With Infinite Warfare out in the wild for a few months and the first early competitive events already taking place, the Call of Duty World League 2017 is really starting to heat up. A new season format sees players compete in online Gamebattles matches for Pro Points and means that there is always something to watch, while the teams with the most Pro Points get invited to the surprisingly regular LAN events that are due to come thick and fast over the next few weeks.
While some teams are still taking things a little slow most have got back into the daily grind, trying to get those all important points and qualify for the big events. This has given us an early look at who the top teams will be, and with the PlayStation Experience Invitation and MLG Las Vegas already in the books we have our first looks at who can perform at offline events.
We won’t truly know who the top players are until the EU LAN events kick off and MLG Atlanta takes place, but we do have a pretty good idea of the teams that will be challenging for the top titles throughout 2017. Here’s a rundown of the big contenders in Call Of Duty esports this year.
You can never count out the Green Wall. Easily the most well known team in Call of Duty, OpTic Gaming remains unchanged for the Infinite Warfare season and is already looking good. They currently sit 4th in NA pro points and have been playing well, only falling to fellow top teams in the 2K online events.
They didn’t have the best time at MLG Vegas, but since then the team that features some of the best players of all time has been grinding hard and look set to do well in the upcoming LAN events. This could be the first year in a long time that we see OpTic as world champions.
FaZe has had a rough few years, always at the top of the scene but never able to win the big one. This year however they look a step above last year already, and they have already proven that they can get it done when it matters.
FaZe won the PlayStation Experience invitational and placed third at MLG Vegas, beating a lot of top teams in the process. They also hold third place in the NA pro points rankings, with a comfortable lead over OpTic that almost guarantees them a trip to Esports World Convention. FaZe are looking strong, but then we say that every year.
The current world champions have got off to a slow start and are woefully low on the pro points chart. They currently sit in 11th, which is well below a lot of teams that they should be beating. However, they are still the world champions and one of the best lineups of all time.
We expect EnVyUs to kick on in the coming weeks; sure, they don’t stand much of a chance of getting to ESWC, but there is no reason why they can’t be in Atlanta and do well. Once this team gets back into the swing of things they will undoubtedly be difficult to beat once again.
Only two of the four man team that came 2nd at World Championships last year remain on the current Splyce roster, but that doesn’t mean this is a downgrade. In fact this reads almost like a EU dream team, with Josh and Bance returning and former Millennium players Jurd and MadCat coming in.
Millennium were the best EU team prior to Swanny missing Champs and Splyce ended the year as the top team, so the big names from both sides coming together creates what looks to be one of the best EU sides ever. They didn’t have the best time in Vegas, losing to EG and FaZe in the bracket stage, but expect them to come in as a favourite for the upcoming Gfinity event.
To casual fans Cloud9 are the team that famously knocked OpTic out of the World Championships to a chorus of boos last year, but they are in fact a lot more than that. They currently sit second in the NA pro points standings, with a big lead over FaZe, partly thanks to a nice 2nd place at MLG Vegas.
They really have looked like a world championship winning side whenever they have played, and have rarely put in a bad performance, even online. It’s probably a little too early to call but if this roster stays together there is no reason why we couldn’t see them lifting the trophy at Champs, and who knows we may even get an OpTic rematch.
Back to EU for this one and we have the only EU team to be above Splyce in pro points, Orbit. The UK squad featuring Joee, Rated, Urban and Zer0 combines a ton of the region’s top players in a lineup that not only looks fearsome on paper, but also in practise.
They took 2nd at the PlayStation Experience invitational and have always performed well in the online events, even if there have been a few shock losses along the way. The real test for this line up will be the upcoming LAN events. If they do well there they can be considered a real threat, but a poor performance could see things take a turn for the worse.
We saved the best until last. Rise Nation have been the dominant squad so far on Infinite Warfare. They came third at the PSX invitational, won MLG Vegas and lead the NA pro points table by 10,000 points. The new roster that formed after Champs has proven to be a success and it’s difficult to see who could dethrone them.
If they manage to take another of the upcoming LAN events then there really will be no questioning who the best team in the world is right now. It’s a long season but if this roster makes it to World Championships then we could easily see the Rise Nation squad lifting the trophy.