Like many gaming websites at present, we are getting pretty excited about the upcoming relaunch of the original Starcraft in a remastered edition.
The real-time strategy game from Blizzard is undoubtedly a classic and has had impressive staying power considering its original launch almost 20 years ago. However, one of the most interesting aspects we’ve noted is how some commentators have taken the refresh of the game – complete with 4K graphics and improved features including anti-cheat – as a fairly clear sign that it is being reborn for the world of eSports.
Starcraft is of course already a key player in this market, with the sequel Starcraft II thought to be among the world’s highest paying games based on prize money. However, there is the sense that Blizzard are no doubt keen to push the original as the world of eSports continues to grow at a truly incredible rate.
Let’s be clear, competitive gaming is undoubtedly big news right now with recent research from Newzoo suggesting that the only way is up for the phenomenon, as it is set to generate $696 million and reach a worldwide audience of 385 million people throughout 2017.
As well as watching games, you can now even bet on eSports through sites such as Bets.io, which offers visitors the opportunity to gamble on competition matches in some of the biggest games including Starcraft II, DOTA and League of Legends.
With all of this growth, it is perhaps unsurprising that seemingly everyone is keen on getting involved in this world. On one hand, you have TV manufacturer Hisense signing an exclusivity deal to provide screens to the team Evil Geniuses and on the other, you have the NHL reportedly considering the creation of their own league.
The NBA has already taken that step and created a league in partnership with Take Two Interactive that will focus on the NBA 2K titles they collaborate on. While soccer is yet to go the same way, clubs have already been making plans too. Interestingly, the French club Paris St Germain has even chosen to create a team that doesn’t focus purely on soccer games and plays the popular title League of Legends. Their reasoning? They want to take their brand into eSports and don’t feel it necessarily has to align to kicking a ball on a pitch.
All of this clearly shows that eSports is a huge deal and everything indicates that it is only going to get bigger in the long run. Considering the current media focus on the issue, it is hard to argue against 2017 indeed being the year when it finally goes truly mainstream. With this in mind, it is totally understandable why this Starcraft re-release would happen now and with the improvements that have been outlined.
The truth is, it also probably will not be the last title to go through this either, as many developers eye up the potential for refurbishing old classics or creating new titles with one eye on breaking into this increasingly lucrative and exciting area.
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