Premier fighting game competition the Evolution Championship Series (colloquially known as Evo) has been purchased by Sony Interactive Entertainment, the Japanese corporation announced today. Evo co-founders Tom and Tony Cannon plan to stay on as key advisors.
Joining Sony in the acquisition is RTS, a brand new esports organisation recently formed by sports marketing company Endeavour.
“Fighting games have been a vital part of PlayStation’s legacy and our community since the very beginning, and we’ve been thrilled to partner with Evo over the years,” said Steven Roberts, Sony’s vice president of global competitive gaming. “This joint acquisition with RTS marks a new chapter of collaboration with Evo’s co-founders, Tom and Tony Cannon, and their passionate community of fighting game fans.”
Since its formation as Battle by the Bay in 1996 and eventual evolution in 2002, Evo has been considered the most prestigious fighting game competition on the planet. Every year, it attracts thousands of players to Las Vegas for its open brackets, which allow everyone a chance to take on the big dogs and walk away victorious.
Evo, like most fighting game tournaments, was forced to halt in-person competition last year due to the covid-19 pandemic. The organisation’s 2020 make-up event, Evo Online, was then shut down after allegations of sexual misconduct hounded co-founder and former CEO Joey “Mr. Wizard” Cuellar. Before today, the competition’s future was in flux.