Kansas City-based esports organisation KC Pioneers has expanded its partnership with the US Army National Guard.
As a result of the expansion, the two parties will collaborate to host a 12-event esports circuit known as the Stateline Showdown Series.
The Stateline Showdown Series will take place throughout 2024 at several locations across the Midwest region of the United States. According to a release, event locations include the NASCAR race at Kansas City Speedway and the LEVELUP Arena gaming facility.
Before the start of the circuit, KC Pioneers and Army National Guard hosted a kick-off event at the 2023 edition of Winter WonderLAN. Over 300 players competed across several titles including Apex Legends, Rocket League, and Call of Duty. The organisation says the full Stateline Showdown Series schedule will be revealed ‘in the coming weeks.’
KC Pioneers first partnered with the Army National Guard in June 2023. The initial collaboration saw them host six events aiming to unite communities and provide a platform where amateur players could showcase their skills. In addition, the event gave players opportunities to explore careers within the National Guard.
Governments and government entities have increasingly started getting involved in esports in recent years. This includes US military sponsorships, which have also attracted criticisms from the community in the past.
With the Army National Guard expanding its partnership, KC Pioneers has a total of 11 partners on its roster. It includes the likes of convenience store company Quiktrip and gaming peripherals manufacturer Logitech.
Mark Josey, CEO of KC Pioneers, spoke on the expansion: “Much like the Army National Guard, our organisation is community-driven.
“Year one of our partnership was tremendous, and it’s awesome to be able to expand what we brought to gamers this past year, as a direct result of our states’ Army National Guard divisions.”