Microsoft appears set to expand the brand awareness surrounding its titular gaming franchise, Halo.
Microsoft announced yesterday January 22, 2019, the all-new Halo Champion Series (HCS) Invitational which will make its first appearance at the media, music and technology festival South by Southwest (SXSW) this March from the 15th to the 17th.
As the Halo game franchise converges at the intersection of media and technology, offering an esports competition at this years SXSW seems like a golden opportunity to expand the burgeoning esports audience as well bolster the Xbox brand at a relatively unconventional crowd.
The HCS Invitational at SXSW will feature a variety a Halo tournaments and experiences for professional players and Halo fans alike. On the main stage, the top six Halo teams from the Halo Classic in St. Louis have been invited for a double elimination Halo 3 showdown over the $100,000 prize pool. The Microsoft Store 2v2 Throwdown will see hometown heroes compete alongside regional pros for a $5,000 prize pool. Pros, casters, content creators and fans will come together for a Big Team Battle Bonanza to compete together on the mainstage. And finally, attendees will have the chance to compete in an open Free-For-All tournament with a $5,000 prize pool on the line. For a full breakdown of tournaments and activities, head to Halo Waypoint.
Beyond being part of Halo history, those in attendance at the SXSW19 HCS will also be privy to some exclusive announcements regarding the franchise.
A post on Halo Waypoint, linked to in the Xbox Wire post above, also includes this tidbit: "Not only will you be treated to amazing matches and gameplay, but we’ve also got some exciting MCC news to reveal during the show," so fans of Halo: The Master Chief Collection have added incentive to tune in.