Atlanta FaZe has won the biggest Call of Duty esports event of the year. Taking on Toronto Ultra in the grand finals of the 2021 Call of Duty League Championship they emerged victorious. Not much of an upset for the event but they deserved the win.
Twelve teams took part in the championship. Atlanta FaZe entered the event with the first seed after winning three out of five majors in the 2021 season. They were heavily favoured for the event but after a generally disappointing showing a few weeks ago at the last major, some folks were predicting an upset. Toronto Ultra was seeded second in the event and would go on to face FaZe in the Finals.
Toronto Ultra was the only team to beat FaZe in the majors in the 2021 season. So, when the two teams ended up facing off against one another, they were in for a gruelling fight. The grand finals of the event is a best of nine series. In the end, eight games were played and FaZe won 5-3.
Toronto managed to secure an early victory in the first game of the series but FaZe would not let up. The series was marked with runs of wins for FaZe only occasionally peppered with small victories for Toronto Ultra.
After FaZe sealed the deal in match eight on the Apocalypse map, they won the series and ended up taking home $1.2 million.
This year the Call of Duty League Championship was an in-person LAN event at the Galen Center in Los Angeles. Of course, due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, the attendance of fans was controlled and restricted. Most of us just watched the streams at home.
Besides the return to in-person play, the real change to the event and one that could have really thrown a spanner in the works was the introduction of PC play. An announcement from the league before the start of the 2021 season read:
“The League is announcing it will move pro team competition to PC + Controller beginning with the 2021 season. This means that all pro matches will be played on PC and all pro players must use a League-approved controller of their choice.
“As part of this transition, Call of Duty League competition will maintain exclusive use of controllers for the upcoming season. This change provides players with expanded choice of controller, allowing them to select the League-approved controller style that works best for their game. More details and rules pertaining to peripherals will be released at a future date.”
For the first time in the league’s history, it wasn’t restricted by the console hardware or framerate restrictions. They had a greater choice of controllers or peripherals that could enhance their gameplay. Unfortunately, they still do not allow the use of a keyboard and mouse. I understand that Call of Duty is more of a console game than a PC game, but they are just leaving great players behind by sticking with controllers.