Blizzard Entertainment have announced the 2016 Hearthstone World Championship, the largest Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcaft tournament in the world.
16 exceptional players from around the globe will come together to duel for glory, a share of the $1 million USD prize pool, and title of World Champion. This massive tournament is preceded by months of Ranked Play seasons, onsite Hearthstone Major tournaments, and online Hearthstone Cups where players compete to earn points in their bid to secure a coveted spot in one of the Season Championships, each with a prize pool of $100,000 USD.
Based on feedback from last year’s tournaments, Blizzard have made the following changes for 2016:
- More local champions. Four tournaments (three Season Championships and one Last Call Invitational per region) across the year will help determine the Hearthstone World Championship invitees.
- No instant byes in Hearthstone Majors. Invited players may have their spots reserved, but they will start in the same round as all open players to ensure a more even playing field.
- More money! We’ve increased the prize pool of the Hearthstone World Championship to a cool $1 million USD, with a $100,000 USD prize pool for the each of the nine Season Championships in the Americas, Europe and Asia-Pacific.
- More onsite events. With multiple Fireside Gatherings serving as the setting for the Season Preliminaries that lead into the Season Championships, there are more opportunities for you to attend a local event to either compete or cheer on your favorite players.
- Points matter more than ever. With the points decaying after each Championship Season, and the Last Call Invitational qualification relying on total accumulated points, collecting points will give you more opportunities to join the competition at any time.
- Point distribution has been rebalanced. The top placing players in a given event will receive fewer points, and the lower placing players will receive more points. For Ranked Play, this also includes providing points to every player that achieves the Legend Rank in an eligible season.
- More flexible match and tournament formats. We will take the opportunity with this year’s new structure to iterate and improve on the match format from each Championship Season to the next, and encourage other event organisers to be creative with their match and tournament formats as long as they encourage fair competition.
Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft is a free-to-play online collectable card game with the option to buy premium booster packs. There are currently over 40 million registered Hearthstone accounts.
You can find all the details about the 2016 Hearthstone Championship tour here, which includes match format, point structure, frequently asked questions and more!