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Blizzard Entertainment, the Irvine company behind massive hit video games including the World of Warcraft, StarCraft and Diablo series, hosts BlizzCon, an annual event where fans can get together, play and share their enthusiasm for the games. The event, celebrating its 10th anniversary this year, features tournaments where world-class gamers face off in real time on the company’s marquee titles while crowds in the tens of thousands watch their every (virtual) move—think of it as the Comic-Con for video games. So whether you're looking for local attractions, the best bars in L.A. or how to get tickets, here's your guide to BlizzCon 2016.
When is BlizzCon 2016?
The conference takes place Friday, November 5, and Saturday, November 6. Opening ceremonies will be held 11am Friday and the final events wrap up by 9:30pm Saturday. Gamers participating in the competitive tournaments will start their matches as early as 9am.
Where does it take place?
BlizzCon 2016 will be held at the Anaheim Convention Center, 800 W Katella Ave, across the street from the Disneyland Resort.
What is on this year’s schedule?
The core of BlizzCon are the esports tournaments for hardcore gamers, particularly the World of Warcraft Arena World Championship, during which teams of players from around the globe will compete for $250,000. The European team has a history of domination, but could be upset this year by teams from China, Korea or the Americas. Tournament finals will also be held for Hearthstone, Overwatch and StarCraft II.
In between the competitions, there will be panels and demonstrations highlighting the art, design, engineering, acting and other facets of video game creation, sure to delight serious fans. Game makers from Blizzard Entertainment will also provide previews of forthcoming games and an anniversary celebration for classics from the company’s 25 years. The evenings end with costume contests and fan talent shows as well as elaborate opening and closing ceremonies.
How does one register to attend?
Tickets to attend the convention run $199 and include a badge to enter the convention hall, a gift bag and in-game bonuses. Virtual tickets are also available for $39.99 that don’t get you into the show itself, but do grant you access to an exclusive live stream of all event happenings and esports tournaments.