, the studio teased a “year-end tournament” and fans will have to wait for an official announcement.