ESL continued to expand in 2016 announcing that they would host multiple $100,000 Heroes of the Storm tournaments, hold a Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six® Pro League and even initiated a Brasilian National Championship across titles such as League of Legends, Hearthstone and CS:GO. Welcoming fruitful new deals with partners such as Logitech and extending their long-running partnership with Twitch demonstrated esports was undoubtedly on the rise.
Highlights of history brewed during 2016 with the LANXESS Arena selling out to house more than 1`4,000 fans bear witness to the Brazilian super-star roster of SK Gaming becoming the champions of their 2nd Major tournament in CS:GO back-to-back claiming the title of ESL One: Cologne Major 2016. While the Brazilians shined the superlative Swedes of Fnatic also donned their flag at IEM Katowice 2016 defeating the Brazilian core 3:0 months before SK won their second Major title with over 34 million unique viewers witnessing their triumph. It was the most watched non-Major event at the time!
With events held across 6 continents and the prize pools for these tournaments growing, 2016 bode very healthy highlights for esports and beaconed a signal of growth for multiple game titles.