STOCKHOLM — Today, DreamHack and ESL (both part of Modern Times Group MTG AB) announced the new ESL Pro Tour, a circuit linking more than 20 Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (CS:GO) tournaments and leagues. The ESL Pro Tour will feature an aggregate prize pool of more than $5 million (USD) for 2020 from competitions across five continents — making it, perhaps, the world’s largest and most lucrative circuit in Counter-Strike’s 20-year history.
The ESL Pro Tour will combine multiple, previously unconnected ESL and DreamHack tournaments into one narrative that builds toward two grand championships each year. The collaboration aims to create a more complete path from zero to hero for aspiring players, a more compelling story to follow for existing CS:GO fans, and a more transparent structure for new esports fans. Watch Hype Video HERE. Watch interview video HERE.
“This collaboration will provide a deeper meaning and purpose to all of our properties, allowing us to provide fans with more thrilling experiences than before. On the other hand, it also represents a much larger and more attractive opportunity for sponsors and media to engage with the esports audience,” said DreamHack Co-CEO Marcus Lindmark. “ESL Pro Tour mirrors our ambition to provide up-and-coming players with a clear pathway to become tomorrow’s esports professionals.”
“ESL’s growth in recent years has led us to rethink what we are doing. We have built some of the world’s most impressive esports tournaments, and it was the time to connect the dots where the outcome is a bigger picture that fits better with our vision for esports,” said ESL CEO Ralf Reichert. “This partnership between ESL and DreamHack will give youths a clearer and more complete path to becoming somebody, and a structure that is more welcoming and digestible for new esports fans.
Tournaments in the ESL Pro Tour will be organized into Challenger and Masters levels. The Challenger level will include DreamHack Open, the Mountain Dew League and ESL’s National Championships — those competitions will serve as a platform for teams to elevate themselves to Master- level tournaments. The Masters category will largely be arena tournaments with $250,000 or more in prize money, and will still feature the world’s best teams —these will include ESL One powered by Intel; Intel Extreme Masters; and DreamHack Masters. It will also include the 2020 format of the ESL CS:GO Pro League.
Teams will win points in the ESL Pro Tour ranking, and the best of them will compete in two Masters Championship finals each year at the world’s largest and most attended independent CS:GO Tournaments — ESL One Cologne (Germany); and Intel Extreme Masters Katowice (Poland).
The ESL Pro Tour will be presented in detail at ESL One New York on the 28th of September to journalists and partners in a specific ESL Pro Tour media briefing. Please reach out to your dedicated ESL PR point of contact to receive accreditation.