MPL Malaysia announces 2024 roadmap with Hotlink as Malaysia Presenter, to define a new era in national esports

KUALA LUMPUR, 5 February MOONTON Games today, with the support of the Ministry of Youth and Sports (KBS) and Esports Integrated (ESI), unveiled its Mobile Legends: Bang Bang (MLBB) 2024 roadmap for Malaysia, defining a new era of mobile esports for the nation. Powered by MOONTON Games and presented by Hotlink, the "MLBB Esports Malaysia 2024: A New Era" event saw the award-winning video game developer and publisher showcase a slew of calendar milestones to mark an action-packed year.

In his opening speech, Deputy Minister of Youth and Sports, YB Adam Adli, said: "This is a new era, brimming with possibilities. Together, let's embrace the future of esports in Malaysia, making it a thriving platform for competition, community, and national pride."

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Deputy Minister of Youth and Sports YB Adam Adli delivers the opening address at the "MLBB Esports Malaysia 2024: A New Era" event, powered by MOONTON Games and presented by Hotlink, at The Exchange TRX in Kuala Lumpur

Powering up the MLBB Esports Malaysia landscape with Hotlink

Hotlink announced its expanded partnership with MOONTON Games in 2024 – to supercharge the growth of the MLBB esports ecosystem as the Malaysia Presenter. These include Malaysia's longest-running league, MPL Malaysia, and the newly launched developmental league, MLBB Academy League Malaysia (MAL MY).

The leading integrated telecommunications provider in Malaysia is working closely with MOONTON Games to fully optimise its network to deliver the best gaming experience for MLBB. The esports fraternity can look forward to leveraging Hotlink's 5G network to obtain unmatched network latency and improved gameplay experiences.

Additionally, Hotlink and MOONTON Games will be hosting a series of social impact activities. These include launching the Hotlink Campus Initiative, where Hotlink provides support to run meaningful grassroots and community esports events.

Loh Keh Jiat, Chief Marketing Officer of Maxis, said: “As a leading youth brand, we can share that the presence of mobile gaming as a whole has emerged as one of our topmost mobile data utilisers, apart from streaming and social media. We also recognise the importance of opening platforms for youths to be able to access the world of esports. Hotlink enables that by making our plans super affordable in the spirit of making the internet more accessible and offers the best gaming experience. This encourages more participants and fosters a larger esports community."

MPL Malaysia returns for Season 13 & 14 with major upgrades

Malaysia's biggest and longest-running esports league unveiled Stadium MBSJ Serdang Jaya as the Home of MPL Malaysia for both seasons, which can accommodate up to 1,000 audience members – more than twice that of Season 12, with the Dewan Sri Putra at Bukit Jalil able to host up to 600 pax.

The Season 14 Playoffs will also be held in Johor as part of the MPL Malaysia's partnership with Kumpulan Prasarana Rakyat Johor Sdn Bhd (KPRJ). The MPL Malaysia Season 14 Playoffs: The Southern Festival will see teams compete outside Klang Valley for the first time in the league's history.

The stakes will never have been higher in Season 13, with the champions set to earn direct qualification to the MLBB Mid Season Cup (MSC) held in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, and a shot at the USD 3,000,000 (~MYR 14,180,000) prize pool – the largest-ever in MLBB competitive history.

The Season 13 Regular Season will see each of the ten teams play a Best-Of-Three (BO3) match against every other opponent in the league in a single round-robin format. The teams will be ranked based on the number of points garnered, with the top eight retaining their slots for Season 14 of MPL Malaysia. A new promotion-relegation mechanic will be introduced in Season 13 (more details in the MAL MY section below).

In addition to Hotlink, ASUS Republic of Gamers (ROG) and Nescafe returns as the official sponsors for Seasons 13 and 14 of MPL Malaysia.

MAL MY Seasons 1 & 2 announced

Jointly organised by MOONTON Games and IO Esports, the Mobile Legends: Bang Bang Academy League Malaysia (MAL MY) will function as the developmental leg of the Malaysian MLBB esports league system by bridging grassroots tournaments with the professional scene. The developmental league will further nurture the esports talent pipeline in Malaysia by providing aspiring young athletes with a structured and competitive entry into the world of professional esports.

Season 1 of the MAL MY will follow the tournament format of the MPL Malaysia and will take place in three stages – Open Qualifiers in February, Regular Season in March, and Playoffs in May. The MAL MY will comprise two separate conferences – the Challengers Conference (comprising eight teams) and the Affiliated Conference (comprising seven teams). The Regular Season will see all 15 teams play BO2, single round-robin matches, with their Conference rankings based on the number of points obtained. The top four teams from each Conference will advance to the MAL MY Playoffs, where all eight teams will then compete for a USD 20,000 prize pool.

Additionally, the top-placed Challengers Conference team will earn direct promotion to the upcoming Regular Season of the MPL Malaysia, while the second-placed Challengers Conference team will face off against the ninth-placed MPL Malaysia team in a BO5, with the winner to secure a spot in the succeeding Regular Season of the MPL Malaysia.

The MAL MY will be broadcast live with commentary in Bahasa Malaysia and Mandarin.

Leon Lee, Chief Operating Officer, IO Esports, said: "As one of the most prominent esports organisations in Southeast Asia, our ambition is to contribute to the development of future champions from Malaysia who will excel at future MLBB international events. With the M6 World Championship on the horizon, the MAL MY will serve to foster the growth of the esports community in Malaysia by creating a nurturing environment for talent and providing a clear path to professionalism."

Powered by MOONTON Games and presented by Hotlink, the "MLBB Esports Malaysia 2024: A New Era" event featured an industry panel session on "Defining a new era of esports in Malaysia". The panel was moderated by Fikri Rizal Mahruddin, Marketing and Business Development Lead, MOONTON Games and featured YB Adam Adli, Deputy Minister of Youth and Sports, KBS; Loh Keh Jiat, Chief Marketing Officer, Maxis; Tai Kam Leong, Chief Sales Marketing Officer, Astro; and Leon Lee, Chief Operating Officer, IO Esports.