Call of Duty EU finals come to London as team closes doors

Activision are pitting the top 28 Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare teams in Europe against each other at the end of this month in London for their share of a $10,000 prize pool, and a trip to the $1m world finals – though one team’s future is uncertain.

The teams, down from 740 from across UK, France, Germany, Spain, Italy, The Netherlands, Sweden and parts of the Middle East, will clash between February 28 and March 1 in Covent Garden’s Royal Opera House. From the UK, major organisations, the likes of Epsilon, TCM Gaming and Team Infused, will join smaller outfits aiming for a shot at the global Call of Duty Championship at the end of March in Los Angeles.

The eSports event, organised in partnership with Gfinity, is a first for London’s classiest theatrical venue, but a natural fit for the drama to play out on-stage, and broadcast exclusively via Drama which is already underway as one of the invited UK/Ireland qualifying teams, Total eSports Circuit, announced their withdrawal from eSports as a whole yesterday on Twitter.

Owner and team manager of TEC, Chris Craddock, said in his statement: “I have been concerned for the scene itself and TEC’s role within the scene for some time. TEC has been around since July 2011 and we have had some fantastic years as an org and amazing support from you all.

“I am looking to move forward with my life and I don’t see TEC or eSports as part of my future anymore.”

Craddock’s reasons for closing such a longstanding organisation in the UK eSports scene range from family and other personal commitments, to the state of the industry as he sees it. “I no longer have the time, patience and energy to deal with the lack of respect and unprofessionalism, not to mention being stabbed in back within the industry several times. I believe the scene and this industry has a long way to go before it will start moving forward again.

“It’s not just the community that has to make these steps but the company’s [sic] at the head of the scene. They have a long way to go to improve before the scene can grow and gain worldwide respect.”

It is understood by eSports Pro that the team is available for sponsorship and that their place in the qualifiers remains valid. Activision has been contacted for comment but has yet to reply at time of publishing.

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