Earlier this week we broke the news that gamers would get the chance to compete for a contract with a top Australian League of Legends team, via a reality show broadcast on Twitch and YouTube. Today we can reveal that the winner of The Next Gamer will earn a contract with Dire Wolves, winners of the most recent split in the Oceanic Pro League.
In a release going out today, organisers behind The Next Gamer revealed a little more information behind the project. The winner of the show, on top of receiving $10,000 in prize money, would become a member of Dire Wolves for six months. Dire Wolves are the current reigning OPL champions, having defeated Legacy Esports in the playoffs, although the organisers and the team could not reveal any more specifics about what role that player would have upon joining the team.
Called The Next Gamer, the show will place 10 players in a house in Sydney where they will battle it out for a contract with one of Australia's best League of Legends teams.
In an email to Kotaku, Guinevere Capital's Dave Harris - the owners of Dire Wolves - said that loved the idea of giving fans a look into the effort and sacrifice required to succeed in sport, and that he was a driving force behind Channel Nine's NRL Rookie reality show that aired last year. That show operated on a fairly similar concept, where a player won a contract with the Canberra Raiders at the conclusion of the show.
"There is an incredible amount of work that goes into competing at the top level and the players demonstrate an incredible level of talent absorbing and reacting to vast amounts of information in milliseconds," Harris explained. "At LG Dire Wolves we have a performance director from the UK and work with a PhD in esports from University of Technology Sydney and their broader Sports Science faculty, who are refining the teams approach to training and learning."
"There is also a lot of research going on into the skills and qualities required to be an elite esports athlete. While many people will look at [solo queue] rankings as a reflection of esports potential, I believe there is a lot more factors to consider which is what will make The Next Gamer such as interesting experiment for us."
The show's logo
The Next Gamer will also be backed by Intel, which has been sponsoring and investing in various facets of esports for well over a decade. "Our commitment to growing the esports community in Australia brought Intel Extreme Masters to Sydney for the first time earlier this year, where more than 7,000 fans attended the live event each day and 8 million unique viewers tuned into the online broadcast," Intel Australia and New Zealand's consumer marketing manager Kristen Hardeman added.
As previously revealed, The Next Gamer will hold online qualifiers from August 12 to 16, with the finalists battling it out from August 19 to September 6 to determine the final 10 applicants. Those 10 gamers will then go into a gaming house where they will go through a series of challenges to determine a final team of 5 players. Those interested can apply through the website here.