MLG Winter Season: HotS & tournament updates
A new year, a new add-on and a new season is reason enough for MLG to revamp their entire tournament structure. In order to provide content in between the tournaments, the qualification system is restructured and stretched out over the whole season.
Alongside the switch to Heart of the Swarm come a lot of other changes to the North American premier tournament franchise. For now, the Open Bracket is done with and the Winter Championship will rely on invitations entirely. Those invitations will be decided upon in a series of online show-matches prior to the event, called the Winter Season Showdowns.
Winter Season Showdowns:
Matches of the Winter Season Showdowns will take place each weekday and selected Sundays from February 4 to March 8 and will feature 56 players which each compete in one of 28 best-of-5 games of which the winner gets to grab one of the 28 spots at the main tournament. The 28 matches comprise of: 5 KeSPA qualifiers, 5 ESF qualifiers, 3 “Independent” Korean qualifiers, 7 NA qualifiers, 7 EU qualifiers and 1 SEA qualifier. You can find the schedule here.
MLG Winter Championship:
The main event from March 15 to 17 will be a best-of-5/best-of-7 single elimination style tourney with full main-stage coverage throughout the tournament. A total prize-pool of $75,000 with the $25,000 for the first place will be split amongst the 28 qualified players from the Winter Season Showdowns and the top 4 from the Fall Championship, which consist of Life, Leenock, Flash and Bomber.
Winter Season Map Pool:
MLG - Source
MLG - Schedule