Last year's Overwatch World Cup saw some of the most exciting competition predating the debut of the Overwatch League. And with the announcement of the 2018 Overwatch World Cup, various countries around the world have already begun preparing to prove themselves against other international competition.
The World Cup will be hosted in four host countries, these being the United States, South Korea, Thailand and France. Additionally, 20 more countries will be invited to compete, with the top 20 being determined by the average skill rating (SR) of the top 150 players in each respective country. The tracking of countries is already underway, ending on April 28, the same day that the 9th competitive season will conclude.
Since the host countries are automatically invited, if one of the 4 host countries is in this top 20 pool, the next country down will be granted a spot, with up to 24 countries getting the chance to compete against the best teams from other nations.
The leaderboards for the respective countries can be found on the Overwatch World Cup website.
Following the qualification period of each country, there will be a committee for the qualifying countries to determine which players will represent their respective countries. The committee will consist of three main figures:
- General Manager (Selected by Blizzard)
- Coach (Selected by each country's top 150 ranked players)
- Community Lead (Selected through a 2-step process by the country's player base)
Links to apply to all three committee seats will be revealed by Blizzard at a later date.
Coach candidates will go through a two-step process to being selected. Phase 1 is open to any player with an account in good standing. Those who apply for the role will eventually be given a custom URL to share, with the top 150 players (by SR) having the ability to endorse one candidate. Phase 2 will see the narrowing of the talent pool down to just three individuals, where another vote by the top 150 players (with each player having one vote) will decide who will represent their country's committee for this role.
Community leads will follow a similar selection process as coaches, but instead of the vote being decided by the top 150 players (by SR), anybody from the country's player base can vote for whoever they feel is fit for this position. Multiple votes can be cast for multiple candidates in this initial phase. However, in the second phase, more similarly to the coach selection process, there will be a small pool of 10 candidates that can represent each country, and the player base will cast one final vote for their candidate of choice.
The full committees for each nation will be revealed on May 31.
Player tryouts will begin June 1 through July 5. Overwatch League members are eligible to compete for spots on their respective country's world cup teams. Similarly to Overwatch League teams, rosters of up to 12 players can be submitted by the country's committee from June 15 to July 5.
All committee members and players are subject to approval by Blizzard.