Recap: Halo E-Sports Makes It"s Mark Via X-Games Aspen 2016
This year eight of the top Halo esport teams from around the world flew to snowy Colorado to participate in the Halo World Championship Tour: X Games Aspen Invitational 2016. At stake was $30,000 in prize money and, more importantly, X Game Gold, Silver and Bronze medals. For many pro players and fans, it was a dream come true to see Halo at the X Games and the tournament did not disappoint, hosting some of the most competitive and intense matches ever in Halo esports. In addition, segments and highlights of the tournament were integrated directly in ESPN’s coverage of the X Games, giving many viewers at home their first taste of Halo and esports on television.
The tournament kicked off on Thursday, January 28, as teams were split up into two groups and began competing in group play, where teams in each group faced off against each other with the hopes of proceeding to the semifinals and finals match for a chance at the Gold. Day one of the tournament would see several dominant matches, as top ranked teams Team Allegiance, CLG and Evil Geniuses defeated Epsilon eSports, PENTA Sports and Dream Team in a convincing 3-0 fashion in a best of five matches. Thursday would also host the first grudge match of the tournament, with Renegades and Ninja facing off against Team Liquid, who had cut Ninja only weeks before the tournament. Ninja would get his revenge, with Renegades cleanly sweeping Team Liquid in another 3-0 victory.
With the end of the All-Star match, competitive Halo concluded at X Games Aspen while fans continued to stream into the Xbox tent to try their hand in Halo 5: Guardians. It was a fantastic event filled with incredible individual play and coordinated teamwork, fast-paced decisions made under intense pressure, and one of the best finals Halo esports has ever seen. Congratulations to Evil Geniuses for winning the X Games Gold medal as well as Counter Logic Gaming and Team Allegiance for Silver and Bronze!