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Halo World Championship 2016: Group Stage recap and Bracket Stage preview

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Doug Cortez
Contributing Editor
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The group stages have come to an end and now only eight teams remain in the Halo World Championship 2016. Here are the teams that are advancing and a look at what we have to look forward to in the Quarterfinals and Semifinals.

GROUP A

  • Team Liquid
  • Team Allegiance
  • exceL eSports
  • Chosen Squad

As expected, both Team Liquid and Team Allegiance made it into the bracket stages. With the exception of Team Liquid sweeping Allegiance, there were no real surprises as the group panned out as expected. Allegiance will have to make adjustments in their gameplay in order to make a deep run into the bracket.

GROUP B

  • Renegades
  • Evil Geniuses
  • Team Infused
  • Team Exile5

As was the case in Group A, both North American teams advanced into bracket play. Although a close series was expected, Evil Geniuses and Renegades put on an amazing show that went all the way to a Game 5 in favor of Renegades. RNG has been much more consistent this weekend than in the past and are a scary squad at the moment. Although the second seeded Evil Geniuses should not be taken lightly. The series could have gone either way as the first two games were very close.

GROUP C

  • Team eLevate
  • Denial eSports
  • Team Immunity
  • FAB Games eSports

Group C was the only Group to have sweeps recorded in every series played. Team Immunity and FAB Games eSports both failed to advance while Team eLevate and Denial eSports duked it out for the first seed. Denial was favored heading into the series, and were met with a bit of a rude awakening as they were swept. Slayer on Coliseum was a close game that ended with a final score of 50-49, but eLevate was in control for the rest of the series.

GROUP D

  • Counter Logic Gaming
  • Epsilon eSports
  • Cloud 9
  • Team Skyfire

After their upset of North American squad Cloud 9, Epsilon eSports was able to close the deal and defeat Team Skyfire to earn the second seed. Many expect Counter Logic Gaming to win the event, and CLG showed us why that is the case. They only dropped one map in the entire Group Stage, and are definitely the frontrunner and team to beat.

BRACKET

Elevate vs Epsilon eSports showcases what many consider to be the best team in all of Europe against a strong North American squad. eLevate upset Denial eSports in dominating fashion, while Epsilon has been hot all weekend. This series should be a close one, and with how well both teams have played, it will be tough to predict.

Renegades and Team Allegiance should make for a great match. Renegades is playing their best Halo of the season and it has been punctuated by their ability to remain level headed throughout the ups and downs of the weekend. Allegiance will need to bring their best if they want to advance. Their communication was a weak point during their series against Team Liquid and they cannot afford to have gaps against RNG.

In almost poetic fashion, rivals Evil Geniuses and Counter Logic Gaming will meet in the first round of the quarterfinals and we will learn very early on who has the last laugh (for now) in their epic rivalry. CLG has been nearly flawless all weekend, only dropping a single game to Epsilon. They have had EG’s number since their matchup at the X Games in Aspen, and it is tough to imagine the biggest Halo tournament in the history of esports with either of CLG or EG out of the top four. One team will walk away disappointed, but the clash of these two juggernauts will be a must-watch.

Denial eSports was considered a top four team by many after their showing at HaloWC: Columbus but surprisingly stumbled against eLevate in the group stages. Liquid is playing well and have the upper hand after their sweep of Allegiance, and look to continue that momentum against the young squad. Beating Team EnVyUs, Team Liquid, and Allegiance is no fluke, and Denial is still the same squad from Columbus. If they get hot, they can beat anyone.

In just a few hours only two teams will remain. Follow all of the action live at Twitch.tv/halo and Twitch.tv/esl_halo, along with updates on Twitter and Facebook!