Record prize money: Gamers8 allocates $45 million

Record prize money: Gamers8 allocates $45 million

8. March 2023 by Andrew Williams

The organizers of the Gamers8 esports and gaming festival have announced $45 million in prize money for this year. This is the highest prize pool ever in esports. Gamers8 2023 kicks off on July 6 in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia and will span 2 months. Besides the competitions and tournaments, there will also be other activities such as live concerts, festivals and the Next World Forum conference.

Now Gamers8 has announced that there will be a massive 45 million in prize money for it. Last year, it was “only” around $15 million – but with the prize money tripling, it means they offer the highest prize pool ever!

Which titles will be played at Gamers8?

As of yet, it’s not clear which games will all be played at Gamers8. However, we can assume that similar to last year, there will be Rocket League, Rainbow Six Siege and PUBG Mobile, Dota 2 and Fortnite. There may even be titles added to that. According to some rumors, ESL has proposed combining its Dota 2 properties DreamLeague and ESL One, as well as Gamers8’s Dota 2 tournament, Riyadh Masters, into a “global circuit” to complement Valve and The International’s Dota Pro Circuit.

Gamers8 outdoes itself again

The Gamers8 festival is sponsored by the Saudi Esports Federation, the country’s premier association. In a statement earlier this year, Prince Faisal bin Bandar bin Sultan, the federation’s chairman, said they wanted to build on what was achieved with last year’s event. “To be honest, when we say we want to be bigger and better this summer, we mean it,” he said. Gamers8 2023’s gigantic new prize pool further solidifies Saudi Arabia’s power in esports. Saudi Arabia wants to dominate and capitalize on esports with its PIF (Public Investment Fund) – and it looks like it’s working. Right now, money from the PIF is pouring into every corner of esports, which doesn’t go over well everywhere, as Saudi Arabia continues to be implicated in a number of human rights abuses.

Saudi Arabia is buying up Esports companies

Last year, Savvy Games Group, which is wholly owned by Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund, acquired FACEIT and ESL for a total of $1.5 billion. In addition, Savvy Games Group announced a $265 million investment in VSPO last year. VSPO is a Chinese tournament organizer specializing in mobile esports. And last week, ESL FACEIT Group bought esports technology and infrastructure company Vindex. Apparently, Savvy Games Group CEO Brian Ward’s vision is to build a gaming company that is “bigger than Tencent.”