Last year, Virgin Gaming teamed up with EA Sports and ESPN FC, a soccer-centric website, to host a tournament for a video game.
The ESPN FC Champions Cup centers around soccer simulation FIFA 14. And while most of the pageantry took place online, the grand finals for the tournament will be televised live on ESPN2 today at 5.30pm E.T.
The competition’s epilogue will see Nicholas Joyce from the United Kingdom and Victor Munoz from Spain duking it out on air at ESPN’s headquarters in Bristol, Conn. for a grand prize of $2,500.
Esports, or competitive gaming, have long-struggled to find a foothold in broadcast television. But as grand a gesture as this might sound, it isn’t incredibly surprising. ESPN has dabbled with televising esports before.
Previously, there was the now-defunct Madden Nation, a reality television show centered around popular football game Madden NFL, which ran from 2005 to 2008. If the ESPN2 broadcast does well, will see a FIFA Nation show sometime soon, too?