I am sure all of you are quite familiar with the worldwide popularity of the game called Counter Strike Global Offensive ( CSGO from now on ). It is among the most popular games on the biggest gaming platform on PC called Steam. In the last couple of years, it has gained a massive popularity, along with other multiplayer games such as DotA 2 and League of Legends. These games are well known due to the fact that they have gathered huge companies to sponsor amazing competitions which are, to be quite honest, on par with real sports such as Football and Soccer. We are talking about a multi-million business here, with a large number of professional teams which are competing on large scale tournaments for huge prizes. With that in mind, it is no surprise that we are going to look into CSGO and some of its biggest tournaments that are going to be held this year.
With that being said, let’s see what exactly awaits us on the professional CSGO scene in 2016!
CS:GO Tournament Overview 2016:
- CS:GO – eLeague Playoffs – Season 1 (07/21/– 07/30/2016)
- CS:GO – ESL One Cologne 2016 (07/05/– 07/10/2016)
- CS:GO – ECS Season 1 Finals (06/24/– 06/26/2016)
- CS:GO – DreamHack Summer 2016 (06/18/– 06/21/2016)
- CS:GO eLeague Season 1 | 2016 (05/24/- 07/30/2016)
- CS:GO – ESL Pro League Season 3 Finals ( 5/11/2016 – 5/15/2016)
- CS:GO – DreamHack Austin 2016 ( 5/6/2016 – 5/8/2016)
- DreamHack Masters Malmö 2016 (04/12/2016 – 04/17/2016)
- MLG Major Championship: Columbus 2016 (3/29/2016 – 4/03/2016)
- CS:GO Counterpit League Season 2 – 2016 (3/17/2016 – 3/18/2016)
- CS:GO IEM Katowice 2016 (03/02/2016 – 03/05/2016)
- DreamHack Leipzig 2016 (1/22/2016 – 1/24/2016)
ESL ESEA Pro League
Date: Feb 09 – Apr 26
We will, of course, start off with the biggest competition ( league ) in CSGO – the ESL ESEA Pro League. This competition basically consists of 2 separate leagues, North American and European. This is considered as the main eSport event when it comes to CSGO, and as such, it has a massive audience, both live and via streaming services such as Twitch.tv. This is the third season of this tournament, which shows just how popular this game actually is.
A total of 24 Professional CSGO teams ( 12 in each league ) are competing for a total prize pool of $119,000, and best 4 from each league ( both NA and EU ) are going to the ESL ESEA Pro League Finals which can be considered as a separate tournament. The finals are going to be held in London where the 8 best teams will compete for the ultimate CSGO eSport title.
MLG Major Columbus 2016
Date: Mar 29 – Apr 03
Another spectacular CSGO tournament is the North American Major League Gaming Championship which is the first tournament of this type. During this competition, a total of 16 teams ( 8 that have been successful in the MLG qualifiers plus additional 8 which were directly invited) will be competing against each other for a total prize pool of $1 million. Yup, you read that right – $1 million!!!
The entire competition is going to be held at the MLG Arena in Columbus. The group stage matches will not be open to live audience while the playoffs, of course, will be open to spectators.
The 16 teams that will be participating in this tournament are already known, and they are as follows:
Team EnvyUs, Na Vi, FaZe Clan, NiP, Fnatic, Virtus Pro, Astralis, Luminosity Gaming, G2, Mouse, Splyce, Gambit, FlipSid3, Team Liquid, CLG and Cloud 9.
Judging by the participants, this will be an amazing tournament that will probably feature some of the most anticipated matchups this year!
Dreamhack Masters – Malmo 2016
Date: Apr 12 – Apr 17
I’m pretty sure that most of you know what Dreamhack is. It is basically the world’s largest digital technology festival which features everything computer related. Among the stuff that is going to be on this year’s Dreamhack are, of course, eSport competitions. The most anticipated one is surely the CSGO competition which is probably going to be the high point of the festival.
The event starts off on April 12 where a total of 16 teams will fight for the prestigious title. They will be divided in 4 groups, and only 2 teams from each of the groups will advance through to the next stage. Group matches, along with both quarter and semi finals are going to be played in BO3 fashion, while the finals will be a full on BO5 ( which are going to be played on April 17th, 19:00 CET. Since the European qualifiers have not yet been finished, a couple of names are still missing from the team sheets, but here are the constestants so far:
Astralis, Team EnvyUs, FaZe Clan, Fnatic, Luminosity, Na Vi, NiP, Virtus.pro, Mouse, CLG, Tempo Storm, Tema Liquid and TyLoo.
Judging by the team rosters, we are in for quite a treat. Combine that with the fact that the winners will not only earn the Dreamhack Masters title, but will go home with a whooping $100,000 in their pockets.
ESL ESEA Pro League Finals
Date: May 12 – May 15
This tournament is the pinnacle of professional CSGO scene where a total of 8 teams are competing for the ultimate prize of $512,000. This year, the Finals are going to be held in London in front of a huge live audience which will be cheering for their favorite teams.
During the group stage, the teams are divided in 2 groups, and only the first 2 teams in each group are going through to the semi finals. The semi finals, along with the group stage matches, are played in a BO3 fashion, while the finals are played in BO5.
In the very first season of this competition ( 2014 ), the finalists were C9 ( Cloud 9 ) and Fnatic. After a couple of amazing matches, Fnatic proved to be the better team and won the title. Last year, in the second season of this competition, the finalists were team Fnatic ( again ) and team Natus Vincere ( also known as Na VI ) which were forces to be reckoned with during the entire tournament. In the end, Fnatic proved to be the better team, as they managed to defeat Na Vi and win the title again, along with a total of $100,000.
Dreamhack ZOWIE Open 2016
Dating back from 2012, Dreamhack ZOWIE Open is Dreamhack’s prestigious e-sports circuit featuring 5 live LAN tour stops across the entire world. Only the best of the best teams are competing in this competition, which means each match of each tour will be considered as a special treat to all CSGO fans out there.
The 2016 tour has already started in Leipzig back in January, when NaVi snatched the title away from Luminosity in what was probably one of the most viewed CSGO matches this year.
The tour continues in Austin, Texas in the first week of May. After that comes the annual Dreamhack Summer which will be held in Jonkoping ( Sweden ) from 18th to 21st of June.
Then, in mid September ( 16th to 18th to be more precise ), CSGO audience will be watching Dreamhack Bucharest which will be held in . . . you’ve guessed it – Bucharest! 😀
And then, finally, in late November, teams will gather one last time in 2016 for the annual Dreamhack Winter tournament which will be held in Jonkoping ( Sweden ).
Now that you know a bit more about the Dreamhack ZOWIE Open, let’s take a closer look at the format of the actual tournaments:
- Group stage
- Two groups with four teams in each
- Double elimination group format (GSL) Bo1 and Bo3
- Top two from each group move on to the playoffs
- Single-Elimination Bracket
- Bo3 matches
Each of the tour stops has a total prize pool of $100,000 which sums it up to a total of whooping $500,000. Talk about a good business to invest in, eh?!
ESL One – Cologne 2016
Date: Jul 08 – Jul 10
ESL ( short for Electronic Sports League ) is the biggest ( and oldest ) eSports promotor with a massive number of held tournaments under its name. The biggest of them all is surely the professional ESL ONE competition which brings millions of fans together to cheer for their favorite teams. This year, one of the most anticipated eSport events is surely the ESL ONE COLOGNE.
As always, it will feature best 8 CSGO teams in the world ( Legends tier ) along with 8 challenger teams that will be decided by qualification matches. The team roster will be decided by 3 stages of qualifications: European, Asian and North American.
Last year, the finalists were Team EnvyUs and Fnatic… and of course, Fnatic swept them aside and won yet another title. What a team they are ( OLOF FTW!! )
The total prize pool for this year’s ESL One is $250,000 and the teams will be divided into 4 groups, each consisting of 4 teams. The group stage will be separated into 2 parts, where both stages will feature only BO1:
Group Stage 1 – only the first team from each group goes directly through to the quarter finals. Second placed teams are going to Group Stage 2 as the high seed, while the 3rd and 4th placed teams are going as the low seed.
Group Stage 2 – We will have 4 groups again but this time with 3 teams in each of them. Again, only the first team goes through to the quarter finals while the others are eliminated.
Playoffs – Quarter finals, semi finals and finals are all played in a BO3 fashion. In other words, first team that wins on 2 maps is the winner! Read more about the ESL ONE Cologne 2016.
The World Championship Belgrade 2016
Date: Oct 12 – Oct 16
The CSGO World Championship 2016 will be held in Belgrade ( Same location as last year ) and it will feature only 8 national teams, whereas there were 16 teams last year. This is yet another prestigious competition, but in this one, players will not only fight for the title – they will also fight for their country which means all of them will give their best. .. . and a little more!
The format of the competition has not yet been agreed on, but rumor has it that the teams will be divided into 2 groups with 4 teams, and 2 best teams in each group will go through to the semi finals.
There are also rumors stating that the group matches, as well as the semi finals, will be BO3, while the grand finals will be, of course, BO5. Keep in mind that these are only speculations and that there is still a decent amount of time before the tournament actually starts; but we will make sure to update you when the structure of the competition gets a formal stamp.
3 slots will go to teams from European qualifications and 1 slot will go to North American, South American, African, Asian and Oceanic qualifications.
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