This year’s first significant CS:GO event is IEM Katowice 2023. The top teams from around the globe have descended on the nation in Eastern Europe to contend for the first significant trophy in 2023.
As always, the road to hoisting the IEM Katowice 2023 trophy will be difficult and unpredictable. Most of the teams arriving in Poland have been on a two-month break following the end of 2022. This means they could surprise the audience with new tricks or bomb out early if they are still under the influence of winter hibernation.
Few Counter-Strike events have cemented themselves as strongly as Katowice. Polish fans will be joined by CS:GO enthusiasts from all over the world to cheer for their favorite competitors, often electrifying the renowned Spodek arena.
If you’re following the competitive scene closely, you simply have to watch IEM Katowice 2023 unfold. And here’s why.
Katowice is one of the esports capitals of the world
If there were national holidays for the CS:GO community, IEM Katowice would definitely be one of them.
IEM Katowice has been a pivotal event since 2014 when it hosted the first CS:GO Major of that year (then known as EMS One: Katowice), and the second Major in the game’s history. It was also a Valve-sponsored tournament for two years following. This year’s edition is set to be the 10th iteration of the event.
In its decade-long history, the home crowd has helped fuel hype around the events by bringing rambunctious energy to each edition of the event. With the tickets sold out, there should be no doubts that IEM Katowice 2023 will once again become a thrilling experience, for both players and the community as a whole.
It’s the first big event after the winter break
Katowice is also known as the first important trophy teams fight for after having their winter breaks. Moreover, during these gaps, many teams make changes to their rosters to bring home trophies for the year.
This year a number of teams will debut in a LAN setting, like Cloud9, FURIA, MOUZ, Outsiders, and Fnatic, with some of them sporting a refreshed lineup. Others already played offline during BLAST Premier Spring Groups 2023, but this time, the stakes are higher, especially for squads like FaZe Clan.
FaZe can complete Intel Grand Slam season four
FaZe won last year’s edition of IEM Katowice after a long and rocky best-of-five series against G2 Esports. This kickstarted their journey to Intel Grand Slam season four. Later on in 2022, they also won IEM Cologne 2022 and ESL Pro League season 15, being just one victory away from claiming the prestigious award. Wouldn’t it be poetic for them to win in Poland, where their journey started a year ago?
Karrigan and crew started the year strong by topping Group B at BLAST Premier Spring Groups 2023 with a substitute. In the three series they played, they only lost one map. They undeniably look capable of grabbing the second Katowice trophy in a row and becoming the fourth team to win IGS. We’ll find out whether it becomes a reality or not soon.
IEM Katowice 2023 play-in stage begins on Wednesday, Feb. 1.