ESL and DreamHack have announced the ESL Pro Tour starting in 2020 with a $5 million prize pool.
The biggest production company in the esports industry has announced the biggest Counter-Strike: Global Offensive circuit to date: the ESL Pro Tour. It combines over twenty competitions under one single tour.
ESL and DreamHack are hoping to create a single narrative that unites all of the tournaments. These events are no longer scattered pieces, but instead part of a bigger story.
“Counter-Strike has grown for the past 6 or 7 years. The tournaments have gone from studios and convention centers to major arenas. Over that time, we’ve built some of the world’s most amazing tournaments,” said Michal Blicharz, member of the ESL Pro Tour design team. “When there were few of them the purpose was clear. When they became many that sense of purpose got lost to some degree, there wasn’t a narrative, there wasn’t rhythm and that’s exactly what we want to address.”
The tour will be divided into two levels, Challenger and Masters.
The Challenger level includes ESL National Championship, DreamHack Open, and the Mountain Dew League. This is the starting point for the aspiring CSGO teams. DreamHack Open Leipzig 2020 will kick off the ESL Pro Tour on January 24. The second stop will be DreamHack Open Anaheim on February 21.
The Masters level consists of four of the most important events of the year. CORSAIR DreamHack Masters, ESL One, Intel Extreme Masters, and the ESL Pro League. The first Masters event is yet to be formally announced, but it is tentatively scheduled for April 17.
World class teams will compete at the Masters events, these will take place on the biggest stages the five continents have to offer.
Ultimately, all of these competitions will lead to two major events: IEM Katowice in the winter and ESL One Cologne in the summer. These two events will act as the Masters Championship, the biggest events of the year where only the best teams in the world can compete for the crown.
ESL and DreamHack will reveal more information on September 28 at ESL One New York.