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Overwatch World Cup 2018 Preview

29 October 2018 16:02

The Overwatch World Cup 2018 will reach a thrilling finale when the eight remaining countries battle it out in the play-offs at the Anaheim Convention Centre, California, for a third consecutive year. South Korea have dominated this event over the past two years, holding the trophy aloft in both 2016 and 2017, so will they defend their title for a hat-trick of titles, or can another nation create their own piece of history on 3rd and 4th November?

How Will The Play-Offs Work?

The eight remaining countries have reached the play-off stages after topping their respective group stages. Group stages were held in Incheon, Los Angeles, Bangkok and Paris, and the upcoming play-offs – a part of BlizzCon 2018 - consist of best-of-five quarter-finals, semi-finals and bronze matches. The Overwatch World Cup action will conclude with the show-stopping, best-of-seven grand final this weekend.

South Korea and Finland came through the Incheon qualifiers, whilst the USA and Canada topped the Los Angeles section. The Bangkok group saw China and Australia come out on top, with France and United Kingdom finishing top of the pile in the Paris qualifiers.

All games will start on a pre-determined control map; Nepal, Lijiang Tower, Ilios, Oasis or Busan. The loser of that map will then choose the second map for the next game – Hybrid, Assault, Escort or Control. All teams will receive a $16,000 fee for participating, regardless of their final standing.

Eight Countries Battling It Out

The eight participating nations are shown below:

  • South Korea
  • US
  • Finland
  • Canada
  • France
  • China
  • UK
  • Australia

South Korea are reigning champions having swept Russia aside 4-0 in the inaugural World Cup in 2016, and dispatched of Canada 4-1 12 months later. They are gunning for a hat-trick of titles, and are clearly the team to beat based on previous performances in this tournament. They are pre-tournament favourites, and their eight-man team of Byung-sun "Fleta" Kim, Hae-seong "Libero" Kim, Jae-hyeok "Carpe" Lee, Jun-ho "Fury" Kim, Pan-seung "Fate" Koo, Sung-hyeon "JJoNak" Bang, Tae-sung "Anamo" Jung and Hyeon-sang "Pavane" Yu will be desperate to create history once again in California.

However, it isn’t a foregone conclusion that the South Koreans will sweep all before them for the third consecutive year. China, France and USA are currently all higher seeds than their prestigious counterparts, and the Americans have the advantage of playing in front of their home fans. Finland are expected to challenge in the latter stages, Canada were runners-up in 2017 and will be eager to go one better this time around, whilst Australia and the UK shouldn’t be underestimated despite their longer odds. Good luck to all eight nations, and let us know on Twitter who you reckon will be stood on the podium celebrating when the grand final comes to its conclusion.

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Updated on: 2018-11-27