BLAST Premier expands to 16 teams after announcing four affiliate member teams

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Image credit: BLAST Premier

Counter-Strike circuit BLAST Premier has announced it will expand to 16 teams for the 2024 season following the unveiling of four BLAST Premier Affiliate Members.

Esports organisations Falcons, GamerLegion, Team Spirit, and Virtus.pro will join the circuit as Affiliate Members alongside the 12 Member Teams.

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BLAST Premier states the introduction of Affiliate Member Teams follows high levels of interest generated from Cloud9 acquiring Evil Geniuses’ Member Team slot in December 2023. With the addition of four more teams competing in BLAST Premier competitions, the expansion will result in more matches and broadcast hours than previous seasons.

The four Affiliate Member Teams will gain access to compete in all BLAST Premier tournaments. As a result, the Spring and Fall Group stages will be expanded to 16 teams with six advancing to the Finals and the remaining ten competing in the Showdowns. In addition to format changes, the 2024 Spring and Fall Groups will see a prize pool increase to $190,000 (~£150,014).

BLAST Premier’s 2024 season commences in January with the 2024 Spring Groups taking place in BLAST’s Copenhagen Studios. Six teams will advance from the Spring Groups to the Spring Final taking place at London’s OVO Arena Wembley in June.

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In addition to expanding its Counter-Strike circuit, BLAST continues to cement its position as one of the biggest esports tournament organisers in the world. In January, it announced it will operate the FNCS and RLCS as part of a multi-year deal with game developer and publisher Epic Games.

Andrew Haworth, Programme Director for BLAST Premier, spoke on the expansion: “We are excited to be expanding our pool of participating teams in the BLAST Premier circuit with four new Affiliate Member Teams.

“BLAST is always looking to innovate and enhance the BLAST Premier product for fans across the Counter-Strike space and the expansion will add four new hungry competitors, each with the chance to play on the biggest stages in esports in exciting locations across the world.”

Jonno Nicholson
Jonno is a Freelance News Writer for Esports Insider and has been part of the ESI team since 2019! His interests include the rapid rise of sim racing and its impact on the wider industry.