E-sports organisers expecting high turnout at Hong Kong event where a record HK$2.35 million is up for grabs in Counter-Strike: Global Offensive tournament

Hong Kong Tourism Board hoping to attract thousands of tourists in crowd of 80,000 to festivals featuring e-sports, music, computers and communications

PUBLISHED : Friday, 24 August, 2018, 9:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 24 August, 2018, 9:16am

Hong Kong’s annual e-sports and music festival, as well as the computer and communications festival, return to the city on Friday, with organisers expecting to attract about 8,000 tourists to the events.

The Hong Kong Tourism Board, host of the three-day e-sports event, hopes to draw a crowd of about 80,000 visitors to the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre in Wan Chai, with 10 per cent of them tourists.

Mason Hung Chung-hing, the board’s general manager, said ticket sales had been better than expected.

“Earlier, it had been a bit slow, but the [ticket] sales were very good about this week or so,” he said.

Hung said the pace of ticket sales was similar to last year, when the event debuted in the city and attracted about 60,000 visitors.

The festival features three popular games, with more than HK$3.5 million in prize money up for grabs. There is a HK$100,000 prize fund for League of Legends, HK$1.18 million (US$150,000) in PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds, and HK$2.35 million for Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (CS:GO).

The award for CS:GO has set a record in the city’s e-sports tournament history.

Hung said tickets for Friday’s League of Legends tournament were sold out, but some for the two tournaments this weekend were still up for grabs.

The matches will be streamed live to 12 million viewers worldwide, while a number of popular artists such as South Korea’s DJ Soda, and Hong Kong-based Malaysian singer Gin Lee will also perform at the event.

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On top of that, visitors can have a taste of virtual reality games and new video games at the experience zone, where there are 12 exhibitors showcasing their products. Some of them, such as Overkill, are in Hong Kong for the first time.

For this year’s HK$40 million event, organisers had slashed ticket prices in an attempt to attract more young visitors and tourists.

More than half of the 5,000 seats will cost HK$50 each, while the other two tiers will be priced at HK$120 and HK$250, depending on location. Last year, four tiers of tickets were sold at HK$480, HK$280, HK$150 and HK$80.

Ticket holders for the tournaments will also be offered access to the Hong Kong Computer and Communications Festival, being held at the same venue, from Friday to Monday.