Saudi Arabia’s top gamers have begun battling it out for a share of a SR4 million ($1.1million) prize pot at the Kingdom’s eLeague Champions event.
Winners from two other esports events held this year have come together for a final competition in Riyadh’s Media City, which kicked off on Friday, Nov. 26 and will finish on Dec. 25.
Some 32 players in four teams will fight it out across five games: “Rainbow Six Siege”, “Counter-Strike: Global Offensive”, “Call of Duty”, “Dota 2”, and “Overwatch.”
The eLeagues Champions tournament is evidence of the growing enthusiasm and thirst for gaming in the Kingdom, according to the Saudi Esports Federation, which revealed there were over 127,000 live-streaming viewers on a “Call of Duty” final day earlier in the year.
The organization’s president, Prince Faisal bin Bandar bin Sultan, said in a statement: “Saudi eLeagues is one of many Saudi-grown IPs (intellectual property) that has made me and my colleagues at the Federation extremely proud of all the hidden talents we discover with each title.
“Saudi esports players are beyond words in terms of professionalism and sports spirit. They are everything we’ve strived to achieve at the Federation.”
In an interview with Arab News last month, the prince said that by 2030 the esports industry could contribute more than SR80 billion to Saudi Arabia’s gross domestic product.