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Intel to bring eSports to PyeongChang before Winter Olympic Games
Technology giant Intel has announced that it will bring eSports to PyeongChang ahead of the Winter Olympic Games in February.
As part of Intel’s technology partnership with the International Olympic Committee, the company will deliver two gaming experiences to South Korea: the Intel Extreme Masters PyeongChang eSports tournament featuring StarCraft II and a separate exhibition featuring Ubisoft’s action-sports title Steep Road to the Olympics, the official licensed game of the upcoming Olympics.
Intel Extreme Masters PyeongChang, an extension of the Intel Extreme Masters (IEM) brand produced in partnership with ESL, will be open to any player, at any level via global online qualifiers, which will take place during November. A qualifier event will also take place in Beijing in December between the top two qualifiers from China, with the winner moving on to compete against the field in PyeongChang.
The action can be seen on the Olympic Channel global digital platform as well as additional broadcast and digital partners to be announced.
Introducing the events, Gregory Bryant, Senior Vice President and General Manager of the Client Computing Group at Intel Corporation, advised “from the qualifying events to the groundbreaking Intel Extreme Masters tournament in PyeongChang, we see this as another important step in giving more people around the world a chance to experience the thrill of eSports.”
Intel will also provide interactive gaming throughout the Olympic Village for attendees and athletes, with kiosks featuring ‘Steep Road to the Olympics’.
Fans will also have the opportunity to compete in an exhibition featuring the game.
Intel and ESL will facilitate all events, with Intel powering live IEM PyeongChang events with the Intel Core i7 gaming processor and also the PCs used in the IEM broadcasts and complete backend cloud infrastructure.
The announcement comes after IOC representatives met last week to discuss eSports and how they could help appeal to a younger demographic.
Following the meeting, Timo Lumme, Managing Director, IOC Television and Marketing Services, said in a statement “following on from the Olympic Summit ..., the IOC will now explore eSport’s relationship with the Olympic Movement further. This is the start of an exciting future and we’re interested to see how this experience will play out.”
Images: IEM ESL esports (top) and eSports' League of Legends (below).
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