The BLAST Premier World Final is one of the biggest events in the esports calendar and fans are eagerly looking forward to the 2023 event. What do you need to know about the games and how to enjoy watching them?
The Basic Details
The Etihad Arena in Abu Dhabi is the setting for this event, making this the second time that it’s been held there. It’s held over a few days, starting on December 13 and running to December 17. With a prize pool of $1 million, it’s one of the most valuable gaming tournaments in history and one that all the pro teams want to excel in.
A group format with double elimination from each see eight teams start the event and four progress to the quarterfinals. Entrants such as Team Vitality, FaZe Clan, and Cloud9 are all taking part. If you want to predict the outcome, you can carry out CS2 match betting with crypto online. Check the game you want to bet on, and you’ll see the odds for the outright winner listed beside each name. Bet in advance or choose to wait until the game starts and check out the live betting odds as you watch it.
Of course, the game they’ll all be playing is Counter-Strike 2, which replaces the legendary Counter-Strike: GO for the first time this year. The release of this new game by Valve earlier this year hasn’t been without its issues, but they’ll be hoping that the BLAST Finals cements it as the legitimate successor to the game it replaced. Certainly, the top pro players seem to have taken to the new game more smoothly than many others have, although the emergence of these great skins may help CS: GO players feel more at home here.
Andrew Haworth is the BLAST director of operations, and he said that the fact the games are being played in the UAE again is a sign of the growing pro sports scene there. He mentioned the “incredible growing passion” for esports in the country and the fact that the fanbase is rapidly expanding across the Middle East. The team come from across the world, and it’s hoped that teams from the Middle East region will take part in the future.
What to Expect
If you haven’t played CS2 or seen any of the Counter-Strike games played by pros in the past, then you’ll want to know some of the basics to get started. CS2 is played with two teams of five players who act either as terrorists or counter-terrorists. The idea is that they meet in different scenarios across a choice of maps, such as when the terrorists plant a bomb that the other team must defuse.
The classic BO3 format is used in the group stage and then in the playoffs. This means that the first team to reach two wins is declared the winner of the match. How can you watch it? There are a variety of ways of watching these games through live streaming options. A vast number of viewers are expected, and last year’s figures may very well be beaten. The most-viewed BLAST event to date was the Premier Fall Final in 2021, with the most popular games attracting over 860,000 online viewers.
Who Will Win It?
As we’ve seen, it’s possible to bet on the outcome of these games, and the odds are going to fluctuate once the event begins, and we see how well everyone is doing. Last year’s Final was won by the German team G2 Esports, who earned $500,000 by doing this. They’re also taking part this year and sure to be among the favourites although last year’s losing finalist – Team Liquid – won’t be taking part.
The eight teams who’ll be here are the best in the world right now and they’ll all feel confident about their chances. Team Vitality is another leading contender, although they’ve undergone changes to their roster and coach recently. This French team recently beat the tough FaZe team at CS2, so they’re on a roll going into Abu Dhabi.
As for FaZe, this American team was the first international Counter-Strike team to win a Global Offensive Major, which they managed in 2022. Their recent signing of frozen from the MOUZ team could prove to be crucial, as the Slovakian is currently one of the top CS2 players in the world.
Natus Vincere – usually known as NAVI – is based in Ukraine and they’ve been playing competitively since 2009. Among their claims to fame, they were the first team to grab three of the major tournaments and were the most successful pro gaming team on the planet not long ago. Their roster has undergone some major changes this year, as players like Perfecto and electronic have entered the fray to replace s1mple and other key players.
The BLAST World Final in Abu Dhabi is sure to be a thrilling event and it should also help CS2 gain new fans as we watch the planet’s best players taking part in it.