Five of the six esports titles that will be featured during the 2019 Southeast Asian Game have been officially revealed by the Philippine SEA Games Organizing Committee (PHISGOC) and Razer. The lineup of games announced so far include Dota 2, Starcraft 2, Tekken 7, Mobile Legends: Bang Bang, and Arena of Valor.
According to the announcement, the sixth and final title to be included in the esports event at the 2019 SEA Games is still undergoing evaluation and will be revealed in the coming weeks.
“We are thrilled to see the momentum that our partnership with Razer has achieved in such a short period of time,” said PHISGOC Executive Director Ramon Suzara. “We are working with all involved publishers and partners to lock down the titles within the next few weeks, and look forward to watching the region’s best esports athletes face off in the arena next year.”
Razer co-founder and CEO Min-Liang Tan said, “In the three weeks since we announced esports as a medal event at SEA Games 2019, we’ve seen a phenomenal level of interest from all segments of the industry, most of all game publishers. The shortlisting of six games in such a short time is evidence that the notion of esports as a legitimate sporting event is no longer a fad. We look forward to having more partners come on board and join us in defining a new generation of sporting heroes for the youth and millennials.”
It was previously announced that a total of six titles would be included in the 2019 SEA Games as medal events, composed of two PC games (Dota 2, Starcraft 2), two console games (Tekken 7 so far), and two mobile games (Mobile Legends: Bang Bang, Arena of Valor).
Mobile Legends was the first game expected to be included in the lineup as the game’s developer, Moonton, was the first game partner announced for the event.
Abraham Tolentino, Director for Sports of Philippine SEA Games Organizing Committee, said “The Sports Department of PHISGOC has long been keen on including sports that will appeal to the young, tech-savvy spectators, including esports.”
Vincent “Chot” Reyes, President of TV5, said, “The Philippines is excited to welcome esports as one of the crowd-drawers in the coming SEA Games. Gamers will surely look forward to these six games as medal events.”
The number of games included at the SEA Games mirrors the amount during the 2018 Asian Games, which also included six esports titles. Unlike the 2018 Asian Games though, the esports events at the 2019 SEA Games will be set as medal events.
The lineup of esports titles for the 2019 SEA Games doesn’t come as much of a surprise as they are incredibly popular in the region, each with their own respective competitive communities and esports events throughout the year.
Sebastian Lau, Director-General of Asian E-Sports Federation (AESF) commended PHISGOC for their efforts of including esports into their Sports Program. He said “Esports is the sport of the future. We are glad to partner with PHISGOC in bringing esports to Southeast Asia.”
Joebert Yu, member of the Esports Ad-hoc Committee and President of the Esports National Association of the Philippines (ESNAP), is looking forward to the games. “It is a truly inspiring development for esports, and we will do our best to set a good precedent and to pave the way for many more esports events in future sporting events”, he remarked.
The inclusion of esports in the 2019 SEA Games marks the first time esports will be included as a medal event in a multi-sport event of this caliber and marks a big step forward towards legitimizing esports as world-class sporting event.
The 2019 SEA Games will take place next year from November 30 to December 11, 2019, at several locations in the Philippines including Manila, Clark, Subic, Batangas, La Union, and Tagaytay.