I’m going to be pretty straight with you here. When it comes to CSGO I know pretty much nothing about the game. I mean, if I’m honest, I played CS 1.6 over a decade ago. I therefore have about as much understanding of the game as a casual player might, so it’s not completely over my head. I enjoy watching the occasional competitive match in the local scene (especially at events) but I don’t know anything about the pro players, or the teams. I know a few of the local personalities, and that’s how I catch most of what little I know.

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For instance, yesterday I saw an outcry on Twitter about there being a lack of information regarding an upcoming VS Gaming CSGO Masters LAN Cup. Apparently it was happening this weekend, and there was little to no information out on it. There was also a public outcry that requests for info were being ignored and/or media being stonewalled. So I did what I do best. I contacted the people at VS Gaming, who consistently do their best to help me with information regarding DotA2, and I made an absurd request. I simply asked them to, “Show me what you got!”

VS Gaming CSGO Masters LAN Cup | Basic Info

This is the first major VS Gaming CSGO Masters LAN Cup for 2017, as far as I understand it. That means this cup rides off the back of the Community Shield 1 stream of qualifiers, not the currently active Community Shield 2 qualifiers. The event is going to be held at the VS Gaming studios in Midrand (where the successful DotA2 tournament was held just last month). The event is scheduled to take place between Friday 30 June and Sunday 2 July 2017. The very first fixture on Day 1 takes place at 10h00 in the morning, with Energy and Southern5 facing off first.

This is a double elimination tournament, meaning there is both an upper and lower bracket. All the upper bracket fixtures are set to be best of one matches (Bo1), while lower bracket fixtures are Bo3. The only exceptions are the Grand Finals taking place on Sunday evening which are set to be a Bo5.

The total prize pool is R110,000, up 10% from the same cup held last year. The larger R550,000 prize pool remains scheduled for the 2nd VS Gaming Masters LAN Cup held at rAge later this year. You can follow all the action this weekend via the VS Gaming official YouTube channel here.

The prize breakdown should be as follows:

  • 1st: R44,000
  • 2nd: R22,000
  • 3rd: R14,000
  • 4th: R8,000
  • 5th-8th: R5,500

VS Gaming CSGO Masters LAN Cup | The Talent

A pretty integral part of any esports event is the talent. We’ve been told that the VS Gaming CSGO Masters LAN panel will consist of:

While the casting duos are:

  • Ashton “Golz” Muller (Twitter) and Kyle “Congo” Wolmarans (Facebook | Twitter)
  • Ryan “Parker” Macquet (Twitter) and Gregory “Fingers” Robinson

A special shoutout to Shaun “Profeci” Murrell (Twitter) for helping me out with finding social media links for some of the talent. I honestly only knew a few of the names!

VS Gaming CSGO Masters LAN Cup | The Teams

There are 6 teams who acquire direct invites straight from the VS Gaming CSGO Masters Leg 1 results. These are the teams that placed 1st – 6th, while positions 7th – 10th entered the Community Shield 1, along with 8 wildcard qualifier teams, to fight for the remaining two spots.

Direct Invites:

  • Energy eSports
  • Aperture Gaming
  • xTc Gaming
  • Damage Control
  • White Rabbit Gaming
  • Exdee Gaming

Wildcard Qualifiers:

  • Bravado Gaming
  • Southern5 (qualified as Pro Wolves)

VS Gaming CSGO Masters LAN Cup | Day 1

The first four upper bracket fixtures are as follows:

  • WB1 10h00: Energy eSports vs Southern5 (Bo1)
  • WB2 11h30: Damage Control vs White Rabbit Gaming (Bo1)
  • WB3 13h30: Aperture Gaming vs Bravado Gaming (Bo1)
  • WB4 15h00: xTc Gaming vs eXdee Gaming (Bo1)

Where are our predictions?

I can’t really tell you much about the teams playing this weekend, since we just don’t know enough about the local CSGO scene. So instead I reached out to some people active in the scene to provide some perspective. Sadly they weren’t allowed to speak to me, as directed by their various Overlord Corporations. Politics, man. So you’re just going to have to watch the event to see how everyone does. We hear VS Gaming have great production value these days (at least they did for their DotA2 event earlier this year). So make sure you don’t miss out.