The World Cyber Games (WCG) have announced a partnership with Samsung as their presenting partner for the WCG 2019 Finals in Xi’an. From July 18th to 21st, the WCG makes its return to the international stage.
As a result of their partnership, Samsung will be responsible for the marketing rights for PC, memory, SSD and mobile products throughout the tournament. WCG had previously announced four titles as part of their line-up of games, but in March they also added Blizzard’s card game Hearthstone and Smilegate’s shooter Crossfire.
In addition to these six games, WCG will feature several showcases of in the worlds of AR, VR and AI. They will be hosting a series called the “AI Masters”, where entrants are allowed access to an AI system that they can program and submit their own version, after which they will be pitted against each other in a five on five football match. Up to $35,000 (£27,000) is up for grabs.
Originally started in 2000, WCG was regarded by many as the pinnacle of esports competition during its reign. Hosting several competitions for the world’s top games at the time such as Quake III and Counter-Strike 1.6, it was the culmination of some of the world’s best players. Coupled with a country-based qualification structure, it had an extra layer of pride for fans and players and was seen as the Olympics for esports at the time. It eventually lost popularity and closed its doors in 2014.
Esports Insider says: While a relic of the early days of esports, WCG still holds nostalgia for a lot of people that watched and played during its height. While it returns with only one former king in the form of Warcraft III, as long as they have stable production and continue to build on the grassroots nature of the competition, WCG can still find its niche and success.