The prize pool for this Hearthstone tournament? A Ferrari
China is fast becoming the land of excess when it comes to esports. A ton of cash being dumped into games like League of Legends. But one Chinese organization is upping the ante for Hearthstone: It's giving away Ferraris.
Following a number of successful Chinese Hearthstone tournaments in 2014, the esports league run by Chinese Internet giant NetEase, NEL, has revealed details of an ambitious intercontinental competition that will pit Chinese players against Europeans. For the Chinese players, success will mean they the opportunity to take home their very own Ferrari.
In a video revealing the unorthodox prize the CEO of NetEase, the company behind NEL, announced the simple proposition: "Conquer Europe, win a Ferrari."
"It's time to deliver our promises," William Ding said, "Chinese Hearthstone has the passion."
The top eight finishers in China's Gold Series tournament will represent their country at the event. That means that Wang "TiddlerCelestial" Xieyu, Xiao "xyuan" Yuan and "IceFox" are the first three competitors. Xieyu was one of China's top performing players in 2014, coming second in the inaugural Hearthstone World Championships and the World Cyber Arena 2014.
NEL ran a number of seasonal team-based competitions in 2014. Originally confined to Chinese teams, the Autumn 2014 event featured Team Liquid as the first foreigner team. The organization was also involved in running the CN vs KR Masters events which featured Chinese and Korean players squaring off in the same format as the China versus Europe tournament.
NEL hasn't announced an overall prize pool for the event, or if the Europeans will have the chance to win a Ferrari of their own. The European competitors will be decided in a qualifier tournament to be organized by ESL.
Photo by Nicholas Serre/Flickr (CC BY 2.0)