Axie Esports - Mid Season Update

A number of important updates to keep you up to speed with the latest in Axie Esports!

Axie Esports - Mid Season Update

Greetings Trainers!

With May approaching, we are rapidly coming to the final sprint of our second Axie Esports Grant, leaving many wondering what’s coming next- especially given the recent launch of the Axie: Origin alpha.

We won’t have all of the answers you seek in this newsletter today; however, there are a few key topics we’d like to address and unpack a little bit.

But first we’d like to say thank you to everyone that has participated in Axie Esports over the last three months. Through this grant we’ve seen a number of new stars rise to prominence, including players, commentators, tournament organizers, and coaches. 

We’ve been keeping close tabs on the events in our ecosystem- working with those that need help and observing those that are continuing to do well on their own accord. It’s great to see so much personal and professional development already!

And now, onto the big stuff!

1. Axie Esports Competitive Integrity Council (AECIC)

On March 30, 2022 the Axie Esports Competitive Integrity Council (AECIC) was formed by Sky Mavis to ensure that Axie Esports take place on a fair and level playing field for all competitors.

The purpose of this council will be to ensure Axie Esports take place on a fair and level playing field, by investigating and ruling on integrity related matters like: win-trading, cheating, throwing, etc. 

To start, the council will be centralized around Sky Mavis and become more decentralized over time as we add more members to the council. We will do our best to be transparent and clear with our rulings and investigations, as we are building in view of the public eye. 

At its beginning, the council will have 7 members: 4 from Sky Mavis, 1 pro player, 1 tournament organizer, and 1 elected- appointed by Sky Mavis and set to serve a 1 year term. Re-election details will be decided in the future.

Council Members:

  • Andrew ‘Zyori’ Campbell, SM Program Lead Esports

  • Stewart Love, Axie Esports Manager

  • Oxaciano, Axie Support Specialist

  • Pos2, Axie Support Specialist

  • Bill Elafros, BEAT Esports

  • Indes, Axie.gg

  • Een Mercado, YGG

Please make sure you are in the official Axie Esports discord server and tagged appropriately to receive regular updates about the activity of the council.

You can access the announcements channel directly from this link:

Axie Esports Announcements!

Soon there will be a public form where esports participants can report unethical behavior for investigation; stay tuned for that in the near future!

2. Governing Rules for Axie Infinity Esports

As the first order of business, the AECIC created a global ruleset for Axie Infinity Esports that applies to all parties involved in any aspect of the competitive Axie Esports space, including but not limited to: players, coaches, managers, tournament organizers, administrators, and team owners.

The three-page Governing Ruleset can be found here and will eventually be moved to a more permanent fixture on the Axie Infinity website.

As a quick reminder, this basic ruleset is an addendum to the terms of service for Axie Infinity, which still apply. Similarly, all official Axie Esports tournaments are expected to have their own, detailed ruleset beyond this specific information about registration, format, administration, and conduct.

This document is living and breathing, meaning it will be updated as needed, with updates dated and logged for transparency.

AECIC will have the power to punish those breaking the ruleset with:

  • Forfeiture of prize earnings

  • Temporary ban of in-game assets used in violation

  • Temporary suspension from official Axie Esports tournaments

  • Indefinite suspension from official Axie Esports tournaments

Tournament Organizers are also expected to take reasonable efforts to enforce the official Axie Esports player ban list.

3. Axie: Origin and Axie: Classic

With the launch of the Axie Infinity: Origin alpha, there has been a lot of feedback from players with concerns about how competitive it will be moving forward. We hear you loud and clear, and continue to take that feedback into consideration as we add more layers into Origin.

There will be many more balance patches to Origin during this alpha period, before Season 1 begins with SLP rewards. Please continue to submit bug reports and balance suggestions as you test Origin- the data really helps our quality assurance and balance teams!

Origin Feedback Form: https://skymavis.typeform.com/to/wQPVMDmr

Originally we offered tournament organizers on the current grant the opportunity to run their events on Origin after its launch; however, there is currently no delay on the in-game spectating in Origin.

Spectator delay will be added towards the end of this testing phase, closer to when Season 1 starts, which will allow for us to start supporting official, online tournaments in Origin!

4. Competitive Esports Modes

Thanks to all of the tournaments that have been happening on Axie: Classic, we have collected some great feedback regarding optimal tournament modes and formats from players.

It’s quite clear that player pools need to be limited for tournaments, usually a maximum of 13 or 15 Axies that are locked in for an event lasting a few days. Some events have experimented with simplistic ban systems, where players are able to remove 1 or 2 Axies from their opponents’ pools at the beginning of a new series.

One of the more popular configurations has been the “10:1”, where players bring 10 Axies to a tournament and are able to remove 1 at the start of every series. Although it must be tracked manually right now, this system has worked very well for smaller, invitational tournaments.

When it comes to Axie: Origin, we are still experimenting and collecting data on the optimal competitive game mode. Eventually we plan to implement an esports mode directly into the game client; however, that is still a little ways away.

This is an important layer that will help to unlock the full competitive potential of Origin.

5. Future

The road might feel a little bumpy right now as we transition from Axie: Classic to Axie: Origin; however, our future plans and roadmap remain bright- especially for esports.

Unfortunately we’re not quite ready to spoil the announcements of what we have in the pipeline, but there are several esports activations underway that will be revealed before long.

And as you’ve probably noticed, AXS emissions through regular season rewards have increased dramatically- we plan to also utilize esports and competitions to increase the amount of AXS being distributed to the community.

Our future esports grants will expand the offerings beyond a one-size-fits-all style approach, and open up the doors for scaled events, ranging from regional scholarship cups to physical majors with live audiences.

The stage is being set. Over the last quarter we've been having very constructive conversations with traditional esports teams, event organizers, and influencers about what it would take for them to enter our competitive ecosystem. As we start to deploy more tournament infrastructure and increase prize offerings, expect to see more recognizable gaming organizations dip their toes into our pond.

A lot of well-connected and influential people in the esports industry are watching!

The next six months will be key to continue battle testing Origin and taking steps towards a larger esports ecosystem. This is a pivotal moment for our game and community; one that will define our future and our mark on professional gaming.

We also have plans to start building out an official esports portal on the Axie Infinity website that will house key information about league, tournaments, competitive news, hall of fame, AECIC, and more. Consolidating all of that information into one place will be another key aspect of scaling our ecosystem.

6. General Notes & Guidelines for Tournaments

As a final note, we’d like to close with some general advice for running successful esports tournaments, both for Axie and in-general.

Our incredible esports manager, Stewart, has been listening and collecting data on common pain points many of our event organizers are experiencing and organized them into a single list for us.

As we enter the final stages of our second Axie Esports Grant, let’s continue pushing to deliver the best possible experiences for our participants and viewers at home!

General Guidelines based on feedback from the community

  • There is a strong preference for the avoidance of Best of 1 or 3 formats where possible.

    • With ideally Best of 5 being for the majority of rounds with Best of 7 finals

    • Where feasible the use of double elimination brackets is requested,.even if, Example: Round of 256 to Round of 16 is single elimination then moving into a double elimination bracket.

  • Keeping clear rules on lateness and penalties that will be received for being more than a reasonable period late

  • Clear rulings for situations where players draw in matches. Consider using wording such as “first to 3 victories” over “best of 5” as this could lead to confusion over drawn matches and rulings; in the case of draws, players start fresh and have the option to redraw Axies like they would after any other match in a given series.

  • Consistent game version between stages of the event, i.e. no switching between Axie Infinity: Classic and Axie Infinity: Origin between qualifiers and the main event.

  • Axie usage, if you are having a format that allows for the swapping of Axies between rounds etc, make sure rules avoid any ambiguous wording.

  • Communication is critical, whether this is pre or during the event. 

    • Keeping communication as clear as possible to avoid any possible grey areas, confusion and or contradictions in rulings.

      • If a change of ruling occurs during the course of the event’s duration.

  • The Axie Esports team are willing to advise on queries, concerns and reports, we’d rather you come to us directly or via the Axie Esports server than open posts on social media. Acting as professional as possible in situations like this is key.

  • In games names when competing in tournaments / esports events should be matching social media handles to allow for players to be easily identified by administrators, production and casters

    • Sponsorship and branding rules apply to players as well as tournaments

You’ll be hearing more from us soon… now back to your battles!