Thai Express founder's gaming start-up holds tournament with $100,000 prize pool

The first EndGods tournament was held in November last year with a $30,000 prize pool, and a second one in April with a prize pool of $1,000.
The first EndGods tournament was held in November last year with a $30,000 prize pool, and a second one in April with a prize pool of $1,000.PHOTO: SPARKJUMPERS

SINGAPORE - Thai Express founder Ivan Lee's gaming start-up will hold a tournament for its online action strategy game EndGods with the largest prize pool of $100,000 for a locally-produced game.

The competition - start-up SparkJumpers' third - will be held on May 21, at Marina Bay Sands' Sands Expo and Convention Centre. The first EndGods tournament was held in November last year with a $30,000 prize pool, and a second one in April with a prize pool of $1,000.

EndGods, available on both mobile and PC, is played by two people at a time. They must assemble an army of characters, and then deploy their forces at the right time to conquer their opponent. It is the first game developed by SparkJumpers, co-founded three years ago by Mr Lee, director Randy Prabowo and development manager Tan Eng Khoon.

Mr Lee is best known for founding Thai Express, whose majority shares he sold in 2008 for $80 million.

Mr Prabowo said that he hopes the tournament will boost the waning eSports scene here. "The past few years have seen a meteoric rise in big international eSports tournaments. However, tournaments of this calibre are few and far in between in Singapore. It's been stagnant here," he said.

In the upcoming tournament, players can compete either solo or as part of a team. After the online qualifiers end on May 8, the top 48 solo players and the top 16 teams will be invited to the May 21 finals.

After the one-day competition, the winners of both the solo and team categories will receive $20,000, $8,000 and $3,000 for first-, second- and third-place finishes respectively.

"We're here to change things up so that the community can grow within our own country, and not just follow the international tournaments and leagues," said Mr Prabowo.

"As gamers ourselves, we are determined to make the community proud that something like this is happening in Singapore."

The event is free to attend. For more information, go to www.endgods.com/leagueofgods.

lting@sph.com.sg