This announcement comes as reports have emerged of Moonton allegedly asking teams in the Mobile Legends: Bang Bang Professional League (MPL) to sign an exclusivity contract that would see them release their Wild Rift rosters. Mobile Legends is a MOBA game that is immensely popular in Southeast Asia. The eighth season of the MPL Indonesia will begin on Aug. 13.
A source close to the MPL confirmed to Dot Esports that such an exclusivity contract did exist but it was optional. Organizations had the choice of signing a “commercial contract,” which would see them competing exclusively in the MPL while getting certain “revenue and benefits.”
While it hasn’t been confirmed which organizations have signed this contract, it seems Bigetron and Onic have done so after today’s announcement. Dot Esports had reached out to both organizations for a comment but didn’t receive a reply. With Wild Rift still in its budding stage, these organizations could have found it more financially viable to sign away exclusivity in exchange for benefits from an established league like the MPL.
Onic Esports and Bigetron Infinity were two of the strongest Wild Rift teams in the region. They placed first and second, respectively, in the summer season of the SEA Icon Series Indonesia.
Riot has ambitious plans for Wild Rift esports and recently said that it’s “going all in” to make the MOBA title into the world’s “first truly global mobile esport.” The company had also commented on the MPL’s exclusivity contract and said that it was aware of the situation. Riot added that it doesn’t restrict any esports teams from participating in other leagues.
Reacting to the announcement today, Ban “ChisinX” Chee, the project manager for Wild Rift esports in SEA, said that he was “grateful” for the time the two orgs spent in the game. He added that this was currently “year zero” for Wild Rift esports and that the scene will take time to mature and reach its full potential.