Fans and players are accusing Blizzard Entertainment of lying about their investment into the BlizzCon prize pool for the World of Warcraft Arena World Championship (AWC) and the Mythic Dungeon International (MDI).
In a post back in March, Blizzard announced they would be selling two new toys in the Blizzard shop and in-game shop in order to support the prize pool for AWC and MDI.
In the post Blizzard noted:
“For a limited time, every purchase of the Transmorpher Beacon or Lion’s Pride and Horde’s Might Fireworks, 25% of the proceeds will contribute toward the year’s finals LAN event prize pool for the Arena World Championship (AWC) and the Mythic Dungeon International (MDI) with a guaranteed minimum prize pool of $500,000 USD ($250,000 USD for each event.) Your support will help take the WoW esports prize pool to the next level.”
That post lead many fans to believe that Blizzard would be contributing $500,000 on top of whatever the 25% cut from the toys would be.
In fact, back in January, MassivelyOp reported:
“Both esports events will be boasting even larger prize pools, which will be augmented by the sales of two new in-game toys that will go on sale this spring, with the final prize pools set to be announced “later this year.””
As BlizzCon drew closer, suspicions arose that Blizzard was not actually going to contribute the minimum $500,000, but instead would only use the proceeds from the toys to pay for the two prize pools.
In a post this past Monday, Blizzard announced the total prize pool for both events, after the proceeds from the toys.
“We’re happy to announce that because of your direct support, the combined prize pool for WoW Esports at BlizzCon 2019 will be $660,000! Each of our two WoW Esports programs, the World of Warcraft Arena World Championship and the Mythic Dungeon International Global Finals, will have a prize pool of $330,000 up for grabs. Thank you for making this the largest prize pool we’ve ever had for WoW Esports at BlizzCon and thank you for your continued support of WoW Esports.”
However, the suspicions of Blizzard simply using the sales from the toys for for the prize pool was seemingly confirmed professional player Kelvin “Snutz” Nguyen, who plays for Cloud 9.
Snutz responded to a Tweet from popular streamer Asmongold who originally called for a wait and see approach and suggested people not jump to conclusions.
Attention people who are mad about Blizzard supposedly not contributing any money to the prize pools:
This is a completely unfounded conclusion, there is no place that states that Blizz won’t contribute if the pool is too big
Lets wait for more info https://t.co/FOuLTZeRe4
— Zack (@Asmongold) October 29, 2019
Snutz responded to Asmongold by revealing that he and a number of other professional players had actually questioned Blizzard about the prize pool money. Blizzard told them the truth that they were indeed just using the sales of toys to fund the prize pools instead of adding the toy sales on top of the minimum $250,000 pool for each pool.
It’s simple. All competitors got into a players meeting, including myself. We asked and they told us there – you can ask any AWC or MDI competitor (including myself) to confirm this, heck I’m sure Dmachine will too
— C9 Snutz (@Snutztv) October 29, 2019
He added that Blizzard doesn’t mention that the prize pool is only from the sales of the toys “to save face.”
There’s absolutely zero reason for me to bring this up if it wasn’t true, blizzard doesn’t mention in the blog post to save face
— C9 Snutz (@Snutztv) October 29, 2019
Shortly after “Snutz” provided Asmongold with the updated he information, he took to Twitter to update his fans.
He called for Blizzard to front the minimum $250,000 prize pot for both AWS and MID they had initially announced.
Asmongold stated, “I think this is just a terrible misuse of player’s good will towards the community and towards these events.”
“Here’s what I think Blizzard should do. Blizzard should say, ‘You know what we f***** up, it was misleading, players misunderstood this. We are going to put in $500,000 anyways. Let’s take that $660k and let’s turn that into a 1.16 million. I think that’s the right thing for Blizzard to do.”
“And hopefully we can see that happen. If not I really can’t see people buying these toys again and I think Blizzard has really misused the goodwill of the community.”
In regards to the AWC and MDI prize pools
— Zack (@Asmongold) October 30, 2019
What do you make of Blizzard’s alleged decision to only use money from the toy sales instead of fronting the $500,000 they originally intimated they would do?