The COVID-19 pandemic has played spoilsport again as the Asian Games has been postponed by nearly a year.

The 19th Asian Games in Hangzhou, China, which will feature esports as a medal event for the first time, has been rescheduled to Sept. 23 – Oct. 8, 2023, the Olympic Council of Asia (OCA) has announced. The Asiad was initially supposed to happen from Sept. 10 to 25. It was postponed, however, due to the recent surge of COVID-19 cases in China.

What sets this Asian Games apart from all the other ones is that it has something for esports audiences as well. Countries will be able to field teams across eight games and earn medals which will add to the overall tally. These games are as follows:

  • Arena of Valor Asian Games version
  • Dota 2
  • Dream Three Kingdoms 2
  • EA Sports FIFA
  • Hearthstone
  • League of Legends
  • PUBG Mobile Asian Games version
  • Street Fighter V

OCA explains the decision to postpone the Asiad by a year

The Asian Games have been pushed back by a year, and the OCA has explained this decision in a press release. It said that a task force was created after the decision to postpone the event was taken. This Task Force has been communicating with different bodies and stakeholders to find a window to host the prestigious sporting competition which doesn’t clash with other international events.

Thus, the tournament will now be held from Sept. 23 to Oct. 8, 2023.

Esports in the 19th Asian Games: All your questions answered

What esports titles will be played in the Asian Games?

Eight games have been included which are Arena of Valor Asian Games version, Dota 2, Dream Three Kingdoms 2, EA Sports FIFA, Hearthstone, League of Legends, PUBG Mobile Asian Games version, and Street Fighter V.

What do the Asian Games versions of Arena of Valor and PUBG Mobile mean?

Firstly, Arena of Valor has a different Chinese localized version called Honor of Kings. While the core game is similar, the two games have different heroes. The Asian Games Version of Arena of Valor will combine both games for the Asiad.

PUBG Mobile’s Asian Games version, on the other hand, will be really different. The battle royale game won’t have “violence” in the Asiad. Instead, players will compete in racing and shooting practice.

Where will the esports competitions be played in the Asian Games 2022?

The esports competitions will be played in a separately constructed venue. The Xiacheng District Esports Venue boasts an 80,000 square meter construction and has 4,087 seats.

Is this the first time esports is being played in the Asian Games?

No, it isn’t. However, it’s the first time esports will be a medal event. In the Asian Games 2018, esports was only included as a demonstration sport. This means that while countries could participate, any medals won wouldn’t count in that country’s overall tally.A still from esports in the Asian Games 2018

What is the exact schedule for esports in the 19th Asian Games?

While the OCA has announced the new dates for the Asian Games, the individual discipline’s schedule hasn’t been revealed yet. It will likely be revealed closer to the event next year.

Wasif Ahmed -

Wasif Ahmed

| Twitter: @wasifahd_

Wasif is an esports journalist from India who covers mobile gaming news. From PUBG Mobile to Wild Rift, he has been covering mobile esports for over three years. You can reach out to him on Twitter to chat about games and esports anytime.