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NZ’s top video gamers take on Asia’s best

NZ’s top video gamers take on Asia’s best

AUCKLAND 06 August 2008 – Nine of New Zealand’s top gamers are set to battle Asia’s best at the 2008 World Cyber Games Asian Championship in Singapore this weekend.

Elite gamers from 14 countries across Asia Pacific will compete at the Suntec Singapore International Convention and Exhibition Centre on 9-10 August.

The 2008 World Cyber Games (WCG) Asian Championship sees the top 140 gamers in the Asia Pacific region competing on video game titles such as Guitar Hero III (Xbox 360) and FIFA 2008 (PC).

World Cyber Games New Zealand Strategic Partner, xLAN’s Susan Baikie, says the NZ team, dubbed the eblacks, will be competing for a chance to win approximately US$15,000 in prize money.

Susan Baikie says the popularity of gaming increases every year. More than NZ$51.5 billion was spent on video games worldwide last year. In New Zealand last year more than NZ$100 million was spent, up 20 per cent over the past five years.

“The NZ World Cyber Games qualifiers in July showcased some of New Zealand’s best gamers and we’re looking forward to competing against the best gamers in Asia Pacific. The eblacks have been training non-stop for this world-class tournament and are more than ready to battle at the eSports equivalent to the Olympic Games.”

The eblacks will compete in a mix of console and PC games: Virtua Fighter 5 (Xbox 360), Guitar Hero III (Xbox 360), DOTA All-Stars (PC), Need for Speed: ProStreet (PC) and FIFA 2008 (PC). The team comprises nine members, most of which will be competing in Singapore for the first time:

2008 eblacks team

• Lorance "Escobar" Taylor DOTA - All Stars (PC)
• Jeremy "jerm_nz" Macdonald DOTA - All Stars (PC)
• Slava "slavOuchka" Sheynin DOTA - All Stars (PC)
• Nick "Veteran-in-Love" Catley DOTA - All Stars (PC)
• David "Wytaliba" Ashwell DOTA - All Stars (PC)
• Mason "massi4h" Maddox Guitar Hero III (Xbox 360)
• Austin "wugga" Sedgwick Virtua Fighter 5 (Xbox 360)
• Pejman "Pablo" Barzandeh FIFA 2008 (PC)
• Patrick "ssj2vegrick" Cullinan Need for Speed Pro-Street (PC)

More than 300 PCs, 40 Xbox 360s and more than 30 Samsung High-Definition LCD TVs will be spread over a combined floor space of 4,000 square metres over the two days of this ultimate gaming event.

With the support of sponsors Samsung, Intel and Microsoft Xbox 360 and supporting agencies Infocomm Development Authority (IDA) and Media Development Authority (MDA), this year's WCG Asian Championship promises to be an even bigger and better event than in previous years with more games, gamers and fans.

For more event details: http://www.eblacks.co.nz and http://asian.worldcybergames.com/

ENDS


The eblacks will depart Auckland International Airport on Thursday 07 August 2008, and will be waiting to board at the departure hall from 9:30am to 11:00am. If you wish to contact the team, please contact Susan Baikie, 027 320 2770.


About The World Cyber Games
The World Cyber Games (www.worldcybergames.com ) is the premier blue chip global video game tournament and culture festival. First founded in 2000 to promote global harmony through e-sports, the WCG has grown steadily ever since. Behind the slogan "Beyond the Game" and with contestants from more than 70 countries expected to participate in this year's event, the World Cyber Games has developed into a true global phenomenon with arguably the largest prize amount at stake. The World Cyber Games prides itself on leading the "Digital Entertainment Culture."
Attendee demographics:

41% 16-24 years, single male, predominantly students.
36% 25-34 years old professionals with a high interest in IT.
23% 20-29 year old singles.

The WCG hosts invitational matches for star players on three continents - Europe, Asia and America, called World Cyber Games Pan Regional Championships. To encourage gamers to participate in marquee events throughout the year, the WCG Pan Regional Championships were launched to enhance WCG brand awareness among IT industry watchers and local Partners in each region.

After a very successful WCG 2005 Grand Final and the first WCG Asian Championship in 2006, Singapore hosted the 2007 WCG Asian Championships from August 2nd - 5th in Suntec City, Singapore. 120 players from 12 countries participated in 5 official titles. Each country held qualifing rounds for the WCG Asian Championships, with the best gamers getting tickets to Singapore where they competed for the title of Asian Champions. Over 45 thousands spectators visited WCG2007 Asian Championship.

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