Live professional gaming will be broadcast on the BBC after the corporation signed a deal with Britain's biggest esports organisation Gfinity to air its Elite series. Four hours of coverage will be broadcast live each weekend over the next six weeks.
The first broadcast will take place tonight (28 July) at 9pm on online channel BBC Three, and will feature Street Fighter 5 action from the Gfinity Esports Arena in London. Tomorrow the action will focus on Counter-Strike GO, and on Sunday it's the turn of Rocket League.
Following tonight's 9pm broadcast, weekly shows will air from 8:45pm on Fridays, 9pm on Saturdays and 5pm on Sundays.
Broadcasts will consist of live competition, "exclusive lifestyle segments and editorial coverage... focusing on the players and their storylines," a statement explains.
"Esports has become hugely popular in the last few years with young audiences so it's great that BBC Three can bring this to a mainstream audience and create new habits with younger audiences as we stream three of the most popular games on BBC Three across the weekend," said BBC Three controller Damian Kavanagh.
Gfinity CEO Neville Upton, added: "This is an incredible moment for the Gfinity Elite Series and for esports fans in the UK and internationally.
Our partnership with BBC Three will bring Elite Series live and lifestyle content to millions of new viewers and showcase the incredible dedication and passion of professional gamers. We are extremely excited to announce to all of our fans, players and partners that for the next six consecutive weeks the Elite Series will be broadcast live on BBC Three.
"The BBC is one of the world's most renowned and respected broadcasters and their commitment to the Gfinity Elite Series is a defining moment for esports and we are very proud to be a part of it".
The Gfinity Elite Series is in its first season of competition, focusing on the three aforementioned games and offering a total prize pool of £225,000.