For the first time ever, live telecast of c2ollegiate eSports event aired on ESPN
IRVINE, Calif.—April 29, 2015—Thousands of student gamers from more than 460 schools across the U.S. and Canada entered the Nexus to take part in Heroes of the Dorm™—a no-holds-barred tournament of epic proportions featuring Blizzard’s online team brawler, Heroes of the Storm™.
After fighting their way through a formidable pool of challengers, four teams of college students took to the stage at the Shrine Auditorium & Expo Hall in Los Angeles on their quest to become Heroes of the Storm collegiate champions. By defeating the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign Mad Banners and weathering an epic five game onslaught from the Arizona State Dream Team, the UC Berkeley Golden Bears emerged victorious, earning the title of Heroes of the Dorm.
“Competing in the Heroes of the Dorm tournament has been an amazing experience for our team,” said Golden Bears team captain Richard ‘PandaJigu’ Xue. “We’ve been fans of Blizzard games for a long time and we still can’t believe that our passion for gaming has paid off in college tuition. College eSports is awesome, and we hope Blizzard and TeSPA bring back the tournament next year so we can defend our title! GO BEARS!”
The Golden Bears players will be receiving the tournament grand prize—tuition to cover the remainder of their college careers.
The Heroes of the Dorm Finals took the Twitter world by storm Sunday evening. Fans of eSports and newcomers alike tuned into the ESPN2 telecast thanks to the non-stop action on display during the back-and-forth series and commentary from the announcing team of Dan ‘Artosis’ Stemkoski, Nick ‘Tasteless’ Plott, Sean ‘Day9’ Plott, Manuel ‘Grubby’ Schenkhuizen, and Tim ‘Trikslyr’ Frazier. According to one Twitter user, “going HAM on this core!” is the front-runner for the “Down goes Frazier” sportscasting call of the century.
The Heroes of the Dorm tournament marked the first time that a collegiate eSports event has been telecast live on ESPN2. The “Heroic Four” semi-finals were delivered on ESPN3, followed by the championship match and closing ceremony in prime time on ESPN2. ESPN coverage of the event was also viewed online at WatchESPN.com, on smartphones and tablets via the WatchESPN app, and streamed on televisions through Amazon Fire TV and Fire TV Stick, Apple TV, Chromecast, Roku, Xbox 360 and Xbox One.
Heroes of the Dorm also broke new ground for collegiate eSports by offering nearly half a million dollars in lucrative prizes to both student competitors and viewers—thousands of members of the Heroes of the Storm community filled out fantasy brackets with their predicted winners. In addition to $10,000 going to the viewer with the “best bracket,” the top 5 bracket predictions will receive the same epic gaming systems as those awarded to all twenty members of the “Heroic Four” teams, with many other prizes going out to randomly selected participants.
“I’d like to congratulate our Heroes of the Dorm, the UC Berkeley Golden Bears, on their epic victory run,” said Mike Morhaime, CEO and cofounder of Blizzard Entertainment. “Watching this tournament has been incredibly exciting for me—even if my bracket didn’t pan out as expected. We’re big fans of eSports at Blizzard and this event was just one example of our ongoing commitment to competitive gaming.”
Heroes of the Storm brings together a diverse cast of iconic characters from Blizzard’s far-flung realms of science fiction and fantasy, including the Warcraft®, StarCraft®, and Diablo® universes, and challenges them to compete in epic, adrenaline-charged battles. Every student who participated in the tournament received closed beta access to Heroes of the Storm, which will be officially launching on June 2, following an open beta testing period beginning May 19.
To learn more about Heroes of the Storm, head over the official website at www.heroesofthestorm.com. With multiple games in development, Blizzard Entertainment has numerous positions currently available—visit http://jobs.blizzard.com for more information and to learn how to apply.
About Blizzard Entertainment, Inc.
Best known for blockbuster hits including World of Warcraft® and the Warcraft®, StarCraft®, and Diablo® franchises, Blizzard Entertainment, Inc. (www.blizzard.com), a division of Activision Blizzard (NASDAQ: ATVI), is a premier developer and publisher of entertainment software renowned for creating some of the industry’s most critically acclaimed games. Blizzard Entertainment’s track record includes nineteen #1 games* and multiple Game of the Year awards. The company’s online-gaming service, Battle.net®, is one of the largest in the world, with millions of active players. *Sales and/or downloads. Based on internal company records and reports from key distribution partners.
TeSPA is the premier college gaming network in North America, dedicated to creating a home for gamers on every campus. Recognized as the leader in collegiate gaming, TeSPA cultivates student communities, known as Local Chapters, which host epic gaming events on over 90 campuses in the United States and Canada. TeSPA supports its Local Chapters by connecting them to national partners for events, hosting cutting-edge competitions for college gaming athletes, facilitating collaboration between Local Chapters, and empowering student leaders to become entrepreneurs in the gaming industry.
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