WESG: Problems on a global scale

Even with the disastrous hotel issues being fixed, WESG is held back by a bad format that cause for an underwhelming result.


Photo Credit: (WESG)

Trouble in the hotel

This week WESG is live from Haikou, China. Featuring a mixture of top teams, unknown teams and mix teams, it is one of the unique tournaments in the CS:GO calendar. Even with the disastrous hotel issues being fixed, WESG features one of the most broken formats in CS:GO annual tournaments. 

One of the key rules in WESG is the rule of one nationality per team. Although the rule can have its charm in theory, it doesn’t work in the modern Counter Strike landscape. With the rise of international teams like FaZe Clan and Mousesports, it’s becoming increasingly common for teams to have different nationalities on the roster. Even a team like EnVyUs has to use a stand-in at the tournament, since their regular starter Adil “ScreaM” Benrlitom isn’t from France, unlike the rest of the team. This results in mixed teams like Team Russia and Team Belgium, comprised of the best players from their respective countries, coming together and trying their best to compete with the top teams. Even though it’s cool to see national dream teams compete, they shouldn’t have any chance to defeat the likes of SK Gaming, Cloud9, and Fnatic. 

The problem for WESG is that they are trying to be a mixture of everything. If they want to stick to the one nationality rule and become the World Cup of CS:GO, teams like SK Gaming and Cloud9 shouldn’t be allowed to compete alongside Team Russia and Team Belgium. If they want to go all-in on the idea of national dream teams, it could work.

 It’s something that could make the event stand out from the rest. With the massive prize pool, national teams would hopefully still take the event seriously and field the best players from their respective countries. Watching Fnatic and NiP come together and form a temporary Swedish All-Star lineup has an appeal to it.  If they have to go up against a regular top team like SK Gaming, it suddenly becomes a lot less interesting. After all, it’d be pretty ridiculous to allow Real Madrid to enter the World Cup. 

The international problem

The other route to go would be to get rid of the one nationality rule and allow teams like FaZe Clan, mousesports, and Team Liquid to compete on an equal footing with the rest of the field. With mousesports coming off a huge win at StarSeries Season 4 why wouldn’t you want to see them try to claim another trophy in Haikou? The reason for not allowing these teams to compete in the event, is seemingly for a rule that has no purpose to it, other than restricting teams from attending the event for no reason. While the rule worked back in the days of WCG, when it was one of the top tournaments of the whole year and international teams were much less common, but in modern Counter Strike, the rule only makes the tournament less appealing to watch. 

The problems don’t end there. While most tournaments have seeded their groups properly, WESG have done the opposite. Some people might have heard of the team ORDER due to their appearance at IEM Katowice last week, but most people, including myself, have never heard of Team MAX, NOREG and EMC. Those four teams are all in the same group. Meanwhile, most people would agree that SK Gaming, Cloud9, and Fnatic are the strongest teams at the event. Yet, Cloud9 and Fnatic have somehow ended up in the same group. SK Gaming are in a group with BIG and Team Russia, two of the other strong teams at the tournament. The seedings of the teams seem to either be completely terrible or completely random. Your guess is as good as mine.

With a prize pool even bigger than the Valve Majors, WESG should be one of the most exciting events of the year. Instead, it’s an event mostly famous for teams having to play with stand-ins, for lack of seeding and for the hotel being filled with cockroaches. 

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