Blizzard’s HCT Winter Championship and Korea StarCraft League Are Here!
Blizzard has released further details for its two upcoming Hearthstone and StarCraft events. The HCT Winter Championship, which kicks off on February 28, is heading to Blizzard’s Esports Arena in LA, while the Korea StarCraft League (KSL) is making a comeback in April this year, taking place in Seoul’s VSG Arena.
HCT Winter Champs kicks off with “Choose Your Champion”
The Hearthstone Championship Tour (HCT) is coming back for the third and last season for the year with HTC Winter Champs 2019. Sixteen top players from around the world representing Americas, Asia-Pacific, China, and Europe will battle it out for glory and the chance to participate in the HTC World Championship in April.
In order to add further excitement to the upcoming Hearthstone tournament, Blizzard is once again launching the “Choose Your Champion” side event. Participants can pick their favorite player and benefit from their champion’s progress towards victory. For every advance of the chosen player, contestants will receive a card pack. To sweeten the deal, a card pack from Rastakhan’s Rumble will also be given to everyone who decides to participate.
The action will unfold between February 28th and March 3rd and will start with a double-elimination group stage, followed by single-elimination playoffs. The games will be a best-of-five format and will feature groups consisting of four competitors, one from each region. Besides claiming a lion’s share of the $250,000 prize pool, the winner will also grab a major portion of the 251 Hearthstone Competitive points, alongside the title of Winter Champion.
Those interested in following the tournament can do so though the event’s official Twitch channel.
KSL is back with new season for 2019
Blizzard has unveiled more exciting news this week, this time for StarCraft enthusiasts. In April this year, the Korea StarCraft League (KSL) is returning for its third season after successfully completing the first two last year. Fans can expect pros like Seunghyun ‘Last’ Kim and Mincheol ‘Soulkey’ Kim return to the stage and claim another win to add to their tally.
Online registrations for participants are expected to open between Match 8th and 20th, with actual qualifiers taking place on March 23rd and 24th. Offline qualifiers, which will run on March 30th, will decide the remaining 16 players to advance to the main event.
This year’s KSL tournament will take place at Seoul’s newly established VSG Arena. The venue is located in the city’s downtown area and includes the necessary infrastructure and technology for an action-packed event.
Fans can follow the action through Blizzard’s official StarCraft Twitch channel.
Blizzard embracing esports with open arms
Activision Blizzard can be considered one of the major companies in esports and the gaming industry in general. Identifying the great potential of esports, the company has early on shown signs that it has every intention to go in deep.
From announcing a new esports dedicated division to acquiring major esports market players, Blizzard has had a successful run in the industry over the last couple of years. Deepening partnerships with the likes of Twitch and Facebook helped the company expand its strategic network in the market. Moreover, with brand investment gaining more and more importance in the business, Blizzard has last year partnered with leading market research company Nielsen to further strengthen its influence in the segment.
With the ongoing expansion of esports and the growing popularity for everything surrounding the scene, there will be more to see of Blizzard in the coming future.
Photo Credits: Blizzard Entertainment