Top Korean Players Prepare for WCS Global Finals

  • Blizzard Entertainment

As the 2017 season of professional StarCraft II comes to a close, it’s time to look at the players who will battle it out at the World Championship Series (WCS) Global Finals at BlizzCon. The top eight Circuit players have already been decided, but now the top eight Korean players who will join them in Anaheim this November have also been finalized. Here are those eight players in order of their WCS point standings:


Kim ‘Stats’ Dae Yeob has been a dominant force all year. In addition to his victory in the first season of the Global StarCraft II League (GSL) and his win in the second season of the StarCraft II StarLeague (SSL), he also made it to the semifinals in four other major events throughout the year. His Protoss play is powerfully consistent, and he’s always a top contender to take any tournament he’s involved in.


Few players fit their nickname so perfectly as Lee ‘INnoVation’ Shin Hyung. He’s known as “The Machine” because his mechanical skill is so flawless and his economic abilities are nearly perfectly streamlined. His victories this year include the first season of the SSL, the third season of the GSL, and the inaugural GSL vs. the World global event. He also finished in the semifinals at the final GSL Super Tournament of the year. While the beginning of 2017 didn’t bring the results fans expected from him, he’s powered up in the latter half of the year, and there’s no doubt he’ll be one of the favorites heading into BlizzCon.


Park ‘Dark’ Ryung Woo is a monstrous Zerg player. After his second-place finish at last year’s BlizzCon, he’s set to make it far in this year’s event. He’s never lost to a non-Korean player in an offline event like the Global Finals, and he always places well in Korean tournaments as well. Without ‘ByuN’ Hyun Woo to stand in his way this year, it should be an exciting run for him to try for the championship title.


The beginning of 2017 was a strong showing for Eo ‘soO’ Yoon Su. He finished in second place in both the first and second seasons of the GSL, which brings his total number of second-place GSL finishes to six. That’s the record for most GSL final appearances, even though he’s yet to win a GSL championship. Add to that his semifinal finish at GSL vs. the World, and we have a determined Zerg player looking to finally take a prestigious trophy home.


Right out of the gate in the 2017 season, Jun ‘TY’ Tae Yang secured his spot at BlizzCon by crushing the competition at Intel Extreme Masters (IEM) Katowice. While he finished in the semifinals at IEM Shanghai and the finals at GSL vs. the World, he hasn’t shown quite the dominant performance that he did at the first global event of the year. He’ll need to locate that kind of exceptional skill again if he’s going to have a chance getting past this intimidating retinue of players.


Koh ‘GuMiho’ Byun Jae has had an interesting year in 2017. He hasn’t placed highly in any premier tournaments except for the second season of GSL, which he won. He’s a remarkable Terran player who’s had difficulty finding his stride this year, but he’s still talented and seasoned enough to bring some stiff competition to the global stage in November.


Aside from Stats, Kim ‘herO’ Joon Ho is the only other Protoss player from Korea joining the competition at BlizzCon. He made his biggest waves of the year when he won the first GSL Super Tournament in a fantastic series against Han ‘aLive’ Lee Seok. He went on to finish in second place both at IEM Shanghai and the second GSL Super Tournament, but a second championship finish has eluded him. If there’s one event to bring out his best play and go for the win, however, it’s going to be BlizzCon.

PlayerProfile_Rogue.jpgLee ‘Rogue’ Byung Ryul has had a rough year for the most part. He didn’t make a splash until IEM Shanghai, where he won the whole event, and he nearly didn’t earn enough points to make it to the Global Finals. Fortunately, he gave his all to win the second GSL Super Tournament of the year, which gave him enough points to rise past Kim ‘sOs’ Yoo Jin and make it to BlizzCon.

Opening Week begins October 27, and the tournament concludes at BlizzCon November 3–4.