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Halo: The Master Chief Collection will launch alongside a new eSports league. Today 343 Industries announced the "Halo Championship Series," a professional competition featuring Halo multiplayer.
"The 'Halo Championship Series,' or HCS, was born of 343 Industries’ desire to curate a quality eSports experience – for pro players, enthusiasts, and spectators – by creating a single sanctioning body for Halo," 343 Industries explained on Xbox Wire. "Designed to foster the best environment and platform for competitive multiplayer, the HCS will showcase, sponsor and support existing tournament organizers in the growing landscape of eSports today."
"To help fulfill this ambition, 343 Industries has teamed up with Twitch, ESL, and various tournament organizers to create a year of high-stakes action featuring Halo 2: Anniversary, the newly reimagined multiplayer engine within Halo: The Master Chief Collection."
The preseason for HCS' first year will begin soon after Halo: The Master Chief Collection's launch this month. Teams of four players will compete in LAN and online tournaments hosted by various organizations. The top teams in each event will receive HCS Points. The amount they receive will depend on how many teams attended the event and the size of the prize pool.
The squads with the most HCS Points at the end of the season will then be invited to the finals. The full details on the season finals haven't been announced. They'll take place sometime in March 2015.
"In addition to awarding official HCS points, 343 Industries and Twitch look forward to working with and supporting tournament organizers in a variety of ways to ensure the best experience possible for players and fans alike. This includes, but is not limited to financial support, tech support, promotional support, talent and production support, and more."
The first official HCS event is the Halo: The Master Chief Collection Launch Invitational tournament on November 8th and 9th. During this tournament, 32 professional FPS players will compete in Halo 2 Anniversary for a prize pool of $50,000. Additional details will be announced about the Halo Championship Series during the event. The broadcast at Twitch.tv/Halo begins at 2PM PDT.
The top players at the Invitational will also be among the first in the world to try out Halo 5's multiplayer. They'll play exhibition matches in H5 at the Avalon Theater on November 10th. These matches will be part of a larger event that 343 Industries has dubbed "HaloFest".
Halo: The Master Chief Collection will then launch on November 11th. The Xbox One exclusive includes remakes of four main games in the Halo series, along with access to an eventual Halo 5 beta. Here are a few reasons why you should check it out.