Call of Duty Academy: 109
Since 2013, Call of Duty has awarded a champion at the end of each season for each Call of Duty title at the Call of Duty World Championships. The World Championships have the largest prize pool of any major tournament for Call of Duty. It is by far the most important tournament, and players step up to play their best at Champs. Here is the list of all of the Champs winners in history, and a full breakdown of each team.
2013: Fariko Impact
The first Call of Duty World Championship was held in 2013, during the Black Ops 2 season. This was the 3rd year of organized competitive Call of Duty, and it was a major step for Call of Duty as a legitimate Esport.
The Fariko Impact team was comprised of veterans of competitive Cod, that competed since organized events existed. The team was not the most talented by any means but worked to learn the game inside and out, better than any other team.
The team was led by the superstar of the league, Karma. Karma was by far the best player in the world at Black Ops 2 and was a major reason why they were able to be successful. Karma played with supreme confidence at all times, like he was playing public matches against random people, not the best players in the world. Karma set the record for the longest killstreak during Black Ops 2, and it is one of those records that will never be challenged again.
The team was known for its unrelenting trash talk. They knew they were better than the other teams in the league, and they let them know about it. The other 3 players on the roster, KiLLA, Parasite, and Mirx constantly chirped the other team while playing, while Karma kept his head down and carried the team.
The team fell apart shortly after winning the Call of Duty championship, due to fighting within the team. Karma left the roster to join the Fariko’s rival, Complexity. The other three players on the roster continued to play competitively, but never reached championship heights again, while Karma went on to be the best Call of Duty player of all-time.
Roster: Karma, KiLLA, Parasite, Mirx
2014: CompLexity Gaming
The Complexity roster was considered the first true dynasty of Call of Duty. The game played this year was Call of Duty Ghosts, and no one understood the game like the players on Complexity. The team was widely considered the 2nd best team during the Black Ops 2 season, and added the MVP, Karma, to their roster, making the team a true powerhouse.
The rest of the roster was already top 10 players in the Call of Duty league at that point, and adding the best player in the world only increased their skill. The leader of the team was TeePee. He helped the team focus on the objective of the game and fill in wherever his team needed him. Crimsix and Aches were the other two members of the team and played integral roles. Crimsix was already a champion from Halo and carried that success over to Call of Duty. He was the best player in the world at Ghosts and overtook his own teammate as the most talented player in the world.
Aches was key to the team as a vocal leader and the main AR. He was always in the right spot for his team in each game mode, serving as an anchor. Aches also demoralized the other team during games with his trash talk. He was constantly chirping the other team while Complexity dominated and he loved every second of it.
Complexity split up after the Ghosts season due to frustration and in-house fighting, leading Karma and Crimsix to join Optic Gaming, and TeePee and Aches left on Evil Geniuses.
Roster: Aches, Crimsix, Karma, TeePee
2015: Denial eSports
Denial was the first underdog to win the World Championship, going on an amazing run in Champs to take the title for Advanced Warfare. All season, Optic Gaming dominated the scene, winning tournament after tournament. It felt impossible for any other team to win a tournament, let alone Champs. However, after Optic was upset in the quarterfinals, it left the door wide open for other teams to win, and Denial stepped up and won.
The roster was a healthy mix of veterans and young players, which was key to their success. Denial dominated their way through the bracket to the winner’s finals, where they were upset by Team Revenge. They moved to the loser’s bracket and proceeded to win three straight series to end up winning the World Championship.
The leader of the team was Clayster who played professionally for the entirety of competitive Call of Duty and was a top 5 player over the three years prior. Clayster was runner-up in 2013 as a member of UNiTe Gaming, coming up just short against Fariko Impact. The following year, Clayster was originally a member of Complexity, who went on to win the title, but was dropped for Karma. Clayster had another successful year but ultimately fell short of the Championship. He was finally vindicated in 2015 and is still one of the top players in the world.
The rest of the roster were no slouches either. JKap was the other veteran on the team and was a crucial voice to keep them level-headed during competition. The team also had a young SMG duo, Attach, and Replays, that played at insane speed to keep the pressure on the other team. Attach won Rookie of the Year in 2015 due to his impact on Denial and was one of the best snipers in Advanced Warfare.
The roster was bought out by FaZe clan later that year, and the team continued to have success in the tournaments after Champs. Going into the next year, the team remained relatively unchanged, but quickly dropped Replays and JKap in favor for other players in Black Ops 3. Replays and JKap moved to team EnvyUs, one of the best teams in 2016.
Roster: Attach, Clayster, JKap, Replays
2016: Team EnVyUs
Black Ops 3 was one of the most competitive years for Call of Duty in terms of top to bottom talent within the league. A few teams were still seen as dominant, but they could fall at any time and any team could rise up to take a tournament. The most dominant teams during the Black Ops 3 season were ones that were versatile and adapt to the bans that happened prior to matches that year. The two most successful teams during the year were Optic Gaming and Envy.
Optic Gaming slipped up once again in the bracket rounds of Champs, not living up to their full potential or the hype surrounding their team. This cleared a path for Envy to win Champs, on the back of some amazing individual performances.
All year, Slasher, the main AR for Envy, was one of the three best players in the world, and constantly put Envy in winning situations. The question surrounding Envy was the play of their SMG players, not their AR players. JKap was the other AR player and was consistent throughout the year. John and Apathy, the SMG duo, were inconsistent throughout the year, but when they played well, Envy was unbeatable. John joined the roster after Replays retired and provided a different type of play for the team. John and Apathy played very aggressively at all times and were not punished because of the flawless AR play behind them.
At Champs, both John and Apathy played the best they had the entire season, making Envy dominant against the competition. John had the best K/D at champs and made plenty of clutch plays, leading him to win Champs MVP.
The team remained together during 2017 and had success again in Infinite Warfare, but were not able to win Champs in back to back years.
Roster: Apathy, JKap, John, Slasher
2017: OpTic Gaming
The Optic Gaming roster finally got over the hump to win Champs, cementing themselves as the second dynasty in Call of Duty history. After experiencing disappointment with this roster for the last two years at Champs, the team finally figured everything out and dominated during Infinite Warfare.
The core of the team remained together for three years, which is inconceivable in the world of competitive Call of Duty. Each of the four players on the roster was superstars in their own right and continued to play at a high level together. The team was led by their dynamic duo, Scump and Formal, who have been top 5 players for the entirety of their careers to that point.
Formal reached an inhuman level of play at Infinite Warfare Champs, posting a 1.4 KD, the record for an individual at Champs.
The other two players on the roster, Karma and Crimsix, were former world champions in their own right and were key role players that filled in the gaps for the roster.
The team rolled their way through Champs, dominating the competition throughout the tournament. Formal and Scump led the way for the team, while Karma and Crimsix continued to do the dirty work for the roster. The team avenged their loss from Black Ops 3 Champs in the grand finals against Team Envy, finally winning Champs with the best roster in Call of Duty history.
Roster: Scump, Karma, Formal, Crimsix
2018: Evil Geniuses
Evil Genuises were not one of the best teams during the regular season of Call of Duty WW2 but managed to put everything together during Champs to go on the most improbable run in Call of Duty history.
The team was near the bottom of the league consistently throughout the regular season, struggling to put everything together. The team was led by Aches and Apathy, who are former world champions in previous games. Aches played as the methodical AR for the team, controlling the pace of play alongside Assault, the younger AR player who was one of the best players in WW2. SiLLY rounded out the roster as the second SMG alongside Apathy and played aggressively to open up the map for their AR players to slay the other team.
At Champs, the team finally began to click and figured out how to play the game effectively. They did not lose a match throughout the tournament and made the biggest Cinderella run in Call of Duty Champs history.
Roster: SiLLY, Apathy, Aches, Assault
The eUnited roster was one of the top three teams in the entire league throughout the 2018-19 season but struggled to get over the hump throughout the year. They consistently played second fiddle to Optic Gaming and 100 Thieves during the early part of the season.
A roster change proved to be the move that put eUnited over the top as the best team in Black Ops 4. They needed to add a faster player in their lineup and dropped JKap for the rookie, Simp. Simp turned out to be the best player in the league in his first season, as he led his team to a dominant finish to the season. He was consistent in respawn modes as the aggressive SMG and the best sniper in the league in SND, and eUnited became unstoppable in SND because of Simp.
The other players on the team were consistent throughout the year and elevated their personal play when Simp joined the roster. Abezy and Prestinni played as fast SMG players that opened the map up to allow Simp to slay. Arcitys and Clayster played more methodically as AR players, and held down power positions on the map, allowing the SMGs to play freely.
eUnited was relatively unchallenged at Champs as they reached their final form. They steamrolled Optic in the semifinals and 100 Thieves in the finals, cementing themselves as the best team in Black Ops 4.
Roster: Simp, Abezy, Prestinni, Clayster, Arcitys