NBC ventures into esports with this summer's $100K Rocket League tournament

nbc rocket league esports tournament 93
As more traditional television networks realize how popular esports can be, it’s becoming far more common to see games of all sorts show up during your regular programming. NBC is the latest network to haul itself aboard the bandwagon, and it will begin its foray into the digital sports world by broadcasting a Rocket League 2v2 tournament, starting July 22.

When Rocket League first debuted in 2015, few thought it could become the gaming behemoth it is today. Beyond its millions of active players though, it’s turned into a hotly competitive esport, too, and that’s lead to partnerships of all shapes and sizes, as well as international coverage. NBC is looking to take advantage of its high-speed, easy to understand gameplay with its own tournament, of which it will show upwards of 40 hours of gameplay and analysis.

Although we don’t have the full details on how it will be split, there will be a $100,000 prize pool up for grabs.

Set to start on July 22 with regional qualifiers using the Faceit esports platform (thanks Engadget), the tournament will initially take place online. However, those who make it through will soon find themselves facing one another quite literally, as they compete as part of the in-person grand finals on August 26 and 27.

NBC isn’t looking to keep this tournament in the United States, though, and has pledged to showcase it on the Syfy channel in the United Kingdom, alongside its NBC Sports Network at home. The qualifiers will also be split across regional networks, as well as several European channels for their particular qualifiers.

Rocket League developer Psyonix is understandably excited about the news, and suggested that Rocket League was a good entry point into the world of esports for traditional sports viewers. With its easy to understand gameplay, viewers quickly know how close the game is, even if they can’t necessarily appreciate the complexities of play right off of the bat.

With this tournament, NBC is trialing a grassroots approach to coverage, hoping that by showcasing regional tournaments on its regional networks, it will be able to engender a measure of local support for competitors before they transition to the main stage finals on larger networks.

For anyone who misses out on coverage of the tournament finals and grand finals, NBC will also showcase many of the games on its video-on-demand services and social channels, as well as regional network replays.

Rocket League was also recently confirmed to have an upcoming Nintendo Switch launch, so if you haven’t played it yet, there will be one more platform to try it out on by the end of the year.

Gaming

‘Magic: The Gathering’ enters esports relevance with $10 million prize pool

Wizards of the Coast is pushing Magic: The Gathering into esports relevance with a prize pool of $10 million across the tabletop version and Magic: The Gathering Arena. Will the game be able to compete with Hearthstone and Overwatch?
Home Theater

Kill your cable and switch to streaming with our painless guide

If you're going to quit cable or satellite for a streaming TV solution, you're going to want to get it right the first time. We've outlined exactly how to get started, step by step. Follow our lead, and you'll never look back.
Gaming

Apple Mac users should take a bite out of these awesome games

Contrary to popular belief, there exists a bevy of popular A-list games compatible for Mac computers. Take a look at our picks for the best Mac games available for Apple fans.
Gaming

Relive Nintendo’s handheld golden age with the 25 best Game Boy Advance games

The Game Boy Advance was the swan song of the Game Boy era. It also happened to have a boatload of amazing games. We decided to countdown our 25 favorite GBA games. Check it out and let us know your favorites in the comments below!
Gaming

Trash at 'Super Smash Bros. Ultimate'? Use this guide to train up and get good

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is the biggest game in the entire series, and it can be overwhelming for newcomers not used to the universe-colliding fighting game. Here's what you need to know when you're starting.
Gaming

Where we droppin’ (presents)? Perfect ‘Fortnite’ gifts for the fans in your life

Chances are someone on your holiday shopping list is a fan of Fortnite. As the most popular game on the planet, there are plenty of Fortnite-themed gift options available for purchase in stores and online. Here are the best ones we found.
Gaming

Sega Genesis classics now playable on Amazon Fire TV, no retro console required

Sega released the SEGA Classics app for Amazon Fire TV devices, allowing gamers to play Sega Genesis classics without having to buy a retro console. The $15 app contains 25 games, including three remastered Sonic titles.
Gaming

Have a spooky dance party at an abandoned mansion with Fortnite's new challenges

The Fortnite season 7, week 2 challenges have arrived in Battle Royale. From searching for chests to dancing off at an abandoned mansion, here's how to do them and the rewards you get for completing them.
Deals

The Super NES Classic is the perfect holiday gift for Nintendo lovers

Whether you're a long-time Nintendo fan looking to relive the 16-bit glory days or just doing some holiday shopping, the SNES Classic -- now in stock at multiple retailers for $80 -- might just be the perfect Christmas gift for gamers of…
Computing

Turn your Raspberry Pi into a Steam streaming hub with Valve’s Steam Link app

Valve's Steam Link app is now fully supported by Raspberry PI hardware, meaning that just about anyone with a few dollars to spare can build their own Steam streaming box in a matter of minutes.
Gaming

Nintendo pulls the plug on making more SNES Classic, NES Classic systems

Nintendo extended production of the NES Classic and SNES Classic into 2018, but once the current supply of consoles is gone, the company won't be making more. Instead, you'll have to use Nintendo Switch Online.
Gaming

Fancy ‘Kingdom Hearts III’ PlayStation 4 Pro launches alongside game in January

A limited edition PlayStation 4 Pro bundle for Kingdom Hearts III will launch alongside the game in January. The system included has a special design on the side, as does the controller.
Gaming

Want to share your Xbox One games? Here's how to do it

Sharing games on modern consoles is possible, but it takes a few steps. Here's how to start sharing games on your Xbox One console, so friends and family can easily access your library.
Gaming

Here's where Xur is and what he has for wares this week in 'Destiny 2: Forsaken'

The weekly vendor in Destiny 2: Forsaken always brings Exotic weapons and armor, some of the toughest loot to find in the game. Here's everything you need to know to track down Xur: Where he is, when he shows up, and what he's stocking.