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Blizzard and ESL FACEIT Introduce the Overwatch Champions Series

After the devastating end of the Overwatch League, Blizzard and ESL FACEIT Group have announced the Overwatch Champions Series.

Fans of competitive Overwatch were concerned about what would happen to pro players and the rest of the pro Overwatch 2 scene after Blizzard announced the OWL was failing. Blizzard promised fans that something was in the works but they were skeptical. Now, Blizzard has come forward with the Overwatch Championship Series, or OWCS, part of a multi-year agreement with ESL.

This international competition is open to all players across North America, Europe, Middle East, North Africa, and Asia. The goal is to create an “open, inclusive, and sustainable” competitive community.

Said OW2 Executive Producer Jared Neuss: “A thriving esports scene is important to a game as competitive as Overwatch 2, and we’re very excited to be entering this next era for the franchise with EFG.” 

Overwatch ESL Partnership

ESL Co-CEO Craig Levine added that it’s a “new era” of Overwatch 2 esports. While they will honor the “traditions and passion,” this will be different from the Overwatch League by taking away the city-focused franchise and instead embracing the FACEIT platform and DreamHack events.

FACEIT will have an open infrastructure in place for amateur and pro players in the OW2 community. This includes FACEIT’s community features to allow them to connect. With a consistent schedule, competitors have a “clear path” for aspiring pros.

The Overwatch Champions Series Structure Announced

Every region will have its own qualifiers and tournaments. Teams that come out on top will participate in two live in-person international events that will have players from around the world.

Those two events are the DreamHack Dallas Major from May 31-June 2, a double elimination tournament featuring eight of the top teams. Then, later in the year, the World Finals will take place at DreamHack Stockholm from November 22-24. Eight teams will be fighting for the title of the first-ever OWCS champion. This will be the first live Tier 1 Overwatch competition in Europe in more than five years.

Stay tuned for more information on upcoming tournaments, including the format, prize pools, and how to buy tickets.