Prior to this year’s Six Invitational, it was announced Rainbow Six Siege esports was to undergo a revamp after the Pro League XI to a new regionalised format split across four regions - North America, Europe, Latin America and Asia Pacific.
While there’s many similarities with the NA League, we now have the full details on how the European League is structured. So here’s a breakdown of the new format.
How will the Rainbow Six Siege European League work?
The European League is the highest level of competitive Rainbow Six Siege in Europe. The league will run in parallel with other regions across North America, Latin America and Asia Pacific.
The European League is split into three stages, with each consisting of 9 playdays in a single round robin system where all teams play each other once. A win is rewarded with 3 points, a draw 1 point, while you’ll get no points for a loss.
Once a stage ends, the top four teams will qualify for a "mini" Six Major, where they’ll face off against one another for Invitational points. The final standings in the European League after each stage will also contribute to the Global Standings in accordance with their placements, which includes those in 5-8th places who fail to qualify for the Six Major.
How teams qualify for the European finals (Picture: Ubisoft)
After each stage, the ranks in the European League are reset. At the end of all three stages in November, these rankings are combined to form the final rankings of the season within the region.
The top four teams from the region will then compete in the European League finals to determine who will be crowned European Champion. The team who places last in the final rankings meanwhile will be relegated to the European Challenger League, while the team ranked 9th will compete in the relegation playoffs.
After each stage, teams earn points towards the Six Invitational (Picture: Ubisoft)
What teams are competing in the 2020 season?
The European League will comprise of 10 teams in total. For the first 2020 season, this will include eight teams from the European Pro League Season XI and the top two teams from European Challenger League Season XI.
You can check out the line-up of teams for the 2020 season below.
- Team Empire
- Chaos Esports
- G2 Esports
- Natus Vincere
- Team Vitality
- BDS Esports
- IZI Dream
- Team Orgless
How does the European Challenger League and new national tournaments work?
The European Challenger League is the gateway into the European League, although teams will have to pass through national tournaments to achieve a spot in the Challenger League.
In the UK, the new Rainbow Six Siege UK Ireland Nationals (essentially the old ESL Premiership) is the gateway into the Challenger League. The team who wins in Nationals across Europe will get a slot in the European Challenger League, while the place will go to the runner-up if they’re already qualified.
UK teams will now compete in the UK Ireland Nationals to win a spot in the Challenger League (Picture: Ubisoft)
At the end of the European Challenger League season, the top two teams will face-off in the relegation playoffs. The winner of that match will take the place of the last ranked team in the European League, while the loser will play against the team who ranked 9th to determine whether they will move up.
The European Challenger League will be comprised of 12 teams, consisting of nine champions from National tournaments across France, GSA (Germany, Switzerland, Austria), UK, Spain, Italy, the Nordics, Benelux, Poland and Russia.
National tournament wins across Europe will lead teams to the Challenger League (Picture: Ubisoft)
Another team will come from an open qualifier, while the remaining two spots will be from the relegation system. In the 2020 season, these two slots will be given to the teams ranked 3rd and 4th in the Challenger League Season XI aka DefuseKid and PENTA.
The European Challenger League 2020 will begin in the autumn, with more details to be announced.
When are the European League Finals 2020?
The European Regional Finals will take place in December, although a specific date is yet to be announced.
Along with hosting the top four teams from the European League, it’s also where the relegation playoffs will take place to decide who will join the league in the 2021 season.
Speaking to GINX TV, senior esports manager on Rainbow Six Siege, Jeremy Somville, explained each year will see the event take place at a different city - acting as a celebration of the European scene.
“It’s going to be a really big event because it’s not only the final of the year to crown a new champion, we’ll also have the relegation between the European Challenger League and the bottom team from the European Leagues.
“We truly want this to be a celebration of the European community with two tournaments in one actually. We have big ambitions for this, it’ll be an event across two days in a venue etc so it’s basically what you’ve seen in the past like the Pro League finals. You can expect an event like this for the European finals.”
When does the European League start and how can I watch?
The first European League playday will start on 22nd June in an online capacity, with games broadcasted on Mondays and Wednesdays at 6pm CEST/ 5pm BST.