Daybreak announce KOTK esports circuit with $1 million in prize money

Daybreak Game Company, the developer behind H1Z1: King of the Kill (“KOTK”) has announced an esports circuit with $1,000,000 on the line. 

It comes as Daybreak look to establish King of the Kill, a survivor based shooting game, as an esport. The tournament series, dubbed the “H1Z1 Elite Series” will bring together the top performing players around the world to create a large professional circuit. The Elite Series will be competed across four regions, with the first taking place at DreamHack Atlanta on July 21st. The four regions are North America, Asia, Europe and Latin America and each region will have $250,000 up for grabs.

At DreamHack Atlanta, Daybreak will run two separate tournaments. One will be a solo tournament, where the winner will take the lion’s share of an impressive $100,000. The second is a team based tournament, where the winning team will split the majority of $250,000. It will not be competed in the game’s duo format but instead in the five versus five format. 

Obey Alliance, World Best Gaming, Denial Esports and CLG have all been confirmed as taking part in the tournaments at DreamHack. Others will have to qualify in preliminary rounds, which will be run at the event out in Atlanta. 

The game emerged as a fan-favourite due to its popularity on Twitch. Many of the world’s biggest and most watched Twitch streamers at least went through a phase where they streamed the popular survival game – yet many have now left it behind. The emergence of PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds has seen many a streamer swap one survival game for another, amidst continued frustration with regards to certain gameplay aspects. 

It remains to be seen whether H1Z1: King of the Kill can really make it as an esport. In a five versus five competitive setup, more conservative play is encouraged (as it is a survival game) and thus it is often not as exciting to spectate as when popular streamers hunt for kills. Additionally, the spectating is often not smooth and PUBG seems to be increasingly popular.

Esports Insider says: Interesting to see such a huge amount of money pumped into this. As aforementioned it remains to be seen whether or not it will really take off and if there’s truly an audience for competitive KOTK. It’s great to watch on stream so here’s hoping it can translate to an esports audience.