A HSEL/Varsity Network participant is any person directly associated with the club or team. This includes players, managing staff, and school faculty. Participants playing in official matches must be high school students enrolled in school affiliated club. No participant can have any role in another school's club at the same time.
1.2 Time Zone
All broadcasts, announcements, and web pages regarding HSEL competitions will always display time in the Central Time Zone, which is six hours behind the coordinated universal time (UTC -6), with the exception of our "Schedule" page under the "HSEL Majors" tab. On that page, all the times align with your timezone.
For HSEL, participants will be split into regions based off of time zones as follows:
For a full list of states and their assigned regions please refer to section 10
Penalties are given for rule violations within HSEL or Varsity Network. These penalties may come in the form of match forfeits, match overturns, player/team suspension, player/team disqualification, or partial or full deduction of prizes. Each penalty is given on a case by case basis and the severity of said penalty is at the full discretion of the administration member or members assigned to the case.
1.5.2 Match Forfeits
Match forfeits are given when a team fails to provide a full roster at the scheduled time of their match or if they fail to contact their opponent by default time. Receiving 3 forfeits in a season will result in an automatic review of your team and could lead to your team being disqualified for the remainder of the season.
188.8.131.52 Player Suspension
A player suspension is given for severe incidents such as unsportsmanlike conduct or ghosting.
184.108.40.206 Team Suspension
A team suspension is given for severe incidents such as ringing, using an unallowed player, or ghosting.
Disqualifications are given for the most severe incidents such as cheating, multiple forfeits, or multiple minor offenses. Disqualifications can be issued to either a team or a player. In the case of a team disqualification some or all players may also be suspended depending on the cause for DQ.
1.5.5 Combination Penalties
The listed penalties are not exclusive and may be given in any combination as seen fit by the league administration.
1.5.6 Repeat Offenses
All punishments outlined in this document are applicable for first time offenses. Repeat offenses will usually carry more severe punishments than the ones listed in this rulebook.
Clubs, teams, and players are expected to know and uphold the rules before and while participating in HSEL events. If a player or team associated with your club is given a punishment, your club nor the player will receive any refund or compensation for their inability to play.
1.6 Official Matches
The term “Official Matches” refers to any match that takes place during events, both online and offline.
The games played are:
Counter-Strike: Global Offensive by Valve Corporation
League of Legends by Riot Games
Overwatch by Blizzard Entertainment
Hearthstone by Blizzard Entertainment
Rocket League by Psyonix
1.8 Administration List
It should be noted that all members of the administration may not be listed in this document as they may have been added to the team following the distribution of this document.
2.1 Rule Changes
The High School Esports League and Varsity Esports reserves the right to add, remove, or otherwise alter rules without further notice.
The content of private information, emails, support tickets, or any other correspondence with league officials are deemed strictly confidential. The publication of such material is prohibited without the expressed written permission from the High School Esports League tournament directors.
2.4 Match Broadcasting
All broadcasting rights of HSEL are owned by High School Esports League, LLC. This includes, but is not limited to: IRC Bots, audio streams, video streams, GOTV, demos, or television broadcasts. Affiliated streamers and official school Twitch pages of participating teams are authorized to stream matches, but HSEL reserves the right to use, distribute, and modify all parts of the stream indefinitely.
2.4.2 Waiving These Rights
Varsity Esports and High School Esports League has the right to award broadcasting rights to one or multiple matches to a third party or participants themselves. In these cases broadcasts must have been arranged with High School Esports League and Varsity Esports administration prior to the start of the match.
Players and participants cannot refuse to have their matches broadcasted by High School Esports League or Varsity Esports authorized broadcast, nor can they choose in what manner of which the match will be broadcasted.
Players and teams can communicate with their opponent through Discord, Email, and by adding the other players in-game to schedule their match.
2.6 Player Details
When requested, players are required to send us all needed information including but not limited to full name, contact details, date of birth, school address, and proof of enrollment.
2.6.1 Proof of enrollment
When requested, players must provide proof of enrollment in the form of any of the following:
A dated report card
A school ID with year and your name
An email from a teacher of school administrator using their school email
Players may be suspended from play until proof of enrollment is provided.
All participants in HSEL events must be currently be enrolled in a high school (grades 9-12). Incoming freshman may play the summer before they start high school and outgoing seniors may play the summer after graduation. All players must be over the age of 13 to participate. If it is a combined high school and middle school the participants must be at least 13 years of age to participate.
2.7.2 Home Country
All participants must reside in the United States of America or Canada.
All participants must have clean accounts.
220.127.116.11 Clean Accounts
Varsity Esports and the High School Esports League defines a clean account as an account who has not received any form of ban in the last year, is clear of vulgar or inappropriate content, is at least 15 days old, and owns a valid copy of a HSEL discipline.
18.104.22.168 Unregistered Accounts
At no point in time is any participant allowed to play on an account not linked to their profile on Varsity Esports. Doing so may result in an overturn of the match, or a suspension from play. If a player wishes to change accounts during season they must change it on Varsity Esports 24 hours before the match. The old account will still be considered as the player's for the remainder of the season and will stay on file. If that account receives any kind of ban during the remainder of the season the player will still receive penalties.
22.214.171.124 In Game Names and Icons
A player’s name in game must match the name that they registered for on the Varsity Esports site. This name or player icon may not contain any of the following:
Drugs (including alcohol and tobacco)
Slander of The High School Esports League, Varsity Esports, or its Staff
126.96.36.199 Professional Status
Players who are considered to play on a professional level are not eligible to play in any High School Esports League competition. The High School Esports League considers professional players as any player who is currently enrolled in the following competitions either on the starting or backup rosters:
ESL Pro League (EPL)
Esports Championship Series (ECS)
League of Legends Championship Series (LCS)
2.8.1 Club Affiliation
All teams must be affiliated with a partnered club to participate.
2.8.2 Team Names
Team names may not contain any extensions such as “RL Team”. The team name may only consist of a unique team name. To prevent confusion, no two teams in the same game may use the same team name. Team names cannot be changed after the season officialy starts.
Teams are required to have a full roster at all times. Failure to have a full roster at any given time can result in suspension or disqualification.
2.8.4 Multi Teaming
Players may only be on one roster participating within the same bracket.
2.9 Roster Changes
Roster changes may be made at any point in time during or in between seasons. A new player will not be permitted to play until 24 hours after the player is added to the roster.
All prizing will ideally be sent out 30 days after the High School Esports League event in question has concluded, but it could take as long as 120 days for the shipment to be completed. If a team or player is missing any required criteria for prizing the prize will be held for 30 days after the conclusion of the High School Esports League event in question. If a team or player fails to provide the required information or payments within those 30 days they forfeit all prize winnings from said event.
2.10.1 Required Criteria
For teams and players to receive prizing all of the following must be provided before winnings are shipped out:
Proof of enrollment for all players on the roster
All pending Varsity Esports and High School Esports League payments paid and cleared
Teams who choose to withdraw from the competition during the season will not be allowed to rejoin once the final decision is made and will most likely cause the club to face suspension from play in the discipline for the following season.
2.12.1 Match Times
Matches must be played at the scheduled time. Teams will have a 15 minute grace period after their scheduled time to get all of the required players into the server and start the match. If a team fails to join by the time the grace period ends, the other team may request a forfeit win. Teams may reschedule anytime before the default match time, but teams should not rely on rescheduling as High School Esports League will not force a reschedule upon any team.
2.12.2 Match Results
Matches must be reported by the winning team immediately following the completion of their game. Match reports must include the map score(s) and all results must be reported by 11:59 pm of the default match day.
2.12.3 Match Disputes
Match disputes may be made at any time before the creation of the next round. The High School Esports League will always wait at least 12 hours after the match play deadline before creating the next round. This allows teams to review, and if necessary, dispute their reported matches. Teams may not dispute matches outside of the current round.
2.12.4 Play Deadline
The play deadline is the latest a match may be played for the current round. Play deadlines are published with the schedule. Teams are not permitted under any circumstances to play or report matches after this time.
2.12.5 Multiple Game Series
In the event of a match with more than one game, teams may have up to a 5 minute break between each game if they wish to do so.
3 Tournament Rules
3.1 Tournament Stages
The regional stage for the High School Esports League will run for 6 weeks with 2 matches played per week. The format played is a swiss system played with Best of One games with no overtime. 3 points are awarded for winning a game. Games may have different scoring and will be in game specific rules if applicable.
3.1.2 Regional Finals
The top 5 teams from each region will move to the regional playoffs. The format for this stage is played as a single elimination bracket with Best of Three matches. Overtime is enabled for this stage.
3.2.1 Online Play
The High School Esports League will not provide any equipment for regular online play.
188.8.131.52 Connection Issues
HSEL is not responsible for any internet issues affecting the team or players.
3.2.2 LAN events
The High School Esports League will provide computers, monitors, and noise canceling headphones. Participants are responsible for bringing their own keyboard, mouse, mousepad, and in-ear headphones with long enough cables. Our machines do not support PS2 keyboards or mice.
The players and teams are not required to wear team or club attire at LAN events but it is strongly recommended. Any kind of headwear is forbidden while playing on LAN. Participant clothing may not contain any references of the following:
Drugs (including alcohol and tobacco)
Sex or pornography
Vulgar or offensive speech
Other sports teams or clubs
Slander towards High School Esports League or Varsity Esports
3.4 Play Zones (LAN Events)
Unless previously announced, players may not bring or eat food into the practice areas. Smoking is also strictly prohibited at LAN events. Players may bring beverages into play zones but only if in a sealable plastic bottle. Bottles and beverages must be approved by High School Esports League administration prior to entering a play zone with it. All cellular devices must be turned off. While playing your match, you must hand over all cellular devices to High School Esports League administrators. These devices will be returned at the conclusion of the match. Loud noise and offensive language are forbidden.
The instructions of a Staff, Administrator, or Intern should always be followed and obeyed.
3.7 Official Matches
Each team is required to play their official matches.
3.8 Removable Media (LAN)
It is strictly forbidden to connect to or in any way use any form of removable media (USB, SD card, External hard drive, etc.) on any tournament computer without prior examination and approval from the tournament administrations.
3.9 Configurations and Drivers
All players must submit their configurations and required drivers prior to attending an High School Esports League offline event. Players who fail to submit configurations prior to attendance must set up their config file on site and play with default drivers.
3.10 Internet Access (LAN)
Internet access is disabled on all tournament computers for all participants.
3.11 Demos and replays
Demos and replays of official matches must be available if requested by an administrator.
High School Esports League reserves the right to play, broadcast, and distribute all demos that are recorded under an High School Esports League event.
3.12 Photo and Media Rights
Participants will be required to sign two copies of a release form that they will receive prior to the event. If the participant is under the age of 18 the form must also be signed by a parent or legal guardian. By participating, all clubs grant High School Esports League and Varsity Esports the right to use their name, logo, and other media from their website for any promotional purpose.
3.13 Closing Ceremony (LAN)
Participants must remain in the tournament area for the closing ceremony following the conclusion of the Grand Final.
4 Rule violations
4.1 Code of Conduct
It is expected that all active participants, including students, club admins, school faculty, and High School Esports League staff read and know the rules outlined in this document prior to participating in any High School Esports League sponsored event.
The use of the following programs is considered cheating:
The previous list are just example, other programs may be deemed cheating if they are found to be giving a player or team an unfair advantage.
The use of performance enhancing drugs is strictly prohibited and will be punished severely.
4.3.1 Prohibited Substances
The List of Prohibited Substances and Methods created by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) is valid for all High School Esports League events. The full list can be found at http://list.wada-ama.org/. An unprescribed use of these substances is considered doping.
4.3.2 Prescribed Medication
If a player has an active prescription for a substance included in the WADA list, they must notify and provide proof to the tournament administration prior to the start of the tournament.
4.5 Using Alcohol or Drugs
The use of Alcohol or other drugs, including tobacco and cannabis, during an official match is strictly prohibited.
No players, team managers, or staff of attending clubs may be involved in any form of betting or gambling, associate with betters or gamblers, or provide anyone information that may assist betting or gambling, either directly or indirectly for any High School Esports League matches or tournament in general. Any of the listed individuals found to be in violation of this rule will be disqualified immediately.
4.7 Match Fixing
Match fixing is defined as the act of arranging the outcome of a match prior to its being played. Match fixing is strictly prohibited and all individuals involved will face a minimum of a 1 season suspension.
All participants are expected to withhold a universal level of sportsmanship while participating in High School Esports League sanctioned events. Those who fail to behave in a sportsmanlike manner may face penalties at the discretion of tournament administrators.
4.8.1 Rule Violations
Violating any of the listed rules in this document is considered unsportsmanlike.
All insults occurring in connection with High School Esports League or Varsity Esports sanctioned events will not be tolerated. Friendly trash talk and banter is allowed.
The excess posting of senseless, harmful, or offensive messages on any platform directed at or referencing High School Esports League, Varsity Esports, our sponsors, or a participant is considered spamming and will not be tolerated. Abusing the in-game text and voice chat functions will also not be tolerated.
4.8.4 Witch Hunting
Witch hunts, or accusing someone publicly without basis will not be tolerated. If you suspect another player or club of any rule violation you should contact a league administrator privately and as soon as possible so an investigation can be opened.
4.8.5 Incorrect Match Results
Reporting incorrect match results will not be tolerated and will be considered cheating. If you report the incorrect results of a match by accident contact an administrator immediately so they can be fixed.
Any attempt to mislead or deceive opposing players, administrators, or any other person related to High School Esports League or Varsity Esports may be penalized.
TERMS OF SERVICES
PROPERTY, DUE IN WHOLE OR IN PART, DIRECTLY OR INDIRECTLY, TO PARTICIPATING IN THE TOURNAMENT, ATTENDING OR PARTICIPATING IN ANY PROGRAM-RELATED EVENT OR ACTIVITY AND/OR THE USE OR MISUSE OF ANY PRIZE.
BY ENTERING THE PARTNERSHIP PROGRAM, EACH SCHOOL AND STUDENT HEREBY AGREES TO FOLLOW ALL TOURNAMENT REGULATIONS. IF REGULATION ARE BROKEN THE HIGH SCHOOL ESPORTS LEAGUE RESERVES THE RIGHT TO PUNISH ANY PARTIES IN QUESTION. PUNISHMENT INCLUDES BUT IS NOT LIMITED TO SUSPENSION, EXPULSION WITHOUT THE RIGHT TO A REFUND. THE HIGH SCHOOL ESPORTS LEAGUE GOVERNING BODIES RESERVES THE RIGHT TO IMPOSE PUNISHMENTS THAT IT SEEMS JUST.
REFUND POLICY: NO REFUNDS. ALL SERVICES ARE SOLD AS IS. THE HSEL ASSUMES NO RESPONSIBILITY FOR YOUR PURCHASE. A GRACE PERIOD OF 48 HOURS WILL BE ALLOWED FOR DISPUTED CIRCUMSTANCES. THE HIGH SCHOOL ESPORTS LEAGUE RESERVES THE RIGHT TO REFUSE OR DENY REGISTRATION. HIGH SCHOOL ESPORTS LEAGUE ALSO RESERVES THE RIGHT TO CANCEL A REGISTRATION UNDER CERTAIN CIRCUMSTANCES.
THE HIGH SCHOOL ESPORTS LEAGUE RESERVES THE RIGHT TO HOLD BACK ANY PRIZING IF THE SCHOOL, TEAM, OR STUDENT HAS BROKEN ANY RULES IN THE REGISTRATION AGREEMENTS.
THE HIGH SCHOOL ESPORTS LEAGUE HAS THE RIGHT TO ADD, AMEND, DELETE, CANCEL, OR EDIT THE TOURNAMENT RULES, AND USER AGREEMENTS AT THEIR DISCREPANCY. ANY CHANGES WILL BE MADE PUBLIC TO ITS USERS.