Intel and ESL Announce Two Weekends of Esports Competition Featuring Dota 2, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive and StarCraft® II For A Combined $1,750,000 USD Prize Pool.
Intel®, a leader in PC gaming performance, and ESL, the world’s largest esports company, are gearing up for the largest event on the 2018 esports calendar. Katowice’s Spodek Arena and the adjacent International Conference Center will once again host two of the most prestigious competitions – ESL One Katowice powered by Intel® on Feb. 24-25, and Intel® Extreme Masters World Championship Katowice (IEM Katowice) on March 2-4. These events will feature the world’s top teams and players in Dota 2, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (CS:GO) and StarCraft® II.
The world’s largest esports-themed trade show, IEM Expo, will also return to the International Conference Center and take place during both weekends next year, during which attendees will experience the latest in PC gaming and technology. The IEM Expo features 8,000 square meters of exhibition space, featuring three esports stages, the Intel® Experience Zone, and a business center.
ESL One Katowice powered by Intel will be the first large-scale, international Dota 2 event in Poland and the country’s first Dota 2 Major. The world’s top sixteen teams, who will be selected through qualifiers held in six regions, will battle it out for the lion’s share of the $1,000,000 USD prize pool and 1,500 points that will count towards the Dota 2 Pro Circuit 2017-2018. The tournament will span across six days, with playoffs taking place on the big stage in the Spodek Arena on Feb. 24-25, 2018.
The 2018 Grand Finals of IEM Katowice, the world’s most prestigious and longest standing pro gaming circuit, will be the biggest and the most lucrative IEM event in its history. The Intel® Extreme Masters World Championship Katowice will once again crown the World Champions across Counter-Strike: Global Offensive and StarCraft II, with competitions spanning six days and the playoffs for both titles taking place March 2-4, 2018. The world’s best sixteen teams in CS:GO will compete on the big stage in Katowice’s Spodek Arena for the biggest prize pool in tournament history, where $500,000 USD is up for grabs. Top contenders in the StarCraft II competition will battle it out for a $250,000 USD prize pool in the largest and one of the most renowned tournaments for the game outside of the StarCraft II World Championship Series. The winner of the tournament will also ear a direct seed to the WCS Global Finals.
IEM Katowice will be the seventh event in the Intel® Grand Slam series, which will award a $1,000,000 USD bonus prize to the first CS:GO team that wins four out of the last ten DreamHack or ESL events. FazeClan, G2 and SK Gaming are all in contention to claim the Intel Grand Slam, with each team already securing one Grand Slam point this season.
The fourth edition of IEM Expo will welcome the industry’s top brands, technology companies, and influencers and exhibit three separate esports stages hosting individual esports competitions in games not featured on the main stage. The event will also turn a spotlight on the Intel Experience Zone, demonstrating the newest tech and gaming technologies, allowing attendees to experience the latest games and hardware with a VR showcase. The IEM Expo will also be open to business trade visitors, providing a business center for esports industry executives and leaders.
Tickets for ESL One Katowice powered by Intel, Intel Extreme Masters Katowice World Championship and the IEM Expo will be available from November on Ticketmaster. More information about additional esports competitions, attendee experiences and event schedules will be released in the coming weeks.
Source: Press release
Image Source: eslgaming.net, Photographer: Adela Sznajder