The KPGA, standing for Korean ProGaming Association, held monthly tournaments in the latter half of 2001. These were small tournaments with multiple games played on 1 day. They played 4 KPGA monthly tournaments and then held a small winners' invite championship taking the best performers of the KPGA monthly tournaments. Though the KPGA monthly tournaments were ultimately the precursor to the individual league we know as MBC Starleague, the tournaments were on too small of a scale. They were held only on one day, and thus, winners of the KPGA tournaments are not recognized as an individual league winner.
2001 KPGA August (01 Aug 1)
2001 KPGA September (01 Sep 1)
2001 KPGA October (01 Oct 1)
2001 KPGA November (01 Nov 1)
2001 KPGA December Winner's Championship (01 Dec 27 - 02 Jan 24)
The KPGA Tours
With OGN making larger tournaments coined as "starleagues," the KPGA changes their monthly format to a larger tournament and called them tours. Rather than play only on one day of the month they expanded to a 3-month league 16-player league. Though they do not carry the MBC title in the league name, MBC recognized the KPGA Tour winners as individual league winners. However, the winners' tournaments are invite tourneys and not an individual league. Starting with KPGA 2nd Tour, the individual leagues for KPGA were beginning to get noticed and got sponsorship for the actual leagues.
KPGA 1st Tour (02 Feb 14 - 02 Apr 14)
Reebok KPGA 2nd Tour (02 Apr 18 - 02 Jun 22)
Pepsi Twist KPGA 3rd Tour (02 Jul 4 - 02 Oct 5)
Baskin Robbins KPGA 4th Tour (02 Oct 25 - 03 Jan 18)
KTEC KPGA Winners' Championship (03 Jan 23 - 03 Mar 22)
MBC Moves In
After the second winners' championship, the KPGA soon became defunct and a large Korean television broadcasting company, MBC, swoops in and picks up where the KPGA left off. With a new parent company, a new tournament format and a new name for the individual league was in store. Following the OGN who named their big StarCraft tournaments "starleagues," dubbing it OnGameNet Starleague (OSL), the MBC Starleague (MSL) was born. The format began as a humongous 16-player double elimination league spanning over 5 months that would be trimmed down eventually.
The Stout MSL would be the first official MSL. There are times when Korean announcers will call an MSL the 12th or 13th MSL. That is because they are counting from the first MSL, Stout. The KPGA Tours, though are not labeled as an MSL, however, winners of the KPGA Tours are recognized as an MBC League winner (and given a badge as well.) That is why when you go to where the MSL games are held, you will see on the list of winners of the MSLs, BoxeR and NaDa. The Survivor qualifying tournament was started to determine who would be playing in this giant new league. 12th Survivor means the qualifying tournament for the 12th MSL. Easy, no? (If you ever wondered why they kept calling it n-th Survivor, now you know. =D)
Stout MSL (03 Apr 17 - 03 Jul 19) 1st MSL
TriGem Sambo MSL (03 Sep 4 - 03 Nov 6) 2nd MSL
HanaFOS CENGame MSL (04 Jan 8 - 04 Apr 18) 3rd MSL
SPRIS MSL (04 May 20 - 04 Aug 29) 4th MSL
You Are The Golf King MSL (04 Sep 30 - 05 Feb 6) 5th MSL
UZOO MSL (05 Apr 21 - 05 Aug 6) 6th MSL
1. IPXZerg (Don't forget your roots!)
LG CYON MSL (05 Oct 6 - 06 Jan 14) 7th MSL
After the LG CYON MSL, MBC decided that their tournament format was archaic. The double-elimination tournament was far too long and very exhaustive for players. They opted for a smaller quicker league format. They dropped the double-elimination brackets but in a sense stayed true to their MSL roots and kept the double-elimination in their group of 16 and group of 8 rounds. A steal draft was also introduced to help players determine who they would be playing in the tournament. Thumbing down maps was introduced borrowed from WC3 ladder systems where a player can pick a map he or she does not want played. It is edited a little bit because map pools are not as large as WC3 ladder games and thumbing down guarantees a map will not be played more than once in a set.
Pringles 1 MSL (06 Apr 6 - 06 Jul 16) 8th MSL
Pringles 2 MSL (06 Aug 17 - 06 Nov 11) 9th MSL
Gom TV MSL Season 1 (06 Nov 30 - 07 Mar 3) 10th MSL
With nary 3 leagues played with the "new" format, MBC decided bigger is better and adopts what is the current league format for its starleague. They double the amount of players to 32 therefore doubling the amount of seeds to 8. They stay true to their double elimination roots but limit it only to the initial group stage. After the group stage they have the league go into a single elimination tournament. Elements from the format change in 2006 were kept such as the steal draft and thumbing down maps. The draft for 32 players though became a grand scheme in itself because of the sheer enormity of players.
Gom TV MSL Season 2 (07 May 3 - 07 Jul 14) 11th MSL
Gom TV MSL Season 3 (07 Sep 13 - 07 Nov 17) 12th MSL
Gom TV MSL Season 4 (07 Dec 27 - 08 Mar 8) 13th MSL
Arena MSL (08 Apr 24 ~ 08 Jul 26) 14th MSL
ClubDay Online MSL (08 Sep 11 ~ 08 Nov 22) 15th MSL
Lost Saga MSL (09 Jan 8 ~ 09 Mar 20) 16th MSL
Avalon MSL (09 Jun ~ 09 Aug)
Thanks to X)Benny and Waxangel for grandfathering these threads and inspiring me to write threads like these for public use. Also a humongous thanks to TLPD. Freaking sexy.