Overwatch Contenders, the first stage of Overwatch League, begins June 3

Overwatch Contenders, the first stage of Overwatch League, begins June 3

While there is a chance the Overwatch Anniversary Event could start at midnight tonight, it's more likely to start at around 6pm United Kingdom time.

As a precursor to their Overwatch eSports League system, Blizzard will be running some "Contenders" tournaments for players in Europe and North America.

This should make for an interesting Anniversary Event if only to see what Blizzard has in store for fans. After that, the top 16 teams move on to the Group Stage starting June 17, and the final 8 will play in the finals on July 1. Meanwhile in China, the Overwatch Premier Series has seen a wide array of both Chinese and worldwide competition. These will take place this summer, with (initially) open sign-up and a prize pool of $50,000 Dollars per region. "It's time to bring that level of competition to the West".

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If you have a squad that thinks it can compete with the best of them, registration is open now. Over 200 teams have registered in North America so far, and Open Qualifiers will be held on June 3 and 4 in North America, featuring two different single-elimination online tournaments. The top four teams from this phase will advance to an offline playoff bracket to fight for a share of $100,000. These eight will play a six week round-robin tournament, and the top four will advance to compete for a $100,000 United States dollars prize pool. The tournament has been named Overwatch Contenders in anticipation of Blizzard's upcoming Overwatch League, the game developer announced on Monday.

"Of course, there is more than cash on the line-with organizations looking to fill their rosters for the launch of the Overwatch League, all eyes will be watching this summer's competitive showcase. If you are Masters rank or higher, and you dare to see where your Overwatch skills can take you, then stay tuned for more information on Open Division signups".

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