The 2018 Call of Duty World League kicked off December 8th-10th in Dallas, Texas at the Kay Bailey Hutchinson Centre. Teams from around the world came to compete for their share of $200 000 in the first ever major tournament for Call of Duty World War II, marking the official return to the franchise’s traditional boots on the ground gameplay.
The weekend produced unlikely heroes, with Team Kaliber emerging as champions and the European favourites Splyce making it to the grand finals.
The tournament’s initial day of action was severely impacted by a hoax bomb threat and server issues impacted the open bracket early on, however despite all of this the action resumed and the first champions of the new title were crowned.
With a brand new title fans were unsure of what to expect in this first event other than last year’s world champions OpTic Gaming being solid contenders. Early on in the event it looked like OpTic might be able carry their dominant streak into the new title, but in the final rounds of the tournament that all changed.
Team Kaliber members Dylan “Theory” McGee, Lamar “Accuracy” Abedi, Martin Chino, and Kenny Williams were not considered likely candidates by many fans to make it this far in the tournament yet they were the ones faced with the challenge of breaking down the Greenwall to secure a trip to the finals.
Team Kaliber was able to narrowly edge out OpTic Gaming in the first match on Ardennes Forest Hardpoint 250-234. OpTic jumped out to an early lead in game 2 making it look like things would be all tied up, but instead Team Kaliber was able to reverse the game in the finals rounds to win 6-5 and give themselves a 2-0 series lead.
With momentum firmly in their favor Team Kaliber was able to best OpTic in the final game with a 4-1 CTF victory on Flak Tower placing them in the final match and awaiting the victor from the anticipated Splyce Vs. OpTic rematch from earlier on in the event.
While OpTic Gaming was able to best the European Splyce squad 3-2 in their first encounter the rematch would tell a very different story. The Europeans started the series with impressive 250-186 and 6-3 Hardpoint and S&D scores. With OpTic’s tournament lives on the line game three was much closer going all the way to overtime where OpTic even managed to score the first flag. Despite this, Splyce was able to rally and score two quick flags to close out the series and OpTic’s hopes of becoming the first CoD WWII champions.
In a nail biting five game grand final, Kaliber were able to best the kings of Europe officially making themselves the team to beat from here on out. FaZe Clan, Echo fox and eUnited rounded out the remainder of the top 6 at this event in a successful first stop of the 2018 Call of Duty World League.
Team Kaliber will look to defend their title in New Orleans, January 12th-14th in the second official Call of Duty World League stop.