In early October we published an article outlining a decision Orena made regarding withholding winnings from teams who competed in their Dota2 and CS:GO Prem Ladder events, after the fact. In the article (you can read it here) we argued that Orena should #PayBackTheMoney to the teams that competed, and we even spoke to Orena regarding the issue. We weren’t the only ones who made a bit of noise about the issue. Glenn Kisela wrote a piece over on Critical Hit (you can read it here) arguing that Orena were setting a dangerous precedent if they chose to go through with their decision to withdraw prize winnings after the fact. Teams and personalities were also pretty vocal about this on social media. It’s been a month and a half since this all went down, so what has happened since?

Orena will #PayBackTheMoney

Orena released an email to teams yesterday which we’ll share here. It reads:

I trust all is well on your side. I have finalized information pertaining to the situation regarding the OCS Ladder and Prize Winnings:

Orena will pay the necessary winnings to the TOP 8 placing teams from the ladder.

We will be resetting the league standings in the New Year, meaning we will re-invite the “TOP 10” teams to compete in the OCS League to be “re-seeded” with lower divisions being opened to accommodate “WILDCARDS” for our final LAN event. This (as has been mentioned before) is mainly due to the reshuffle of team members.

We will release the full list of invites for DOTA2 & CSGO in the coming weeks.

With the above in mind, could you please forward the (“TEAM/ORG NAME”) bank account details so we can begin the process. Please bear with us as corporate payment procedures do apply. Thank you for your patience during this time.

We believe 2018 is going to be a fantastic year for gaming in South Africa and at Orena, and we look forward to treating your teams to a healthy year of esports on our platforms.

What’s important here are that Orena have agreed to honor the original OCS Ladder prizes, but also that going into the new year they’ll reseed the top 10 teams before their LAN event. This is pretty much the move everyone was hoping Orena would pull, and I’m glad they’ve decided to do the right thing here. It’s an important decision they’ve reversed here – with the public and teams unhappy with the original decision to pull the prizes.

Q and A with Orena

We got in touch with Luca Tucconi over at Orena to ask him some questions to aid clarity on how things will work moving forward.

Sargon: Is OCS as it was originally planned now being scrapped, and another league taking place that will lead up to a new LAN event date? What is the date, and what is the final prize pool per title?

Luca Tucconi: OCS will still run in the New Year. Nothing has changed regarding the prizepool and distribution. What we will be doing is restarting the league structure with the teams that earned the “10 OCS” slots for this year. We will run a league featuring those invited teams, with lower divisions being opened up for other teams to facilitate a “wildcard” like system.

Why did Orena decide to reverse their decision on the ladder payment issue?

We put a lot of thought into the situation, and even though I don’t 100% like the idea of giving out prize money to teams that might not have earned it legitimately, as it hurts the credibility of our scene, but seeing as there were teams that truly put in an incredible amount of time to qualify for prizemoney we felt that it wouldn’t be fair to punish them.

We’ve spoken about the ESWC at EGE event a few times now. Can you please outline the official Orena position on teams who incurred costs for that event, as we still get questions about this and we would like to make it abundantly clear to readers.

As mentioned previously, we will be accommodating the teams that incurred expenses on their ESWC trip. We are confirming the 2018 schedule regarding all our events, including possible qualifiers for international tournaments. Once this has been confirmed we will be in contact with the teams who would have attended this year and organize their travels, if there are teams that won’t be attending and incurred expenses this year, we will remunerate each player individually.