It looks like H1Z1’s Pro League isn’t gonna make it. ESPN is reporting this evening that the esports league teams received a letter from Jace Hall informing them that “the 2nd Split has been suspended indefinitely, and that a second league season will not be renewed or scheduled at this time” and that “teams have been immediately released from their League specific obligations.”
According to ESPN’s sources, Daybreak and its esports partners have struggled to pay promised team salaries, with some teams participating at a loss, others ending pay to the players, and still others withdrawing outright. Hall, however, says that the suspension has nothing to do with the money problems: “Nothing has changed in that area and as discussed previously with teams, the League is still working to pay teams and resolve that matter.”
The letter reportedly refers to a weakening playerbase in the game, which seems strange (it performed well on PS4 this past summer, even if PC is so-so), and it ought to concern not just H1Z1 players but players of Daybreak’s other MMOs as well. As gamers will recall, in September Daybreak announced that holding company NantWorks had invested in Daybreak and created a new subcompany to build out H1Z1 and EverQuest for mobile. NantWorks was also said to be working on a large esports arena and studio dubbed the LA Times Center next door to the LA Times headquarters. One might wonder what it’s aiming to do with that arena if its own flagship esports game is suffering.
I hate to see it go. A lot of blood, sweat, and tears went into getting this off the ground. Still very proud of my time and the team behind the spectator camera for any H1 competitive show we ran in the past. https://t.co/SW5y1Mx0NK
— Greg Henninger (@greghenninger) November 17, 2018