European competition has rocketed to a new level of play in the Call of Duty World League, presented by PlayStation 4. For years, the region struggled to escape the shadow of their North American peers, yet through continued growth and support the field has begun to level.
The Stage 2 Finals, taking place from July 14th – 17th in Burbank, California, provides the region’s final chance to show who’s in fighting form to take on the world in the upcoming Call of Duty Championship 2016. European talent includes the top six teams in the EU standings at the close of Stage 2 regular play: HyperGames, Team Infused, Splyce, Epsilon eSports, Millenium, and Supremacy.
Let’s take a look at the six competing teams and what to watch for in their Stage 2 presence:
#1) HyperGames (15-3)
Formerly excel eSports, the full squad of Zed, QwiKeR, Nolson, and Braaain joined HyperGames in April. The roster originally came together out of their shared frustrations in getting dropped from teams before the start of the World League, only to fight back to a dominant first place position with a 15-3 Stage 2 finish.
“We want to beat all the teams who have doubted us in the past. With the Call of Duty World League, we can take first.” – Zed
Their confidence has proven true, but will they bring their A-game to the Stage 2 Finals?
#2) Team Infused (14-4)
Closing out Stage 2 regular play with a six-series win streak, Team Infused just barely missed a first place standing. They finished the Stage 1 regular season in first, however, but fell in a surprise defeat to Splyce at the Stage 1 Finals. While they won’t get top seeding this time, the squad of MarkyB, Peatie, Urban, and Zer0 offers a consistent threat to any and all competitors.
#3) Splyce (12-6)
Splyce made waves in the Stage 1 Finals with a seven-game series quarterfinals win over exceL eSports. They went on to upset Team Infused, the number one seed at the tournament, with another seven-game series, proving their endurance and dedication under pressure. In the Grand Final, they fell 4-1 to Millenium, but with the latter’s disappointing Stage 2 performance, they might just have the momentum they need to close out the finals in first.
#4) Epsilon eSports (10-8)
Where Splyce has risen in prominence and Millenium have fallen, Epsilon has remained in a steady 3rd/4th EU position. Settling in third for the Stage 1 regular season and playoffs, the current squad of Moose, Reedy, Skrapz, and SunnyB hopes for a lapse in the top seeds to make room for a strong Stage 2 Finals performance.
#5) Millenium (10-8)
Stage 1 champions Millenium struggled to maintain their momentum through Stage 2, falling to fifth with an underperforming 10-8 finish. A brief exit by MadCat signaled the desire to change up the roster, only for him to rejoin when a replacement couldn’t be found. Will Europe’s former top squad regain their form for the finals, or does a new champion await the region?
#6) Supremacy (10-8)
French team Supremacy joined the World League for Stage 2, and despite a rough start began turning things around with a mid-stage four-series win streak. While the team is new, their captain, mAxxie, has competed in Call of Duty since Modern Warfare 3, bringing valuable experience to tournament competition. Tied with both Epsilon and Millenium at a 10-8 Stage 2 ranking, Supremacy isn’t a squad to overlook.
Tune in for the Stage 2 Finals
The Stage 2 Finals will take place in Burbank, California from July 14th-17th. Tune in to all matches live here at callofduty.com/CWL, Twitch.tv, or YouTube. For on-site seating, purchase live tickets here.