Counter-Strike league FLASHPOINT announces changes due to coronavirus

FLASHPOINT is a new North American-based franchised Counter-Strike: Global Offensive league set to kick off in March in Los Angeles. Provided by FLASHPOINT

FLASHPOINT, a new Counter-Strike: Global Offensive set to kick off March 13, announced Friday that it would hold its debut event entirely in a Los Angeles studio and canceled an April playoff event because of the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.

The North American-based franchised league formerly known as B Site announced the changes via a statement on Twitter.

"The studio is a controlled environment that allows us to implement strong policies and best practices to protect the players and our employees," the league said, "while also avoiding incremental travel and interactions with fans."

The canceled playoff event was set to take place in April in Stockholm.

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On Friday, the coronavirus eclipsed 100,000 cases worldwide. It has killed nearly 3,400 people, primarily in China, the epicenter of the outbreak, according to The Associated Press. More than half of those who contracted the virus have now recovered.

Concerns about the disease have caused cancellations of events across dozens of sports worldwide as well as questions about whether this year's Tokyo Olympics will be affected. Gaming and esports have also felt the impact of COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus.

FLASHPOINT is the second Counter-Strike: Global Offensive event to be affected by the virus. In Europe, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive's IEM Katowice tournament was played out without an audience last week because of the threat.

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Friday included several other coronavirus-related announcements in the esports world. The League of Legends European Championship announced it will move its spring final from Budapest to Berlin as cases continue to climb in the region, and the Call of Duty League announced it will be taking additional precautions during this weekend's Los Angeles homestand, though the event will still take place. Streaming platform Twitch also announced the cancellation of TwitchCon Amsterdam.

Rocket League developer Psyonix announced it will not run the Rocket League Season 9 World Championship, which was scheduled for April 24-26 in Dallas. The League of Legends Pro League in China, after a nearly monthlong hiatus, will return in an online format because of the threat of the virus, and League Champions Korea is now being postponed.

Activision-Blizzard's Overwatch League has seen its homestands in China and South Korea go to the wayside for now as well. No plans have been announced for making up those matches yet.