The esports hustle never stops when one’s looking to be the best in the business, especially with the mobile market increasingly growing in popularity. While powerful desktop set-ups continue to be the staple of the competitive scene, the rise of mobile esports titles means that players are no longer confined to a mouse, keyboard, and monitor on the grand stage – a trend that Riot Games is looking to embrace across the globe.
In a virtual event held for the media, the industry giant announced the debut of a global tournament for League of Legends: Wild Rift, the mobile iteration of its largely-popular MOBA game, that’s currently set to arrive in the later part of this year. The news follows a series of regional competitions around the globe, particularly in the Southeast Asia region, where its first official event SEA Icon Series: Preseason saw a total of 54 professional teams from Vietnam, Taiwan, the Philippines, Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia, and Singapore.
“We’ve seen a great number of esports organizations around the world announcing their Wild Rift teams,” said Leo Faria, Global Head of Wild Rift Esports. “In Southeast Asia, for example, organisations like The Alliance, RRQ, and LoL Esports veterans Flash Wolves all announced Wild Rift rosters. As we kick things off in the rest of the world, we expect to see some of the biggest names in esports also announcing their own Wild Rift rosters.”
Event details have yet to be confirmed, but the man promises that more information will be available nearer to the date, including a regional competition schedule and third-party tournament guidelines. Joining the game in receiving esports updates is fellow mobile peer Teamfight Tactics, which sees an upcoming live event in China come October 2021.
The mobile titles aren’t the only ones enjoying the spotlight, however. In addition to the above, Riot Games has also unveiled Berlin as the host country of the third and international Masters competition of the 2021 Valorant Champions Tour (VCT), after Masters Reykjavik ends its run from 24 to 30 May. The Q3 event, running from 9 to 19 September, will serve as the final opportunity for teams to earn points that count towards qualification for the Valorant Champions, the year-end clash where the best of the lot fight it out to become the ultimate victor.
It’s not a Riot Games event without some mention of League of Legends, and the team has something in store for fans of the Mid-Season Invitational (MSI) following a one-year absence from the scene. In celebration of the its return from 6 to 23 May, fans can look forward to a curated MSI-themed playlist and an esports-centric podcast channel on Spotify, courtesy of a collaboration with the music service.
Moving beyond the esports realm into in-game updates, players will be able to earn Pride content across all games from 17 May as well, in light of Pride Month 2021 in June.