JUST days after being named one of the 56 events included in the Southeast Asian Games next year here in the Philippines, esports saw things get rolling for it with the naming of Razer as an official partner in the biennial regional tournament.
The leading global lifestyle brand for gamers, Razer has been tasked to provide the infrastructure and logistical support as well as expertise and experience in organizing esports events to ensure that the esports portion of the Games is successful staged, from the qualifiers all the way to the tournament proper itself.
In the official announcement of the partnership on Wednesday at the Marriott Hotel, officials of Razer and the Philippine Southeast Asian Games Organizing Committee, led by Chairman Emeritus Alan Peter Cayetano, hailed the newly forged deal as a breakthrough for the SEA Games as well as in the continued growth of esports.
“Esports is no longer a niche market. Many people are already picking it up both as gamers and audience and it is projected to be a billion-dollar industry by next year,” said Limeng Lee, Razer chief strategy officer, at yesterday’s announcement.
“To have Southeast Asia be part in that movement is big,” he added.
For Mr. Cayetano, the inclusion of esports in the Games as an official medal sport is a welcome development as it fortifies further the SEA Games goal of unity and inclusion in the region.
“SEA Games is about sports and competition but still we cannot forget about its goal of unity and inclusion. Gamers are part of this community,” Mr. Cayetano said.
PhilSGOC and Razer officials said more details on the tournament and other developments will be announced on a later date.
They, however, said that six games are being eyed — two mobile, two PC and two console games — for the Games.
The 2019 SEA Games is slated from Nov. 30 to Dec. 13 spread in different parts of the country. — Michael Angelo S. Murillo