Over the past decade, Call of Duty eSports competition has exploded as professional gamers battle head-to-head to determine who’s got the fastest reflexes, smartest tactics, and best team at the highest level of play. With the introduction of the Call of Duty World League, Activision will continue and expand on the eSports tradition with bigger competitions, greater prize pools, and more opportunities for fans to get involved than ever before. Whether you’re a player or a spectator, newcomer or veteran, here’s everything you need to know about the Call of Duty World League’s inaugural season:

Origins

Whether it’s online, in their living room, or at organized LAN events around the world—competition has long been a staple of the Call of Duty series.  In 2013, however, Activision held the first-ever Call of Duty Championship, where it invited the top teams from all over the world to compete for a $1 million prize pool. The Championship has gone on to become an annual event and has helped propel Call of Duty to the top competitive console first-person shooter in the world. Now, with the debut of Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 and the Call of Duty World League, we’re taking Call of Duty eSports to the next level.

Season Structure

The Call of Duty World League season consists of two major competitive stages leading up to Call of Duty Championship 2016 in the fall. Throughout the year, top teams will be practicing day in and day out, learning every corner of every map, and perfecting their strategies in a bid to gain entry to Pro Division Stage 1. To encourage dedicated teams just starting out, those who fail to qualify in the first tournament will have another chance to earn a spot via online qualifiers.

Pro vs. Challenge Division

While the Pro Division consists of professional eSports teams across three major regions—North America, Europe, and Asia-Pacific—new and amateur players will have the chance to compete in the worldwide Challenge Division. Challenge Division competitors can earn a spot at the Call of Duty Championship through a series of Call of Duty World League-hosted LAN and online events, making the Call of Duty World League our most accessible competitive season yet.

Note: in order to compete in the Pro or Challenge Divisions, players must be must be 18 years of age or older.

World League Points and the Call of Duty Championship

The Call of Duty Championship takes place in the fall of 2016. Pro Division teams will earn World League Points based on their performance in the tournaments leading up to it, with the best teams guaranteeing spots in the Championship. Challenge Division teams will also have the chance to earn World League Points throughout the year to earn the right to qualify for the Championship.

Prize Pool

World League is raising the stakes with over $3 million in cash prizes for Pro Division participants, including $250k per stage in North America, $200k per stage in Europe, and $150k per stage in Australia & New Zealand. The best and most coordinated teams walk away with the lion’s share, making each and every match count.

Where to Watch

All tournaments will be live streamed free on the Call of Duty World League site at CallofDuty.com/CWL. The Call of Duty World League will have Pro Division LAN events with limited access to the public. LAN Challenge Division events will give fans the opportunity to see some of the best competition Call of Duty can offer in-person.

Mark Your Calendars

World League events are already underway. For the latest news, follow CallofDuty.com/CWL and @CODWorldLeague on Twitter. We look forward to hosting you in the year ahead.