5/4/2020

Announcing the Rainbow 6 North American League

INTRODUCING THE RAINBOW SIX ESPORTS NORTH AMERICAN LEAGUE

As we close the door on our Rainbow Six Pro League, a new one opens. We’re excited to finally share with you the next chapter of Rainbow Six Esports in North America.

Starting this June, the Rainbow Six North American League will feature two Regional Divisions – the United States and Canada – as well as the North American Challenger League, our path-to-pro tier designed to foster the best up-and-coming teams in both territories. The US Division will feature eight pro team organizations competing in an offline league based in Las Vegas, Nevada.

For the first time in Rainbow Six Esports history, Canada will join the global competition with its own Canada Division, a league consisting of four teams competing online in lockstep with the US Division tournament schedule. To promote a robust semi-pro ecosystem for all aspirational players, Rainbow Six Esports North America will also introduce a revamped North American Challenger League, our accessible online league consisting of eight teams per region, playing for a chance to break into the pro tier each season.

Each competitive season runs for nearly a year – from March through the following February – concluding with the Six Invitational global championship. A full season is comprised of three five-week Stages, with each Stage building to a Major showdown event bringing together 16 of the world’s best teams. A notable exception being this 2020 season, as the transition and sunset of the legacy Pro League program this year will shorten the program to only two Stages with two global Major events this year. In the North American League, all teams will fight for supremacy in standard best-of-three weekly matches to be one of four regional teams to earn a spot at the quarterly Major.

R6 NAL Timeline Asset Final-01 (2)

R6 NAL Timeline Asset Final-02 (2)

Each North American League season concludes in an epic Finals event in December that also features a winner-takes-all promotion/relegation series between the last place US and Canada Division teams versus the respective 1st place Challenger League teams in the region. Meanwhile, throughout the competitive year, all teams have the potential to be awarded Global Standings Points for high performance per stage. At the end of the season, the top 16 global point earners are invited to the pinnacle of Rainbow Six Esports – the Six Invitational – where we crown the one team that will claim the true title of Rainbow Six World Champions.

The introduction of the US Division, Canada Division, and their Challenger Leagues in North America represents the biggest evolution for the competitive Rainbow Six Esports landscape in its five-year history. All three programs make-up the competitive ecosystem that is focused on the long-term health and stability of Rainbow Six Esports in the North America region.

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US Division

In the US Division, eight pro organizations have been invited to compete in our new offline chapter, out of Las Vegas, Nevada, entertainment capital of the world. (For more details and context on the team invitation process and other questions, please check out the companion Q&A blog post here.)

  • Spacestation Gaming
  • TSM
  • DarkZero Esports
  • eUnited
  • Tempo Storm
  • Susquehanna Soniqs
  • Disrupt Gaming
  • Oxygen Esports

Returning to pro Rainbow Six Esports in the US are current world champions Spacestation Gaming, as well as fan-favorites from the recently transitioned Pro League: TSM, DarkZero Esports, eUnited, and Tempo Storm. New to the pro tier in North America are Susquehanna Soniqs and Disrupt Gaming, both organizations having contributed to the vibrancy of Rainbow Six Esports in Challenger League. Finally, please welcome Oxygen Esports, a new North American organization focused on Rainbow Six Siege as its flagship esports investment. Although Oxygen Esports is new to the scene, their players, consisting of the veterans from the recent Reciprocity roster, have triumphed over more than their share of tough match-ups in the US Division line-up.

Canada Division

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As an area of growth for the North American scene, Canada will debut on the global circuit with its own Canada Division, an online league consisting of four teams competing in lockstep with the US Division tournament schedule. This Canada Division will be open exclusively to all players currently residing within Canada. Unlike the US Division, which saw eight teams invited to its inaugural season, the Canada Division will hold an open qualifier to determine which four teams kickoff the 2020 season. The Canada Division will hold official online qualifiers May 30th- 31st, which will decide the top four teams who earn a spot to compete in the online league. Registration for qualifiers will officially open on May 11th and will continue to be open until May 29th.

Similar to the US Division, all official matches in the Canada Division will be played in a best-of-three series. Teams in the Canada Division will also have a chance each Stage to qualify for the Major by defeating teams from the US Division. Full details on the North American League Playoffs will be announced at a later date. Finally, just like its US counterpart, Canada Division teams are eligible for Rainbow Six Global Standings Points, which grant an invite to the Six Invitational. Registration for the Canada Division qualifiers goes live on May 11th.

We are humbled to have the opportunity to reshape the future of this esport we have collectively grown together with our players, communities, and pro organizations. The launch of the new North American League marks the beginning of the next big evolutionary leap for Rainbow Six Esports in the region and we couldn’t be more excited.

As always, thank you for your continued support of Rainbow Six Esports.

PATH-TO-PRO IN NORTH AMERICA; THE NORTH AMERICAN CHALLENGER LEAGUE

Any healthy esports ecosystem needs a robust path-to-pro program that is both accessible to enter and flexible enough to allow repeated attempts during a season. We are excited to kick off the next revamped chapter of our path-to-pro program: The North American Challenger League. The goal of this program is to ensure we grow a layer of talent that’s always on the verge of bursting into the pro tier. As an online league, the North American Challenger League is designed to be more dynamic, with opportunities for two open qualified teams to enter per stage, as well as highlighting Challenger League teams through broadcasted matches. We believe there’s a story to be told amongst all of our semi-pro teams and we want to honor the passion of our aspiring NA League pro players and teams.

Like the US and Canada Divisions, each North American Challenger League season is one year long, consisting of three Stages. Due to the transition from our previous Pro and Challenger Leagues, the 2020 season will only feature two Stages. Online qualifiers for the NA Challenger League Stage 1 will take place on June 6th and June 13th 2020. Stage 2 Qualifiers will take place August 29th and September 5th.

On September 12th the 1st and 2nd place teams in the Stage 2 Qualifiers will play the 7th and 8th placed NA Challenger League teams to earn their spot in the NA Challenger League Stage 2. NA Challenger League teams will also have a chance to play in the North American Finals where the Divisional Promotion/Relegation matches will take place.

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US Division Challenger League

On June 6th, 2020 Open Qualifiers for Stage 1 of the US Division Challenger League will take place. Teams will play in a best-of-one, single elimination style tournament until there are 16 teams remaining.

On June 13th 2020, those remaining 16 teams will play in a best-of-three, single elimination tournament until eight teams remain. These teams will be joining the US Division Challenger League Stage 1. The US Division Challenger League will be broadcasted on a regular schedule in order to give players promotion and support.

These eight teams will be split into two groups of four. Each group of four will play in a double elimination bracket. In week five, the 1st place team in each of the two groups will play each other to determine 1st and 2nd place.

The Stage 2 North American Challenger League 1st place team, will play the US Division 8th place team. The winner will be promoted to the following 2021 US Division Season Stage 1, with the loser being relegated to the US Division Challenger League.

CL CAN

Canada Division Challenger League

On June 6th, 2020 Open Qualifiers for Stage 1 of the Canada Division Challenger League will take place. Teams will play in a best-of-one, single elimination style tournament until there are 16 teams remaining.

On June 13th 2020, those remaining 16 teams will play in a best-of-three, single elimination tournament until eight teams remain. These teams will be joining the Canada Division Challenger League Stage 1.

These eight teams will be split into two groups of four. Each group of four will play in a double elimination bracket. In week five, the 1st place team in each of the two groups will play each other to determine 1st and 2nd place.

This same process will repeat for Stage 2 in order to determine which teams will have a chance at being promoted to the Canada Division. At this time, the 1st place team from Stage 2 will play the Canada Division 4th place team with the winner being promoted to the following 2021 Canada Division Season Stage 1, and the losing team being relegated to the Canada Division Challenger League.

What’s Next?

Grassroot programs and their players are the foundation of any healthy esports program. We strongly believe that giving our players a fair opportunity to flourish in this new ecosystem will grow the Rainbow Six Esports talent pool.