The World of Warcraft: Shadowlands 2021 Arena World Championship Cup One concluded this weekend with more than 200 teams participating during its qualifying stage.
The battle was fierce, but only two teams emerged victorious in the entire chaos. Method won the Cup in the EU region, while Kawhi won the Cup in the NA region. Other participants didn’t leave empty-handed, though, as they got a small prize pool with some points, which will decide if they will qualify for the final stage.
Method won the EU cup by a sizable margin. The team formed of Chas, Thesia, Whaaz, and Zunniyaki surprised everyone with their top-tier gameplay. They played popular setups such as RMP, Holy Paladin / Fire Mage / Windwalker Monk, and others throughout the tournament.
The team showed great coordination and set-up, throwing out a lot of cross crowd-control before going for kills during their major cooldowns such as Mage’s Combustion. They won 120 points alongside a small prize pool.
In the second and third places came Oldness Strikes and Skill Capped EU, who won 100 and 80 points, respectively. Oldness Strikes played Restoration Shaman / Retribution Paladin / Arms Warrior in most of their games, showing how strong Ret offheals can be. They were the team closest to take down Method as well with their composition, but Method proved to be more experienced.
Skill Capped EU played a spellcleave such as Holy Paladin / Fire Mage / Elemental Shaman in most of their games, favoring open maps to drag enemies out in the open field before unleashing a Stormlasso into Combustion combination once enemies were out of cooldowns.
Overall, teams favored Holy Paladins due to how strong they are as healers, providing a lot of utility cooldowns such as Blessing of Protection, Blessing of Sacrifice, Aura Mastery and overall mana sustain they have. EU has clearly shown that Holy Paladins are the healers to go with if you want to competitive.
Kawhi won the NA cup after a long best-of-seven series against Cloud9. The team of Brain, Cerallum, and Drake favored a composition predicted to win the tournament by the community such as Holy Paladin / Fire Mage / Windwalker Monk. This set-up allows for great offensive play and can turtle if needed to get back the offensive cooldowns thanks to the Monk Teleport and Mage Polymorph.
hile the series was very close—Cloud9 almost snatched the win—Kawhi achieved glory in the end. They won 120 points alongside a small prize pool.
Cloud9 and OTK finished second and third, winning 100 and 80 points, respectively. C9 played various setups such as Holy Paladin / Balance Druid / Fire Mage. The composition, known as Spicy Chicken Cleave, won a lot of games early on due to Convoke the Spirits from the Balance Druid, which allowed them to delete entire health pools once casted.
Other compositions they played was Shadowplay with a Holy Paladin healer, relying on throwing a lot of DoTs on everyone and then slowly withering them down. While the tactic proved powerful against some opponents, it wasn’t enough to take down Kawhi.
OTK played Holy Paladin / Fire Mage / Windwalker Shaman as their opponents, but they were surprised a couple of times by the Spicy Chicken Cleave, which knocked them out of the tournament and earned them only a top-three finish. While they did try to experiment with Restoration Shaman / Windwalker Monk / Frost Death Knight, the composition proved to be too weak to compete with others which had a Holy Paladin and a Fire Mage.
Overall, the meta in both EU and NA looked the same with a team of Holy Paladin / Fire Mage / Windwalker monk winning it all.
Next AWC is in two weeks
All of the AWC cups will be streamed on the official Blizzard YouTube channel and will be happening every other weekend. On top of having points for the top 12 teams during every cup, teams will earn a small prize as well for a top-four placement, ranging from $600 to $5,000 per squad. The next event will happen on the weekend of Friday, Jan. 29.
Tune in to see who will emerge victorious in the next cup and if the current teams can hold onto their titles. The full schedule can be found on the official WoW esports website.