This is a quick update for those who have been wondering what has been going on behind the scenes within the ANZ HotS community with regard to Phase 2 of HGC ANZ Premier.
Captains met with Gamestah during the week of 14 May, and then again the week of 21 May, to provide their feedback on Phase 1 and suggestions for Phase 2. The outcome of the meetings was a set of recommendations which were proposed to Blizzard ANZ, and the following changes will be implemented for Phase 2 of HGC ANZ Premier:
HGC ANZ Premier teams will now consist of up to six players on the “Active Roster” and will be given the opportunity to use emergency substitutes for two of their matches during Phase 2. The substitutes will not be considered part of the Active Roster, and cannot be sourced from another Premier team.
In addition, teams will no longer be required to meet a core-of-three requirement for their roster, but instead will be held to a core-of-two requirement.
During the off-season (i.e. the period between Phases 1 and 2) teams will have the opportunity to make adjustments to their rosters. The Agency Period started on 22 May, and ends on 11 June, as follows:
- 22 May – 31 May: Roster Release period
- 1 June – 11 June: Roster Acquisition period
During the agency period, teams may release and acquire new players for their Phase 2 roster. Newly qualified teams (i.e. teams promoted from Open Division in Phase 1 to Premier Division in Phase 2) are not allowed to release players, but are allowed to acquire additional players should they need to it fill their active roster to six.
If a premier team does not fulfill the core-of-two requirement at the end of the acquisition period, or that team forms two separate teams that both satisfy the core-of-two requirement, their slot in Premier opens up to challenge. To ensure fair access to the slot, a playoff series will be conducted for those teams that qualify to challenge for the slot. Teams that qualify are:
- The two new teams that satisfy the core-of-two requirement
- The highest ranked Open Division team
In other words, a team that maintains its core-of-two, where no other team with a core-of-two from the old roster is formed, keeps the Premier slot. The challenge only occurs if two teams form out of the old roster. In the case where one of the new teams has a majority of players in it (i.e. 3 or more players from the Active Roster), there is no challenge – that team will hold onto the slot.
All HGC ANZ Premier matches in Phase 2 will be played on the Tournament Realm!
There were a few other changes that were agreed between the Captains and Gamestah that affect mainly how the tournament is run, as opposed to changing the requirements teams must meet in order to compete.
These changes include a Captains’ Council that will be consulted on issues such as hero bans, rules changes and responses to the discovery of significant bugs.
Gamestah has also committed to improving transparency regarding the application of rules and responses to player reports/requests, as well as improving general communication.