Blizzard Entertainment issued a press release earlier today announcing plans to launch a tournament competition using the Arena system in World of Warcraft.
BLIZZARD ENTERTAINMENTÂ® ANNOUNCES NEW GLOBAL WORLD OF WARCRAFTÂ® ARENA TOURNAMENT FORMAT
2008 World of Warcraft Arena Tournaments to feature competition on dedicated regional tournament realms and more than $200,000 in cash prizes
IRVINE, Calif. - February 14, 2008 - Blizzard Entertainment, Inc. today announced plans to launch a new type of tournament competition using the Arena system in World of WarcraftÂ®, its popular subscription-based massively multiplayer online role-playing game. The tournaments will take place on special realms that allow competitors to instantly create level-70 characters with epic equipment, placing the focus on tactics and execution rather than normal adventuring.
"eSports is one of the most exciting facets of online gaming today," said Mike Morhaime, CEO and cofounder of Blizzard Entertainment. "We're pleased to expand World of Warcraft's tournament options for players who want to focus mainly on the competitive aspect of the game."
The tournaments are scheduled to start in April with two rounds of online qualifiers in Europe, South Korea, North America, and the regions of Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Macau. Each qualifier round will have a per-competitor entry fee -- â‚¬15/Â£12 in Europe; 20,000 won in South Korea; $20 in North America; and NT$450 in the regions of Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Macau -- and will run for six weeks. During this time, teams will play 3-vs.-3 matches on the tournament realm in their region, with the top four teams from each round advancing to the regional finals to compete for more than $27,000 in cash prizes. Winners from each regional will then be invited to a global championship event to compete for $120,000 in cash prizes, including a $75,000 grand prize.
Stay tuned to http://www.worldofwarcraft.com for further tournament details.
About Blizzard Entertainment, Inc.
Best known for blockbuster hits including World of WarcraftÂ® and the WarcraftÂ®, StarCraftÂ®, and DiabloÂ® series, Blizzard Entertainment, Inc. (www.blizzard.com) , a division of Vivendi Games, is a premier developer and publisher of entertainment software renowned for creating some of the industry's most critically acclaimed games. Blizzard's track record includes ten #1-selling games and multiple Game of the Year awards. The company's online-gaming service, Battle.netÂ®, is one of the largest in the world, with millions of active users.