While Tom Brady and the Patriots are taking a much needed rest before the Super Bowl, a different kind of championship is set to go down in Boston this weekend.
Some of the world's top esports athletes will throw down in the Hub for this year's ELEAGUE Major Boston event. The highly-anticipated video game tournament will take over Agganis Arena Jan. 26-28.
Ahead of this weekend's esports action, here are three things you need to know about ELEAGUE Major Boston.
What are they playing?
Attendees will get to see players take each other on in the fan-favorite, first-person shooter "Counter-Strike: Global Offensive." Similar to "Call of Duty" or "Battlefield," the multiplayer game involves a lot of military-style action using a variety of virtual weapons. During each match, teams also try to defeat each other by completing certain objectives, such as defusing or planting bombs.
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How does it work?
After whittling down the playing field at qualifying events in Atlanta over the past few weeks, the remaining eight teams will ship up to Boston for the champions stage. The opening round of matches will take place on Friday and Saturday, including a battle between America's Cloud9 team and Spain's G2 Esports. The semi-finals will also take place on Saturday, with the big championship match set to go down at 2 p.m. on Sunday. A cool $1 million purse will be on the line, so don't expect these gamers to hold anything back.
What can fans expect?
Fans who stop by the festivities will be able to take home a few goodies. Not only will RFID-enabled badges give attendees access to the arena, but they can also be linked to fans' Steam accounts for special in-game item drops. ELEAGUE Major Boston will be giving away gift bags in person as well over the course of the weekend. Attendees can expect a slew of other fun activities too, including autograph and photo sessions, an interactive crowd-sourced polling game, giveaways, plus concessions and merchandise for sale.
If you go:
Jan. 26-28, Agganis Arena, 925 Commonwealth Ave., Boston, $120, eleague.com