Sony and RTS buys Evolution Championship Series fighting game tournament

The Evolution Championship Series, better known as Evo, has been acquired by Sony Interactive Entertainment and RTS, a new esports venture. Terms of the transaction weren’t disclosed but it’s big news the fighting game community.

Questions such as the inclusion of console-specific games such as the “Super Smash Bros.” and the “Killer Instinct” series is up in the air. Those fighting games are Nintendo Switch and Xbox exclusives respectively.

Evo co-founders Tony and Tom Cannon will work as key advisers for the tournament along with Mark Julio, who is head of business development. Julio on Twitter said that Evo is “still open to all platforms.” That offers a glimmer hope for fans of other fighting games.

With that said, this could mark a major change for the scene as the tournament would likely focus on fighting games on PlayStation consoles. This year’s Evo was again announced to be online and it is scheduled to take place from Aug. 6 to 8 and Aug. 13. to 15. It’s going to be an open format with free entry. The games featured will be the following: “Tekken 7,” “Street Fighter V: Championship Edition,” “Mortal Kombat 11 Ultimate” and “Guilty Gear Strive.” All those titles are multiplatform.

Over the past two decades, Evo has grown quickly. It originally started off as Battle by the Bay in 1990s and was held at the Golfland arcade in Sunnyvale. It soon grew big enough that it was held universities such UCLA and Cal State Pomona. Evo eventually landed in Las Vegas and has been held at Caesars Palace, Rio and other hotels on the strip.

Last year, Evo was canceled after sexual misconduct allegations were reported against another Evo co-founder, Joey Cuellar. The sale of Evo marks a fresh start for the tournament and with corporate backing it could get back on track. “We want to reaffirm that harassment or abuse of any kind has no place within Evo or any of our future events, and we’re taking every precaution to make sure members of our community will always be treated with the respect, dignity and decency you deserve,” the Cannons said in a statement. “In order to deliver on the trust you have all put in Evo, we realize that we need an experienced strategic partner who truly respects the spirit of the” fighting game community.

Sony and RTS buys Evolution Championship Series fighting game tournament