In 2016, rAge launched and hosted Africa’s first eSports Branding Summit at rAge Expo in Johannesburg, in partnership with GAMeS (Global Assembly Marketing eSports). This year NAG and rAge are taking that esports initiative one step further by announcing a new annual event called Rush. Hit the jump for all the details.
From the creators of the legendary rAge (really Awesome gaming expo) comes the next evolution in South African gaming – the dawn of Rush! The inaugural Rush event, powered by HP OMEN, is a first for esports in South Africa and is set to become an annual showcase of everything that esports has to offer. This unique event will offer aligned partners the opportunity to affiliate their brands with one of the world’s fastest-growing competitive spectacles*.
Over the course of three days, Rush will feature a variety of competitive tournaments by leading local organisations hosted on dedicated esports stages, with live shoutcasting (commentary) by some of South Africa’s top shoutcasters. South Africa’s top gamers and clans will compete for the honour of taking the top spots, as well as for a host of incredible prizes. Perhaps the biggest draw for esports is the spectator value – fans and supporters will be able to watch the competitions live on big screens with dedicated seating areas at all the stages.
Three main stages have already been confirmed, showcasing popular titles such as Counter Strike: Global Offensive (CS:GO), FIFA 17 and League of Legends. In addition, there’ll be a Street Fighter V tournament where casual as well as professional gamers can take part. Games such as these, with their dedicated fan bases, will showcase the best local talent that esports has to offer.
“Rush aims to provide a neutral and inclusive platform for all the local esports organisations to host their respective events under one roof,” said Lauren Das Neves, marketing manager for Rush, NAG and rAge. “We want to foster an environment that will not only benefit local tournament hosts, but encourage new esports talent, as well as provide a centre of activity where local esports fans can gather to interact with and support their favourite teams and players. Rush is not another rAge, it’s something completely different”.
Rush is also thrilled to announce its headline partnership with HP OMEN.
“We are proud to be partnering with Rush as the headline sponsor for this inaugural esports event. We said we would re-enter the high-end gaming PC market and we are back with an impressive line-up of OMEN PCs. We have built PCs for gamers who need fierce performance out-of-the-box in a fully customizable chassis – something not typically available from traditional PC manufacturers,” said David Rozzio, Managing Director of HP Inc South Africa. “This partnership shows our interest to help gamers dominate games. Through the OMEN brand, our engineers combined a unique design that maximises thermal management with support for industry standard components so that the true enthusiast can always be up to date with the latest hardware to maintain peak performance.”
What’s next for HP in the world of gamers? On 19 October, HP will host a live League of Legends tournament at the FOR GAMES event in Prague on a much larger scale. “We will also be sponsoring a trip to Prague this October for the winning team of the Rush HP OMEN League of Legends Challenge. We are excited to be part of this great evolution of gaming in South Africa and want to immerse ourselves in the community for many more years,” concluded David.
Orena, one of the active partners at Rush, will be offering gaming opportunities and technical support across the spectrum at the event. “A highlight of Rush will be the chance to qualify for ESWC for CS:GO at one of the main stages,” says Luca Tucconi, Operating Executive at Orena. “We’re looking forward to seeing SA’s best esports teams fighting it out in an epic arena for the chance to qualify for ESWC.”
As part of Orena’s Fight Night, there’ll be a casual Street Fighter V tournament, with a not-so-casual R20,000 up for grabs at the end of the Fight Night Season in October. Orena will also be running the tournament for HP OMEN’s League of Legends stage.
What else will you be able to do at Rush? Not only will visitors be able to see and experience all the esports action live, they will also be able to meet their favourite players and teams as well as purchase merchandise, hardware products and accessories in the retail section.
More big news for gamers is that Rush will also be supported by NAG’s ever-popular signature event – the NAG BYOC LAN.
Tickets for Rush and the NAG BYOC LAN are on sale now at Computicket.
Exhibition Hall 2, Sandton Convention Centre, Gauteng
Rush is a rAge Esports Initiative, formed by NAG and rAge in 2016 to help build and nurture the emergent esports community in South Africa and beyond. Our mission is to expand the growing esports fan base as well as the local esports community by promoting esports tournaments, competitions and events to hardcore and casual audiences, as well as by bringing a level of professionalism to local events we host or are associated with. The goal of this initiative is to significantly accelerate the development of the South African esports industry as a whole.
About HP OMEN:
The HP OMEN unified gaming portfolio, launched in 2016, delivers over-engineered products meant to bring bold innovation in the gaming space. HP OMEN has reinvented gaming, by delivering extreme performance and unprecedented PC customisation for gamers who crave to dominate games. The funky looking OMEN 17 laptops are equipped with the latest CPUs and GPUs for the best gaming and virtual reality experiences.
*According to the Newzoo Global Esports Market Report 2017, the global esports market is fast growing into a multi-million dollar industry, with an estimated year-on-year growth of 43% in 2017 to $696 million, and an estimated audience of 385 million people.