The best pro gaming to watch this weekend

LoL Worlds 2015 Groups Week 2

Photo credit: Riot Games.

This weekend is all about warm-ups. League of Legends’ ongoing group stages heat up in Paris; Blizzcon gets its latest pair of Hearthstone competitors; the Dota 2 Frankfurt Major begins its massive international qualifier process; the Smite Pro League rumbles on. Fancy something different? Try the Counter-Strike: Global Offensive World Championships 2015, a rare example of a competition featuring national teams rather than established orgs.

League of Legends: LCS Worlds Group Stages

This has been arguably the most dramatic group stage in the history of the League of Legends World Championship. The action continues this weekend, with matches between Team SoloMid, Origen, KT Rolster, LGD Gaming, Invictus Gaming, ahq e-Sports Club, Fnatic, and Cloud 9. Games run from approximately 10:00 BST/02:00 PDT on Saturday and from 08:00 BST/00:00 PDT on Sunday. Find a full schedule right here, and follow the action on the official livestream. Need to catch up on the teams? Check out our massive group stage preview.

2015 Hearthstone Americas Championship

Hot on the heels of last week's European Road to Blizzcon, the best Hearthstone players in the Americas head to San Francisco to compete for a prize pool of $25,000 and one of two spots at the World Championship at Blizzcon. Play is scheduled to occur all day on Pacific time, and you can follow it all on the official stream.

Dota 2: The Frankfurt Major 2015 Regional Qualifiers

The first Dota 2 Major will find its final set of teams this weekend as all four regional qualifiers happen at once. This includes teams that qualified through the open qualifiers, which have been running all week. There are big names mixed in with the newcomers - Invictus Gaming in China, Na'Vi, Alliance and Ninjas in Pyjamas in Europe, Fnatic and MVP Phoenix in South East Asia. It'll be difficult to follow the entire thing, so I recommend picking a region and sticking with it. Play starts on Saturday at the following times:

  • USA: 18:00 BST/10:00 PDT.
  • South East Asia: 03:00 BST/19:00 PDT (Friday night in the USA.)
  • Europe: 11:00 BST/03:00 PDT.

In China, the games start on Sunday at 03:00 BST/19:00 PDT (Friday night in the USA.)

Games can be spectated in the client, or check the official site for Stream info.

Counter-Strike: The World Championships 2015

They may well have called this 'Technically The World Championships 2015'. TWC is one of the few esports events to involve national teams rather than sponsored squads. As such, it's a bit of a novelty: a chance to see the USA face off against Singapore, Kyrgyzstan, Sweden and so on. Most players are drawn from multiple esports orgs, with a bunch of free agents in the mix to round things out. The winner takes home $50,000. The group stages are happening right now, with the main bracket to be played over the course of the weekend. Scheduling info isn't currently available that far ahead on the official site, but you can watch the stream here when the time comes.

Smite: SPL Fall Split Week 8

Smite's Super Regional draws closer as the Fall Split marches on. Play starts at 18:00 BST/10:00 PDT on both Saturday and Sunday, and all of the games will be streamed on the official Smite Twitch and available afterwards on YouTube. Look out for Cloud9 vs. COG on Sunday. C9 is made up of the players who won the first Smite World Championship under the COG Gaming label earlier in the year: they face off against the team brought in to replace them.

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Chris Thursten

Joining in 2011, Chris made his start with PC Gamer turning beautiful trees into magazines, first as a writer and later as deputy editor. Once PCG's reluctant MMO champion , his discovery of Dota 2 in 2012 led him to much darker, stranger places. In 2015, Chris became the editor of PC Gamer Pro, overseeing our online coverage of competitive gaming and esports. He left in 2017, and can be now found making games and recording the Crate & Crowbar podcast.