Chinese gamers win US$5m top prize in international video game tournament

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 22 July, 2014, 5:04pm
UPDATED : Thursday, 24 July, 2014, 12:07pm

A team of gamers from China has won US$5 million after emerging victorious at an international video games tournament in the United States.

The International Dota 2 Championships 2014, an annual electronic sports (eSports) event, concluded on Monday after the five young men beat their opponents – also from China – 3 to 1 in the final to take home one of the biggest prize in video gaming history.

The victory helped the members of the Newbee team, whose name means “f**king awesome” in Chinese, secure US$1 million each in prize money.

The tournament of multiplayer online battle game Dota 2 was hosted by video games publisher Valve Corporation. The total prize pool of US$10.9 million, up from last year’s US$2.9 million, is the largest in eSports history and twice that offered by the 2013 US Open Tennis Championships.

The four-day tournament at Seattle’s Key Arena was dominated by teams from China. Chinese teams made up five of the final eight and pocketed US$8.5 million out of the total prize pool.

Competitive video gaming has flourished in China in recent years after a number of gamers won championship at international events. The winners are hailed as national heroes by fellow video-gaming fans back home.

The video games industry has also won support from the official sports authority. The General Administration of Sport formally approved eSports as China’s 99th officially-certified sport. It has also pledged to “help organise eSports events in order to promote the country in the international eSports realm”.

China has hosted the World Cyber Games, the world’s largest international competitive video-gaming event, three times in the past five years.

China has an estimated 30 million eSports fans.