Sad day for Apex Legends esport fans as Respawn has made the tough decision to hold the Global Series Split 1 playoffs online as the Omicron COVID-19 variant.
The event, which was scheduled to be played in January, would feature teams from "as many as 40 countries", according to Respawn, however, due to strict travel restrictions going being put in place by several of them, it's no longer feasible to fly them all for an offline competition.
"Our priority is protecting our competitors, employees, tournament partner staff, and communities. As we continue to monitor the Covid-19 Omicron variant, review the continuously changing country-by-country travel restrictions, and digest the direction given to us by health officials we’ve concluded a global in-person January event is not possible."
As a result, the playoffs will be held with an online regional format in place, with the Top 20 teams in each region before the end of the regular season (North America, South America, APAC North, APAC South, and EMEA), qualifying to compete in a Match Point series. "The $1 million USD Split 1 Playoffs prize pool is now divided across the five regional events," the statement adds.
Despite these changes to Split 1, Respawn remained hopeful that for the next circuit, things could go back to being an offline event. "We want to reiterate that should conditions allow, we intend to return to LAN competition this May for the ALGS Split 2 Playoffs."
The final week of the Split 1 regular season will be played from 3rd to the 5th December, with squads across looking to secure enough points for now online regional playoffs.
Stay tuned with our dedicated Apex Legends page throughout the entirety of Season 11 for all the latest from EA Sports.
Featured image courtesy of Electronic Arts.