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With the 2018 esports season set to take-off, ESL India Premiership makes its return with a bigger prize pool and a challenging tournament format.

Following the tradition, ESL India Premiership 2018 will break the prize money statistics in the country once again. With a massive INR 1 crore prize pool allocated for the 2018 edition, ESL India Premiership has put the Indian esports scene on par with some of the top tournaments in the region. The 1 crore prize pool is also a testament to the growing esports scene in the country, while also making gaming a lucrative occupation to pursue.

Year-long tournaments will be organised for the games of Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, DOTA 2 and Clash Royale. Inspired by its predecessors, ESL India Premiership 2018 will continue with the three season, multi-league format. However, there are a couple of minor changes.

First off, the Master League will become a highly competitive affair. The participant numbers have been bumped up to 12 slots from the original 8. Similarly, the Master League will function independent of the other two leagues and guarantees an uninterrupted run of 66 matches. These matches will be streamed on the Facebook page and YouTube channel of ESL India, apart from being telecast on television. However, the promotion-relegation process at the end of the season will see the bottom four teams drop down and get replaced by four promising teams from the Challenger Cup.

Speaking of the Challenger Cup, this tier will introduce a double-elimination format.  Here, the 8 teams will fight to retain their spot in the league through the three phases in every season. At the end of every phase, the bottom two teams will be knocked out and get replaced by teams from the Starter Cup. The knocked out teams can register themselves again in the Starter Cup and find their way back in ESL India Premiership 2018. Meanwhile, at the end of every season, the top four teams will be rewarded with a promotion to the Master League.

Finally, the Starter Cup will continue with the single-elimination format, but limit itself to only 128 contestants. Interested teams and players will have to register themselves at the earliest in order to participate in ESL India Premiership 2018. The promotion-relegation process at the end of each phase will see the top two teams proceed to the Challenger Cup.

The teams participating in the Summer Season’s Master League and Challenger Cup of ESL India Premiership 2018 will be hand-picked by the organisers. However, this selection process will be a transparent one and participants will be chosen based on their past merits and participation.

Over 15000 gamers and 2000 teams participated in ESL India Premiership 2017. Meanwhile, more than 700 hours of content was streamed over a period of 250 days on the Facebook and YouTube platform of ESL India. This managed to garner 1.7 million video plays and 2.44 million in engagement while posting a reach of 30 million. ESL India Premiership 2017 also became the first indigenous esports tournament to make its way to the Indian television screens. The progress of the Fall and Winter Season of the CS:GO Master League was broadcasted exclusively on DSPORT, a sports channel by Discovery Communications.

ESL India Premiership 2018 promises a bigger and better experience as it develops the Indian esports scene and provides gamers with an exciting year-long tournament. With a massive prize pool and a challenging format, the Premiership will help unleash a new era in Indian esports, apart from identifying new talent and promising teams in the domestic scene.

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