The moment that the Halo esports community has been anxiously awaiting has finally arrived. The 16 teams have been drawn into four groups, and in just two weeks the best Halo players in the world will converge upon the Halo World Championship in Hollywood, California for the chance to become World Champions, and to earn a share of the $2.5 million prize pool. We'll be taking a deep dive into each of the four groups to see what lies ahead, and you can click here for a much larger image of the above group image. Let's continue with Group B.
- Coach: Xavi
Team Infused tore through the Halo World Championship Tour: Cologne and beat favorite Epsilon Esports along the way. Infused walked away from Cologne with a first place finish and a 5-0 (15-4) record, and are considered to be one of the EU teams that is talented enough to upset a North American squad. Chalkie is a player to keep a close eye on, as he had the most kills (286), and the second highest accuracy (50.9) of any European player to have qualified for Worlds. Hopefully the team has had a chance to address their Strongholds gameplay, as that accounted for two of their three losses in Cologne. Team Infused matches up well against Exile5 and they should have a very competitive series against Renegades as well.
- Coach: Jak the Bun
When asked which team they were most looking forward to facing at the Halo World Championship, Exile5 said “... probably CLG - as it will be a quick win for us” Cheeky or not, the team comes into Hollywood saturated with confidence, and some would say they do so with good reason. After a win at AvT Auckland, x5 took second place at the Halo World Championship Tour: Sydney and beat higher seeded teams along the way. Known by the community as “The Kiwi Hope”, x5 has a tall task before them if they want to make it out of groups and into bracket play. Historically, they have done very well in objective gametypes such as CTF (12-1) and need to be able to leverage that against the likes of EG, RNG, and Infused to keep the series competitive. If x5 can continue to do well and take those maps off of their group opponents, they have a good chance at stealing a series and potentially making it out. If they can’t, x5 will have a long weekend in front of them.
- Coach: Towey
Behind mastermind Towey, Evil Geniuses comes to Halo’s biggest stage with something to prove. The last time we saw this prolific team, they looked completely outclassed and were swept by their bitter rivals Counter Logic Gaming in the semifinals at the Halo World Championship Tour: Columbus. Prior to that series against CLG, EG had only lost one game, and that was to Grand Finalist Denial Esports. With one last chance to show Lethul that he made a mistake in moving to CLG, expect EG to play the cleanest Halo games of their lives. They must not overlook the rest of this group, however, if they want to make it to a rematch. EG left Columbus not only with a winning record in all gametypes, but the sour taste of their record six live event wins in a row being broken. The only other team EG has faced in this group is Renegades, and they met in the quarterfinals of the 5th Online Qualifier. EG won that series 2-1, but should not rest easy. Renegades is a wildcard and you never know how the team will perform. But barring an upset at the hands of their regional counterparts, EG should make it out of this group in first place.
- Victory X
- Coach: Symbolic
Renegades lost two series while in Columbus, and both were humbling sweeps. On the other hand, the series that they won were sweeps in their favor. Renegades has limited exposure to the other teams in this group, which could very well be to their benefit. While at Columbus, Renegades averaged less DPG in their wins (7601) than in their losses (9222.5), and averaged slightly less APG in their wins (32.8) than in their losses (36.3), but averaged almost 30 more deaths in their losses (66.5) than in their wins (37). Renegades should not be overlooked on by anyone in Hollywood, as this is a very “all or nothing team”. If they can be more cognizant of staying alive and hitting their stride, they can beat anyone in the world.
This group should have some very close matches, and could be a real test for the teams. Make sure you tune in to the Halo World Championship March 18 through March 20 to catch all the action live, and follow along with us on Twitter and Facebook. These are the best teams in the world and you won’t want to miss any of it.