The qualifying countries and the groups for the first stage of the Overwatch World Cup 2018 have been decided.
The Overwatch World Cup returns for its third iteration in 2018. The World Cup pits national teams against each other, offering fans a chance to see unique all-star squads from different countries face off against each other.
Countries qualified based on the collective ranking of the top players on the ladder in season nine. The average rank of the top 150 players from each country was taken at the end of the season, with the top 20 countries by average ranking qualifying for the World Cup.
The four host nations of the group stage qualified by default, making for 24 total teams. Those 24 teams will be narrowed down to 16 over the course of four six-team groups, from which the bottom two of each will be eliminated.
The rosters representing each country have yet to be determined. This year, they will be selected by a three-man committee made up of a General Manager, Coach, and Community Lead. The General Manager will be selected by Blizzard, while the Coach and Community Lead will be voted on by players from their country.
The 24 qualifying countries have been divided into the following groups, the dates for which have yet to be announced: