Intel Extreme Masters Guangzhou canceled due to political unrest in China
Intel Exteme Masters Guangzhou, or IEM Guangzhou for short, a popular yearly stop on the IEM circuit has been cancelled. This cancellation comes as a result of the cancellation of the hosting event, the Anime Comics and Games Convention, which is held yearly in Guangzhou similar to PAX here in the US. This cancellation is unfortunate as qualifiers for the event are still in full swing - but considering they are being compensated for already booked travel and board, no harm no foul. This event was set to host a League of Legends and StarCraft II tournament - and its sad really, as last year's Guangzhou was one of the highlights of 2011. There are no plans to reschedule this event.
Michal Bilcharz, director of this pro gaming event, issued the following statement:
We were all looking forward to going to China yet again as last year's tournament in Guangzhou, at the same venue, was a great success for us. Fans from all over the world surely remember Greg "IdrA" Fields' successful run through the tournament as well as the first ever encounter between Western League of Legends teams and their Chinese counterparts.
We are terribly sorry to disappoint esports fans that were expecting to enjoy the event, especially all Chinese esports fans. Unfortunately, the circumstances that forced the cancellation upon us were entirely beyond our control, though we understand and respect the decisions made by the Anime Comics and Games organizers.
Despite this setback, we are working very hard on delivering more fantastic events for esports fans around the world. We will soon announce more Intel Extreme Masters tournaments, including another one in Asia
The cancellation of this event comes after political unrest in China against Japanese culture in general (due to territorial disuputes, if you're unfamiliar with the situation) - unrest that's included riots against many popular Japanese stores. Officials of the hosting convention were worried that the same could happen there, and thus, with no home IEM was also forced to cancel their event. No word yet on the effect on the IEM circuit as a whole, but we'll keep you posted as we find out more on the situation.
Dustin Steiner is GameZone's eSports Correspondent! Follow him on Twitter @VGHC_Deitis and check out Video Gaming Hard Corps, where he is a local tournament organizer for the S. FL. Fighting Game Community.