HCS Kickoff Major 2023 » Best Sites, Predictions and Format

Finally, after a slightly delayed return, the Halo Championship Series is back. After an impressive inaugural season last year, 343 Industries looks to start the second year with a bang. Bearing this in mind, we’ll be taking a look at the HCS Kickoff Major 2023 and everything you need to know before placing bets!

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Betting on the HCS Kickoff Major 2023 with GG.Bet and Thunderpick

Overall, there are various avenues when it comes to Halo betting. Moreover, we recommend top-rated sites such as Thunderpick and GG.Bet for your Halo bets.

GG.Bet: An Awesome Welcome Bonus

Starting in esports betting can be a little unclear, without the proper guidance. Well, apart from the awesome 100% up to $300 welcome bonus, GG.Bet is also respected as one of the top platforms out there for Halo odds. Check out what you need to learn about opening your GG.Bet account with our very own guide!

Thunderpick: How About Crypto Betting?

If cash betting isn’t your thing, Thunderpick has you covered. Listed alongside other top esports betting sites, thanks to a €500 welcome bonus in your chosen cryptocurrency, it offers a unique avenue to betting.

Should you wish to learn more about how to bet with cryptocurrency, drop by our Thunderpick review.

HCS Kickoff Major Charlotte

Image credit: Halo Esports Twitter

Event Background – HCS Kickoff Major 2023

For those unaware, the Halo Championship Series is the highest level of competitive Halo Infinite as organized by 343 Industries. After the return of the scene last year, HCS looks to continue maturing in 2023.

Just like last year, the season kicks off with an awesome Kickoff Major event. Taking place between 24th February and 26th February, the weekend of competition is heading to the Charlotte Convention Centre in the US.

With $250,000 on the line, the best teams in the world have earned a spot at this event!

Competing Teams

Overall, a total of 16 teams will be competing at the HCS Kickoff Major 2023. Currently, 12 are known, while the remaining 4 will be determined through the Open Bracket days before the event.

Here are the competing teams and their means of qualification:

North America Qualifier

  • FaZe Clan
  • OpTic Gaming
  • G1
  • Native Gaming Red
  • Spacestation Gaming
  • BtH BtH

North America HCS Points

  • Sentinels
  • Rebellion

Europe Qualifier

  • Natus Vincere

Europe HCS Points 

Mexico Qualifier

  • Luminosity

Oceania Qualifier

  • Divine Mind

The Open Qualifier teams, all 4 of them, will be open sign-ups. Literally, any team to make it will join one of the best Halo tournaments.

HCS Kickoff Major 2023 Format

When it comes to the format, there are two stages of the competition. The simplicity of the event will make it very easy for Halo betting. Overall, the competition is split into two stages – Pool Play and Championship Bracket. 

Image Credit: 343 Industries

Pool Play

Kicking things off, the 16 teams will fight through four groups of four teams each. Here’s how the Groups look with the fourth seeds to be determined through the Open Bracket:

  • A: FaZe Clan, Shopify Rebellion, Natus Vincere, TBD
  • B: OpTic Gaming, Sentinels, Quadrant, TBD
  • C: Gamers First, Believe The Hype, Luminosity Gaming, TBD
  • D: Native Gaming Red, Spacestation Gaming, Divine Mind, TBD

Within each group, a round-robin means that every team will play one another once in BO5 matches.

Seeding into the Championship Bracket of the HCS Kickoff Major 2022 will be as follows for each group:

  • Top 2 – advance to Championship Upper Bracket Round 1
  • 3rd – advance to Championship Lower Bracket Round 1
  • 4th – eliminated

Championship Bracket

Once in the Championship Bracket, the final 12 best Halo teams will compete through a double elimination bracket.

For those unaware, teams will compete in two brackets. In the Upper Bracket, a loss demotes a team to the Lower Bracket. However, an additional loss results in elimination.

Everything concludes with an epic Grand Finals, which will be BO7 with a bracket reset!

HCS Kickoff Major Schedule

For an updated schedule adapted to your time zone, we recommend visiting the official Halo Esports Twitter page.


Ever since Halo returned last year, so did the dominance of North America in the esport.

Bearing this in mind, predictions are best made using the standings from the recent HCS Kickoff Major North America Qualifier;

  1. FaZe Clan
  2. OpTic Gaming
  3. Gamers First
  4. Native Gaming Red

In addition, it’s worth noting that OpTic Gaming are your defending World Champions from last year’s HCS World Championship!

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Gabriel Sciberras

Gabriel is an esports journalist and content writer, covering every related esports scene and topic under the sun, apart from plenty of experience in the realm of technology and gaming. When he’s not covering international news, he’s focused on the local Maltese scene.

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