Gears of War makes the plunge into eSports by partnering with ESL
When we asked if Gears of War had a place in eSports this week, it seemed that an answer was being brewed by the employees of The Coalition and ESL. At their competative showcase yesterday that showed off multiplayer gameplay from top players. The companies announced the formation of the Gears of War Pro League. The league, which launches in October, will be an attempt to return to form for the series, which had a brief stint in the MLG circuit a few years ago.
"This league will be the premier place for the best Gears of War teams in North America to compete at the highest level of play. Starting in September, ESL will be running 8 preseason cups to allow players to refine their skills, prepare for the Pro League and compete for a $500 weekly prize pool."
Footage from yesterday's competitive showcase
This is just the beginning. Starting in October, the best teams that have refined their skills in the September preseason will be working towards a worthy end goal. With a grand final set for January 2016, the best teams in the league will fight for a slice of the $50,000 prize pool, with 1st place receiving $20,000.
The Coalition has their work cut out for them. Along with the upcoming release of Gears of War: Ultimate Edition on August 25th, game balance will be the defining issue for the league. What weapons will be overpowered or underpowered? What mechanics will need to be tweaked? What maps are worthy of a competitive spotlight? We shall see if the mere weeks after launch will be enough for them to answer these questions before the league begins in September.