ESL and Oculus join forces to relaunch VR League

After a well-received first season, ESL has re-established its partnership with Oculus to rehaul and relaunch the VR League.

With over $220,000 (£162,763.70) in prize money, the VR competition will have a new tournament format and feature a maximum of seven games over the span of five months.

ESL Oculus VR League

Starting on May 18th, the VR League will commence with The Unspoken being played for a month. From there, a month of Sprint Vector will kick off on June 4th. Two other games will be hosted in July and August on ESL Play, but they are yet to be determined. In addition to the aforementioned competitions, ESL will host a ladder-style competition – also on ESL Play – with no prize pool. The aim of this particular event is to decide on three new games that will be introduced into esports.

Echo Arena will have a four-month competition from May 20th as part of the VR League, too. This title was a staple of the inaugural season of the competition, and both ESL and Oculus aim to see growth this time around.

Sean Charles, SVP Publisher Developer at ESL discussed the return of the VR League: “We want to reward and encourage the communities that positively respond to esports. With VR League in 2018, we are taking a more flexible approach: we want to engage as many prospective VR esports stars as possible, and so have left a few slots open to be filled in the coming weeks. We want to listen to the respective VR gaming communities and go where we’re needed and can have the biggest impact.”

The bulk of the aforementioned prize pool will be dished out at the VR event, Oculus Connect 5. Games that are played in the 2018 version of the VR League have a chance to be showcased during the conference, which is considered the grand finale.

Chris McKelvy, Head of Esports at Oculus added: “Oculus is committed to fostering long-term growth of the VR esports ecosystem, and season two—with its new format and additional games—is an amazing next step on this exciting journey.”

Esports Insider says: There’s nothing quite like VR esports in the scene, so we’re pleased to see both ESL and Oculus keep pushing to make it as popular as other methods of playing games. VR is young in general, but with competitions like the VR League, it stands its best chance of both survival and growth.