Sony has purchased the long-running fighting game tournament EVO alongside RTS. Something that could change the event forever.
It seems like Microsoft isn’t the only gaming mega-power prepared to reach for their wallet in 2021. While the Xbox brand is busy buying publishers like Bethesda – and eyeing up others, Sony has taken a different approach.
The PS5 mostly has its exclusive game titles nailed down, so purchasing other studios isn’t high on Sony’s agenda. However, the company lacks in other areas.
One of these is community building, events and esports—an arena where Microsoft frequently outshines Sony. But now we’re in the era of the PS5; this may no longer be the case.
Together with RTS (part of Endeavor’s esports division), Sony has co-bought the Evolution Championship Series (Evo). Evo is the world’s largest fighting game event and may undergo some radical changes under Sony's leadership.
The exact details of the deal have not been made public by Sony, RTS, or the Evo leadership. But we imagine some details will emerge in time – as they have a tendency to do.
Although the present founders of Evo will be staying in their roles as the new era gets underway.
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What Does Sony’s Acquisition of Evo Mean Going Forward?
Sony boss Steven Roberts said, "Fighting games have been a vital part of PlayStation's legacy and our community since the very beginning, and we've been thrilled to partner with Evo over the years.”
He went on to say, "This joint acquisition with RTS marks a new chapter of collaboration with Evo's co-founders, Tom and Tony Cannon, and their passionate community of fighting game fans."
Sony has already confirmed that Evo will return in 2021. But as a digital event due to the ongoing threat of COVID-19.
This year’s event will feature a collection of fighting games, including Tekken 7, Mortal Kombat 11, Street Fighter 5, and Guilty Gear Strive. – Which, we must admit, is a pretty sweet list of titles.
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Last year's line up was as follows:
Although we’re slightly disappointed that Super Smash Bros. Ultimate has not made the cut this year. This sadly may be a sign of things to come now that Sony jointly owns Evo.
However, Sony has been keen to stress that despite their purchase, Evo "is still open to all platforms." Suggesting that Nintendo, Xbox, and PC players will still be able to participate.
But the real question is, what does this mean for exclusive Nintendo and Microsoft titles? Cross-play is welcome, but Evo without Super Smash or Xbox fighters like Killer Instinct may dishearten many fans.
When Will Evo 2021 Take Place?
Evo Online or Evo 2021 will take place on the 6th to the 8th of August, then again on the 13th to the 15th of August.
Players will be able to enter for free, and those living in North America, Europe, Asia, and Latin America will be free to sign up.
It’s a big week for Sony; the company has given us our first glimpse at PSVR2. However, it won’t be coming anytime soon, according to boss Jim Ryan.
Sony’s Play At Home is also adding ten new games - for free!
On top of that, PlayStation is even reaching out directly to fans, allowing users to get their hands on a PS5 with ease.