Free Fire World Series (FFWS) 2023 will not have a team from India
In a major disappointment to fans from India, the Free Fire World Series (FFWS) 2023 will not feature a team from the country. This comes despite Free Fire set to make a comeback into the South Asian country soon.
The slots for the FFWS were first announced in July 2023. At the time, Garena had only revealed 16 of the 18 slots, leading to speculation that the remaining two could be going to teams from India – a region which holds a major Free Fire audience. This was confirmed in August when Garena announced Free Fire India and added that one of the slots will be going to India. However, it seems like that is no longer the case as Garena has filled those slots up with other countries.
For the unaware, the FFWS is the global esports tournament for Free Fire esports. The 2023 edition is set to happen in Bangkok, Thailand again from Nov. 10 to 26. Eighteen teams from around the world will compete across a group stage and the finals to determine the world champions.
No Indian team at the FFWS 2023 as Free Fire India release delayed
Free Fire once used to be the most-watched mobile esports title worldwide. The FFWS Singapore in 2021, for example, achieved a peak of 5.4 million viewers. Since then, however, the game has seen a sharp fall in its overall viewers, with the ban on the game in India playing a big role in the fall.
This was expected to change in the FFWS 2023, though. Garena announced in late August that Free Fire India will be launching on Sept. 5 – and even said that the Free Fire India Championship will be happening soon. The winner of the FFIC was supposed to qualify for the FFWS 2023.
However, on Sept. 4, Garena announced that it was delaying the release of Free Fire India by a few weeks. Since then, the company hasn’t spoken about the game’s release.
Now, there is a further disappointment for Indian fans as Garena has confirmed that the FFWS 2023 will not feature an Indian team. The two remaining slots have been given to Indonesia and Vietnam. The updated slots distribution is as follows:
- Brazil: Three slots
- Latin America: Three slots
- Thailand: Three slots
- Indonesia: Three slots
- Vietnam: Three slots
- MCPS: One slot
- Pakistan: One slot
- MEA: One slot
Why has the Indian slot been removed?
Garena hasn’t given a reason behind the removal of the Indian slot. The most likely explanation, though, is due to the time constraints caused by the delay of Free Fire India.
Before deciding the best Indian team to represent the country at the FFWS, Garena needs to hold a national competition in the form of the India Championship (FFIC) 2023. This includes a long period of registrations, qualifiers, and different stages leading to the finals. The FFWS, however, is just a little over a month away.
Nonetheless, it remains to be seen when Free Fire India is eventually released. Garena will be hosting esports tournaments for the country nonetheless. Fans, however, will have to wait until next year to see an Indian team in the FFWS.
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