CHIEF5 The 5 Year Anniversary
When the Chiefs was founded in August 2014, I had no idea things would ever get to this level. 5 generational League of Legends players, great support staff and myself venturing out into the great esports unknown.
It’s impossible to go through and thank or acknowledge everyone individually, due to the sheer number of amazing people that made this possible. Throughout the 5 years, many people have come through the halls of the Chiefs. We have been incredibly blessed to have had the opportunity to work with so many amazing and inspirational people, many of whom went on to do great things within the space.
It’s no secret we were very lucky to begin our journey with the greatest League of Legends teams Oceania has ever seen. Winning the first 4 Oceanic Pro League titles, the biggest domestic esports league when it was established laid the foundations for what the Chiefs would be.
Our LoL team went from two almost undefeated splits, dropping one regular season game and one playoff game in 2015, to a more challenging regular seasons next year but still pulling out the goods where it counted. We’ve had the privilege of competing at every single live domestic Grand Final at Luna Park Sydney in 2015, Courier Mail Piazza Brisbane in 2016 (my personal favourite OCE esport event ever) and Melbourne Esports Open in 2018. With the upcoming OPL 2019 Grand Final, the Chiefs will have played in 8 out of 10 OPL Grand Finals.
CS:GO was a title we brought onboard as our first esport title outside of LoL. As someone who had never played a single FPS game besides Battlefield, it was a new world for me. I immediately fell in love with the energy, sportsmanship and the spectacle of competitive CS:GO in a title that was fast reclaiming its place as one of the biggest esports franchises in the world.
We were very lucky to enter into the space right at the cusp of the major transition from 1.6/Source to Global Offensive. CS:GO is a title that is very close to my heart, with many iterations of Chiefs teams winning domestic titles, representing Oceanic internationally and being the sole Oceanic team to ever compete at all 3 IEM Sydney events.
During the early days of the Chiefs, we were rapidly looking for titles with a lot of potential to expand to. Our time in Overwatch was short-lived but very eventful, and I had always thought Overwatch was a game with so much potential. Call of Duty was our very first console esport. Despite the incredible passion of the local CoD community, while their hearts were in the right place, CoD was never a title that I felt we really understood how to deliver the most value to our players and our fans. Other titles such as Smite and Hearthstone were all titles that piqued my interest but were lessons that we could not spread ourselves too thin if we really wanted to do things right by our players and our fans.
Once again, as with many times in my career, we were incredibly fortunate to work with two of the greatest Oceanic teams in their discipline in Chiefs Rocket League and PUBG throughout 2017 and 2018. Rocket League was a title that came down to the last second for us to bring onboard. Never in my wildest dreams during our inception did I think we would have a squad that would place 4th overall in the WORLD. I also still vividly remember checking the OCE PUBG Global Invitational and seeing our squad almost 1,000 points ahead in the lead. The hardwork and dedication of all Chiefs squads, including support staff is the vital component to how we were able to maintain such a consistent amount of success in our 5 years, across multiple esports titles. Without that, combined with the undying support of our fans and partners, our 5 year story would be a very different one.
Fortnite was a global phenomenon that took the world by storm, even bigger than the scale of PUBG, which I did not think was possible. A title we were quick to embrace, but once again blessed with a group of players who are committed, hard working, highly talented and incredible driven. It’s a very unique title that will redefine the nature of esports, and to have two of our representatives compete on the world stage in a $30 million dollar tournament is something that was a pipedream to me when I first founded the company.
One important aspect that this journey has given me is the opportunity for us to give back to the community. I think myself and our players are always just as pleasantly surprised, despite it having been 5 years, when fans and members of the community approach us and tell us how positively gaming, esports and the Chiefs have impacted their lives. I have such an immense amount of respect for our squad, and all players and members of the gaming community that have actively used our passion to bring joy and positivity to as many people as they can. Most recently, our Rocket League squad’s visit to the Brisbane Children’s Hospital was one of the highest points of my time with the Chiefs.
It is undeniable that whatever success we have achieved is off of the back of the blood, sweat and tears of everyone who has come through the Chiefs Esports Club. There’s a reason why I have such a strong affinity to our long term hashtag, ‘We Are Chiefs’. As someone who relied heavily on sporting clubs and communities to settle into Australian culture when I moved here, i have always very much been of the belief that any player, supporter, fan or otherwise that buys into our values of competition, heart and most importantly, community, is a Chief.
This year, we announced the next step in our life as a business. A necessary step and an important one that will help our club and Oceanic esports and gaming reach its full potential. To partner with ICON Esports, and bring in the expertise, professionalism and ability to scale will ensure the Chiefs’ future is one where we can stop thinking about “what can we do?” to “what should we do?”. We are already working on some things to take the entire region to the next level.
Thank you immensely to every single player, fan, and partner who have made the CHIEF5 5 year journey as memorable as it has been, here’s to 5 more!
Celebrate with us over the next 2 weeks as we relive moments that have lead us to where we are today and hear from players both past and present about their favourite moments playing as a Chief.