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Published: March 25, 2021

Written by: Stefan Velikov

  • The big sports event will once again feature esports
  • The list will encompass eight different games, four of which will be mobile
  • The IOC will present medals to the best performing teams and players

SEA Games secures IOC’s approval to hold official esports medal events in eight different video games, including both mobile and desktop titles.

SEA Games: The Special Event Where Esports Meet Olympics

The Southeast Asian Games (SEA) are a big sports event that takes place every two years since 1959. This year’s 31st iteration will take place in Vietnam’s capital of Hanoi

As mind sports continue making a name for themselves, esports will once again be a part of this grandiose event. In the 2019 SEA Games in the Philippines, esports were sanctioned by the International Olympic Committee as a medal event for the first time. This year the event has once again secured the IOC’s support, and esports will be treated as a medal event. 

However, the list of played games will be expanding. GameK reports that Vietnam’s ministry of culture, sports, and tourism have signed for eight games which are two more than the six games played in 2019. The eight games will be played across ten different competitions, with two of the games having two separate events. The games will include four mobile and four PC games. 

The four PC games will include League of LegendsFIFA OnlineMobile Legends: Bang Bang, and CrossFire. The four mobile games are the following: League of Legends: Wild RiftPUBG MobileFree Fire, and Arena of Valor

All the games, excluding LoL: Wild Rift, will be played with mixed-gender teams allowed. Wild Rift will have two separate competitions for each gender.  All the games will be played in a team format, with the sole exception of PUBG Mobile, which will have both a team event and an individual event. 

This year’s lineup is quite different from 2019’s and has a heavy focus on MOBA’s and shooters. However, neither is expected to become a part of the Olympic Games as the IOC has reported it’s going to focus more on virtual sports that simulate real sports and less on traditional competitive titles. This is a part of IOC’s policy to avoid featuring violence and involving itself in controversies.

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