Saturday, September 15, 2018

Show Notes, Blizzard News September 2018



Due to GamesCom and BlizzCon secrecy, and 
the Warcraft expansion, there has been very little 
to report lately that you can't find through Blizzard's 
own press releases. As always, if I do see anything, 
I'll continue updating here. 

See the Calendar Post 
for complete list of events, micro holidays, 
tournaments and in game events.





      WORLD OF WARCRAFT      


As I have left World of Warcraft I will no longer provide the usual links to all of the standard WoWhead and MMOChampion content you can find everywhere, just any new articles I come across that might be interesting or out of the way.



BlizzCon 2018 November 2-3

You have until July 20 to edit the information on your tickets.  The Benefit Dinner will be Thursday, November 1 and tickets are $750.  Community Night is undergoing some changes, but there will still be a costume contest.

More info: https://t.co/BlDJnUpfsy       https://t.co/yVVSmudS8l








                 STARCRAFT                 



SUMMARY



GSL Super tournament

GSL Super tournament , the last decider for the Korean wing of the lead up to BlizzCon, plays Sept 27 - 30. 

Seven players, GuMiho, Trap, SoS, soO and Solar will be battling for the last BlizzCon seat to complete the Round of 16 in November. Although foreigners did enter they failed to make it through the offline qualifiers and many have instead moved on to prepare for WESG USA and WESG Canada this weekend. 



Maru wins GSL, Promises BlizzCon

Maru took his third GSL victory this year, only the second time to ever happen in the GSL, in a 7 game, 3 hour match up against fellow Korean Terran, TY. 

While Maru focused on his signature proxy 2 barracks followed by medivacs and cyclones with banshees with vikings, TY threatened to proxy but never did, instead defending against Maru's shenanigans and taking the first two maps, with hellions and air. As the pair traded games, Maru evened the score.  With victory in sight, Jin Air rallied with Maru for a strategy session, SpeCiaL joining his friend TY to offer his own analysis as one of the top terrans after Maru and TY themselves. In game 7, Maru pushed early with cyclones, tanks, marines and a banshee, cutting through TYs natural and forcing the GG and history.

TY has won over half a million dollars playing Starcraft, the 4th highest Starcraft II player after SoS, Rogue and Maru, who  has taken over half of his $672,735 total in this year alone, with BlizzCon and its prize pool  still to go. 



Starcraft AI Tournament Season Begins

The longest running Starcraft AI Tournament, SSCAIT, will begin in a few weeks and run through December or January. Kings of the North: Probot Season 2 has already gotten underway however while SC2AI.net, a Starcraft II AI Tournament will begin in October.



And Lastly

And lastly, the TotalBiscuit Commemorative Pack is in the store for a limited time. All proceeds go to his family towards hospital bills for his cancer treatment. There is also the Starcraft War Chest for a limited time, with sweet in game skins, a Heroes of the Storm Probius skin, and loot chests for OverWatch and Hearthstone.





Go Behind the Scenes During BlizzCon Opening Week


https://wcs.starcraft2.com/en-us/news/22538230/Go-Behind-the-Scenes-During-BlizzCon-Opening-Week/  

You’ll explore backstage and learn how Blizzard esports productions come together. Watch top StarCraft II players compete live for a portion of the WCS tournament. Take a photo with the WCS Global Finals’ original Gosu Trophy . Afterward, head across the street for a WCS Global Finals viewing experience at local eatery, Simmzy’s. Toronto’s well-known ESChamp PubCraft will be coming to Burbank to host a crowd of eager WCS supporters (BarCraft will be open to the public and will not require a tour ticket.)”




Chinese Researchers developed AI capable of defeating StarCraft II’s AI 

on the highest difficulty levels in full matches — making them the first to do so. 
https://thenextweb.com/artificial-intelligence/2018/09/20/tencent-created-ai-agents-that-can-beat-starcraft-2s-cheater-ai/



Tencent’s AI programs defeat Starcraft’s own AI

https://www.technologyreview.com/the-download/612188/tencents-ai-programs-defeat-starcrafts-own-ai/
AI researchers at the Chinese tech giant Tencent have posted details of two programs capable of beating the “cheating” AI found in the popular video game Starcraft.
China’s AI push includes an extraordinary commitment from the government, which recently announced a sweeping vision for AI ascendancy. The plan calls for homegrown AI to match that developed in the West within three years, for China’s researchers to be making “major breakthroughs” by 2025, and for Chinese AI to be the envy of the world by 2030.
https://www.technologyreview.com/s/609038/chinas-ai-awakening/




The NetEase Esports X Tournament Guangzhou offline finals

http://www.digitaljournal.com/pr/3956905

Last year, China began a push to become dominant in eSports, all eSports and the tournament prizes tend to be hefty. Although no foreign talent was mentioned in the article, it is common to see a few at these and so I am including this article.

"A dozen games including Blizzard games StarCraft II, Warcraft III, Hearthstone, and Overwatch.  In particular, China's top six professional Hearthstone gamers are invited to battle the best amateur gamers. For the first time, the NeXT Overwatch summer tournament has invited a South Korean team to take part in a Chinese offline match. Two well-known seasoned StarCraft gamers, Huang "Poisonous Milk" Xudong and the Chinese King of Zerg, Sun "F91" Yifeng, will be the StarCraft II commentators
NetEase Esports X Tournament. It is NetEase's first professional multi-franchise eSports tournament, consisting of online qualifiers and offline finals. This is a comprehensive eSports event that offers an experience where eSports enthusiasts can participate, watch, and immerse themselves in gaming culture.

Tournament link: http://next.163.com/ "




Dark Horse, Blizzard Reunite for StarCraft: Soldiers Comic Series

https://www.cbr.com/dark-horse-starcraft-soldiers/




SSCAIT 6

An AI BroodWar tournament on its 6th year.

Submission deadline is October 1st, 2018. Message McRave, aka Fawx#2874 , on the SSCAIT Discord channel.

https://www.twitch.tv/sscait

https://discord.gg/VkhVSnn

WillBot in action : https://clips.twitch.tv/DifferentThirstyOtterPeanutButterJellyTime




Kings of the North: ProBots Season 2     

eschamp.com   

StarCraft 2 AI tournament. KotN: ProBots is a StarCraft II Tournament between custom made AIs, held by ESChamp with the support of SC2AI.net community.
https://twitter.com/ESChamp/status/1042469930124304384



SC2AI Ladder Season 6   

Ladder will be frozen on 12th October. Games will be streamed 20th / 21st October and 27th / 28th October. The top 8 eligible bots will go forward to the Finals, streamed on 4th November.

Full rules and prizes at  https://sc2ai.net/Tournament.php

http://sc2ai.net/   

https://twitter.com/Sc2Ai/status/1040491788774060034



AITT   

A for-fun Tiny Code AI tournament. AITT submissions are due November 1st.
Message McRave, aka Fawx#2874 , on the SSCAIT Discord channel.
https://discord.gg/VkhVSnn





The Pylon Show Episode 22, a Starcraft Podcast 

https://www.twitch.tv/incontroltv

With Artosis and iNcontroL every Wednesday! Also available on YouTube and as a podcast.

This week's guests, puCK, ZombieGrub and Nice__Username!




The Pylon Show Episode 21, a Starcraft Podcast 

https://www.twitch.tv/incontroltv

With Artosis and iNcontroL every Wednesday! Also available on YouTube and as a podcast.

This week's guests, Nathanias, uThermal, Lambo, and TLO!










             ESPORTS            




The NetEase Esports X Tournament Guangzhou offline finals

http://www.digitaljournal.com/pr/3956905

Last year, China began a push to become dominant in eSports, all eSports and the tournament prizes tend to be hefty. Although no foreign talent was mentioned in the article, it is common to see a few at these and so I am including this article.

"A dozen games including Blizzard games StarCraft II, Warcraft III, Hearthstone, and Overwatch.  In particular, China's top six professional Hearthstone gamers are invited to battle the best amateur gamers. For the first time, the NeXT Overwatch summer tournament has invited a South Korean team to take part in a Chinese offline match. Two well-known seasoned StarCraft gamers, Huang "Poisonous Milk" Xudong and the Chinese King of Zerg, Sun Yifeng, will be the StarCraft II commentators. 
NetEase Esports X Tournament. It is NetEase's first professional multi-franchise eSports tournament, consisting of online qualifiers and offline finals. This is a comprehensive eSports event that offers an experience where eSports enthusiasts can participate, watch, and immerse themselves in gaming culture.

Tournament link: http://next.163.com/ "





                          DIABLO                      





    Diablo Netflix series confirmed by accident 

    http://www.adventuresinpoortaste.com/2018/09/22/blizzards-diablo-franchise-is-getting-a-series-on-netflix/ 
    The would-be showrunner let the cat out of the bag.   Thanks to a now deleted Tweet sent out, we know that the rumors were accurate.  " I guess I can confirm I am indeed in final talks to write and show-run the new DIABLO animated series for Activision and Netflix. It’s very exciting and I hope to the High Heavens it all works out." — Andy Cosby (@andycosby) September 20, 2018





         HEROES OF THE STORM     





    HEROES OF THE DORM   https://heroesofthedorm.com/








                  HEARTHSTONE              





    The NetEase Esports X Tournament Guangzhou offline finals

    http://www.digitaljournal.com/pr/3956905

    Last year, China began a push to become dominant in eSports, all eSports and the tournament prizes tend to be hefty. Although no foreign talent was mentioned in the article, it is common to see a few at these and so I am including this article.

    "A dozen games including Blizzard games StarCraft II, Warcraft III, Hearthstone, and Overwatch.  In particular, China's top six professional Hearthstone gamers are invited to battle the best amateur gamers. For the first time, the NeXT Overwatch summer tournament has invited a South Korean team to take part in a Chinese offline match. Two well-known seasoned StarCraft gamers, Huang "Poisonous Milk" Xudong and the Chinese King of Zerg, Sun Yifeng, will be the StarCraft II commentators. 
    NetEase Esports X Tournament. It is NetEase's first professional multi-franchise eSports tournament, consisting of online qualifiers and offline finals. This is a comprehensive eSports event that offers an experience where eSports enthusiasts can participate, watch, and immerse themselves in gaming culture.

    Tournament link: http://next.163.com/ "








                    OVERWATCH                





    The NetEase Esports X Tournament Guangzhou offline finals

    http://www.digitaljournal.com/pr/3956905

    Last year, China began a push to become dominant in eSports, all eSports and the tournament prizes tend to be hefty. Although no foreign talent was mentioned in the article, it is common to see a few at these and so I am including this article.

    "A dozen games including Blizzard games StarCraft II, Warcraft III, Hearthstone, and Overwatch.  In particular, China's top six professional Hearthstone gamers are invited to battle the best amateur gamers. For the first time, the NeXT Overwatch summer tournament has invited a South Korean team to take part in a Chinese offline match. Two well-known seasoned StarCraft gamers, Huang "Poisonous Milk" Xudong and the Chinese King of Zerg, Sun Yifeng, will be the StarCraft II commentators. 
    NetEase Esports X Tournament. It is NetEase's first professional multi-franchise eSports tournament, consisting of online qualifiers and offline finals. This is a comprehensive eSports event that offers an experience where eSports enthusiasts can participate, watch, and immerse themselves in gaming culture.

    Tournament link: http://next.163.com/ "









                   WARCRAFT III               



    Daily and Weekly Tournaments here

    https://www.twitch.tv/back2warcraft




    The NetEase Esports X Tournament Guangzhou offline finals

    http://www.digitaljournal.com/pr/3956905

    Last year, China began a push to become dominant in eSports, all eSports and the tournament prizes tend to be hefty. Although no foreign talent was mentioned in the article, it is common to see a few at these and so I am including this article.

    "A dozen games including Blizzard games StarCraft II, Warcraft III, Hearthstone, and Overwatch.  In particular, China's top six professional Hearthstone gamers are invited to battle the best amateur gamers. For the first time, the NeXT Overwatch summer tournament has invited a South Korean team to take part in a Chinese offline match. Two well-known seasoned StarCraft gamers, Huang "Poisonous Milk" Xudong and the Chinese King of Zerg, Sun Yifeng, will be the StarCraft II commentators. 
    NetEase Esports X Tournament. It is NetEase's first professional multi-franchise eSports tournament, consisting of online qualifiers and offline finals. This is a comprehensive eSports event that offers an experience where eSports enthusiasts can participate, watch, and immerse themselves in gaming culture.

    Tournament link: http://next.163.com/ "











                   WARCRAFT CLASSIC               



    World of Warcraft Classic At-Home Demo

    https://blizzcon.com/en-us/event-info/tickets/virtual

    Get access to the BlizzCon 2018 World of Warcraft Classic demo. Normally only available on the show floor, the Virtual Ticket brings this content straight to your home during the event! Only a few starting zones will be available, and only until November 8th. There will be a Warcraft Classic panel at BlizzCon.



    More on Classic at BlizzCon

    https://worldofwarcraft.com/en-us/news/22551243/bring-home-the-blizzcon-wow-classic-demo-with-the-virtual-ticket

    There will also be a panel on Classic at BlizzCon, and only a few zones will be available to play. The Classic demo will include access to a couple of entry-level zones, with one for Horde and the other for Alliance. It's the original Azeroth and will remain playable until 10am PST on Nov. 8. That way anyone attending BlizzCon and playing it on the show floor also has time to travel home and play it some more.






      OTHER BLIZZARD RELATED STUFF  








    Sources for these news bits include:

    https://news.blizzard.com/en-us

    http://www.teamliquid.net/

    And others.



    .