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StarCraft II WCS Leipzig 2018 Preview

25 January 2018 14:57

The 2018 World Championship Series (WCS) Leipzig three-day event gets underway on Friday 26th January, with a $100,000 prize pool and 12,600 WCS Circuit Points to play for as well as entry into the end-of-year WCS Global Play-Offs.

Now in its eighth year, the tournament is part of DreamHack Leipzig 2018 and the first of four WCS Circuit Events in 2018. Players will be competing in StarCraft II Legacy of the Void, and whilst PtitDrogo overcame Bly at DreamHack Leipzig 2016, who will go all the way this time?

The Format

There’s initial First, Second and Third group stages leading onto the play-offs. All three parts of the group stage are best-of-three, dual tournament format matches played in the Abiogenesis, Acid Plant, Backwater, Blackpink, Catalyst, Eastwatch and Neon Violet Square maps.

The First Group Stage sees 64 players split into sixteen groups of four, and the top two players from each group will advance through to the next season. The groups begin with PtitDrogo, spacemarine, Spazymazy and eonblu in Group A going right through to soul, Lambo, Mamba and Aelith in Group P.

In the Second Group Stage, 32 players will take their places in eight groups of four.  Again, the top two players from each group will go into the Third Group Stage.

The Third Group Stage will see 16 players from the Second Group Stage come together with 16 players from Qualifiers to form eight groups of four players. The top two players go through to the play-offs.

The play-offs begin with 16 players in a single-elimination bracket going into best-of-five Round 16 and semi-final stages, finishing with a best-of-seven grand final.

Who Made It Through the Qualifiers?

The qualifiers for 2018 WCS Leipzig saw 16 players from six regions – Europe, North America, Latin America, Taiwan/Hong Kong/Macau/Japan, China and Oceania/South East Asia - make it through the main event:


  • Marc "uThermal" Schlappi
  • Mikolaj "Elazer" Ogonowski
  • Artur "Nerchio" Bloch
  • Joona "Serral" Sotala

North America

  • Alex "Neeb" Sunderhaft
  • Maru "MaSa" Kim
  • Sasha "Scarlett" Hostyn
  • Bang "TRUE" Tae Soo

Latin America

  • Diego "Kelazhur" Schwimer
  • Juan Carlos "SpeCial" Tena Lopez

Taiwan/Hong Kong/Macau/Japan

  • Huang "Nice" Yu Xiang
  • Kwok "GogojOey" Chun Yin


  • Li "TIME" Peinan
  • Xiang "XY" Yao

Oceania/South East Asia

  • Sean "Probe" Kempen
  • Sheldon "Seither" Barrow

The Odds

You can get the following odds for some of the pre-tournament favourites to win outright:

  • Neeb – 17/10
  • Serral – 21/10
  • Nerchio - 13/2
  • SpeCial – 8/1
  • Elazer – 9/1
  • Scarlett – 10/1

Neeb dominated on last year’s WCS circuit, taking the titles in Austin, Jonkoping and Montreal, so it’s no surprise that he starts as favourite with some bookmakers. Elazer, who reigned supreme at Valencia 2017, is also up there as one of the players fancied to still be in with a fighting chance come the latter stages.

Prize Pool and WCS Circuit Points

32 players will receive differing amounts of the share of the $100,000 prize pool and 12,600 WCS Circuit Points based on where they finish in the overall table. The top three players will be awarded:

  • 1st place - $20,000 and 3,000 WCS Circuit Points
  • 2nd place - $10,000 and 1,400 WCS Circuit Points
  • 3rd place - $6,500 and 900 WCS Circuit Points

What Next?

The 2018 calendar looks to be bigger and better than ever before, with three further StarCraft II WCS events for fans and players alike to look forward to following the conclusion of WCS Leipzig. Austin is first up in June at the Austin Convention Center, followed by Valencia in July and Montreal in September.

Published on: 2018-01-25

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