The first concrete sightings of the elusive OGN APEX Season 2 have been reported by fomos.kr in the last hour.
Chrome translate tells us that the event will begin on July 17th, but luckily Bing Translator is living in the real world and has deciphered that the season will in fact be kicking off on Tuesday January 17th at 05:00 ET / 11:00 CET / 19:00 KST from the OGN's e-Sports Stadium.
The prize pool remains unchanged from Season 1 at a hefty ₩200 million Korean won, although exchange rates currently mean that the dollar value has dropped from $178,000 to $168,000. Still, you wouldn't say no to one of the biggest prize pots in Overwatch. Fight money returns as well next season with each fixture being worth ₩1 million won (~$837) to the victor.
The tournament will reportedly use a restricted pool of 10 maps yet to be announced by the organisers. Whether the maps will be preset akin to MLG Vegas and the Winter Premiere or using the hybrid system from Season 1 is unclear.
However, the biggest change to the old structure sees the single elimination playoff bracket upgraded to double elimination format which will extend the tournament duration to an estimated 3 months. As before four groups of four teams will contest eight spots in the playoffs.
In a tweet that was later deleted, Taimou confirmed the western teams that will be in attendance. Cloud9, Fnatic and Misfits will be joining the defending champions Team EnVyUs to battle the cream of South Korean Overwatch.
It has also been confirmed that OGN's English language casting duo MonteCristo and DoA will be returning to the helm having recently announced they were stepping down from their League of Legends commitments in favour of Overwatch. Even with so much still unknown APEX Season 2 is fast shaping up to be the most hotly contested tournament in game's short history. Keep 'em peeled on over.gg for more details as they emerge.