Saudi Arabian Gamers8 raises prize pool to $45 mln, connected to new reported Dota 2 annual circuit by ESL


The Saudi Arabia esports Federation announced the Gamers8 gaming festival with a record prize pool of $45 million. It will be held in Riyadh, the capital of Saudi Arabia. The start is scheduled for July 6.

Initially, the organizers planned to allocate $30 million but later increased the amount. They will be distributed among several disciplines. Dota 2 will almost certainly be there, but other games are still unknown. In 2022, Gamers8 held tournaments in Dota 2, Fortnite, Rocket League, PUBG Mobile, and Rainbow Six Siege. The organizers noted that the 2023 event would have a similar format.

According to Richard Lewis, citing a confidential ESL document, Riyadh Masters will become a final event in the new Dota 2 circuit as a part of the Gamers8 festival. It will combine DreamLeague and ESL One series into one Tour. This document was reportedly shown to Lima Major participants to get their feedback.

The new ESL Pro Tour will overhaul its world ranking system, and feature several events, finishing in Riyadh. The current plan is to hold the circuit for "the next two years". This season, Gamers8 will launch on July 6.

Source: Richard Lewis

The reported ESL Pro Tour structure

  • DreamLeague with a $1 mln prize pool for 16 teams in Europe, online. The best teams qualify for Riyadh Masters. The invites are based on the world ranking.
  • ESL One Thailand with a $1 mln prize pool for 12 teams on LAN. Connection to Riyadh Masters
  • Riyadh Masters with 20 teams on LAN. The prize pool is the biggest in Dota 2 besides The International.

Last year, Gamers8 had a $15 mln prize pool, shared among competitors in six esports disciplines. The Dota 2 event had a $4 mln prize pool, also the biggest in history, aside from TIs. ESL was bought by Saudi Investment Fund (PIF) in early 2022.


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