First announced at Blizzcon, the circuit is split into three championships—Spring, Summer, and Autumn. Teams from eight regions will compete locally and internationally for their share of $4 million (with all prize money in U.S. dollars).
The spring split qualifiers have already started in Korea, China, and South East Asia—but now we know when we can watch the rest of the regions—and the championship—thanks to an announcement from Blizzard today.
Competition in Korea will end on March 20 with the finals in Seoul, and a prize pool of $200,000. Chinese teams will be competing for $100,000, with the winner being crowned on Jan. 24 in Shanghai. Both regions will see two teams advance to the Spring Championship.
For Blizzard to put up such a big prize pool—and two spots—in both regions is not surprising. For the Heroes of the Storm competitive scene to grow it needs to garner more interest from fans in Asia, with its huge markets and populations.
Here’s how the circuit will break down:
South East Asia finishes up on March 6 with an online finals cast live from Singapore. Teams have a chance to win their share of $22,500, and a spot in the championship. Latin America will follow, with the preliminaries and finals being held between Jan. 21 to March 19 with $20,000 on the line. The finals will be held in Brazil, with one team advancing.
Then it’s Australia and New Zealand, with one team going through to the championship. Teams will compete from Feb. 7 to 28, with the finals in Sydney, and $20,000 up for grabs.
Taiwanese teams will compete from Feb. 18 to Mar. 13 for a total of $60,000. The finals will be in Taipei and one team will continue on.
In Heroes of the Storm’s two biggest regions, the prize pools are bigger. Teams will compete for $100,000 and two spots in the championships respectively. North American teams will go head-to-head in the finals from Feb. 27 to 28 in Los Angeles, although the starting date for the qualifiers has not yet been set. Meanwhile European teams will meet in Katowice, Poland, for their finals on March 5 to 6—with the qualifiers beginning on Jan. 23.
Finally, the Heroes Spring Championship will see the top teams from each region meet in Seoul, South Korea, from April 1 to 3, to compete for a share of $500,000. This will be run in partnership with OGN (who is also running the Korean Super League qualifiers).
With competitive teams around the world in a flux after last year’s world championship—think new players, new teams, roster swaps, and players leaving—there are no clear-cut finalists for the Spring Championship finals in Korea.
In North America Cloud9 is still looking like a strong competitor after winning the 2015 world championship, although a recent roster swap that resulted in some shaky synergy led them to lose the first LAN of 2016 to Bob Ross Fan Club.
European teams Fnatic and Team Dignitas both have strong rosters going into the competition. Dignitas came in second during the world championships last year, while Fnatic took out the DreamHack Winter competition at the end of November.
More details are likely to be announced soon (like the kick-off date for North America), so stay tuned.
Image via Blizzard | Remix by Jacob Wolf