With $3.5 million on the line, every team amongst the best of Counter Strike: Global Offensive professional circuits had decided their name needs to be on the list of teams playing in the first-ever Esports Championship Series (ECS).
Made to happen through joint partnership between Twitch and FACEIT, the tournament was announced last week and is set to offer the biggest prizepool the likes of CS:GO players had ever seen.
What makes it even more special is that every team involved in ECS will be provided with an ownership stake, something quite unique to the league.
From Fnatic to Columbus Major winner Luminosity Gaming and runner-up Natus Vincere, every top team that had ever shown their grit and mettle to come out on top throughout the years will see themselves competing.
The European side will feature some of Counter-Strike’s best competitors and the biggest names in the industry. Premier teams Astralis, EnVyUs, FaZe Clan, Fnatic, Natus Vincere, Ninjas in Pyjamas, Team Dignitas and Virtus Pro were invited into the league. Meanwhile, Germany-based mousesports and G2 eSports made it through qualifiers.
They are not all pushovers in the Americas either. Most notably, Columbus winners Luminosity Gaming and semi-finalists Team Liquid are in. The league had also invited Cloud9, compLexity, Counter Logic Gaming, NRG eSports, OpTic Gaming, and Team SoloMid. Making it through the qualifiers were Echo Fox and Alliance.
But not all were happy with the shortlist. Tempo Storm and Flipsid3 Tactics were in fact, quite disappointed to find that they had missed out. Brazilian team Tempo Storm had, in fact, displayed plenty of praiseworthy performances throughout 2016.