EPICENTER 2019 Tournament Preview

December 16, 2019 | 0 | 557| |

EPICENTER is one of the final CS:GO LAN tournaments for the year and will feature a diverse mix of teams. 

EPICENTER will host their last event of the year and it features some of the best CS:GO teams in action. Previous years saw very little action in December, but 2019 December is already shaping up to be an action-packed month for CS:GO fans. 

When Does EPICENTER 2019 Take Place?

EPICENTER 2019 takes place at the Crocus Expo Hall in Moscow. The LAN tournament kicks off on December 17 and will continue for six days ending on December 22. 

  • The Group Stage: December 17-20, 2019.
  • Playoffs: December 21-22, 2019. 

What is the Format for EPICENTER 2019?

  • Group Stage: December 17th – 19th, 2019
    • Two double-elimination format (GSL) Groups
      • Each group has four teams
      • All matches are Bo3
    • The top three teams from each group advance to the Playoffs:
      • Group stage winners advance to the Semifinals
      • Group stage runners-up advance to the Quarterfinals as the High Seeds
      • Group stage 3rd place teams advance to the Quarterfinals as the Low Seeds

  • Playoffs: December 21th – 22th, 2019
    • Single-Elimination bracket
    • All matches are Bo3

Data from Liquipedia.

Which Teams Will take part in EPICENTER 2019?

EPICENTER 2019 will feature eight teams competing for a prize money of $500,000. The first-place team wins 50% of the total prize money at $250,000. 

Here is the list of the eight participating teams in EPICENTER 2019:

  • Evil Geniuses
  • Natus Vincere
  • Vitality
  • Heroic
  • Mousesports
  • forZe

Top Contenders

The eight teams include some of the top CS:GO teams as well as a few dark horses who could cause massive upsets.

Evil Geniuses

The North American roster rose rapidly post the Berlin Major and soon became the best team from the region. They were able to defeat Astralis, Team Liquid multiple times and soon claimed the title of the best team in the world. However, maintaining their position at the top of the ladder was easier said than done as EG’s decline was as rapid as their climb. Valve’s nerfs to the SG553, or the Krieg as its more popularly known also played a role in the team’s lack of performance in recent months. 

Evil Geniuses is still a top contender for the tournament and they could possibly put up really strong results at EPICENTER 2019. However, the team does not have the same momentum as before and they do not seem comfortable playing against top tier teams at present. 


AFter three back-to-back event victories, Mousesports is one of the hottest CS:GO teams at present. They won the cs_summit 5 Grand finals despite playing with a stand-in, NatoSaphix and their coach, as Karrigan had to leave early due to visa issues. 

Under Karrigan’s leadership, Mousesports has proved extremely effective in allowing their star players the freedom and the space to play to their strengths. So far, players like Woxic have not disappointed, regularly putting up strong results individually and in a team environment. 

Mousesports is definitely a big contender for EPICENTER 2019 and could be the dark horse at this tournament. 


Vitality has the 2019’s best CS:GO player and despite his presence, the team has failed to produce visible results. In fact, the team has failed to replicate results from before the Major as they have a new lineup, with the inclusion of Shox. 

Vitality’s roster breeds expectations and they are one of the contenders for the trophy. They will have to go through teams such as Mousesports and Na’Vi if they are to secure this title, which could be their last trophy of 2019. Vitality is in Group A alongside teams like Natus Vincere and Heroic. 

While they are a contender for the tournament title, they are also extremely inconsistent and could fall to Heroic for an early group stage exit from the tournament. 

Natus Vincere

Natus Vincere face a similar situation as Vitality. They have two of the world’s best CS:GO players in Electronic and S1mple. The team has failed to produce decent results despite having a promising roster when they added GuardiaN to their CS:GO team. GuardiaN’s addition to the team, however, has been a bane as the player has seen a massive dip in individual form since his transfer from FaZe Clan. 

If Na’Vi are to have any chances of reclaiming their lost glory, GuardiaN has to play a crucial role in their comeback. The veteran player has all the experience required to make an impact on the squad’s performance, but he needs to step up on an individual level for the team to look good in their matches. 

What Can We Expect from EPICENTER 2019?

EPICENTER 2019 will not see the best CS:GO teams in action. However, the absence of the best CS:GO teams allows a level playing field for the rest. Teams like Na’Vi, Heroic, Mousesports and Vitality present a very even playing field, and could provide for some exciting Counter-Strike. 

EPICENTER 2019 kicks off on December 17, 2019 and will continue till December 22. The tournament features a total prize pool of $500,000 with $250,000 reserved for the first place. 

The author

Esports journalist. An esports fan, former wannabe pro and occasional angry young man. You can find him trying to climb the Dota 2 MMR or just chilling in Rocket League. Or maybe building an entire city in Cities: Skylines. The current mood is always a surprise.

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