Ubisoft on Sep. 29 made a number of announcements concerning the future of the R6 Esports ecosystem.
These changes indicate a significant shift in the competitive format come 2023, as per various rumours, with some further details now revealed.
Firstly, there will be no relegations at the end of this year, worldwide:
Starting in 2023, our focus will shift from the mechanic of promotion/relegation matches as a gateway to regional leagues, towards creating more opportunities for teams to participate in international events. As such, and in line with recent announcements in LATAM, there will be no promotion/relegation matches between Season 2022 and Season 2023. Instead, teams that would have been eligible for promotions, or promotion matches, across EU, NA, LATAM and APAC*, will see their performance rewarded by a substantial advantage in the qualification path leading to our international events next year.
Secondly, the transfer window has been delayed, extended, and restructured:
...we are moving the Mid-season Transfer Window 3, initially planned to take place between November 21st and December 4th. This Transfer Window will now take place from December 10th to January 5th.
During the 2020 and 2021 seasons there was no post-November Major transfer window. This year, it was added in at the beginning of the season.
The date change is likely so that the regional finals to crown the NAL, EUL, and BR6 yearly winners can happen before teams start changing players ahead of the Six Invitational.
...this Transfer Window is being extended to a total of 27 days and will allow 2 types of transfers:
As per the rules of the Global Rulebook, teams are allowed to register up to 2 new players and a coach for the remaining of the 2022 season, encompassing Six Invitational qualifiers and the Six Invitational 2023.
Transfers to build a Season 2023 roster:
In preparation of the 2023 Season, teams will have the opportunity to pre-register up to 7 players (and a coach) that will be officially registered as part of the team after the Six Invitational 2023, during the 2023 off-season Transfer Window. Details and process for this pre-registration will be shared with organizations and players ahead of the Mid-season Transfer Window 3 in December 2022.
The two different kinds of transfers will likely get confusing, as an organization may announce a signing that won't come into play until after the Six Invitational. Nevertheless, it will likely be a net good as it gives teams more time to get their 2023 rosters sorted, rather than it be a rush in March.
Teams being able to sign their 2023 rosters in December also increases the likelihood that players will go into the Six Invitational knowing their time on the team is up no matter the result.
This could be similar to LaXInG and Shas' positions at the Berlin Major, with Oxygen stating the situation hurt their Major performance.
The changes seem to imply that secondary tier rosters could be able to qualify for international events next year, and not just the teams competing in the primary tier-one leagues:
As part of this vision, one of our core principles is to ensure that up-and-coming talents and amateur teams can hone their skills and reach the highest level of competitive play in Rainbow Six Siege. This is critical for the long-term health and competitiveness of the scene. The idea of a path to pro has been taking on many shapes and forms within the industry, and we took the decision to redesign ours alongside the rest of the program, in order to create more opportunities for amateur teams to compete against pros.
Prior to the 2020 format changes, every Six Major tournament had an open qualifier allowing teams like forZe and I don't know to qualify for the global tournaments.
It is possible these have returned, which will allow some incredibly promising rosters to skip a year-long climb to tier-one before they get to prove themselves internationally.
Ubisoft will likely announce full details at the 2023 Six Invitational esports panel. Until then speculation will be high, but the information is limited.