Halo Infinite NA Anaheim Regional: Teams, schedule, and format

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Credit: Jake Fabricius

This weekend the fourth biggest Halo tournament of the 2022 calendar will take place in Anaheim, California where the top-16 teams in the North American region will compete in Halo Infinite’s second official LAN event.

While the cancellation of the DreamHack Anaheim event and subsequent Californian covid-19 restrictions has led the format to be changed to a smaller and partially online event, the Minor will still be going ahead as teams fight for a spot in the Kansas City Major.

For a complete rundown on everything you’d need to know coming into this tournament continue reading below:

What’s is the Anaheim Regional?

The Anaheim Regional is North America’s path straight to the pool play portion of the Kansas City Major.

While initially part of the DreamHack Anaheim event, this was canceled leading the Halo tournament to be run separately. As well as this, rather than inviting thousands of players to compete in an in-person open bracket, this took place online. Now just the 16 qualified teams will attend the event with no additional competitors or fans allowed in the event.

The tournament will also have a lot of HCS Points as well as $125,000 in prize money to play for split up as seen below:

  • 1st place - $45,000
  • 2nd place - $27,500 each
  • 3rd place - $14,000
  • 4th place - $7,800
  • 5-6th place - $3,850 each
  • 7-8th place - $3,000 each
  • 9-12th place - $2,500 each
  • 13-16th place - $1,750 each

With most of the world’s top Halo teams hailing from North America, this is a must-watch event just shy of a Major. This is also North America’s only Regional Minor of the year with Split 2’s tournament being an Online Super instead making it both key LAN experience and a major title to win.

The Teams

The top eight NA teams from the Raleigh Kick-Off Major as well as eight teams from an online qualifier will be competing this weekend:

Eight teams from the Kick-Off Major:

  • Cloud9 -- Eco, Penguin, Renegade, StelluR, and Hoaxer (coach)
  • eUnited -- KingNick, Rayne, RyaNoob, Spartan, and Chig (coach)
  • FaZe Clan -- Bound, bubu dubu, Falcated, Snip3down, and Towey (coach)
  • Sentinels -- LethuL, SnakeBite, Frosty, Royal2, and Royal1 (coach)
  • Pioneers -- Druk, SoulSnipe, Taulek, and Manny
  • OpTic Gaming -- aPG, Pistola, TriPPPeY, Lucid, and Lunchbox (coach)
  • Spacestation Gaming -- Ace, Tylenul, Ziyon, Flazin, and Elamite (coach)
  • G2 Esports -- Gilk3y, Sabinater, Str8 SicK, Tusk, and Calloussss (coach)

Seven of these teams are official HCS partnered organizations with Pioneers being the odd one out.

It was at the Raliegh Major where Cloud9 began their since unbeaten streak and now two months later the team is hoping to reiterate their dominance. The only team that’s been able to put any fight against C9 since then was OpTic who had a fairly bad showing at the Raleigh and will be very confident in their ability to improve on sixth place.

eUnited finished way up in second place in Infinite’s debut LAN, a performance they haven’t been able to match before or since. Now we’ll get to see whether it was the LAN environment in particular that helped them to this result.

Finally of note, most attention will be on Sentinels with this being their very first LAN since the Halo 5-era with them playing with their full roster. This team was billed to be Infinite’s team to beat coming into the game and now finally we get to see them play together on stage once again.

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Eight open qualifier teams:

  • Oxygen Esports -- Swish, Name, Haines, Common, and Trey (coach)
  • XSET -- Cratos, Suppressed, Suspector, Artic, and Brizzy (coach)
  • Complexity Gaming -- Triton, Hysteria, Vetra, Rob, and SeeSaw (coach)
  • Gamers First -- Squallaye, PreDevoNatoR, Marbs, Ali, and ElitheNiNjA (coach)
  • Fnatic -- SuperCC, Juziro, Sceptify, Envore, and Strobe (coach)
  • UYU -- Karmea, tonisun, Cykul, PiggySaiyan, and Mash (coach)
  • Torrent -- Abature, Filthy, Huss, and HotShotGhost
  • Esports Arena Red -- Rammyy, BoamX, Neuronical, Kuhlect, and Mikren (coach)

Fnatic all the way until January to pick up their roster and have been somewhat lackluster since. As well as needing to go through the lower bracket of the open qualifiers to qualify for Anaheim, they also failed to qualify for Pro Series 3 and finished outside of the top-eight during numbers two and four.

They now sit alongside notable organizations such as Oxygen, XSET, and Complexity who are very eager to establish themselves as serious contenders in Halo Infinite. A top-eight position at Anaheim would certainly do this and position themselves well ahead of the Kansas City Major.

Finally, the teams of UYU, Pushin P, and Esports Arena Red are definitely underdogs at this tournament with no major top-level finishes to their name so far. Playing on LAN and so soon in the game’s lifespan does definitely give them a bigger chance than usual to perform an upset.

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The Format

These 16 teams have been split into four groups of four based on their HCS Points:

we love anime has since been picked up by Esports Arena while Incognito joined UYU.
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we love anime has since been picked up by Esports Arena while Incognito joined UYU.

The groups stage will consist of a single round robin -- every team plays each other once -- format with best-of-five map games.

Following this, all 16 teams will progress to the Champions Bracket. The four group winners go straight to round two, the second and third seeds start in round one, and the last place teams starts in round one of the losers’ bracket.

The Champions Bracket is then played out in a double-elimination, best-of-five map format with a best-of-seven reset grand-final.

The Schedule

The pool play will take place on Friday across four streams -- Halo, Xbox, HCS_Red, and HCS_Blue -- before the Champions Bracket kicks off over Saturday and Sunday.

For the group stage, the matchups can be seen below (all times in PT):

  • 11:30am -- Broadcast starts
  • 12:00pm -- Sentinels vs OxG, SSG vs G1, C9 vs Esports Arena, and FaZe vs Fnatic
  • 1:15pm -- G2 vs Complexity, Pioneers vs XSET, OpTic vs UYU, and eU vs Torrent
  • 2:30pm -- C9 vs OxG, FaZe vs G1, Sentinels vs Esports Arena, and SSG vs Fnatic
  • 3:45pm -- OpTic vs Complexity, eU vs XSET, G2 vs UYU, and Pioneers vs Torrent
  • 5pm -- C9 vs Sentinels, FaZe vs SSG, Esports Arena vs OxG, and G1 vs Fnatic
  • 6:15pm -- OpTic vs G2, eU vs Pioneers, Complexity vs UYU, Torrent vs XSET
  • 7:45pm -- Broadcast ends

The games will be played on Xboxes with PCs used as the server. This should stop the extensive delays which happened during the Raleigh Major group stage.

The Champions Bracket schedule has yet to be confirmed as of writing.