Last year Supercell launched an esports league for its mobile hit Clash Royale. It culminated in the Clash Royale Crown Championship in London in December, with the winner, Sergio Ramos, earning $150000. What set this event apart from other esports tournaments wasn’t just that Clash Royale is a mobile game, or that it’s based around individual players instead of teams. What made the Crown Championship so special was that the initial qualifying round was open to anybody who played the game. If you did well enough, you could get invited to later qualifiers, and if you kept winning you could wind up at that championship event in London. One of the finalists that first year, Music Master, made it to that final tournament before his parents even knew he was playing the game. The odds were astronomical, sure, but theoretically anybody could’ve made it to London if they were good enough at the game.
Today Supercell launched the Clash Royale League Challenge, another tournament open to all comers (assuming they’ve downloaded the game first). The terms seem slightly different from last year’s Crown Championship qualifier, though. According to the League Challenge website, any player who wins 20 games before getting a third loss is “on the right track to potentially becoming a pro player.” It’ll also “grant access to the next round of the competition,” but the focus seems to be on using this event as a sort of tryout for professional teams, and just winning 20 out of 22 games doesn’t guarantee any player a contract with a pro team. So this event isn’t just selling the promise of a single tournament, but a potential career as a professional Clash Royale player.
The challenge starts today and runs through March 19, and although it’s open to anybody who’s 16 and up and at least at level 8 in the game, again, the odds are slim. Over 27 million players participated in last year’s open challenge, and it’s safe to assume there’ll be even more this year. Your first three entries are free, and subsequent entries cost 10 gems an entry. There are a variety of prizes you win after every second victory—you can see a full list at the official Clash Royale Reddit. And this year’s tournament finals are scheduled to be held in Asia, so if you make it all the way you better make sure that passport is up to date.