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A store's PlayStation display case. Photo: Budrul Chukrut/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Sony's PlayStation division has bought the Evolution Championship Series (Evo), the long-running fighting game tournament that hosts contests between the world’s best players of video games such as "Street Fighter," "Mortal Kombat," and "Tekken."

The big picture: Video game giants such as Sony and Microsoft usually buy companies that make games. But Sony's acquisition of Evo, made jointly with a new group called RTS, is the rare purchase of an event — and a notable move for Sony into competitive gaming.

Catch up quick: The grassroots Evo events have been running since the late '90s, most recently in Las Vegas in front of thousands of attendees.

  • The bigger audience is online, where nearly 300,000 people tuned into the Evo 2019 finals featuring Nintendo's "Super Smash Bros. Ultimate."
  • This year's event will be online-only, across two weekends in August, and feature at least four major fighting games.

Of note: "Smash Bros." may not be there.

  • Nintendo and Sony are arch-rivals. While Evo will still be open to non-PlayStation games, Nintendo wouldn’t confirm involvement, telling Axios it will "assess" the event.

Worth seeing: Take a look at the most famous finish in fighting-game history, 2004's "Evo Moment 37."

Go deeper

Updated 1 hour ago - World

North Korea claims latest missile test new weapon launched from submarine

North Korean state media claims the country's military fired this missile on Tuesday. Photo: Korean Central News Agency

North Korean state media announced that a detected ballistic missile launch off its east coast on Tuesday was a newly developed weapon test-fired from a submarine.

Why it matters: Pyongyang's latest in a series of recent missile launches into the sea happened hours after U.S. officials emphasized their commitment to restart negotiations on North Korea's nuclear weapons program, which have stalled since talks broke down during the Trump administration, AP notes.

3 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Manchin's massive means test

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) is offering progressives a trade: He'll vote for their cherished social programs if they accept strict income caps for the recipients, people familiar with the matter tell Axios.

Why it matters: Manchin’s plan to use so-called means-testing for everything from paid family medical leave to elder and disabled care would drastically shrink the size and scope of the programs. It also would bring a key moderate vote to the progressive cause.

The China whisperer

Nick Burns. Photo: Chen Mengtong/China News Service via Getty Images

President Biden's nominee for ambassador to China will face aggressive questioning Wednesday about the most important, and potentially perilous, bilateral relationship in the world.

Why it matters: While Nick Burns is an experienced diplomat with support on both sides of the aisle, lawmakers want to use his confirmation hearing to force the administration into some tough positions on China.

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