Twenty years ago, in 1998, StarCraft was released. This year, we celebrate its 20th anniversary with SC20, a series of StarCraft and StarCraft II events. Not long before this, in late 2017, StarCraft got a remastered edition, which made the game look considerably better and helped raise awareness of the title. Today, the celebration continues as Blizzard is launching the Korea StarCraft League (KSL), a StarCraft: Remastered tournament.
Format and Schedule
The tournament was open to all players, and the registration for it was in the middle of June. After that, online and offline qualifiers determined who will participate in the group stage.
The format of the group stage is a dual tournament best-of-five, and the top two players in each group will advance. Elimination stage is an eight-player single elimination BO5 bracket, with a BO7 final match. Total prize pool is ₩80,000,000, which is roughly equal to $70,000.
The tournament will go on for two months. RO16 has started on July 19 and the Final will be played on September 8. Korean analysts will be KCM, Zeus, and trOt(Park). The legendary Tastosis duo will provide English commentary. For a full schedule, click this link.
KSL is an open tournament, and as a result, 1,200 players initially signed up for the qualifiers. After many matches, both offline and online, 16 players came out on top. Player roster is skewed heavily away from Zerg, with half the players being Protoss, and five being Terran. A very notable participant in this tournament is Jaedong, arguably the best Zerg player in StarCraft: Brood War.
Korea StarCraft League will feature a balanced map pool with a total of seven maps:
- Blue Storm
- Circuit Breaker
- Fighting Spirit
- Polaris Rhapsody
Most of them were used in 2010 Proleague season, except Blue Storm and Roadkill.
KSL promises to be of great entertainment value, for both SC:R fans and new players alike. Artosis and Tasteless are the ultimate choices for casting this tournament and will undoubtedly provide content even for those who have no idea what StarCraft is. For our Korean readers, Park, Kim Chun Mil, and Zeus should provide the best possible commentary as well. You can watch the English version at the official StarCraft Twitch channel and the Korean broadcast here. If you can’t keep up with the schedule, VODs will be available on Twitch and on the official KSL website.
We can only hope that the increased viewership of StarCraft II tournaments will apply to SC:R as well. Even now, being 20 years old, it keeps up with other professional titles, and a potential to grow its fanbase will surely be a benefit for the future of StarCraft in particular and the RTS pro-scene in general. You can read more on the decline and growth of SCII in this article by Tyler Scott.