The Nationals (esports)
|Upcoming season or competition:|
2019 The Nationals (esports)
|No. of teams||6|
|TV partner(s)||eGG Network|
|Level on pyramid||1|
The Nationals is an upcoming electronic sports (eSports) league in the Philippines which will have its inaugural season in 2019. It will be the first franchise-based electronic sports in the Philippines. The tournaments are sanctioned by the eSports National Association of the Philippines (ESNAP).
The Nationals was first announced in June 2018 with its inaugural season set to commence in the first quarter of 2019. The league will feature four titles. Smart Communications and PLDT Home will be organizing the Road to The Nationals, a separate tournament to be held in ten locations across the Philippines from August to November 2018 to help the initial teams of the esport league to scout for players. The Nationals is envisioned to act as the main pool for national eSports athletes who will compete for the Philippines in international tournaments such as the Asian Games.
- HappyFeet Esports
- BrenPro Inc.
- Cignal TV Inc.
- PLDT Inc.
- STI Education Systems Holdings, Inc.
Road to The Nationals
The Nationals was officially launched on July 24, 2018 in a press conference. In the same event, the "Road to The Nationals" a series of qualification tournament to determine the players of the six franchise teams to compete in The Nationals' inaugural season was announced. Three qualifiers for each of The Nationals three video game titles will be held. These tournaments will run from August to October 2018 with the qualifying eight teams from each of the three titles competing in the final qualification tournament at the Electronic Sports and Gaming Summit 2018 to be held from October 27 to 28 at the SMX Convention Center in Pasay.
The winning teams and individuals (for competitors in single-player titles) will be given millions of pesos in prize money and a chance to get drafted in one of the six franchise teams of The Nationals.
The inaugural 2019 season will commence in March 17, 2019 and will feature three video game titles. Each title will feature two conferences.
The six founding corporate partners of The Nationals will field teams for the inaugural season of the eSports tournament. As of August 2018, two more franchise slots are still open which if filled would see eight teams participating in The Nationals. The six participating franchise teams including a new team, Suha, were confirmed by Gariath Concepts in February 2019. A team of one of the founding corporate founders, TNC is not among the six confirmed teams.
|Team||Company||Joined The Nationals|
|Bren EPro||BrenPro Inc.||2018|
|Cignal Ultra||Cignal TV Inc.||2018|
|Happy Feet Emperors||HappyFeet Esports||2018|
|Omega||PLDT Inc. / Smart Communications||2018|
|STI||STI Education Systems Holdings, Inc.||2018|
The league will follow a franchise model, the first eSports league in the Philippines to adopt such format. Other franchised based leagues in the country are the Philippine Basketball Association, the Philippine Super Liga, Premier Volleyball League, and the Philippine Football League. The Nationals is recognized by the eSports National Association of the Philippines
Video game titles
Three titles, belonging to three categories: PC gaming, Mobile gaming, Console gaming, will be contested in The Nationals. A fourth title as wildcard was reportedly considered. Gariath Concepts will handle the operations and logistics of the league.
On July 24, 2018 two titles for The Nationals were confirmed: Dota 2 for PC Gaming and Mobile Legends for Mobile gaming. As of that date, two titles are being considered for the Console gaming category: NBA 2K19 and Tekken 7. NBA 2K19 was confirmed as the third title by August 2018.
|Dota 2||PC Gaming|
|Mobile Legends||Mobile Gaming|
|NBA 2K19||Console Gaming|
The players of the inaugural 2019 The Nationals season will be drafted among the winners of the Road to The Nationals qualification tournaments to be held in the latter half of 2018. The organizers of The Nationals meant to make electronic sports as a professional career with players to be given monthly salaries ranging from ₱40,000 to ₱50,000. Minors are eligible to compete if they have waivers from their parents consenting their participation.
The first financial firm to become a sponsor of the league was the Rizal Commercial Banking Corporation (RCBC) which announced its sponsorship deal with the league in October 2018 to specifically promote its MyWallet Virtual Card service.
The Nationals will be broadcast at 5 Plus on ESPN 5 in the Philippines. League matches will also aired at the eGG Channel through Cignal TV for Philippine-based viewers.Matches of Road of The Nationals were aired live in the country on ESPN 5.
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