The coronavirus pandemic is making a lot of esports organisations think outside of the box. Whether it be being delaying competitions entirely, like Dota 2’s The International 10, or putting a league online, there are now ways to get around the health restrictions. For ESL One Cologne they’re opting to put the event online – and also split itself in four.
A tweet from the ESL Counter-Strike Twitter account announced the decision with a video of the ESL trophy splitting itself into four like the competition is. “After extensive research of global travel regulations, ESLOne Cologne 2020 will happen online. We are going to split the trophy across four regional divisions in Europe, North America, Asia and Oceania from 18th – 30th of August” says the tweet.
In a longer post on the ESL One website, it explains that the teams were determined on the ESL One Cologn qualification rules set, and although these teams will be awarded ESL Pro Tour points as normal, the competition will not count towards the ESL Pro Tour Masters Championship event.
Although the trophy is being split into four regions, the size of those regions is not the same. There will be 16 European teams, eight North American teams, four Asian teams, and another four Oceania teams competing.
After extensive research of global travel regulations, #ESLOne Cologne 2020 will happen online.
We are going to split the trophy across four regional divisions in Europe, North America, Asia and Oceania from 18th – 30th of August.
— ESL Counter-Strike (@ESLCS) July 16, 2020
From Team Liquid to 100 Thieves, Ninjas in Pyjamas to Fnatic, many of the biggest names in CS:GO are still going to be competing despite the tournament being so different to what we all expected.
In another tweet following on from the announcement, the ESL account does say that they look forward to everyone being brought back together in 2021 – let’s hope we can all see these teams battle it out then.