The International: Major eSports tournament postponed

The International 2019

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The international in 2019

One of the world’s largest eSports events has been postponed to 2021.

The International, which awards huge prize money to the winners, was due to take place in Stockholm in August.

Last year’s tournament was held in the Mercedes Benz Arena in Shanghai with a capacity of 18,000 seats, with cash prizes totaling $ 35 million (£ 28 million).

The organizers say they will share more information “when we have it”, but they don’t expect to be able to set a fixed date for a while.

The International teams compete in the Defense of the Ancients game, better known as Dota 2.

It is an online fighting game, in which players control teams of heroes with special powers as they attempt to attack each other.

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The International attracts large crowds

Blocking has sometimes been seen as good for eSports. Apart from anything else, everyone has a lot more time to play.

But a lot of the revenue generated from these games comes from big live events like The International – just think about ticket sales.

The Call of Duty and Overwatch eSports tournaments are currently able to continue online, but that means they will lose all the income they get from people who actually come to see the action in person.

There is also a discussion that people play differently online and in person, which could be one of the reasons why The International doesn’t seem to consider moving its online tournament.

And given that The International is seen as the pinnacle of eSports, an online tournament may not have the same level of credibility.

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Europe-based OG won The International in 2019

For some smaller events, however, the blockade has helped eSports into the mainstream.

Veloce Sports co-founder Rupert Svendsen-Cook tells Radio 1 Newsbeat “it’s probably a quick two-year journey for us.”

In addition to the Fifa tournaments that featured the likes of Real Madrid goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois, his company collaborated with Formula 1 to organize virtual Grand Prix races.

These celebrity gaming events are very different from traditional esports, where the best players in the world compete for millions of people.

But Rupert says that tournaments like the ones his company is organizing are introducing new faces into competitive gaming.

Formula 3 driver Jamie Chadwick would certainly agree. He told Newsbeat: “The world of eSports has always been something I was a little interested in.”

“Now, with the situation as it is, it was an obvious choice for all of us racing drivers to dedicate ourselves to.”

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