MSI will be a little more interesting by instituting it’s first ever Play-In Stage come the end of the month.
The Play-In Stage is a new part of the tournament that is scheduled to happen before the Group Stage. The Play-In Stage will be three rounds with ten regional teams from the following:
- CBLOL’s Red Canids – Brazil (BR)
- LCL’s Virtus.pro – Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS)
- LJL’s Rampage – Japan (JPN)
- LLN’s Lyon Gaming – Latin America North (LAN)
- CLS’s Isurus Gaming – Latin America South (LAS)
- TBD (NA LCS Finals on 4/23) – North America (NA) – Round 1 bye, starts in Round 2
- OPL’s Dire Wolves – Oceania (OCE)
- GPL’s Gigabyte Marines – Southeast Asia (SEA)
- TBD (LMS Finals on 4/23) – Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Macau (LMS) – Round 1 bye, starts in Round 2
- TBD (TCL Finals on 4/22) – Turkey (TUR)
So, to kick it off there are eight teams in round one from BR, CIS, JPN, LAS, LAN, OCE, SEA, TUR that will be sorted into two groups and play a Double Round Robin BO1. Those teams have already been decided for the most part and are:
- CBLOL’s Red Canids
- OPL’s Dire Wolves
- TBD (TCL Finals on 4/22)
- LJL’s Rampage
- LCL’s Virtus.pro
- LLN’s Lyon Gaming
- GPL’s Gigabyte Marines
- CLS’s Isurus Gaming
The two winners of that round will move on to round two where they will face off the split champion from NA or the champion from LMS in a BO5. The winner of this two matches automatically qualifies for the Group Stage of MSI. The two losers will have to face off against each other for one last shot at moving on to MSI in another BO5.
The winners of this Play-In Stage will meet up with the other regions, China, Europe, and Korea, for the Group Stage once they secure their spot. Action kicks off on April 28 at 11 a.m. PT. You can catch all of the action here. Missed the drawing? Check out the video below.