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From Shanghai to Katowice – season XI of IEM kicks off

Grzegorz Łatka | 27 lipca 2016, 16:59

It is going to kick off in Shanghai and conclude in Katowice – the eleventh season of Intel Extreme Masters, which is the most prestigious e-sports tournament, is set to start. Tomorrow the first stop starts but it is just the beginning of a few months long journey.

Ten seasons are already over

Up until now we have witnessed many exciting matches, unforgettable moments and tears of both joy and sadness. Players competed for great prizes in San Jose, Cologne, Taipei, Toronto or Katowice to bring their fans all over the world the most exciting e-sports memories. Those who competed at IEM were rewarded with total sum of $5 631 150, while the tenth season had a total prize pool of $993 200. IEM champion title has already been taken by players of many well-known e-sports teams such as Fnatic, SK Telecom T1, Team SoloMid, ESC Gaming, Moscow Five and Natus Vincere. Every single IEM tournament is an important point in e-sports calendars of the best progamers from all over the world.

For seven seasons IEM final events were held at CeBIT in Hanover, but it was only until 2014, when final was moved to Katowice. Moving the deciding tournament of the season to Poland for Intel Extreme Masters was a complete turnaround. Since the very first IEM World Championship in Katowice, Spodek seemed to be a perfect venue for this kind of events. Atmosphere was pretty much the same as during football games taking palce in enormous stadiums.

Only the best play in Katowice

Three events concluding three different seasons of Intel Extreme Masters already took place in Katowice, each beating previous record of attendance. In 2014 the event was visited by 73 000 people, in 2015 104 000 e-sports fans took part in IEM Katowice, while 2016 had an attendance of 113 000 people. Rising attendance of IEM final events show how important this event is for Polish e-sports society. For players from many different countries this event is also extremely important.

Who took the champion title each year:

  • 2014:
    – StarCraft II: sOs
    – League of Legends: KT Rolster Bullets
    – CS:GO (EMS One tournament): Virtus.pro
  • 2015:
    – StarCraft II: Zest
    – League of Legends: TSM
    – CS:GO (ESL One tournament): Fnatic
  • 2016:
    – StarCraft II: Polt
    – League of Legends: Polt
    – CS:GO: Fnatic

It has already been announced that this season will also feature three most important e-sports games: StarCraft II, League of Legends and CS:GO. The World Championship event in Katowice will be preceded by three stops:

  • July 28-31: Shanghai
  • November 19-20: Oakland
  • December 16-18: Gyeonggi

It’s time for Shanghai

Sixteen players will be competing for champion title at IEM Shanghai:

  • Théo „PtitDrogo” Freydière
  • Alex „Neeb” Sunderhaft
  • Huang „Cyan” Min
  • Ke „Has” Yu Feng
  • Caviar Napoleon „EnDerr” Marquises-Acampado
  • Jens „Snute” Aasgaard
  • Huang „TooDming” Huiming
  • Shin „Hydra” Dong Won
  • Brandon „puCK” Qual
  • Tobias „ShoWTimE” Sieber
  • Maru „MaSa” Kim
  • Marc „uThermal” Schlappi
  • Artur „Nerchio” Bloch
  • Mikołaj „Elazer” Ogonowski
  • Kim „viOLet” Dong Hwan
  • Zhou „iAsonu” Hang

The tournament, whose winner will take home $16 000 and 1000 WCS points will kick off tomorrow at 5PM CEST.

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