We're glad to share with you what the NHL has prepared for their biggest gaming event so far - Season 2 of the NHL Gaming World Championship!
Registrations kick off March 6th and closes on March 31st. However, online qualifiers will be starting already on March 13th.
Ahead of the announcement, NHL Vice President of Business Development Chris Golier stated: “We’ve listened to the players and measured how the live events and content were received and are making changes this year that we think will make for a more competitive tournament and more engaged community.”
So, what are the changes?
First off, the NHL GWC Season 2 will be played in Hockey Ultimate Team. This will allow for players to create unique teams that are tailored according to their own style of play. It is definitely an interesting switch over from versus and it's refreshing to potentially see something else than the same two teams matching up against each other for the entire tournament. Right from the get-go, the switch to HUT received heavy criticism from some of the best gamers out there, and it hasn't been toning down. What do you think?
The second new thing was the qualifier system, which was renewed as a natural continuation of switching to the HUT game mode. In order to qualify for the tournament, a player needs to register at Battlefy.com/NHL, whereafter one is eligible to play Online Open Play in order to qualify for the Online Play-in Bracket, where the top 23 players per console and region for each weekly period will compete for a spot at the Live Regional Finals. Online Play-in Brackets are hosted twice for each region (EU 13th & 20th of April, CAN 20th & 27th of April, US 27th of April & 4th of May). In the Online Play-in Bracket, the top 128 players from each console and region will battle it out for four spots at the Live Regional Finals.
The third new thing is also related to the switch over to HUT and this is an interesting one. From the Live Regional finals onwards, players will be drafting their teams from a preselected player pool and no duplicate players will be allowed - meaning every team will be completely unique! This adds another layer of strategy to the competition and will definitely be some fun to speculate on. Players will draft their team for the Regional Live finals and redraft again for the NHL GWC Final.
Andrew "Nasher" Telfer, who will be returning as analyst for season 2 of the NHL GWC commented on the draft as follows: “Players will be forced to step out of their comfort zone, some players stick to versus (with actual NHL teams), others focus on HUT, but for the first time, players won't know exactly what their team will look like going into the tournament. Tough decisions will have to be made during the draft, I'm sure we'll see some pretty crazy lineups come the live events. The good news is players will be able to build a team to fit their play style.”
Prize pool: $100,000
You can see the full schedule for the tournament below:
EU US CAN
March 6th Registration opens at Battlefy.com/NHL
March 13th Online open play begins
March 31 Registrations close
April 7th Online open play ends
April 13th European Online Play-In Bracket Day 1
April 20th European Online Play-In Bracket Day 2
April 20th Canadian Online Play-In Bracket Day 1
April 27th Canadian Online Play-In Bracket Day 2
April 27th US Online Play-In Bracket Day 1
April 27th European Regional Draft
May 4th US Online Play-In Bracket Day 2
May 4th Canadian Regional Draft
May 11th US Regional Draft
May 18th European Regional Finals (Stockholm, Sweden)
May 25th Canadian Regional Finals (Toronto, Ontario)
May 30th US Regional Finals (Stamford, Connecticut)
June 3rd NHL GWC Final Draft
June 18th NHL GWC World Finals (Las Vegas, Nevada)
Also check what your reigning champion @Eki has to say:
Will we see you on the ice in season 2 of the NHL GWC? Who do you think will win? What are your thoughts on the GWC moving over to HUT? Let us know in the comments!