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This article was updated 11th January following a further announcement from ETF2L.
As we enter a new year ETF2L have announced their latest 6v6 season and an accompanying pre-season cup. The season will run from January 23rd through to the start of April and Copenhagen Games, and while ETF2L have confirmed that there will be a prizepool no specifics have yet been announced. Last season Witness Gaming took the trophy in convincing fashion, but with the shakeup of their roster and the announcement of the "dream team" in EvilGuys it's anyone's guess who will triumph this time.
The pre-season cup will be held across the weekend of January 15th and 16th, and after long debate will be used to test a plugin that nerfs the Iron Bomber, by making its grenades the same size as those from other launchers. This move has both been called for and opposed ever since the discrepancy was discovered, so it will be interesting to see how changing this affects gameplay. The cup will take the same format as previous, with a three-map pool consisting of:
For the main season, the map pool originally remained the same as Season 40, which drew criticism from several Premiership players; the proximity of this season to the Copenhagen Games LAN has been cited as a reason to favour established maps, such as Product, that are likely to be played there. This was acknowledged by the admin team, who consulted current Premiership players and adjusted the map pool: Reckoner and Clearcut were removed and replaced with Granary and Product. This means the pool is now:
- cp_metalworks or cp_metalworks_f2
With this comes the news that the Market Gardener will also be banned, with 73% of respondents voting for this, and several bugs will be patched or banned. Changing the Iron Bomber's grenade hitbox to bring it in line with the stock launcher was endorsed over banning it, though to quote admins, "this decision may not be definitive"; further announcements may be made after the cup. Finally, players voted for single elimination playoffs in Premiership and Division 1, with the highest seed getting an advantage in the map pick/bans.
Signups are open now, with those for the cup and for Premiership closing on January 14th, and those for the season closing the following Thursday. Should any qualifiers be necessary for Prem, they will be held the week after the cup, with it all covered on twitch.tv/teamfortresstv