The Pacific Showdown is this weekend, as Overwatch Contenders teams from South Korea, China, Asia-Pacific, and Australia travel to Shanghai to face their fellow Asian competitors live and in person. There is a lot more on the line than just a share of the US $125,000 total prize pool. Regional bragging rights are taken to another level: winning the Showdown guarantees your region an additional starting slot at The Gauntlet later this year, while placing fifth and sixth will cost your region a starting slot.
The City Where It Happens
Shanghai, a hotbed of esports in China, has played host to numerous marquee Overwatch events including the Overwatch World Cup. Three days of electrifying action will start on Friday, May 24, at 1 p.m. CST/10 p.m. PDT/7 a.m. CEST, with a total of 10 matches broadcasted live on Twitch over the weekend. On Saturday, May 25, gameplay begins at 1 p.m. CST/10 p.m. PDT/7 a.m. CEST, and on Sunday we will also start at 1 p.m. CST/10 p.m. PDT/7 a.m. CEST.
We will share updates frequently on Twitter on @owpathtopro, so give us a follow and join the conversation using #PacificShowdown.
LGE Huya is the newest champion in Chinese Contenders and currently serve as the Chengdu Hunters’ affiliated academy team. Despite being a newly formed, mixed-language roster featuring both Chinese and Korean players, LGE Huya beat out regional contenders Flag Gaming and The One Winner. Chinese DPS player Zhong “Haker” Hao-Tian is at the center of this team’s success, matching his namesake with incredible Sombra play.
Element Mystic—South Korea
After failing to defeat RunAway for two straight Contenders seasons, Element Mystic is finally on top. Despite three-support, three-tank compositions being popular stateside in the Overwatch League, Element Mystic found its success with compositions centered around Sombra and Doomfist. It might be a bit too early to call it the new meta, though, because Yeong-han “Sp9rk1e” Kim is the type of player that makes any team approach possible.
Despite switching from a full-Korean roster to a mixed roster to comply with Contenders rule changes, Talon became the first Pacific team to repeat championships. Korean flex player Ji-yoon “Gogora” Lee remains at the center of the team’s success, but Thai DPS player Dara “oPuTo” Ubon remains a player to watch. As a team offering talents from both South Korea and the Pacific, Talon is sure to excite with a variety of playstyles.
Order first entered Australian Contenders with the acquisition of Blank Esports’ B team, Blank Blue. After narrowly missing out on the 2018 Season 3 title in a fInals loss to Sydney Drop Bears, Order exacted its revenge with a 4-1 win in the finals this season. James “Yuki” Stanton, a former Australian Overwatch World Cup representative, remains one of the team’s strongest performers.
O2 Blast—South Korea
O2 Blast first made it to a Contenders final in 2018 as O2 Ardeont, where they lost 4-0 to RunAway. In 2019 Season 1, history repeated itself, as O2 Blast went down 4-0 to Element Mystic in the final. Despite that, O2 Blast is set to be one of the most exciting teams at the Pacific Showdown with its creative compositions and electric tank play from Sang-hoon “Kaiser” Ryu.
The One Winner—China
The One Winner (T1W) was the final Contenders China champion in 2018, and has carried much of that form into 2019. T1W’s star player Shilong “Krystal” Cai may have moved on to the Hangzhou Spark this season, but the team still remains one of the best in Contenders China, with a second-place finish behind LGE Huya.
Release the Casters!
Now that you know more about the Pacific Showdown competitors and where and when to watch the games, it’s time to meet your casting team:
Enjoy the show! We’ll see you on Twitch.