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HCS 2023 KICKOFF MAJOR CHARLOTTE

Venue full of fans spectating the Halo World Championship 2022

Welcome back Spartans! Join us next month in Charlotte, NC as we kickoff the first Major of the 2023 HCS season.

With fresh rosters, new storylines, and heated rivalries, the stage is set for this to be an intense year of Halo Esports. Will OpTic Gaming keep their crown and defend their title, or will there be a new champion?

Year 2 of HCS starts now!

HCS Kickoff Major Charlotte, February 24-26,

KEY INFO

  • Date: February 24 - 26
  • Venue: Charlotte Convention Center (Hall B) - 501 S College St, Charlotte, NC 28202
  • Event Type: Major
  • Eligibility: Global
  • Broadcast: Twitch and YouTube
  • Spectator Tickets: Available Now
  • Team Pass: Available Now
  • 4v4 Prize Pool: $250,000
  • FFA Prize Pool: $5,000

VENUE, TICKETS, AND TEAM PASSES

Venue:  Charlotte Convention Center (Hall B)

Address:  501 S College St, Charlotte, NC 28202

Price: $50

  • Entrance into event for the entirety of the tournament. 
  • Access to compete in the Free-For-All tournament at no extra charge. 
  • General Attendees will receive a Halo Waypoint token that unlocks all in-game items provided as Twitch Drops over the event weekend.

VIP 3-DAY TICKETS (SOLD OUT)

Price: $100

HCS Charlotte VIP Package includes:

  • Early Entry to the Venue on Friday (Get the first look at the stage and venue).
  • Dedicated Entry Line at Check-In. Access to the VIP Lounge and private bar.
  • Limited Edition VIP Credential.
  • Exclusive Production Tour on Friday morning with backstage access and onstage photo opportunity. A rundown of the venue and various areas including knowledge and insight on what it takes to get everything set up and working. The tour ends with an opportunity to get on the main stage for a group photo. More information will be emailed out closer to the event.
  • Early access to the Free-for-All Competition Check-in (30 minutes before general admission).
  • Chance to win exclusive giveaways. 10% off on HCS Apparel and Merchandise.
  • VIPs will receive a Halo Waypoint token that unlocks all in-game items provided as Twitch Drops over the event weekend

PARTNERED TEAM CODES

In order to provide extra value to fans and also allow fans to support their favorite teams directly, you can use any of the below codes at check out to receive a 10% discount on your tickets. When you save 10%, the Teams receive 10%.  

Support your favorite team and get a discount on spectator tickets. If you use a team's code, be sure to share on Twitter and tag the teams so they know you've supported them! 

  • Military Discount: MLT for 10% off
  • Senior Discount: SNR for 10% off
  • Price: $250
  • Covers 4 Players + Coach
  • 96 Total Team Passes Available

Head to hcs.ee.gg to purchase your HCS Charlotte 2023 Team Pass!

CHARLOTTE FORMAT

Format: The event format will be very similar to what we saw in Year 1 but we’ve made a few refinements now that we’ve got a full year of global competitive results to build from. Here’s what you can expect:

  • Open Bracket: As is customary, there will be an open bracket featured at the Charlotte Major (and every Major in 2023). This will take place on Friday, February 24 and will start and end on the same day. The bracket will be filled by the first 96 teams to purchase a pass. The top 4 teams from the Open Bracket will move on to Pool Play (2 from the Winner’s bracket, 2 from the Elimination Bracket) They will be placed into Pool Play and will have a shot to earn a spot in the Championship Bracket.
  • Pool Play: The Top 12 teams from qualifiers will be starting the tournament from Pool Play on Friday, February 24 competing in a Best of 5 round robin format as is customary. You’ll notice this number is slightly reduced from Year 1. We made this decision to increase the competitiveness of Pool Play, as well as the competitiveness of the Open Bracket. We expect to see more intense matches, a more intense Championship Bracket, as well as more competitive teams coming out of the Open Bracket. As with last year, each of the 4 competing regions will have a set amount of slots in Pool Play and Open Bracket which we’ve also adjusted based on Year 1 results. The regional breakout is as follows:
    • North America: 8 Pool Play slots, 2 Open Bracket Travel Coverage slots
    • Europe: 2 Pool Play slots, 2 Open Bracket Travel Coverage slots
    • Mexico: 1 Pool Play slot, 1 Open Bracket Travel Coverage slot
    • Australia and New Zealand: 1 Pool Play slot, 2 Open Bracket Travel Coverage slots

IMPORTANT NOTE: As with last year, all teams in pool play will receive travel stipends. Additionally, as with last year, we’re still providing regional travel support for the next top teams regionally so that there’s still meaningful global participation at the Majors and those teams have the chances to prove themselves worthy of qualifying for pool play and the championship bracket.

  • Championship Bracket: For HaloWC 2022 the top 2 teams from each pool went to the Winner’s Bracket, the 3rd place team went to the Elimination Bracket, while the 4th place team was eliminated from the competition. In 2023, we’re going to replicate this format for the Majors. Like with the Pool Play changes, our aim is to overall create a more competitive format where the matches are also higher stakes along the way. We felt this was a success for HaloWC and we’re excited to see it in action for the Majors.

CHARLOTTE OPEN + QUALIFIER

Players will have a chance to earn travel coverage and a spot in Pool Play at Charlotte Major. See the online tournament dates below:

Registration goes live Jan 26 at FACEIT.

Charlotte Online Open

  • Date: Feb 4-5 (Feb 5 for EU/MX/ANZ)
  • Prize: Cash + HCS Points

Charlotte Major Qualifier

  • Date: Feb 7-8 (Feb 8 for EU/MX/ANZ)
  • Prize: Pool Play + Travel Coverage
  • Charlotte Pools: 8 NA, 2 EU, 1MX, 1 ANZ
  • Travel Coverage: 12 Pool Play Teams + next top teams in each region by HCS Points. (2 NA, 2 EU, 1 MX, and 2 ANZ)

Qualifier Format

  • Year 1 Points: Players fought all season long in 2022 and we want to recognize their efforts as well as ensure the first competition of the new season is as balanced as it can be. To accomplish this, Year 1 points will be used for seeding for the Charlotte Online Open. Once the Online Open has concluded, all Year 1 points will be wiped and only Year 2 points will be used going forward.
  • Qualification: In Year 1 we leaned heavily into rewarding teams for earning spots in those specific qualifiers as opposed to points accumulated across all qualifiers. In Year 2, we’re going to balance this out a bit more so that teams that perform well in the main qualifier are rewarded, but that we’re accounting for consistent performances by rewarding teams that have accumulated points through consistent performances during the qualification period. You’ll see this philosophy throughout the season as well as we look to strike the right balance. Here’s how it breaks out per region:
    • North America: 6 with placement qualification, 2 with points.
    • Europe: 1 with placement qualification, 1 with points.
    • Mexico: 1 with placement qualification
    • Australia and New Zealand: 1 with placement qualification

Note: Teams that qualify for Open Bracket travel coverage per the breakout above will be determined based on points only.  

$5,000 FFA TOURNAMENT

As usual, the Charlotte Major will also feature a $5,000 FFA tournament - open to all event attendees!

Pre-registration is live at hcs.ee.gg!

EVENT SCHEDULE

The event schedule will be published at a later time. Check back here for updates!

WHERE TO WATCH

Catch all the action live February 24 - 26.

TWITCH DROPS

The Twitch Drops that will be up for grabs during the Charlotte Major will be revealed at a later date! Check back here, or follow HCS on Twitter to be notified!

TRAVEL

  • Airport: Charlotte Douglas International Airport (CLT)
  • Ground TransportationUberLyft
  • Hotels: Click here for a list of nearby hotels.

FAQ

When will the Halo World Championship 2022 take place? The HCS Kickoff Major Charlotte 2023 will take place February 24th to 26th, 2023.
Where is the event taking place? The HCS Kickoff Major Charlotte 2023 will take place at the Charlotte Convention Center in Hall B. 501 S College St, Charlotte, NC 28202
Where can I purchase tickets? Spectator passes available January 13th: Click here to purchase.
I can't attend the event, but want to watch online. Where can I tune in? You can tune into these links to watch the action:

Twitch
A stream - Twitch.tv/Halo
B stream - Twitch.tv/HCS
Is there an age limit? All 4v4 and FFA Players must be 13 years of age or older to compete at Halo Major Charlotte. Players 13 years of age or older require a signed parental consent form if under the age of 18.

Spectators 13 years of age or older require a signed parental consent form if under the age of 18. Spectators under 13 years of age will need to be accompanied by guardian. Children ages 3 and under will not require a ticket, but will require a completed parental consent form and be accompanied by a guardian at all times.

Download the Parental Consent Form.

Please bring the completed form to the event and have ready to hand in at the ticketing desk.
What if I am under the age limit at the time of qualification but meet the age requirements by the event date? Can I still participate? Players will need to be of age by February 6th to compete.
What time do the doors open? The Event Schedule will be published at a later time. Please check back here for updates.
Where should I park and is parking free? You can check here for all paid parking options near the event.

You can view a parking map on the Charlotte Convention Center's website here.
Do you have appropriate seating and parking for individuals with medical conditions? The event is ADA compliant and accessible. More information can be found here.
Are pets allowed? Only service animals are allowed at the event.
I am with the press and would like to cover the event. Who should I reach out to for information and Press Access? Please submit your inquiry using our Press Credential Request form. For any additional help, email xboxpress@assemblyinc.com.
I have other questions – where’s the best place to ask them? For Charlotte specific questions, email us at HCSeventsNA@ee.gg

For HCS program and eligibility questions, email us at HCS@ee.gg
Are there any prohibited items? Halo Championship Series Prohibited Items

ACCEPTABLE:
- Cosplay and other costumes determined to be safe by security
- Prop/Replica weapons as part of cosplay or other costumes (Must be submitted to security for review. Cannot contain a functioning bolt mechanism or fire a projectile of any kind. Any bow-type weapons must be unstrung or strung with a low-tensile thread. All prop arrows must have soft, non-metal, blunted tips made out of foam or cardboard only. Cannot be pointed at any individual in such a way to cause fear of harm or distress. Cosplay firearms must have brightly colored safety tips. Must be visibly tagged and visually identified as “safe” or “peace bonded”)
- Cell Phones
- Action cameras, such as GoPro’s
- Prescription medication (you must have the prescription/label in your name with you)

PROHIBITED ITEMS* (below list is a guide, not all inclusive):

- Illegal or illicit substances, drugs, or drug paraphernalia
- Weapons of any kind including, but not limited to, guns, ammo, pocket knives, sharp-edge blades, self-defense sprays, or any item deemed as unsafe by security staff
- Flammable items or liquids including aerosols and fireworks
- Bags lager than 12″ x 12″ x 6″ max
- Coolers, sleeping bags, tents, and chairs
- An exception will be made for medically necessary items after thorough inspection
- Outside alcohol
- Outside food and beverage Bicycles, skateboards, hover-boards, scooters, or personal motorized vehicles
- Drones or unmanned aerial vehicles
- Animals except for service animals assisting an individual with a disability
- “Comfort,” “therapy” or “emotional support” animals do not meet the ADA definition of a service animal. Security may permit working dogs or other animals as required.
- Laser pens, laser pointers, or similar focused light devices
- Noisemakers such as megaphones, air horns, sirens, whistles, or other devices which may interfere with others’ experience
- Any item that is not lawfully permitted to be carried in the locality or City of Seattle
- Additional items may be prohibited at the discretion of Microsoft staff or security

*Note: Prohibited items and items determined to not be appropriate for entry into Halo Championship Series will be the responsibility of the attendee and cannot be accepted, stored, or checked by Microsoft or Convention Center.
What is your bag policy? Spectators: All Bags must be clear and under 12in x 12in x 6in to be allowed in the venue, and are subject to wanding and searches as needed. Wallets and wristlets no larger than 5in x 8in x 1in are permitted -Anything larger must follow the clear bag guidelines.
What are the closest hotels to the event venue? Please use this link to find nearby hotels options and rates.
Where can I find the Handbook & Code of Conduct? You can find the HCS Handbook & Code of Conduct by clicking here.
Will there be a Free-For-All (FFA) competition at this event? Yes! The event will feature a free Halo Infinite FFA tournament, which will be open for up to 512 players and spectators. Best of luck to those competing for their shot at the largest portion of the $5,000 prize pool!

The FFA check-in schedule will be published closer to the event. Check back here for updates.

Must have a Spectator ticket to participate.
I don't live in the United States. Can I still compete in this tournament? To check your specific country’s eligibility, please see the list of eligible countries as listed in the Handbook here.
Is there a limit to the number of teams eligible to compete in this tournament? Yes. The 4v4 competition will include 12 invited teams.

The FFA competition will feature a maximum of 512 competitors
When do rosters lock? TBD
What equipment should I bring if I'm competing? All players competing must bring:

- Your preferred wired peripheral (Xbox wired Controller or Mouse and Keyboard)
- USB cord required for your preffered peripheral
- Headset with no power outlet and a 3.5 mm plug
- Wired Earbuds (needed for Feature Station and Main Stage play)
- If you plan on competing with Keyboard & Mouse, you must submit your model number for each device to hcs@ee.gg ahead of the event.

Mixamps will be provided. Bringing backup equipment is recommended.
Which monitors will be used for the tournament? All tournament and warmup monitors will be played on BenQ Model XL2540K
How do I earn travel coverage? More info on how to earn Travel Coverage will be shared soon!
How does travel coverage work? More info on how Travel Coverage works will be shared soon!
What is the Prizing Breakdown? Prizing Breakdown - Charlotte Major 4v4
Full Breakdown will be shared soon!

Prizing Breakdown - Charlotte Major Free-For-All
1st: $2,000
2nd: $1,200
3rd: $800
4th: $425
5th: $200
6th: $150
7th: $125
8th: $100
What is the Pro Point Breakdown? Pro Points Breakdown - Charlotte 4v4
1st - 25,000
2nd - 15,000
3rd - 11,000
4th - 9,000
5th/6th - 8,000
7th/8th - 7,000
9th-12th - 5,500
13th-14th - 4,500
15th-16th - 3,000
17th-20th - 2,750
21th-24th - 2,250
25th-32th - 1,800
33th-40th - 1,600
41th-56th - 1,400
57th-72th - 1,000

Pro Points Breakdown - Charlotte FFA
1st: 15,000
2nd: 13,500
3rd: 12,750
4th: 12,000
5th: 11,250
6th: 10,500
7th: 9,750
8th: 9,000
9th - 10th: 6,000
11th - 12th: 5,250
13th - 14th: 4,500
15th - 16th: 3,750
17th - 20th: 2,800
21st - 24th: 2,450
25th - 28th: 2,000
29th - 32nd: 1,650
33rd - 40th: 1,300
41st - 48th: 1,125
49th - 56th: 950
57th - 64th: 750
65th - 128th: 375
I have other questions – where’s the best place to ask them? For Charlotte specific questions - HCSeventsNA@ee.gg

For HCS Program and eligibility questions - HCS@ee.gg
What types of payment do you accept? Online and onsite? All major credit cards are accepted. Cash payments will not be accepted at the event.
How will I get my tickets if I buy them online? You will receive a confirmation email from Eventbrite with a QR code and printable tickets. Digital or print tickets will be accepted and scanned at the door at the event.
What if my tickets are lost or stolen? Please contact HCSeventsNA@ee.gg for more information.
Do you offer refunds? Charlotte Spectator and VIP Ticket - Refund Policy:

Esports Engine will only be considering refunds for tickets until February 17th, at 6:00 PM ET.
Refunds requests will not be accepted after February 17th, 2023 at 6:00 PM ET, and must be emailed to HCSEventsNA@ee.gg.
No tickets may be exchanged for event credit with Eventbrite or 343/HCS events.
Tickets are non-transferable.
In the event that the event is canceled due to the organizer or COVID restrictions, refunds will be processed for all purchasers.
What if the event is cancelled? If the event is cancelled all tickets purchased will be refunded in full.
Can I show my tickets on my phone at the door or do I need to have the physical tickets with me? Digital or print tickets will be accepted and QR codes scanned upon entry. You must have all members of the parties accounted for with multiple tickets present to check in at the same time. Tickets are only scanned once.

Fans will receive a wristband that corresponds with their ticket type.
Do you offer military or senior citizen discounts? If you are purchasing a ticket online - please use the code MLT (for Military) or SNR (for Senior) to receive 10% off your ticket.

For the Military discount, please be prepared to present your Military ID. For a senior discount, you must be 55+ years of age.

Any questions about codes or eligibility please email HCSeventsNA@ee.gg.
What does general admission mean? General Admission (GA) refers to seating or standing areas that are not assigned or reserved, and are occupied on a first-come, first-served basis.
Will my seats be together? General Admission (GA) refers to seating or standing areas that are not assigned or reserved, and are occupied on a first-come, first-served basis.
What should I do if I don't receive my tickets? Please contact HCSeventsNA@ee.gg for more information.
Is my multi-day ticket good for either or both days? 3 Day GA or VIP tickets are acceptable for all days of the event. You will receive a wristband or credentials that you must keep with you for all of the days to re-enter.
The name on the ticket doesn't match the attendee’s name. Is that okay? This is allowed, however you must have all members of the parties accounted for with multiple tickets present to check in at the same time. Tickets are only scanned once.
What does a VIP ticket include? Charlotte Major VIP Package includes:

Early Entry to the Venue on Friday (Get the first look at the stage and venue)
Dedicated Entry Line at Check-In
Access to the VIP Lounge and private bar
Limited Edition VIP Credential
Exclusive Production Tour
Early access to the FFA Competition Check-in (30 minutes before general admission)
Chance to win Surprise Giveaways
10% off on HCS Apparel and Merchandise
What are the COVID event's guidelines? Per current federal, state and event organizer guidelines, HCS Kickoff Major Charlotte 2023 will have no COVID requirements for teams or spectators for entry or while in the building. Halo and event organizers will work to continue to monitor the situation and update protocols for safety as needed.
Do I need to present proof of vaccination or a negative PCR test? Per current federal, state and event organizer guidelines vaccine or test results will not be required.
Will I be required to wear a mask or face covering, or other PPE, while at the event? Per current federal, state and event organizer guidelines masks are recommended but not required.