The 2020 World of Warcraft World Championship open qualifier concluded this weekend. After hard-fought arena matches, the top eight teams from EU and NA will battle in a circuit over the next few months to determine the winner of this year’s World Championship.
On May 15, Blizzard Entertainment announced the changes to this year’s format to protect the health and safety of all people involved in the event. As a result, the traditional tournament that’s usually held during BlizzCon has been moved to an online format.
Starting May 22, four open qualifiers were held in NA and EU for any teams willing to participate, with the top eight teams from each open qualifier advancing to a weekend cup. Based on their results during the weekend, they’d receive a certain number of Championship Points.
This weekend was the final cup for both regions. The standings based on Championship Points for each region can be found below:
Cloud9 have been dominant in all cups, winning four with their Mage, Lock, Healer composition. Their main tactic consisted of selecting big maps and dragging games to the Dampening phase, where healing done is reduced based on game time. Some teams took games off of them and even managed to knock them down to the lower bracket. But in the end, they lost because C9 adapted to their tactics and swapped compositions. They’re the favorites to take it all after their dominant showing during the four qualifying cups.
Golden Guardians were the only team to defeat C9 with a lineup featuring prominent Rogue player Jason “Pikaboo” Smith. They played a Rogue, Shadow Priest, Healer composition, which they’ve shown proficiency on during previous caps. They took C9 to the Dampening and after a series of crowd controls on C9’s healer, they managed to wipe them away.
While NA had C9 in the driver’s seat, Europe had two teams: Wildcard Gaming and Method Black. While the Wildcard mostly focused on playing spell cleaves, Method played mixed compositions, having most success with the Rogue, Mage, Healer composition.
Recent nerfs to some Corruptions give an edge to Method Black since their primary composition was indirectly buffed by this. Wildcard will need to find a solution for that if they want to become a contender for the European title.
AWC Circuit standings and schedule
The final part of the 2020 World Championship will start in August. There will be four weeks of play on the weekends of Aug. 22, Aug. 29, Sept. 5, and Sept. 12. After these four weeks, the top teams will face each other in the corresponding region finals: EU’s will take place on Sept. 26 and NA will play on Sept. 27.
While there are some clear favorites after their showings at the weekly cups, we could have some Cinderella stories from teams that placed lower in the standings by bringing surprise compositions to deal with the dominance of top-tier teams. There are a couple of examples with two European teams playing Jungle Cleave (Feral Druid, Hunter, Healer), even though it’s subpar compared to other compositions. Recent adjustments to Corruption gear could put them ahead and finally be that extra power they needed to defeat other top-tier teams.
The article will be updated throughout the entire period of the 2020 World of Warcraft World Championship Circuit.