In a bid to rapidly expand esports development for their multiple online battle arena title Honor of Kings, Tencent plans to revamp the game’s esports ecosystem.
“We want to take Honor of Kings to the next level,” said Yijia Zhang, Chairman, King Pro League (KPL).
The 2020 esports roadmap for Honor of Kings will focus on three critical areas:
- Local development
- Accelerating growth of professional teams
- International expansion
In China, Tencent has confirmed that six Honor of Kings teams will be setting up their home venues in highly connected cities. These locations — Chengdu, Shanghai, Wuhan, Nanjing, Chongqing, and Guangzhou — are hotbeds of innovation, with next-gen infrastructure development that will be conducive to extensive esports growth. Setting up a home base will allow these teams to fully focus on taking their gameplay skills to the next level.
As for professional league growth, Tencent is opening up six new spots in the semi-pro KPL G-League (KGL) that amateur and enthusiasts teams can compete for. This new structure ensures even more players can join the KPL at a faster rate.
The overseas division for Honor of Kings pro tournaments, the Korea King Pro League, will be revamped and renamed to the King Pro League Global Tour. This move, which transforms the original event into a global platform, will also combine offline and online matches for 2020. Malaysia will be hosting all offline competitions.
These efforts have set the pace for how Tencent wants to scale the esports side for its popular MOBA game. This also includes the continuous slow-pacing to rollout in limited regions.