Comcast has partnered with recreational esports community platform Mission Control to launch a three-month-long esports league, the companies announced Tuesday.
Starting this month, gamers in Boston, Baltimore, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh and Washington D.C. will be invited to compete in the “Xfinity City Series,” a series of league competitions powered by Xfinity wifi.
Each month, participants will compete in four regular-season games per title with finalists going head-to-head in a series of playoffs. The league will commence with “Fortnite,” followed by “Rocket League” in February and “Super Smash Bros” in March. Gamers of all ages and skill sets are welcomed to compete, socialize and follow their progress on the league’s app and website, powered by Mission Control.
The campaign aims to engage and build the gaming community while promoting Xfinity's gigabit service through multiplayer gaming, said Megan Wallace, VP of marketing for Comcast’s Northeast Division.
“Today’s gamers require the speed, personalized tools and controls, and advanced cybersecurity protection that Xfinity is uniquely suited to offer, including faster-than-Gig speeds over WiFi,” she said in a press release. “We’re thrilled to welcome gamers as they put their skills to the test and can’t wait to celebrate each city’s best.”
League winners will receive up to $50,000 in prizes. For instance, “Fortnite” and “Rocket League” winners will take home a Playstation 5 and Super Smash Bros. Ultimate playoff champions will earn a Nintendo Switch OLED console.
All monthly event winners will additionally receive a custom controller with their respective console and earn digital brag badges to share their rank and involvement on social media.
Mission Control hopes the league will continue to foster community in gaming.
“I truly think that the future of esports is more about community than competition,” said Austin Smith, CEO of Mission Control. “Rec leagues are the medium for people to gather more purposefully and can deliver that more than one-off tournaments that we see a lot today.”
Comcast has previously partnered with gaming leagues and companies including Twitch, G4, Overwatch League, Philadelphia Fusion and Nerd Street Gamers and sponsorship of high-profile streamers like Bugha, BasicallyIDoWrk, and iamBrandon.
In recent years, the video game market has exploded, with U.S. consumer spending in gaming estimated at $11.6 billion in Q2 2020, according to Statista. Gaming is also expected to grow further in the coming years, surpassing a $200 billion valuation in 2023.