It seems safe to say that Rocket League is well on its way to becoming the next huge eSport. Just a week after NBC Sports announced that it is looking into broadcasting a tournament on television, the X Games announced that the game will be added to the lineup this summer:
“The X Games and ESPN have done a great job of bringing attention to nontraditional sports over the years,” said Rocket League developer Psyonix’s esports manager, Josh Watson. “Adding esports and Rocket League to that lineup is something we at Psyonix are very excited about.”
UK eSports tournament platform FACEIT was the facilitator of the deal with the X Games, as was the case with the potential deal with NBC. Viewers can catch the Rocket League tournament on ESPN3 from July 14-16. The tournament features a prize pool of $75,000, as well.
This won’t be the first time eSports will be represented at the X Games. They had a partnership with Major League Gaming to host Call of Duty tournaments in the past. The addition of Rocket League, which is a game in which users control cars playing soccer, hockey or basketball, seems to make much more sense given the format of the X Games themselves.
Back at the beginning of the year, Rocket League underwent a format change that has helped it burst onto the scene as a major eSport. The change simplified the RLCS into a single-qualifier event, which led to over 18,000 players signing up for the open tournament. The 6,000 teams was more than double the amount that participate in season one.
The deals with the X Games and NBC Sports followed the format change. Rocket League has also sponsored a WWE event and have plans to continue to do so for other events in the future. The untraditional marketing strategy has worked quite well for Psyonix to this point.
The Summer X Games are set to go down in Minneapolis, Minnesota, in July and will feature the normal extreme sports in addition to the new Rocket League tournament. Skateboarding, BMX and motocross are just a few of the sports holding competitions in Minneapolis.
Last year’s Winter X Games featured a Halo 5: Guardians tournament. Counter-Strike: Global Offensive has also been featured at the X Games in the past.
Rocket League is currently available on a number of platforms, including PS4, Xbox One and PC. Psyonix recently announced that the game is coming to Nintendo Switch next December. The Switch version of the game will feature cross-play with Xbox One and PC. The developer has also expressed interest in cross-play with the PS4, but Sony currently does not allow cross-play with other consoles.
Psyonix has also announced a massive update to Rocket League for the game’s upcoming second anniversary. New cars, explosions and arenas are just a few of the new additions coming in the new update, which will come on July 5.
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