Valve making big changes to CSGO majors with circuit qualifiers

Tom B. January 18, 2020

According to a report from HLTV, Valve is planning big changes to the qualification system for official Counter-Strike: Global Offensive majors. This will end the previous format, where 14 teams received an invitation based on their performance in the last major while 10 more qualified through regional minors.

The new approach will involve a point system where teams can work their way into the major through strong performances in multiple events in the months prior. 

The top 8 teams from this new ranking system will automatically qualify for the Legends Stage of the major, while the next 8 teams will enter in the Challengers Stage of the competition. The final 8 teams will be determined with regional minor tournaments.

This will make for a circuit system similar to the Dota Pro Circuit, which Valve uses to determine invitees to The International.

These plans will go into effect for the yet-to-be-named fall 2020 CSGO major. The first event where teams will be able to earn points towards that major will be the ESL One Rio Major, which takes place in May.

This will not change the qualification process for the ESL One Rio Major. It is has not yet been announced which other events will determine seeding for the fall 2020 major.

New invitation system brings big changes to CSGO majors

Many have welcomed the changes but some, such as FaZe Clan coach Janko “YNk” Paunovic, still have questions. He gave his thoughts on the new format on Twitter, and discussed how the scheduling could interfere with a Counter-Strike Professional Players' Association-organized player break set to take place between July 15 and August 15.

“Any change which makes more recent results more relevant is good but there are still lots of questions. How will they calculate the decay etc from the previous Major? When will these qualifying LANs actually be? We changed the Major dates not to have it right after the break.”

It's unlikely that schedule conflicts would directly conflict with majors late in the year, as Valve has already set these calendar dates for November.

Valve has asked for tournament organizers to propose locations for the new events, suggesting the remaining qualifying events could be brand new tournaments.