Philadelphia will soon put together a band of unlikely heroes to battle for the future of global eSports.
Home to hundreds of thousands of Overwatch video game players, Philly was just selected to field one of a dozen international teams in a new professional eSports league, according to a Philadelphia Inquirer report by Bob Fernandez.
Comcast Spectacor recently signed on to the acquisition of a local franchise for the eSports competition based on the IGN Entertainment Game of the Year.
“We know how to run teams and build fan bases. We have a long history in sports,” said CEO Dave Scott.
Comcast’s team will go head-to-head against other franchises as far away as Shanghai, Seoul, and London during a preseason that debuts Dec. 6 and a regular season starting in January, all played in an Activision Blizzard arena in California for the inaugural campaign.
A team name and Philly-area arena are yet to be determined, as is the league’s television deal. What is known is that pro eSports players will earn at least $50,000 each year and receive health benefits and bonuses.
“We are reaching a tipping point in the culture where watching video games is as important as playing video games,” said Major League Gaming President and CEO Pete Vlastelica. “There also is a generational story. Young people are not watching sports like they used to, and part of that is that they are watching gaming. eSports is a very compelling alternative to traditional sports.”
The topic of eSports is one that will be discussed on Oct. 4 by Brian Selander – the Entrepreneur in Residence at SeventySix Capital, a leading venture capital firm based in Radnor – in the Suburban Philadelphia Speaker Series at People’s Light and Theatre in Malvern.
Reserve your tickets by clicking here.
Read more about Philly’s new pro eSports team in the Philadelphia Inquirer here.