As unveiled during the Six Invitational 2020, a major update is coming to the Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six Siege’s esports programs. The four existing regions – Europe, North America, Latin America and Asia-Pacific – will now run in parallel their dedicated regional programs, all leading to the Six Invitational, the pinnacle of the Rainbow Six competitive year.
For Asia-Pacific, the action starts on June 23, with the first playday of the new Asia-Pacific League, and more specifically of the North Division.
As we get ready for this next chapter of Rainbow Six Esports Asia-Pacific, let’s review the key changes that you can expect.
Each regional league ties into a coherent global program, one unique race towards a qualification for the Six Invitational. As teams across the four regions face off in regional and global competitions, featuring 3 Majors and regional leagues, they will be ranked based on a new and in-depth point system that rewards sustained performance.
Each competitive Season runs for nearly a year, from March through the following February. Each Season will be divided into 4 quarters. The first three quarters, corresponding to the 3 “Stages” of the regional leagues, consist of 5 weeks of play, and conclude with a Six Major bringing together 16 of the world’s best teams – four per region across the four regions. Each stage awards prize money and points for the Global Standings. The Global Standings determine the sixteen teams earning a spot to the annual Six Invitational. Following the 3 stages, the last quarter of the season will be dedicated to regional finals and relegations. The season will then conclude with the Six Invitational, the pinnacle of the Rainbow Six competitive year that will crown the world’s best team.
Four additional teams will also have a chance to qualify for the Six Invitational through Regional Open Qualifiers, making the Six invitational a 20-team competition.
A notable exception to the global structure will be the first Season of 2020. As the transition and sunset of the legacy Pro League program, this year will shorten the program to only 2 stages with two Six Majors this year.
Starting this June 2020, the Asia-Pacific League will feature two Regional Divisions – the North Division and the South Division – each of them following its own competitive structure.
- The North Division includes: Japan, South Korea, and Southeast Asia (Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Philippines, and Taiwan).
- The South Division will comprise two independent subregions: Oceania and South Asia. Both will operate their own tournaments but ultimately lead to a single, common South-only playoff prior to each Major Qualifier.
- The Oceania subregion includes: Australia, New Zealand, Melanesia, Micronesia
- South Asia includes: India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Nepal, Pakistan
At the end of each stage, the top teams from each Division will eventually face each other during the Asia-Pacific Playoff, a tournament to determine which teams will represent the Asia-Pacific region at the upcoming Six Major.
THE NORTH DIVISION
The Asia-Pacific North Division gathers a total of 12 teams – from Japan, South Korea and Southeast Asia – that will compete in a single online league. For the 2020 season, the slots are broken down as follows:
- 6 Invites
- 6 Qualifiers
The North Division online league will consist of a variation of the Swiss system spread across 5 weeks, with 6 matches per playday, played in Best of 1. Each stage comprises 2 Swiss tournaments played directly back-to-back, limited to 5 rounds each, for a total of 10 playdays. There is a random draw for the 1st round, then teams with the same, or the closest, win/loss ratio face each other round after round. For example, for Round 2, winners face off against winners, for Round 3, teams with 1 win and 1 loss will face other teams with the same win/loss ratio and so on.
At the end of each stage, based on match results, the six best teams from the North Division standings progress to the Asia-Pacific League Playoffs. The standings are determined by the final win/loss ratio of all teams after both Swiss tournaments, with the second swiss having a slightly more important weighting. For example, if two teams finish with the same win/loss ratio at the end of the two Swiss tournaments, the team who performed better in the second Swiss would have a better final rank.
At the conclusion of the 3 stages, stage results are tabulated to determine a final North Division Ranking. The top 8 teams will be invited to the following season, while the 4 bottom ranking teams are moved into a Promotion/Relegation tournament to play off for a spot in the returning season of the league. In that Promotion/Relegation tournament they will face the champions of their respective national tournament.
Discover a whole new broadcast experience
With the 2020 Season, Ubisoft will take a first major step in revamping the viewing experience of its esports leagues and will inaugurate a brand-new and cutting-edge broadcast studio.
While the matches of the North Division League will be happening online for our pro teams, our crew of talents will join us, in Paris, to cast from this new studio, in English.
Our cast of talents and everyone from Ubisoft working behind the scenes is excited to welcome you in the new home of Rainbow Six Esports Asia-Pacific.
Though we really want to keep the element of surprise on the look and feel of the studio for the moment you will tune in for the first match, in the meantime, here’s a sneak peek of the additions you can expect:
- Premium tools and material to assist our talents while they cast
- A dedicated analyst area that will allow the crew to provide in-depth information
- New types of content on top of the action-packed show the teams will put on during their matches, such as debates, editorial pieces, interactive content and more.
- Tech improvements backstage that will ultimately create a more engaging stream for the viewers to watch
As the health and well-being of our talents, staff and partners is our first priority, the new studio will not be ready for the first playdays of the North Division League. When the first matches begin on June 23, you will see a “light” version of the studio. This will be a temporary solution and as soon as the situation permits, the fully-fledged studio will take over! We will share more information soon. Stay tuned.
THE SOUTH DIVISION
In parallel, the Asia-Pacific South Division will bring together two independent subregions: Oceania and South Asia.
In Oceania, 8 teams from across Australia, New Zealand, Polynesia, Micronesia and Melanesia will compete in the Oceanic Nationals, an online league.
In South Asia, teams from Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka will face off in a series of open online tournaments ending with a closed bracket playoff.
This online phase consists of 8 teams, each playing a Round Robin per stage. Each team will face each of their opponents once. At the end of each stage, the top 3 teams from the standings advance to the South Division Playoffs.
Details about the relegation system will be communicated later on.
South Asia Nationals
The South Asia Nationals will feature four independent online Open Qualifiers. Each Open Qualifier will consist of a single elimination format where the top 2 placing teams will advance to a Closed Qualifier.
Over 3 days, the closed qualifier will bring together 8 teams and use a double elimination format, leading up to a Final played in Best of 5, with a one map advantage to the upper bracket winner. The winner will earn a spot in the South Division Playoffs.
The South Division Playoffs
Each stage, when the South Division nationals end, the South Division Playoffs begin. This offline event will bring together 4 teams from the South Division to compete in a double elimination bracket:
- The Oceanic Nationals winner
- The South Asia Nationals winner
- The 2nd Place of the Oceanic Nationals
- The 3rd Place of the Oceanic Nationals
The top two teams emerging from the double elimination bracket will progress to the Asia-Pacific League Playoffs.
THE ASIA-PACIFIC LEAGUE PLAYOFFS
Each stage, following the conclusion of the North Division League and the South Division Playoffs, the Asia-Pacific League Playoffs will gather the 8 best teams, fighting for the top placings in the region. The slots are broken down as follows:
- The 6 top-ranking teams of the North Division league
- The top 2 teams from the South Division Playoffs
Those 8 teams will battle it out in a double elimination bracket and the best four teams will claim a spot in the upcoming Six Major where they will get the chance to proudly represent the Asia-Pacific region. They will also earn points for the Global Standings – in the race towards the Six Invitational – according to their final placements at the competition.
Even though they don’t get the chance to participate in the Six Major, the teams that rank 5th to 8th place in the Asia-Pacific Playoffs will nonetheless score points for the Global Standings in the Six Invitational race.
To sum it all up: each stage, all 8 teams qualified for the Asia-Pacific League Playoffs will earn points for the Global Standings.
Each season of Asia-Pacific League will conclude with regional finals, tasked to find who the best team in the region that season truly is. This will translate into a special event.
Based on the final rankings of the North and South Divisions – aggregating the results of the 3 stages –, the top-ranking teams will qualify for the Regional Finals as follows:
- The top-3 ranking teams from the North Division after all 3 stages of the league
- The highest ranked South Division team (across Oceania and South Asia) after all 3 stages of the South Division program
This event will consist of a single elimination bracket leading up to a Grand Finale played in Best of 5. The winner will be crowned Champion of the Asia-Pacific region.
Becoming the Asia-Pacific Champion is the ultimate goal at a regional level, but before getting to the top, teams need to hone their skills through the National programs.
Starting this Season, Nationals will receive greater significance within the overall international program, thus forging a multi-tiered esports scene, allowing players from all levels and horizons to compete. National tournaments create the foundation for the Rainbow Six Esports ecosystem, providing pathways into the regional leagues. From there, any player and team can make their mark progressing to the Majors and finally the Six Invitational.
South Division Nationals
As described above, each stage, the Oceanic and South Asia Nationals will fuel the South Division Playoffs, offering teams from those subregions a chance to compete in the Asia-Pacific League Playoffs to claim a spot for the Six Major.
North Division Nationals
At the end of a season, teams winning Nationals in the North Division will have the possibility to compete against one of the four lowest placing teams from their respective country in a Promotion/Relegation system. 4 relegation slots will be divided as follows:
- 1 slot for Japan
- 1 slot for South Korea
- 1 slot for Southeast Asia
- An extra slot for the region that is the least represented in the top 8 of the North Division
In case there is no team from a given country in the four lowest placing teams of the North Division league, the representative from that country will be promoted directly to the North Division. For example, if no Japanese teams were to finish in the bottom 4 of the North Division league at the end of a given season, then the winner of the Japanese National tournament would be granted a direct spot to the following season of the North Division league.
To stay in the loop on everything related to our esports activities, follow Rainbow Six Esports as well as our Europe, North America, Asia-Pacific and Latin America regional accounts on Twitter. For behind-the-scenes coverage, follow Rainbow Six Esports on Instagram. And for much more on Rainbow Six Siege, check out our previous coverage.