The International Olympic Council's regional arm has announced that competitive video gaming will be inaugurated as a medal sport at the world's second-largest sporting event, the Asian Games, at its September 2022 meet in Hangzhou, China.
The Olympic Council of Asia is partnering with Chinese Internet firm Alisports, part of the Alibaba Group retail giant, to bring eSports to its premiere event, the Asian Games.
Prior to the induction of eSports as a medal sport at the 19th Asian Games in 2022, two earlier athletic meetings will serve as demonstration events in 2017 and 2018.
The 18th and most imminent Asian Games, to be held in the Indonesian cities of Jakarta and Palembang from Aug 18 to Sept 2, 2018, will showcase eSports as a competitive pursuit.
Before then, the 5th Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games, scheduled for September in Ashgabat, Turkmenistan, will also showcase the emerging discipline.
Soccer simulation FIFA 2017 will be one of the tournament titles at AIMAG, the OCA announced.
The September 2017 event will also include a Multiplayer Online Battle Arena game and a Real Time Attack game.
While the OAC did not name specific titles in the latter two categories, League of Legends and Dota 2 have emerged as the globe's biggest tournament MOBAs, holding multi-million dollar championships on an annual basis.
As for Real Time Attack, further clarification is required; the category title could be interpreted as a reference to speedrunning, the art of completing a videogame in record time, or a mistranslation of the Real Time Strategy genre, a fixture of the eSports scene through StarCraft II, the earlier WarCraft 3, and classic StarCraft: Brood War. — AFP Relaxnews
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