Austria’s “eBundesliga” (electronic National Football League – FIFA18)
At the end of 2017 Austria’s biggest FIFA esports league took place. With over 6,000 participants all over the country it was one of the largest national esports events so far. With the ongoing planning for the second season we review the last season before the new one starts at the end of fall.
To start it all, the “eBundesliga” was announced in summer 2017. With big national partners such as PlayStation, krone.at, MediaMarkt, T-Mobile and LG, it was clear that this league was going to be a big success. All 10 national football clubs from the highest Austrian league were involved as well. ESVÖ (esports federation Austria) got on board to help coordinating the events and provided official esports referees and tournament admins for all offline events of eBundesliga. How to get there as a player? In the first place, every FIFA gamer had to decide for which club he wanted to play. Everyone had to do the registration on the eBundesliga website. Afterwards the online qualifications were held on different days of the week in October. The best 64 - 128 players per qualification were allowed to compete at the offline “CLUB Events”. Most of them took place in the local football club stadium – which was something that has never been seen before in Austria. FIFA18 was played on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. The best 5 players from every offline CLUB Event represented the football club at the big finali in Vienna. Not only was the goal to become the best FIFA Club as a team – which had an astonishing price pool over € 5,000 - the best FIFA Player was rewarded with € 5,000 too (10,000 prize pool for the solo rating).
eBundesliga finals took place on 8th of December 2017 in the capital city of Austria VIENNA. With a strictly timed schedule, it took the whole day to crown the winners. Most of the matches were streamed over Twitch.tv with ESVÖ esports casters on site. The final matches were also broadcasted on national TV with one esports caster and with a local known football moderator. They both received a big amount of positive feedback afterwards.
It is safe to say, that this league was a full success. Loads of positive articles about eBundesliga appeared all over Austria. FIFA is definitely one of the most successful competitive games in the German speaking area at the moment. Everybody is looking forward to the improvements of the second season of “eBundesliga”.