Esports

Coronavirus: How the outbreak has effected esports

by Scott Robertson
ESL

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The Coronavirus situation has had a drastic effect on numerous tournaments and events across the entire esports and gaming scene. Here’s a full, detailed list of what’s happened so far.

The global outbreak of COVID-19, also known as Coronavirus, has reached ‘pandemic’ status according to the World Health Organization.

It’s already wreaked havoc on the world of professional video games, with numerous events being canceled, postponed, or altered in some way. Here’s the full breakdown, by game, of the effects so far.

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Counter-Strike: Global Offensive

One of CS:GO’s biggest organizers in ESL took a massive hit in Februrary, when the local government retracted permission to host a crowd for the playoffs of IEM Katowice.

Since then, both the ESL Pro League and the new FLASHPOINT league, have had to not just compete with each other, but now with the effects of Coronavirus.

Both leagues have had to move their playoffs from arenas to closed studios, and fans are not permitted to watch regular-season matches in-studio.

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League of Legends

Numerous LoL leagues have been affected as well. The LCK in Korea initially started playing matches in their studio without a crowd before postponing the season altogether. LPL in China was on hiatus until March 9, with matches now taking place solely online and only after players do through a 14-day quarantine.

The European LEC moved its Spring Finals from an arena in Budapest, Hungary to the smaller LEC Studio in Berlin, Germany. Just before going live on March 13, they announced that the remainder of the season had been postponed.

The North American LCS has barred fans and press from attending Spring Split matches, while a decision regarding the Spring Finals in Frisco, Texas hasn’t been made yet. The Mid-Season Invitational has also been postponed.

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Overwatch League

All Overwatch League homestand events have been canceled for the months of March and April. Prior to the league-wide cancellation, homestands in Korea, China, and Paris had been canceled on their own.

OWL commissioner followed up on the initial announcement with a clarification that matches will still take place and will be broadcast, but not in front of a live crowd.

Rocket League

The Rocket League World Championships event in Dallas, Texas, scheduled for April 24-26, has also been canceled.

The RLCS announced that its Regional Championships would serve as the competitive pinnacle for season nine, and added $250,000 to its prize pool.

Call of Duty

On March 12, Call of Duty League announced that all home series events for 2020 had been canceled.

Activision Blizzard
Official statement from CDL.

In an official press release, CDL confirmed that all matches will take place online and will still be broadcast.

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