Blizzard, Psyonix to expand Tespa collegiate esports offerings

Tespa, in conjunction with game developers Blizzard and Psyonix, will be massively expanding its breadth of collegiate esports work.

The organisation will offer more prizes, broadcasts, competitions and membership options than ever for university-level players and fans.

Tespa will run its usual fare of Overwatch, Hearthstone, and Heroes of the Storm (including flagship tournament Heroes of the Dorm). This season, Blizzard will begin to emphasise Starcraft 2 and World of Warcraft more than ever. Plus, for the school year, Tespa will focus on its Rocket League competitions, which began with the Summer League 2017, with the help of Psyonix. They promise at least six live broadcasts per week and expanded content, highlighting the top moments of their collegiate leagues each week.

It will also offer over $1 million (£777,700.00) in scholarship money to participants. This is a sharp increase from its approximate $150,000 (£116670.00 GBP) prize pool last year in Overwatch’s Collegiate Series and the Hearthstone Training Grounds.

Players wishing to get more involved with the scene have more options, as now Blizzard is offering rewards for both financial and participatory investment. Colleges can upgrade to a “Premium Membership,” offering in-game rewards and loot, plus physical merchandise. Plus, players playing on a regular basis can earn Blizzard rewards for registering through Tespa and playing in its events regularly.

Tespa will also launch Tespa University, which it describes as “a central online hub to help students learn about all of Tespa’s programs and how to get involved.” Here, players and fans can join the organisation, find chapters and sign up for a number of amateur on- and off-season competitive leagues, dubbed the “Training Grounds.”

Already, Tespa, founded in 2010 at the University of Texas in Austen, has over 65,000 members registered over 220 chapters across the USA and Canada. The company has worked in conjunction with Blizzard in past years, and after recent partnership initiatives, Tespa has become the sole provider of Blizzard esports in collegiate environments. Students are encouraged to create their own club, and Tespa provides financial and tournament support from the parent organisation.

Esports Insider Says: The prominence of Tespa as a force in collegiate esports could never be ignored, but their future work gives an impression that they do mean business. Specifically, their increased outreach, scholarship and amateur leagues show their honest and true dedication to making competitive gaming an accessible and entertaining part of university life. Based purely off of their initial announcements here, things are looking up where relations between students and Blizzard, Psyonix and Tespa are concerned. 

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