- Dota 2, Starcraft 2, Tekken 7, Mobile Legends: Bang Bang, and Arena of Valor have been announced as medal events for the 2019 SEA Games.
- The list is similar to the chosen games for the Asian Games, with both events selecting two mobile titles for inclusion.
- The SEA Games list is noteworthy for the inclusion of several so-called “violent” games and the lack of sports sims, a preferred path pushed by organizers of the Olympics and Asian Games.
Five out of the six esports titles for the 2019 Southeast Asian Games (SEA Games) have been announced. The Philippines Southeast Games Organizing Committee (PHISGOC) and its partner Razer have selected Dota 2 , Starcraft II , Tekken 7, Mobile Legends: Bang Bang, and Arena of Valor. The final game will be announced in the coming weeks.
The announcement also confirmed that each game would be gender-inclusive, allowing men and women to compete in the same tournament. Earlier reports had indicated that certain games such as Dota 2 would have separate, gender-specific events.
Razer signed on as an official partner for the SEA Games in November. Shortly after, esports games were approved as medal events for the Games.
The list of games is similar to the set of esports titles chosen for the 2018 Asian Games. Both lists feature a wide range of genres, as well as two mobile titles, with Mobile Legends replacing Clash Royale , likely due to the massive following Mobile Legends has generated in Southeast Asia.
Notably, the inclusion of Tekken 7 in particular places the SEA Games in stark contrast to the recent discourse surrounding esports and international sporting events. Representatives of both the International Olympic Council and the Asian Games have been outspoken in their preference for excluding violent games from any potential events, and instead shifting the focus to sports simulation games.
Every title on the SEA Games list so far could be considered violent, with Tekken in particular showing hyper-realistic characters engaged in a fist fight, At most, the SEA Games will feature a single sports simulation title, should Pro Evolution Soccer earn the final spot. As the first medal event for esports, and with a list of games in stark contrast to the stated desires of similar organizing bodies, all eyes will be on the SEA Games in late November 2019 to measure engagement, response, and above all else, viewership numbers.