It was a thrilling weekend for Call of Duty eSports, as Black Ops 3 competition began with the Call of Duty World League Pro Division Qualifiers. Regional tournaments took place in North America, Europe, and Australia/New Zealand, as some of the best teams in the world competed to join the premier Call of Duty eSports circuit. In the end,16 teams earned qualification into the Pro Divisions of their respective regions. Check out the weekend's results:
In North America, 16 teams competed for eight spots in the Call of Duty Pro Division. The teams were seeded into four groups, with the top two performing teams from each group qualifying into the Call of Duty Pro League.
It was a great weekend for Group A's OpTic Gaming, who not only dominated in their claim for a Pro Division spot, but also accepted the "eSports Team of the Year" award at The Game Awards 2015. E6 Gold were favorites to finish second in the group, but two straight series losses saw the team eliminated early in the qualifiers. That opened the door for Apotheon Esports, who would take the second Pro Division spot from Group A after winning a decider match against OrbitGG.
Group B was led by Rise Nation, who continue to make waves early on in Black Ops 3 competition. The second spot was contested between Team eLevate and Luminosity Gaming, who would face off both in the opening round and in the eventual decider match. Leaving no doubt as to which team deserved it the most, Team eLevate took both series to punch their ticket into the Pro Division.
Group C saw the most dominant team performance of the weekend, as Team EnVyUs would go 6-0 in map count to claim their Pro Division spot. It was a tough fight for the second spot however, with an elimination match between Dream Team and Counter Logic Gaming that came down to a 1v1 on round 11 in the final Search & Destroy, with CLG ultimately prevailing. In the end it was Team Kaliber who would go through both teams to seal their place in the Pro Division.
The top-heavy Group D played to form, with FaZe Clan and compLexity both clinching their spots in the Pro Division. The two teams put on a show in their head-to-head matchup, with FaZe prevailing after a series of failed and successful comebacks. compLexity would have to wait until the final day of competition to qualify, clinching their Pro Division spot after a 3-0 sweep of Happy Hour.
It was a story of the United Kingdom in the European Qualifiers, as all four Pro Division qualifying spots would go to UK-based teams.
Group A saw an intense matchup between Epsilon eSports and Team Infused. It looked all but over when Team Infused went up 2-0 in the series, but Epsilon managed to win Uplink and Capture the Flag to take it to a final Search & Destroy. The two teams battled to a decisive round 11, where Epsilon eSports completed an amazing comeback to take their spot in the Pro Division. Team Infused would join them after a 3-0 sweep of Team Vitality, setting the stage for some intense rematches to come in the Pro Division.
In Group B, all eyes were on Millenium, and they would not disappoint with 3-1 and 3-0 series wins to earn Pro Division qualification. The final spot in the group came down to a back and forth match between FAB Games and Splyce. This series produced one of the best individual plays in the entire weekend, with FAB Games' GunElite rallying home two flag captures in the same life. It was Splyce however who would win the final S&D to claim their spot in the Pro Division.
Some of the most shocking matches of the weekend happened in the Australia/New Zealand qualifiers, where eight teams competed for four spots in the ANZ Pro Division.
Group A delivered the upset of upsets, as Skyfire would top heavy favorites Mindfreak in a 3-2 result. Mindfreak regained their composure on the second day of competition, taking out Avidity in a 3-0 sweep to earn their way into the Pro Division.
Similar results would play out in Group B, with Tainted Minds taking a Pro Division spot with a 3-1 series win over Team Immunity. The New Zealand squad Team Immunity would bounce back however on the second day, putting together a 3-1 victory over nV to earn their place in the Pro Division.
The attention now shifts to the Call of Duty Pro Division Online Qualifiers, where from December 14-18, online competitions will decide the remaining Pro Division teams in each of the three regions. Can some of the teams from this past weekend redeem themselves or will a new group of competitors come in and prove their mettle?
Think you've got what it takes to compete at the highest level? Head over to CWLRegistration.com for more information on how you can register for the qualifiers and compete!
As always, make sure to follow @CODWorldLeague on Twitter for the latest on all things Call of Duty eSports.