It's been an incredible year for competitive Counter-Strike, but before we all swap our flashbangs for fairy lights and start petitioning Santa for a Crimson Web, there's still some important business to settle: this year's Esports Championship Series Season 2 Finals!
Six months after G2 Esports put down Luminosity at Wembley Arena in London to claim the Season 1 title, eight of the best Counter-Strike teams in the world will assemble at the Anaheim Arena from December 10-11 to fight for honour, $750,000, and the right to be in a good mood throughout the holidays. The ECS Season 2 Finals will feature four teams from North America and four from Europe, but the big question is: who's gonna make it?
Qualification is ongoing on both continents, and while some teams are already staking a strong claim, there's still much to play for as we head into the last few days of competition. Can FaZe Clan continue the good form they've shown since karrigan's arrival? Will the GODSENT dream team finally come good, or are they destined for more sleepless nights? Can anybody stop FalleN and SK Gaming?
We have no idea, which is why we're asking you. We wouldn't expect you to share your expertise for nothing though, so we're giving away free tickets to the ECS Season 2 Finals in Anaheim for people who correctly predict the eight teams who qualify for the Finals. All you have to do is name your eight teams in the comments, and if you're correct then we'll get in touch after qualifying finishes in mid November to give you your tickets.
(If too many people guess correctly, we'll draw names out of a hat until we run out of tickets. And if nobody guesses all eight teams, we'll go with the next best guess.)
Who can qualify for the ECS Season 2 Finals?
Qualification is currently taking place in North America and Europe. There are 10 teams in each regional league and the top four teams from each region will meet in Anaheim.
The European league is being contested by:
- FaZe Clan
- G2 Esports
- Ninjas in Pyjamas
- Team Dignitas
- Team EnVyUs
The North American league is being contested by:
- compLexity Gaming
- Counter Logic Gaming
- Luminosity Gaming
- NRG eSports
- OpTic Gaming
- SK Gaming
- Team Liquid
- Team SoloMid
At the time of writing, it's looking pretty good for FaZe Clan in Europe, but the top half of the league table remains very tight and almost anyone could still play themselves into contention. Over in North America, the two Brazilian teams SK Gaming and Immortals are both pretty close to qualifying, while OpTic and Cloud9 are also showing decent form. You can study each team's form on the ECS website, which tracks results and standings.
Where can I watch ECS qualifying?
All the action will be taking place on the FaceIt Twitch channel and you can use the ECS website to find out when matches are taking place. If you miss any matches, you can always watch VODs on the ECS YouTube channel. For example, here's a rather fetching match where GODSENT (that's GODSENT, not Fnatic - even the casters forget occasionally) coming back from a slow start to smash Team EnVyUs on Mirage.
Where can I buy tickets for the ECS Season 2 Finals?
Do make sure you enter our competition, but of course the best way to guarantee your place at the event is to buy ECS Season 2 Finals tickets online today. And if you use that link, you'll get 25% off the regular prices! There are four ticket types:
- Student Ticket - FREE! Includes access to matches, partner booths, signing sessions and other activities on December 10th and 11th. Ticket holders must show College ID.
- Ticket - $15 $11.25 - A regular ticket gives you access to matches, partner booths, signing sessions and other activities on December 10th and 11th.
- Ticket Plus - $35 $26.25 - Everything you get from a regular ticket, plus a Limited Edition ECS Anaheim Cap and access to an improved seating area.
- Premium Ticket - $75 $56.25 - Everything you get above, plus a Limited Edition ECS Anaheim Hoodie and Fast Track for queues.
Good luck and have fun!