Blizzard kicked off their bid to enter the competitive eSports scene with the announcement yesterday for the Heroes of the Storm World Championship tournament. This will be the first ever global tournament for the new MOBA (Multiplayer Online Battle Arena) title that – only recently – had announced to be leaving closed beta on June 2nd. Blizzard apparently hopes to get in on the action of the competitive MOBA genre with major online tournaments akin to that of the current MOBA behemoths League of Legends and DotA 2, with massive venues and equally gigantic prize pools.
The Heroes of the Storm World Championship will have a total prize pool of 1.2 million dollars – 500,000 dollars set aside specifically for Blizzcon, with the championship team walking away with a cool 200,000 dollars. Other than the world championships taking place at Blizzcon, local championships will walk away with prize money from the regions of the Americas, Europe, China, Korea, and Taiwan. From each of these regions, the top eight teams will be invited to compete at the World Championship at Blizzcon this November in Anaheim.
“We’re excited to kick off the inaugural Heroes of the Storm tournament series, and we can’t wait to see the best teams start to distinguish themselves in battle,” said Mike Morhaime, CEO and cofounder of Blizzard Entertainment. “With the world championships for StarCraft II, World of Warcraft Arena, Hearthstone, and now Heroes of the Storm underway, 2015 is shaping up to be a great year for eSports fans.”
Officially launching on June 2nd, Heroes of the Storm allows fans of Blizzard titles to duke it out using gamers’ favorite iconic characters from Blizzard’s series such as Warcraft, Diablo, and Starcraft. With this investment directly from Blizzard, it looks like the eSports scene may see a new contender on the global eSports scene come November.