WESG 2018: Hearthstone Boomsday Begins

Esports has gone a long way in the world of the competitive gaming scene. For those of you who doesn’t know about esports, simply put it this way: it is a competition between people or groups using online games as their platform. It is different from traditional sports in a way that it uses more of the brain muscles rather than the entire body, needs a lot of hand-eye coordination for most games and fully driven by strategy building for some.

There are many tournaments happening around the globe tailored for several different esports. One of them is WESG (World Electronic Sports Games), which caters to games such as Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (CS:GO), Defense of the Ancients (DotA 2), Starcraft 2, Vainglory and Hearthstone. WESG started 2 years ago and from there, it’s been growing bigger ever since.

Now let’s delve into one of the games in WESG that may not seem too heavy on correlating the hands and eyes, but rather a more problem-solving oriented game: Hearthstone, a digital collectible card game where you collect cards and build decks to use against opposing players. The game is concluded by diminishing the starting 30 life total via direct damage, attack or burning the enemy deck down to zero. There may be other ways of winning by fulfilling some requirements that a few cards from the game specifies. You may also encounter a big swing in variance via random cards taken from abilities and spells, which usually puts people on a tilt or left with a big question mark as to how they won or lost via a card that was not even in their deck to begin with.

Moving back to the event, WESG has its qualifying games per country and by region where several participants from all over the world gather to compete and claim the grand finals trophy.

WESG: Hearthstone’s prize pool reached $300,000 last year for the male competitors alone. While the female counterpart gets $51,000. With so much money at stake, it is very enticing for competitive minds to take a shot at these types of events. One of our very own won the WESG: Hearthstone 2 years ago and have been inspiring a lot of our countrymen Hearthstone gamers to compete at the international level.

Watching Staz (Philippines) against Orange (Sweden) at the WESG Finals: Hearthstone, the Philippine Flag on broadcast was set to be at war with the red part being on top instead of blue. Not a big deal but it encourages the audience that Philippines is in a heated battle against a foreign foe. Staz won the whole event and was crowned the 2016 WESG Champion. He also earned a whopping $150,000 that year.

In the local scene, Staz and some of the biggest names are expected to compete in the upcoming WESG Philippine Qualifiers, they are:

Euniel “Staz” Javiñas (WESG 2016 Champ)
Cara Rechelyn “CaraCute” Sy Vergel De Dios
Dustin “Waning Moon” Mangulabnan
Chalk “Chalk” Zaldivar
Philip “Switch” Galang (HCT Taipei 2018 Champ)
Richard “Pompi” Castillo

The Men’s qualifier for this year’s WESG for Hearthstone in the Philippines will be held online this coming September 1. The Women’s division will be held the next day.

Will the Philippines once again emerge as champions or will a dark horse from our archipelago defend our country?

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