Astro has just ended a month long screening of the League of Legends World Championship, and it doesn’t look like the satellite tv provider is letting up on its eSports coverage. Next in line are the Hearthstone and Starcraft II World Championships set to take place at Blizzcon this weekend.
Blizzcon is Blizzard Entertainment’s annual convention where it celebrates its most popular games, and announces its plans for the next 12 months. Alongside its usual panel shows, the company also holds eSports tournaments for Hearthstone and Starcraft II. These might not be as big and as prestigious as Dota 2 or League of Legends, but they are still massive events with large cash prizes.
Astro will only be showing the two eSports events, as these are the only two that are available to the general public. Blizzcon itself is a closed door event that requires an e-ticket just to livestream the announcements and panel talks.
As is becoming the norm, the both eSports events will be screened on Astro Supersport Plus channel 808. It is free for all Astro subscribers and is also available on Astro On The Go. The Hearthstone and Starcraft II World Championship both begin on 6 November, although the time difference means that Malaysians will be watching it on 7 and 8 November instead.
Interestingly, Astro has chosen to skip screening the Heroes of the Storm World Championship which is taking place at the same time. Heroes of the Storm may not have the same name recognition as the other games that have been screened live, but it does fall into the extremely popular MOBA genre that includes both Dota 2 and League of Legends. Even without the same following it could have potentially drawn MOBA fans in just to see how the game plays out.
It looks like Astro is happy with the viewing numbers for its eSports efforts, and is taking the initiative to continue providing the content without having to wait for fans of the games to sign petitions. Astro originally began screening eSports shows earlier this year when thousands of Dota 2 fans petitioned the content provider to pick up the The International Dota 2 Championship. This was soon followed by League of Legends fans who began a similar movement to get their own favourite game on satellite tv.
This latest move from Astro to screen Hearthstone and Starcraft II has not come from any fan petition, and we are not sure if Blizzard has anything to do with the decision to pick up the games. In any case, it is a positive move for our eSports aspirations and makes Astro one of the few television content providers in the world with a dedicated eSports channel.
[Source: The Star]