Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Just added some cool new Summer Split Wallpapers by WideEye12 to our LCS Wallpaper Section! Be sure to grab yours so you can start the Summer Split off right!

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Edward Gaming vs LGD Gaming 
LPL Finals Recap

The undisputed No. #1 team in China vs a team that had risen up from the depths of the league. LGD has been playing amazingly, dispatching OMG and Snake without dropping a game. Is this enough for them to take on Edward Gaming? Enough to take on a team that is able to punish opponents for every single mistake that they make? Read More...
NA LCS Summer Promotion Preview

Photo courtesy of Riot Esports

by Patrick Garren

First up in the NA LCS promotion matches are Dignitas and Team Fusion. Dignitas had a less-than-optimal split, losing their Top Laner and AD Carry before the season began and benching their long-time Jungler and team captain, Alberto “Crumbz” Rengifo, three weeks in. Things began to come together for them as newcomers Jo “Core JJ” Yong-in and Yeong-Jin “Gamsu” Noh started to get more comfortable in their roles, but Dignitas failed to ignite anything exceptional and they limp into the promotion tournament as the 9th seed. They look to retain their previously-firm grip on their spot in the LCS against Team Fusion Gaming, a scary looking Challenger Series team full of former LCS ringers. While Fusion failed to make it into the LCS last split, losing their promotional matches to Team Coast, I personally believe they’re the favorites in this match-up.

Pick/Ban Breakdown

The strategy is pretty simple for Fusion. Keeping Danny “Shiphtur” Le out of his comfort zone and giving Jae-hyun “Huhi” Choi a good matchup can only increase your chances of victory. Meanwhile, Dignitas has to focus on Fusion’s bottom lane. Zach “Nien” Malhas was a monster throughout the entire Challenger Series, and keeping him down is critical to Dignitas’s chances of remaining an LCS team. Expect to see both junglers make several appearances early in whichever lane Nien finds himself in almost every game.

Players to Watch 

Most importantly, I believe Nien controls the outcome of this game. If Dignitas can keep him from popping off, they definitely have a better than average shot at keeping their LCS position. However, Fusion’s best chance of beating a struggling Dignitas team is for Huhi or Top Laner Joshua “Chunkyfresh” Kesrawani to make their presences felt.


I see Fusion winning the grind, 3-2. Both teams are evenly matched and have the obvious baskets they put their carry eggs in. Seeing which team can execute under the pressure of relegation/promotion will likely be the deciding factor.


The second and final match-up of the day is Winterfox versus TDK. Winterfox had an incredibly interesting split, seeing Nicolas “Gleeb” Haddad replaced as their support by Korean import Jang “Imagine” Hyeon-su. When Imagine failed to produce, Winterfox pulled out one of the most unprecedented moves in LCS history by having their brightest star, Johnny “Altec” Ru, move to support while head coach Choi “Paragon” Hyun-il moved to AD Carry. This move produced similarly lackluster results, and now we have a Winterfox team entering the promotion tournament with the same roster they came into the split with. On the other side of the coin is Team Dragon Knights, or as I like to call them, That Team That Seraph Went To, hoping to enter the LCS as the last bastion of the true Top Lane Carry strategy.

Pick/Ban Breakdown

I think the most important thing going in for Winterfox is banning out Shin “Seraph” Woo-yeong, as he presents the biggest threat and highest mechanical skill level on all of TDK’s roster. Seraph has become a much stronger LAN presence since his days with CLG, so Winterfox jungler Shin “Helios” Dong-jin can’t expect to camp his lane and make him a non-threat as so many teams did to Seraph last split. TDK, however, have a much harder road in champion select. They match-up poorly across most of the lanes, and Winterfox will likely attempt to initiate lane-swaps, as they certainly don’t want Shin “Avalon” Dong-hyeon in a 1v1 scenario with Seraph. Getting Altec and Pobelter onto comfort champs, and getting them ahead early, are Winterfox’s keys to success.

Players to Watch

Winterfox’s young talented duo of Pobelter and Altec are basically the core of their team, and the successes and failures of the team often coincide with how well the two perform. TDK put most of their eggs in the Seraph basket, but as I said about Team Fusion, TDK will likely need performances from mid-laner Seo “Kyle” Ji-sun and AD Carry Lee “LouisXGeeGee” Sung-jin if they have any hope of advancing to the LCS.


This one seems handily in favor of Winterfox. If any semblance of their peak performance shows up on Sunday, TDK almost certainly face another split in the Challenger Series. Winterfox wins 3-1.

Saturday, April 25, 2015

LPL Review: Invictus Gaming vs Snake 

Was Invictus Gaming able to secure their third spot and take away the money and points for the Worlds 2015 qualification tournament? Perhaps Snake has recovered from their average performances the last couple of weeks and are ready to show China and the world one more time this split why they are one of the most feared teams in China. Read more...
EU LCS Summer Promotion: ROCCAT vs Copenhagen Wolves Academy

By Anel “Musin” Musinovic


EU LCS Summer promotion begins early at 14.00 CEST with Giants vs Reason Gaming, which will be followed by the game we are going to look at - Roccat vs Copenhagen Wolves Academy. Read more...

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Invictus Gaming vs Snake Preview 

by Michael "Tribble" Godani

This match is for third / fourth place in the LPL Spring Split, but what is that really worth? Honor, respect and money. The winner of this match will obtain 250,000 CYB (approx. €37.4k ) and the loser will get 200,000 CYB (approx. €30k). That’s a lot of money but what can we expect from these two teams who have been wanting to reach the finals? Will Snake be able to recuperate after the demolishing sweep brought to them by LGD? Was Invictus Gaming's loss justified or was it just as much of a beating as Snake took? There are a lot of questions that will be answered next Saturday. Read More...

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

The Trouble with Hai

Is it Time for Cloud9's Mid to Move On?

Photo courtesy of Riot Esports

by Patrick Garren

Since the acquisition of Zachary “Sneaky” Scuderi from Quantic Gaming on May 23rd 2013, Cloud9 have had the exact same roster. They didn't actually "acquire" Sneaky from Quantic either - they WERE Quantic. Sponsorship issues led to their reformation as Cloud9. Founder and Team Captain, mid-lander Hai “Hai” Lam, chose the name Cloud9 because he believed that professional gaming should be about being happy. But Cloud 9 is the last place they were at the beginning of the 2015 Spring Split, when they saw themselves in a spot they hadn't seen since they made it into the LCS: last place. Read more...

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Kings of the Rift : TSM Take the NA LCS Spring Split Championship 

Photo courtesy of Riot Esports 

Sunday, April 19, 2015

 TSM and Cloud 9 get Ready to Rumble in the NA LCS Spring Split Finals!

by Jodi McClure

Last year when Cloud 9 met TSM in the LCS Finals, Meteos and his highly-skilled band 3-0'd them. Granted, it was a Lustboyless TSM with Odd One and Xpecial still in the mix, and the meta was completely different, but credit where credit is due. Cloud 9 are not a push over team by any stroke of the imagination, and even though TSM have had a superlative split, there's zero guarantees they'll be holding that big check at the end. Both teams have performed amazingly well. Cloud 9 had a slower start then TSM but slammed home a stronger finish. Turtle has been all flashy kills while Sneaky is the focused, mechanical giant. TSM excels at rotations and taking down turrets while Cloud 9 likes their objectives. It's all too beautifully even. If I were to stick my neck out and pick a winner of this Best of Five series, I wouldn't name a team, I'd name a color. A color shared by both Cloud 9's shirts and TSM's long sleeve button-downs. It's Blue - the color of convenience, and whoever starts this series on the Blue side of the map will ultimately win the trophy. I'll be cheering for my long-time favs, TSM, but I suspect we're going to see the series go five games, and whoever wins will definitely deserve it! 

Edward Gaming vs Invictus Gaming
LPL Playoffs Review 

The world’s uncontested No.1 team took on the surprisingly well-performing Invictus Gaming. With Pawn back in the starting line-up, was Invictus Gaming a threat for EDG’s mission to get to MSI? How did Rookie perform against Pawn? What about Clearlove and Kakao? Let’s have a look at the games played in this series! Read more...

by Michael "Tribble" Godani

Friday, April 17, 2015

LGD Gaming Takes Out the Pride of China

The Oscars have been assigned and now it’s time for the real deal. OMG, the Chinese powerhouse, is taking on LGD Gaming, who are on a mission to MSI. Was OMG really throwing games intentionally as their coach stated, or was this a cover up for their sloppy performances? LGD’s story is clear, they trolled their way into the 6th seed to avoid EDG. Well, for both teams, it was time to perform and take it onto the rift! Read more...

LPL Quarterfinals Snake vs King Review

The two new teams in the LPL put on the Quarterfinals' best show! Did Flandre, Beast and Ella provide their ADC with enough space to fire away on the enemy team, or was King victorious in this match with their early pressure playstyle? There is a lot to say about this series, so let’s have a look! Read more...

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Edward Gaming vs Team World Elite : The Top Dogs meet The Underdogs 

Before the games even started, there was an upset in Pawn not being able to play because of a possible injury. How would this series go without the Korean star midlaner for EDG? Would they be able to ace Team World Elite as everyone expected, or will the underdog show some neat tricks? Read more...

Monday, April 13, 2015

Edward Gaming vs Team World Elite - LPL Spring Split Quarterfinal Preview

Clearly Spirit Loves the Jungle

This will be the first of 7 previews that will be coming out during the playoffs of the LPL. The playoffs are single elimination best of 5.

This matchup features arguably the best team in the world against China’s biggest gaming organization as well as the LPL's favorite player in Spirit. Is there a possibility for World Elite to shock the world once more after their IEM performance? Or will Clearlove’s and his teammates be too much for WE to overcome? Let’s have a look at both teams their players, top picks and play styles. Read more...

Unicorns of Love - The Ultimate Fairy Tale?

Image courtesy of Riot eSports

by Louis "Guichex" Lemeillet

As the team who integrated into the LCS this Spring Split, participated in IEM San Jose instantly after, and are heading into their first playoffs finals, the Unicorns of Love are definitely a successful new team in the League of Legends scene. But are they exploring the full potential of their success? A lot of hype surrounded the team since their games in the promotion tournament; hype which still grows today as the Unicorns chants resonate in the Berlin studios, but still, where's the merchandise at? Where's the tons of sponsors? Where's the business? How did their hype go through the roof and what does the future have in store for them? Let's try to take a look at this fairytale they created on their own, both the story we can see and the one we cannot. Read More...

LPL Week 11 Review

The final week of the regular LPL spring split season. Who goes to the relegation tournament, who continues through to the playoffs and who is going to be in the top side of the bracket? Michael "Tribble" Godani takes you through the games. Read More...

Saturday, April 11, 2015

EU LCS Playoffs Preview : Unicorns of Love vs SK Gaming

Photo courtesy of Riot eSports

by Reece "SabrewoIf" Dos-Santos 

Order vs Chaos is the name of the game as SK Gaming faces one of the three teams to deal them a blow during their otherwise perfect split.

Time and again, the Unicorns of Love have shown that their creativity and use of "the element of surprise" is not to be trifled with. Kikis’s Udyr pick against Gambit has done a good enough job at displaying this to full effect. For the mythical creatures of friendship, statistically Fnatic was the better draw of the two as UOL are the only team to 2-0 them. However to get to Fnatic, they would have had to go through H2k, the only team to 2-0 UOL. So when it evens out, drawing SK isn't too bad. Read More...
EU LCS Spring Split 2015 playoffs: H2k vs Fnatic

By Anel “Musinlol” Musinovic
EU LCS playoffs begins at 17.00 tonight with Fnatic facing H2k. Expect a great game between two teams who have performed much better than expected.
Fnatic vs H2k
Huni, Reignover, Febiven, Steelback, YellOwStaR vs Odomane, loulex, Ryu, Hjarnan & KaSing

Only a true prophet would have called this semi-final match-up at the start of the spring split, which is part of what makes this series so interesting. Two active, aggressive teams who have clear plans in the early game will meet head-to-head. H2k has demonstrated their drake control vs Copenhagen Wolves perfectly, but this time around it will be contested. Ready More...

Friday, April 10, 2015

Rising From the Void: Cho'gath's Return 

Image by 9ooo

by Jerrod "Thousand Eyes" Steis

Cho’Gath has been a seemingly new pick rising to popularity in the recent weeks. To most people this might seem like a random occurrence, but there’s actually a trail we can follow back to all the way before the season even started. Read More...

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Week 11 LPL Preview – League of Trolls & The 8th Place Seed

by Michael "Tribble" Godani

The last three days of the regular Spring Split in the LPL. Traditionally, this week is a huge trollfest, and we shouldn’t expect much different from this precious competition except that Master3, Team WE and SHRC are still in the race for a playoff spot. We will discuss a few interesting games, the ones that are most likely to be troll free and the games for that eighth place playoff ticket. Read more....

Preview of EU Challenger Series Spring 2015 Final: Origen vs Copenhagen Wolves Academy

By Anel “Musinlol” Musinovic

EU Challenger Series Final will go live at 18.00 and Origen will go in as massive favorites again. However, Copenhagen Wolves Academy have looked really solid and even took a clean 2-0 vs Gamers2 in the semifinals.

Origen vs Copenhagen Wolves Academy
Soaz, Amazing, xPeke, Niels & Mithy vs Morsu, Kirei, CozQ, Vizility & Hybrid

Origen has been dominating the whole split and despite an unconvincing win 2-1 over Reason Gaming, I feel like they should go 3-0 or 3-1 here. Origen has way more experienced players and more quality player for player. However, Copenhagen Wolves Academy have been surprising all throughout and nobody expected them to be in the finals or to come out of groups as second seed.



Origen seems to have a lot of flexibility in their draft with flex champs like Lulu and Morgana and I predict them to be at an advantage coming out of champ select. CWA will be hard pressed to try and ban out Peke and Soaz. I can see Origen focusing on getting a Malphite pick to counter Morsù as they did in their previous win against this team.

When Origen have first pick they could ban out Ahri, Cassiopeia & Rek'Sai and force CWA to ban Leblanc as they did in their win against them. However, it does leave all of Morsù's champions open, which can be deadly if they don’t get the Malphite. Otherwise, I would try to ban out Morsù if they feel like they can’t get their hands on Malphite or something else that they feel comfortable bringing up in the top lane.

I feel like, even though it didn’t work for them in their previous game against Copenhagen Wolves Academy, Origen could go for a Kog’Maw comp. After all, it's a B05 and they have room to be flexible with comp choices. But getting comfortable picks across the board should be enough to for them to find a victory and the auto-promotion spot.

Copenhagen Wolves Academy:

CWA have a massive disadvantage in the pick and bans because Origen’s Soaz & xPeke seem able to play anything at a competitive level. Amazing, on the other hand, is more known for having a smaller champion pool and sometimes not performing when uncomfortable.

In Challenger, Amazing has played five champions across thirteen games & six of those games has been Rek’Sai. Banning out Sejuani as a strong power pick, Lee Sin, then Rek’Sai or Nidalee and picking the one left open could allow them to get ahead and try to snowball from there like they did in their win against Origen.

Putting Amazing on the likes of Gragas or another tank in Nunu could force Origen to make the decision to go with the Kog’Maw comp which didn't work for them the last time. This has weaknesses, though, as it allows the rest of Origen to play what they want and leaves up the Malphite who seemingly counters every champion in Morsù’s champion pool.

If they decide not to try to ban out Amazing they could go for their own winning recipe of trying to hold down the solo laners to have minimal impact by banning Maokai, Lissandra and Zed. This does leave up the Malphite which I think they could be trying to swap out with one of the three.

Getting good picks for their solo laners will be incredibly important and getting either a Rek’Sai or a tanky jungler is also really important for CWA if they want to try to win at least a game or two or potentially the series.

Player to Watch from Origen: xPeke

Who else than our former Fnatic superstar. xPeke is one of the still standing old players and still has the drive to compete. He is a player who can play any midlane champion you put him on but personally I've always loved watching xPeke playing Ahri. New unorthodox midlaners have shown to be coming into the meta and xPeke seems to have picked some of them up by playing Vladimir in 2/3 games vs Reason Gaming and to success both times.

Player to watch from Copenhagen Wolves Academy: Morsù

Morsù has been carrying games for them on good 1v1 champions such as Jax, Irelia, fizz and even Fiora. If he can get his hands on one of these champions it could work out greatly for him, but he's often target banned. Origen has shown willingness to not ban out Morsù and therefore it can put him in a position where he is on his favorite champions and in a position to carry. In their win against Origen he was on Irelia and was 9-1-4 on her. Also trying to avoid lane swaps would be a good idea to let Morsù get a lot of resources.

Predicted score: Origen 3-1 Copenhagen Wolves Academy

The game will be played April 7th at 1 PM EST & 18:00 CEST

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

EU LCS : The Backstage Experience

by Chase "RedShirtKing" Wassenar

For the average fan, attending the LCS is an incredible experience. You get to sit with a few thousand people, each of whom are just as passionate about the scene as you are, as you watch your favourite teams face off head-to-head in front of your very eyes. Much like more traditional sports, there's a certain sense of energy that comes from joining in chants, seeing the players' reactions in real time, and bonding with fellow fans over that crazy triple kill that you couldn't see coming and OH MY GOD HOW DID HE ESCAPE THAT GANK?!? Add in the more personal touches like the ability to high-five players after the game or get autographs from teams willing to stick around that have been lost from many live sporting events, and you have an experience that cannot be matched.

I love League of Legends, but this eSport is more than just a fandom for me. As a writer for Paravine with my own weekly podcast and the occasional talk show appearance on Into the Rift, the ability to attend the LCS is not just a chance to see my favourite teams try to prove their worth on the big stage, but is also my chance to get some serious work done. While the fans go crazy over their poro gear in the stands, I'm backstage in the press room live tweeting games, arranging interviews with team managers (after desperately trying to track down their information, of course), taking notes, prepping for the next piece of content, and making professional connections that will help in my future work within the scene. It can be hectic at times, especially when you're not used to the experience, but it is also easily some of the most fun I've ever had. Ever wonder what it's like to attend the EU LCS as a semi-professional journalist? Read on to find out.

It's Not about the Style

You know that incredible crowd I was telling you about in the opening paragraph? When you're working in the press, you don't spend much time in the stands. Instead, as soon as you pick up that fancy press pass (which takes only slightly less interrogation than it takes the Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. to pick up their lanyards if they don't find your name on the press list right away), you're led backstage through a small dining area to the press room. With the exception of the big screen TV constantly playing the LCS in the background, there's essentially no difference between this room and the types of meeting rooms you'd expect at any place of business. At first, I missed the paper screens adorned with all your favourite champions that decorated the former Cologne location, but the new setup is undoubtedly more functional. The internet is speedy, the room is mostly soundproof once the doors are closed, and there's plenty of space for each writer to have their own personal table set-up. That may sound pretty dull for those of you who use the LCS as an escape from the tedium of ones daily work life, but the good news is that the stands are only a couple of minutes away if you need to feed off the crowd's energy to keep you going. That said, I doubt you'll have that issue because...

You're Constantly Working

This is probably a “no, duh” moment for a lot of you, but when you're going to an event like this as a journalist, you're not there to enjoy the games; you're there to get stuff done. Every minute you spend out there listening to the roar of the crowd is a minute you could be studying your notes to better understand why a team picked that particular composition or how that player has performed on this specific champion in their previous matches. If you're like me and only get to attend the LCS during breaks from University, you've got to find a way to cram in as many interviews as you can, which means even more preparation than normal. Don't forget that interviews don't just fall from the sky, so you'll have to spend a great deal of time on Skype trying to track down team managers, or roaming the hallways trying to physically grab somebody's attention. Oh, and you better be keeping a strong social media presence throughout the event, because if you don't, no one will notice when your content goes up. By the way, you're taking time to meet as many new people as possible so that you can take advantage of the networking opportunities in front of you, right? Because that's how you turn a freelance job into one that lets you do this for a living. It's a lot for one person to balance, so you're probably hoping that someone will be there to help you out, but...

No One is Going to Help You

When you email Riot for your press pass, the first thing they do is ask with which teams you'd like to interview so they can let the teams know you are coming. That's how it all works in theory. In practice, the LCS is a huge production that takes a ton of time, energy, focus, and stressful work from pretty much everyone involved in order to pull off. If you spend the day sitting in the press room waiting for Riot to bring in a player or team manager for you, you're going to have a bad time. It can be a tough lesson to learn if you find yourself shy or are the kind of person who is afraid of getting in the way, but an essential one if you want to succeed in this industry.  But assuming that you're a strong, independent journalist that doesn't need anyone else to help them do their job, you'll soon find that...

The Press Room is Filled with Awesome People

In another section that will likely come as no surprise, it turns out that watching League of Legends with a bunch of people who are passionate about the scene and happen to be incredibly educated about every aspect of the league is a lot of fun. There's always an interesting handful of people hanging out in the press room, ranging from veterans like Adel “HypeAlgerian” Chouadria from Azubu to individual team's PR departments hoping to grab good photos for their social media pages. It takes a lot of work and effort to make a living out of eSports, and the people who have made it are among the most knowledgeable and interesting personalities in the scene. Even better, they each offer something new to your understanding of the game, as it's easy to find someone whose strength in analysis is your weakness and vice versa. There's nothing quite like being able to improve at what you do while also having a great time. And the best part of it all is...

You Never Know Who Will Drop By

True story: after catching a glimpse of Pr0lly in the hallway, I chased him down to arrange an interview with KaSing. He was talking with someone I didn't immediately recognize who introduced himself only as Nick. After I grabbed the interview, I headed back to the press room, but to my surprise, Nick was following close behind. He ended up hanging out with us for about ten minutes or so talking about Magic: the Gathering, travelling with his wife, and the merits of the Karthus farming mini-game. Eventually, he was pulled out by a Rioter who said they needed him for something important. When he left, I asked who it was we'd been talking to, since everyone else seemed to be quite familiar with him.

It was Nick Allen.

I'd feel more embarrassed about that story if it wasn't so common for key figures in the industry to stop by and say hi during the few moments of downtime people had. I knew Devin “Piratechnics” Younge was going to say hi because we'd worked together on Into the Rift in the past, but we also were joined by Thomas “Flyy” Mihailov, ROCCAT's owner during the team's must-win match against Giants Gaming. Couple that with the constant stream of players, coaches, analysts, managers, and casters that roam up and down the halls throughout the day, and it eventually starts to feel quite normal. Speaking of the players...

Interviews Matter Above Everything Else

If you're more a features writer like me, there's a temptation to spend your time just trying to network and plan out your article for the upcoming week with whatever extra pieces of info you manage to grab from the other journalists and your hopefully fine tuned listening skills. That's what I did the first time I was in Cologne, and while I enjoyed myself, I left feeling like I had failed to get the most out of my time there. It's so much easier to arrange interviews in person than it is to grab players over Twitter or Skype, and those conversations can often be the most enlightening. And once you actually sit down and talk to those players, you realize...

The Players are Just Like You

Much like a little kid can't imagine their parents as anything other than “mom” or “dad”, it's hard to imagine your favourite celebrities as being regular people. That's why Imgur is filled with gifs of people like Anne Hathaway or Jennifer Lawrence being regular human beings; it blows our collective consciousness to see public figures we look up to or admire acting so normal. When I told my Twitter followers I was heading to Berlin and would ask any questions they wanted passed on, the most popular question by far was “What is (insert player name here) like in real life?”, and in the vast majority of cases, the answer is that they're pretty much like everyone else their age, except much, much better at League of Legends.

Once I understood this, I started noticing a lot of little moments that had gone over my head before. There was a great moment right before the Elements vs. Gambit game during which Woolite and Jankos ran into the press box like two 5-year-olds on Christmas morning and pleaded with Flyy to let them watch the game before the shuttle took them home. I decided to leave the press room to sit with the team and see if I could learn anything from watching players break down a live game. I quickly realized, however, that they, like the Gambit fans that took over the crowd, were more interested in cheering big plays and making Reddit-style jokes when someone made a misplay. It was easy to see not only how much these guys cared about keeping their playoff hopes alive (a task about which they felt quite confident at the time), but also how much they still loved the game itself.

Ultimately, my greatest takeaway from my time in Berlin are the stories I gained while I was there. There were a lot of silly moments, like when I took a bunch of ridiculous pictures with Piratechnics while he told me about Berlin's sneaky good Japanese restaurant scene, or when the entire press room banded together to laugh at my microphone, which was so big it looked like a webcam from first glance. Other times, the room got deathly quiet as team managers and staff watched nervously as their teams battled for playoff seeding or just to keep their season alive. It is an incredible experience to watch a coach or analyst break down every mistake their team is making, wincing at every missed CS as if that creep will be the difference in the game. If their team won, the room would erupt with cheers and hugs and promises of players for interviews. If they lost, however, there would be mostly silence as the team staff packed up their gear and quietly made their way back to make sure their players took the loss in stride.

My favourite story, however, came as I left the Berlin studio after the second day of games. On the way out, HypeAlgerian and I ran into Leviathan and the rest of Gambit getting ready to head home. Cabochard asked me what had happened with the stream, which had sadly struggled from technical difficulties preventing their convincing win over Elements from being streamed live. I told them that Riv had come on stream and told everyone they would rebroadcast the game later. The entire Gambit team looked at each other for a split second, smiled, and said, “LATA!!!” in their best Trick2G voice. I couldn't help but burst out into laughter with them as they climbed back into the car, giving their best blue card salute as they drove off into the distance.

As soon as their van pulled out of the parking lot, I realized that my adventure was over just as quickly as it had began. I had watched ten games of my favourite teams battling head-to-head on one of the largest stages in eSports, but the crowd was long gone. The energy they brought with them had disappeared into the night, replaced instead by the sound of a light breeze and the moonlight lighting our way towards the train station. I was no longer in the eSports bubble that had provided so much entertainment during my time there, but the friends I had made and the memories we created have stuck with me ever since.

Preview of the EU Challenger Series Spring 2015 Third Place Match: Gamers2 vs Reason Gaming

By Anel “Musinlol” Musinovic

The last spot for the promotion tournament is on the line in today's EU Challenger Series third place match. Gamers2 performed a lot worse than expected against the Copenhagen Wolves Academy, while Reason Gaming put up a strong fight against Origen. Gamers2 should be the slight favorites, but they'll lose if they play as badly as they did in the semifinals.

Gamers2 vs Reason Gaming
SmittyJ, Gilius, Eika, Jebus & Hiiva vs Kubon, Xayoo, Takefun, Celaver & Libik

This game will be a lot closer than anticipated. G2 have more individual strengths but seemed lost against Copenhagen Wolves Acadamy. On the other side, Reason got a free pass into the playoffs and have no pressure on them for the rest of the tournament. Reason had a good showing vs Origen but I imagine G2 will have reviewed their mistakes and made adjustments. I'm just not sure that will fix all of their problems. 

Pick and Bans:

So far these two teams' records against each other are 1-1. Kubon's Irelia seemed to contribute largely to G2's loss, so taking her and possibly Hecarim away from him would seem a wise idea. Also, any bans targeting Takefun's main assassins; Zed, Leblanc and now Ahri, could be a smart move, but I feel like banning Sejuani, Hecarim & Irelia would be the better choices.

Sejuani will certainly be a contested pick, although Gilius didn't find success on her vs Copenhagen Wolves Academy. I expect both junglers to try and get her because of her current strengths despite Gilius' frustrating showing.

For Gamers2, focusing their comp around Jebus would be preferable as he has shown himself to be a key player vs the Polish team. The popular Kog’maw comp could be an idea or something else they have up their sleeve. 

Reason banned out Nidalee previously and should do it again so as not to allow Gamers2 to snowball - even though this might leave Lee open. Getting comfort picks for Kubon would be ideal since he has been their key player against Gamers2.  

Player to Watch from Gamers2: Jebus

In their win against Reason he seemed to be one of the leading players with his 10-2 score, and after a disappointing loss and unsteady performance in the semifinals, he'll be trying to show his worth.

Player to Watch from Reason Gaming: Kubon

For the same reason as Jebus, he is the player to watch. When his team has managed to find victories vs Gamers2, he's gone 11-3-11 on Irelia. Even in their loss, he was 5-4, but it wasn't enough to carry his team. 

Hecarim and Irelia seems like obvious bans so if he can draw two bans it also shows his ability to contribute in the pick and bans. Getting him on a more damage-oriented or carry style champion will be essential to their comp. He's shown his Rumble to be a decent pick and it can do well against the likes of Maokai so that could also be a possibility. 

Predicted score: Gamers2 2-1 Reason Gaming

The game will be played today, April 7th, at 1 PM EST / 18:00 CEST.

If you want to contact me or follow me on twitter ->

Monday, April 6, 2015

LPL Week 10 Review : Bard/Kennen/Irelia support and more!

For many teams, this was the week of truth - and on top of that, they were dealing with a new patch. Returning picks such as support Irelia and new picks like Gragas jungle, Shyvana top and Bard even, made this quite the moving week.

by Michael "Tribble" Godani

Friday, April 3rd

OMG vs Energy Pacemaker

OMG's coach, citing the teams performance in other games, said he wanted to place his team on unconventional picks. Whether this was the case or not, it was still another show of disrespect levied towards the viewers and fans of one of China’s top teams.

Losing Game 1 in a true “we don’t care” fashion to the last seed in China does not mean EP didn't have to do anything for it. AmazingJ, who brought out the Garen the last time he was on stage, managed to 1v1 superstar Gogoing in lane. You could even see AmazingJ shout out loud when he got the solo kill.

OMG did manage to stay in gold range of EP early by prioritizing turrets. Unfortunately, EP played their teamfights a lot better and while OMG kept initiating fights, EP kept cleaning them up.

Energy Pacemaker came to play and they showed us just that with their new jungler and ADC. The last seed in China took down OMG with a beautiful teamfight composition. A few Gnar! + Glacial Prison combo’s completed the wombo combo and therefore most of the teamfights.

EP's comp was built around getting those five drakes and they did. Having the fifth dragon stolen away from them by Loveling was nothing more then a minor misstep for this relatively new lineup. EP managed to pick up the fifth drake followed up with the second baron of the game for them, and with that they upset the LPL and its fans by destroying OMG in the first game.

To round up this first game, OMG should really stop letting Cloud play Annie; his last two performances were very poor and the only impact that he has had was feeding the enemy team. We've seen that OMG cannot play these “lategame” team compositions well. Early/midgame is their forte, but who is going to tell them that.

The second game was a different story. Perhaps OMG realized that there were a lot of people around the world not amused with their performance/draft.

Putting Gogoing on the Gnar and Cloud again on a skillshot champion, Nautilus, they were ready to go. The star midlaner from the all-Chinese line-up, Cool, was playing the Anivia who picked up first blood sub 3 minutes into the game and from there went on to snowball, grabbing a few more kills around the map and a comfortable 30 cs lead.

EP’s Captain57, the jungler, did manage to get some aggressive warding down early-on in this game, same as he and the rest of his team did in the first game of the series. Unfortunately for him, he wasn't able to countergank since all the ganks or, let’s say, most of the ganks, were focused on the botlane.

Early midgame OMG did manage to rotate towards the toplane, giving both Cool and UZI a few more kills so that they could grab some new fancy gear from the item shop to get ready for the final siege.

A beautiful siege on the toplane ended with a Crunch into the Gnar! to line the members of EP up for the Anivia/Jinx combo who would quickly make fast work of the fresh meat that was being presented to them.

As mentioned earlier, Cloud was playing a skillshot champion. As the best mechanical support player in the world right now, he showed off with incredible hooks, beautiful peel and teamfight-deciding plays. The man is a monster on skillshot supports, showing it every single game.

OMG did not manage to end the game themselves. EP ended it for them by surrendering after 26 minutes and splitting the series.

King vs LGD Gaming

Two teams who both came out with their own unique compositions. The Ori/Kog’maw ball comp from LGD against the five-tank army from LGD. Yes, five-tank army! Maokai, Vi, Cho’gath, UrGOD and Nautilus. The most remarkable detail about King was that MLXG actually build Cinderhulk on Vi.

The first ten minutes of the game were quiet with a lot of farming, and right before the second spawn of the drake (the first one being picked up by King) MLXG ulted PYL above LGD’s red buff to secure a 4v5 advantage for the next drake. As King was not sure yet if a 4v5 was sufficient enough, they managed to kill Acorn’s Rumble and then went for their second drake of the game. It seemed to be going okay for King as they were still down in gold due to the fact that LGD was getting better farm and knocking down turrets. 

The real switch in the game was around the twenty minute mark when MLXG overextended and died for free while the rest of the team tried to catch up and got picked off one by one. A 3-1 trade in favor of LGD basically sealed the game.

We1less was playing the Orianna this game and he did so to perfection. A couple of beautiful shockwaves, especially around the thirty minute mark. TBQ jumped into the midlane, followed up by a Glacial Prison and Acorn’s Equalizer! Double kill TBQ, no escaping this though, the Ori ball caught out any player trying to escape this drive by the killer squad from LGD.

LGD destroyed King’s idea of being unkillable with teamplay and individual play. TBQ and We1less were looking very strong on their champions and secured a first game win by forcing the surrender from King.

Bard and Amumu were locked in for the LGD team and they got everyone hyped! The first time that Bard was to be seen in competitive play, Pyl was the first one to do it. Just a note on the side, Flame got swapped in for Game 2 to get some playtime.

Before the game even started, TBQ managed to give Leym first blood which resulted into a boots pickup for the Nautilus support. Leym used his mobility to scout out TBQ in his jungle to get vision on his jungle pathing and with success. TBQ was not as successful on Amumu as he was last game with the Sejuani. Dying too many times by making bad plays, TBQ set not only him but his entire team back by a lot. Flame was cursed to play 1v3 every couple of minutes and the bottom lane of LGD didn't get a single decent gank from the sad mummy.

It was actually We1less who once again was the shining light on the LGD team. Who would've thought that an Anivia's ganks would be more successful than Amumu’s? Indeed!

King controlled the game just fine, taking early drakes, collapsing on lanes knowing where TBQ was by warding properly and extending their map pressure.

A 23-minute baron by King didn't result in a total collapse on one of LGD’s turrets, but they used the buff to slowly take away the outer turrets and get more control over the map.

Pyl’s Bard didn't work out as he might have hoped for but it is to be appreciated and respected that he took it out, even if not to his own success. We have seen the potential of Bard and perhaps with some better coordination, this could really be a strong pick.

Skye might have been one of the better performing players this game, single-handedly taking out Imp in every teamfight and causing chaos. 

TBQ did give LGD a bit of hope by stealing the second baron, but King their lead was too big to overcome with this buff.

King takes the fifth drake and shortly after take down Game 2 as they split the series!

Star Horn Royal Club vs Vici Gaming

This is it, the moment of truth for the fans, the players and the organisation of Star Horn Royal Club. With four games to go, this should game should be a great start for a perhaps crazy playoff participation run, could it be?

No, it cannot! Vici gaming showed off another Montecristo like game with a low but efficient kill count and strong rotations to leave SHRC out in the cold.

Vici had 100% control over every single aspect of this game. They ended the game with a 22k gold lead and dropping no towers to the two-time runners-up at Worlds.

Calculated tower dives with a ton of  crowd control coming out of Carry’s Hecarim, Dandy’s Definitely Not Udyr and Hetong’s TF, caused them to multiple times come out of these dives with zero deaths.

The substitute jungler for SHRC was not able to make his mark this game, perhaps that was a bit too much to ask for.

So, a very strong looking Vici Gaming with another objective-minded game which worked out perfectly fine, just like the previous games that they have played.

Game 2 wasn't all that different in terms of results. Vici Gaming took control over the game after Blank was caught out in the dragon pit while Mata wanted to clear a ward. He tunneled into the pit and when he tried to tunnel out, Mata flailed him backwards and VG just collapsed on him. Instead of turn away from this area, SHRC decided that a early lead for Vici might be a better option here.

After this point, Vici took a big enough lead to start controlling the entire map again, as they did in Game 1. With superior ward coverage, a fast clear of the outer turrets basically sealed the deal for them. Vici showed incredible teamplay while the only shining light on SHRC was Cola’s Jax, taking away the only two turrets of the series in the botlane.

Dandy showed this series that his champion pool is more like an ocean. Udyr and Sejuani were picked up this set and especially with the Sejuani he showed off some incredible ganks. His ultimates were on spot, hit them 100% with a 100% kill follow up on them.

Vici Gaming is looking like the second best team in China at this point while Star Horn is in need of some serious help! The team looks completely broken, clueless and is really in need of someone to get these guys back on track.

Edward Gaming vs Team World Elite

To keep the playoff dream alive, Team World Elite must at least take a point off EDG in this series. After this first game, that is still possible, though highly unlikely.

Where teams such as OMG and LGD have been trying certain champions/strategies out, EDG is not much into that and just does whatever they want and how they want it together with winning.

Swapping out Pawn for U hasn't changed a thing for this match as EDG still dominated every aspect of the game.

The game started off quite well for Team WE by going even in the early game, picking up the drake and only being down in gold by some cs advantage created in the bot and top lane.

Until the second drake spawned, the game was quite even but EDG shifted into their second gear and took a 3-0 fight and the drake. All three kills went to the super toplaner, Koro1, who was playing Jarvan IV, building a brutalizer into a hydra into the last whisper and before he could complete his ghostblade the game was already over.

Several fights occurred across the map, especially in the midlane, and every single time, EDG came out on top. Even if only by a little, the No.1 in the world managed to grab the advantage out of every single confrontation.

Did TWE play bad? I don’t think you can say that they actually played bad, they were just up against a much better team.

Game 2 started a bit similar to Game 1, although with less kills yet there were some ganks from both junglers who could’ve lead to a few deaths across the board. While the game seemed to be going even, EDG was once again coming out on top after a few fights, ending with a 4-2 and a 4-1.

Looking at the trades, it looked good, but none of the kills were going onto EDG’s carry Deft. He was not having a good game, some might discuss his item build as an issue for this game while others might argue that EDG was a bit too cocky coming into this game.

Mystic on the UrGOD made quick work of Deft and made sure that he was the one coming out on top with his standard build (FH,LW,MM,BC) while Deft went for a unorthodox build with the Infinity Edge as his first item.

The game slowly turned as more teamfights started to ramp up and Aluka’s Sion was becoming more and more an issue for the players from EDG. As soon as the Undead Juggernaut got his Thornmail, he was dishing out more damage to Deft without even targeting him.

Team World Elite sought out more fights and got them, everywhere, within seconds of each other, almost fight after fight, extending their gold lead with each fight. All this fighting lead to destroying the bot inhibitor from EDG and a Nexus turret but, by overstaying a bit, EDG managed to kill two members from TWE and answer with the Baron.

Could it be? I mean, if there would be one team to come back after this(EDG being behind in the meantime in turrets 8-2), it would be EDG.

No, it couldn't. Some questionable engages came through from Meiko and even U all of a sudden was found in the middle of this “Melee range” formation which sealed the deal and gave the IEM finalists the win.

Team World Elite beat Edward Gaming and was added to the list of OMG, Snake and King of teams who managed to pull this off this split. 

A split between a cocky EDG and a motivated and 'all-to-play-for' Team World Elite, keeping playoff dreams alive!

OMG vs Energy Pacemaker 1-1
King vs LGD Gaming
Star Horn Royal Club vs Vici Gaming  2-0
Edward Gaming vs Team World Elite 1-1

April 4th

Star Horn Royal Club vs Energy Pacemaker

Crazy performance from the struggling members of the Star Horn Royal Club, forcing a 21 minute surrender from Energy Pacemaker after an amazing game!

Destroy AmazingJ, that was the early mission for SHRC, EP who initiated the laneswap placed Maokai in the botlane who got bullied by Zero’s Thresh and Namei’s Jinx. After poking him with the hook/chomper combo a few times, he had to give up first blood and gave SHRC more control on the bottom lane.

Star Horn turned up the heat and didn't stop, taking a turret in the bot lane, the drake and then collapsing with four people onto AmazingJ’s Maokai followed up by a toplane gank on the tree really sealed the deal.

They did not only break the confidence of the man who managed to kill Gogoing yesterday inlane 1v1, but the entire team.

Zero’s Thresh combined with the chompers from Namei was an effective way to take out a single member while the Gnarjuani combo took out the rest of the team.

Our world’s finalists blew our mind by taking the bottom inhibitor sub 19 minutes and forcing a 21 minute surrender after baiting the baron which lead to two kills.

Are they back? Is the playoff dream still real and alive for Star Horn, or was this a one time show?

Clearly, this wasn’t a one time show! Game two continued where Star Horn left off in game one. I do have to mention that giving away Sejuani and Gnar was quite the awkward decision, but it worked out for them.

Blank’s early gank pressure lead to several kills and Zero once again came out big with the hooks, this time out of the Nautilus.

Zero single-handedly dominated the early game for Star Horn and slowly but surely Cola joined the snowball.

SHRC looked very good and EP looked terribly bad! Although Star Horn didn't clear the game as fast as they did in the first game, the game was never really in danger of being lost. Especially after Cola’s baron steal, yes, the Leblanc baron steal got brought to you by Star Horn Royal Club’s Cola with a bitter taste for Energy Pacemaker’s Drizzle who failed to smite.

Star Horn cleans up this set and takes the three points home, being alive still to make the playoffs!

Gamtee vs Snake

Snake should be the big winner of the 5.6 patch, the tank meta would suit their champion pools and improve their peel for Kryst4l.

What Snake did today in their first game against Gamtee was something new, new for the entire league of legends meta, Shyvana top with Teleport Smite.

How does this work though? Well, in lane swaps, Flandre managed to pick up the Gromp which is a juicy 60 gold and add 30 gold to it once he had his cinderhulk. Flandre kept picking up the Gromps in either his bot or the enemy’s top side to keep him ahead of his laner LetMe.

His quick cinderhulk was the key to the domination that Snake managed to show off later in this game.

Gamtee did try to fight Snake off, but the newcomers kept their gold lead by contributing to kills as a team and not as a single or duo.

Flandre was ahead enough to tank up the baron together with Beast who picked up LPL’s first Gragas jungle and Baka was hitting it from outside the pit. They got caught out, but managed to pick up the baron, a 3-2 exchange in favor of Snake with Kryst4l picking up the three kills which got him going as well.

A fed Draven with a huge dragon in the front line that seemed to have a limitless health pool.

Snake did it again as most of the watchers would say. The only question is, shouldn't Snake just have played this safe instead of showing off these kind of shenanigans right before playoffs?

Gamtee’s LetMe was impressed enough by the Teleport Smite combo that he tried it out himself on the Rengar top building full tank. Snake came onto the rift with two new picks in the likes of Trundle and Volibear (jungle). Early on, LetMe was benefiting from the laneswap initiated by his team by being far ahead of Flandre’s Trundle. The small advantage became a bit better when Xiaohu managed to 1v1 Baka inlane and take first blood.

Snake answered back with a couple of early drakes, good vision control and taking the outer turrets down before the 15 minute mark.

The entire game was going back and forth, while Snake was in the lead most of the time, Tale’s positioning on the Kog’maw lead his team to even the gold and outplay Snake in the teamfights.

Gamtee made a questionable decision going for a baron which they did manage to get, unfortunately for them, Kryst4l was quick enough to come all the way to the baron pit after taking the bot tier 2 turret. Kryst4l then cleaned up the pit by taking three kills and Baka took the last one as Sinkdream managed to get away as the slippery fish that he was.

Snake’s limited engage from the Volibear was what should’ve lost them the game, Volibear is a pretty one dimensional champion who cannot reach the backline without flanking. If he does manage to reach it, he is either too low health to do something or his passive is popped already.

Gamtee exploited this and was on their way to split the series, but the bad positioning from Tale on the final teamfight at the dragonpit lead his team to defeat against a shaky Snake.

Invictus Gaming vs Master3

Both teams had something to play for and after looking good the last few weeks, this might be one of the most interesting games of the day.

Interesting it was, when we look at the first game. Z1tai playing the Eye of the twilight in the toplane, Shen while Kakao picked up the Gragas.

Also worth mentioning is that M3 switched out Candy to play with Smlz, who is a known UrGOD player and therefor locked in the UrGod.

It was quite the farm game although Kid and Kitties managed to push Smlz into his turret early with some good harass and forcing the heal as a result of eating a death sentence.

M3 decided to make a dragon play and with succes, just the follow up on ganking the botlane didn't share the same success. At least, not for M3, a gank with the Glacial Prison got turned from a possible 2-0 gank into a 1-3 advantage for M3. A great countergank by Kakao didn't only lead secure his own bot duo, but also lead to killing the enemy botlane in exchange for his own Kitties.

The Kalista from Kid being up by two levels, two kills and a gigantic cs lead, meant that the botlane was secured, time to focus on the other lanes.

Rookie was doing a great job already against Dade’s Vladimir who lost his turret early and falling behind in CS which meant that the Batman & Robin duo from IG focused on helping their toplaner out.

All this happened without any form of real pressure by Master3, who just let IG do whatever they wanted and when they did try to interfere, they simply got smoked!

Yes, IG showed off their mechanical skills, especially Rookie who had some beautiful Azir plays and Kitties max range Death Sentences were one not to forget.

A 21 minute surrender was the result that IG was looking for. They take game one.

The second game of this series was a lot more interesting to watch when it comes to close games. Looper locked in one of his favorite champions in the toplane, Singed, as Invictus Gaming came onto the rift again with the Shen & Gragas.

M3 was looking good early in the game, coming out on top in the little skrims that occurred across the map but not quite as lucky on the dragon attempt that got stolen by Kid with the Ezreal ult.

IG traded the next two drakes for a mid outer turret and the top tier 2 turret and continued to expand their lead in forms of farming and turrets.

We do have to mention though, that M3’s jungler, Condi, is just looking terribly bad! Yes, he did have a decent debut, but after showing off his facechecking ability for the last few weeks, our friend managed to single-handedly lose teamfights by misusing his Glacial Prison. Not once, not twice, every single time!

IG’s composition had again a lot of utility and they used this to bait the baron multiple times so that Zz1tai, who had a double teleport on the Shen, could splitpush and take down the bottom inhibitor which eventually lead to a baron for Invictus Gaming.

M3 wasn't playing better or less than IG in the teamfights, but when you  have a jungler who wastes his aoe stun ultimate on a single target or in the open, you’re chances are pretty much done for.

Kid managed to punish Condi’s lack of insight with cleaning up fights due to the ability he had to burst down champions and chase them to finish them off.

A great performance from Invictus Gaming who secure the three points and push M3 really close to relegating.

Team World Elite vs King

Perhaps one of the most important games this week in terms of playoff seats. As both teams still have control over who is going to the playoffs, this promised to be a interesting match with two teams going all out.

Assassin, the decent performing midlaner from King, came onto the rift with the Karthus while LeyM obviously thought that Zero’s Irelia support pick was good enough to pick it himself(and also in the second game).

King started very strong, Assassin was using his ultimate almost to perfection as the team seemed to communicate very well. The pressure that MLXG applied on the botlane got followed up by the pressure that Assassin put onto Team WE with his ultimate.

The roams from the King midlaner lead to full control for the promising team who according to the critics would be somewhere in the top of the LPL based on their pre-season performance. King continued to pressure WE and eventually pushed their lead towards the 9k gold mark which didn’t even help King that much. A teamfight that occurred at that point went even, 4-4.

Despite the gold lead, this game seemed to be even in terms of fighting, as TWE tried to stall the game to farm up as much as they could. King couldn't close out the game, a common issue that we've seen quite a few times before this split and with that they kept TWE their hopes high. Teamfights were still going even until around the 40 minute mark. A teamfight that barely went in favor of King, as their team started to scale better and TWE their damage was falling off, lead them to the baron and eventually to close out the first game.

King was lucky that TWE is not a good teamfighting team, otherwise this might have turned out otherwise.

Perhaps the most important game for Team World Elite was the second game against King for them this split. For some reason, Spirit and Xiye were allowed on Nidalee and Leblanc which lead TWE to victory in the second game of this set.

As we started out even, with great ganking pressure from MLXG on the midlane, TWE managed to come out on top early in the midgame. As both Aluka and Skye farmed up, Aluka got a little bit ahead after Spirit started to give his lane some more attention.

Xiye in the meantime had been toying around with Assassin’s Lissandra, who didn’t stand a chance 1v1 against the Korean midlaner.

The first teamfight seemed to be happening around the second dragon spawn, but TWE managed to poke and scare King away from it, giving them another free drake which would help them significantly to close the game out earlier than King did the last game.

Creating the fights that lead to turrets and eventually the baron, strangly enough didn’t come from Spirit or Xiye, but from Yuzhe, who showed why we are all such a fan of LPL supports playing Thresh.

Death Sentences, to the fullest meaning of the name, were thrown out to sentence the poor looking King players to a 1-1 in the series, which would keep the hopes for the playoffs for TWE alive.

Team World Elite didn’t hesitate pressuring King while having a gold lead, they searched for fights, created fights, took objectives and forced a sub 30 minute game win over their competitors for that playoff seed.

Results Day 2:

Star Horn Royal Club vs Energy Pacemaker 2-0
Gamtee vs Snake 0-2
Invictus Gaming vs Master3 2-0
Team World Elite vs King 1-1

April 5th

Snake vs Master3

A beautiful game to start your Sunday off with. Snake came onto the rift with the troll in the toplane and the fat drunk man in the jungle while Baka picked up a new champion, Karthus.

A game that shortly after M3 picked up the first blood on their ADC, got turned into favor of Snake with some unfortunate teamfights for M3. You don’t want to be in early skrims around the map with a Karthus on the enemy team.

Baka picked up three early kills and the likes of snake took the rule of three into three early drakes and turrets.

There was nothing much that M3 could do except hope for mistakes from Snake’s side. After picking up the baron early in the game, pick got turned into a teamfight and turned into favor of M3. Bad positioning from the likes of Kryst4l and Flandre, but well executed skillshots from Dade and zone work from Lovecd.

This only extended the torture that Snake had lined up for M3 who had no answer to their strategy of the Trundle splitpushing to get rid of the outer turrets.

Snake ended the game 9-0 in turrets and took a perfect game. M3 their chances for playoffs is now looking very grim with King picking up points and all they can and must do is turn it up for game two against Snake!

So it appears that someone told Dade that if they wouldn't win this game, playoffs would be close to impossible.

The former Samsung Blue superstar came onto the rift with a digusting performance in terms of KDA and skills to show off together with LoveCD. Dade’s Leblanc, Lovecd’s Thresh was a recipe for abuse and disgusting punishment.

Snake started off decent by taking the early dragon again but M3 wouldn't have it. Flandre who locked in the Shyvana again with the teleport smite got camped and taken out of the game with some 3-4 men ganks.

M3 showed a completely different approach to the game than they had shown in the first one. More aggressive and above all wanting to win and destroy the opponent. We mentioned Lovecd, who is just one of those players why you would watch M3, especially on his Thresh. Every Chinese support is a great Thresh player and the use of his kit this game was tremendous, beautiful flails into the box and DeathSentences that literally caused death.

As you can see in our Top 5 of this week, Dade’s dancing skills were tremendous and his ability to delete Baka was quite entertaining also.

M3 kept pressuring Snake and left them no chance to even have hope to get back into the game.

A well deserved split.

Team World Elite vs Energy Pacemaker

All that Spirit and his ducklings need right here is a 2-0 victory to have a bit of hope of making the playoffs.

Spirit was once again the man of the match, the uncontested MVP for Team World Elite. His early ganks, annoying Nunu invades(which causes nothing but stress and frustration for the enemy) applied enough pressure for his team to capitalize on the already relegated Energy Pacemakers.

Spirit got his ADC Mystic a head with some beautiful Thresh lantern ganks got him ahead too in gold to work on his support items.

As always it is both amazing and satisfying to see a player of world class being able to solo-carry games in the professional gaming scene, Spirit always delivers!

A perfect game for Team World Elite that didn't drop a single turret forced the surrender right before Mystic could’ve gotten his first penta of this split.

Energy Pacemaker got their bans back this game after being punished for not obeying the rules for showing up with the proper lineup.

The weird fact about this pick and ban phase is that Aluka got to play his Sion again as Spirit got his Nidalee and Xiye his Leblanc.

It was another one-sided match. Team World Elite dominated thanks to the likes of Spirit who in the early game was not even needed in the bottom and midlane. Xiye got himself ahead as Mystic picked up a early double kill inlane.

Spirit kept applying pressure after delivering Aluka his first blood and destroyed the morale of EP. Contesting buffs, showing up constantly in the enemy jungle and even scaring EP away from a dragon while being outnumbered 1v3.

Spirit showed off as if he was making a “How to carry” video live on stage.

Spirit got himself so far ahead and therefor also his teammates that they could capitalize on every teamfight, the one in the bottom lane ended with a massive chain of CC by Aluka and cleanup from the likes of Spirit and the one in the toplane ended with a quadra kill for Xiye.

Another perfect game by not giving up any turret and Team World Elite take a well deserved and needed 2-0 in their last game of this week!

King vs Invictus Gaming

King starting off by giving Skye the red buff for his laningphase against Zz1tai’s Trundle. Mainly to sustain his health and to be able to come out on top in trades. In the meantime in the toplane Wuxxian was destroying Kid thanks to great play from both Wuxxian and Leym but also due to a slacky performance from Kitties. Failing to peel properly for his ADC by not using the proper spells in the proper moments caused them to fall behind, getting poked out in lane and then giving up first blood to MLXG’s Rek’Sai.

To make matters worse, Skye teleported top and ended up giving his ADC a double kill, just to snowball his lane and getting him ready for the upcoming teamfights.

Despite the early kills on MLXG and Wuxxian, the gold stayed even as Rookie and Zz1tai were winning their lane in farm, but King was winning the battle in dragons. As we will see later on they managed to pick up 5-0 dragons in this game which eventually caused IG to lose the game.

We can’t blame everything on the dragon control, Kakao was just not able to make his presence known in the first 10-15 minutes of the game while Rookie farmed up mid.

The first teamfight that occurred in the toplane went in favor of King, who gave a great show in terms of “How to peel for your ADC” while Rookie did not manage to pull off a proper flank with the Azir.

Losing this teamfight caused IG the baron and the fourth drake for IG. As IG did manage to pick up the baron later on in the game after Assassins got caught out, they couldn't translate it into anything big like a inhibitor. King continued their wonderful way of teamfighting for which the team has been praised so many times this split and took the first game after MLXG and Assassin collapsed onto the backline after Skye splitting up the team.

A very much deserved victory for King who controlled objectives and fought their fights carefully and properly.

There isn't a single person that stood out on King, all players put filled in their roles and managed to win thanks to their teamwork.

Game two was a total different game than the first one, as King decided to turn on the heat quite early by MLXG counterganking his botlane, grabbing the first blood on Kakao’s Nidalee. Not much later he caught the jungle cat in the river and turned her into a dead kitty while Rookie was taken out by Assassin.

From this point on, there were appearing little skrims everywhere on the map, King came out on top of every single one of them. Assassin impressing a lot again on his Karthus, timed ults, beautiful teleports to assists his teammates.

Perhaps MLXG and Assassin impressed me the most this game, they were very eager to choke IG and try and take the three much needed points to keep the playoff dream alive, or should we say secure it?

Also this game, King controlled the dragon, grabbing all dragons in this set is perhaps a detail for Invictus Gaming to think about.

Then again, perhaps Invictus gaming is aiming fort hat 6th spot and didn’t bother too much with this game? Who knows, anyway the three points go to King who have their seventh spot almost as good as secured!

LGD Gaming vs Vici Gaming

The best set of the night on this final day of week 10. We got served some bloodthirsty first half of the game with picks such as Imp’s Ashe, Acorn’s Galio and Mata’s Kennen.

Oh yes, it was on! Dandy tried to capitalize on TBQ’s predictable and weak early jungle by invading and placing traps all around. He managed to find at his blue buff after PyL had to wait in the fountain to revive after giving up a kill. This “capture” by Dandy, turned into a incredible fight with teleports being used and ults being thrown out. A wonderful play by We1less and teamfighting from LGD turned this skrim into a 6-2 win for LGD.

TBQ was active this early in the game, ganking here and there and even killing Dandy solo in his own jungle. LGD was playing this early game with succes, as Vici was not allowed and able to play their dominating rotation game as they did the previous games.

Unfortunately for LGD, at the dragon pit, Carry got a triple kill on the big tree which turned him into a vicious animal at this part of the game and Vici jumped on his back. The tree was carrying the teamfights with his AOE damage reduction and throwing the damage back like the boss that he was!

Vici Gaming was perhaps not able to show off their objective minded gameplay, but they did outsmart LGD, baiting TBQ’s ult kill him and Pyl shortly after to take the dragon and more map pressure.

VG’s comp seemed to be stronger than LGD’s comp, or they were just playing it better. Who knows, anyway Vici Gaming was going to take game one after LGD was throwing their early lead that they grabbed from TBQ’s aggressive play.

VG takes the baron, two inhibitors and then die to LGD in a teamfight…yes, they died.
The gold got put into good use as the gap closed to only 3k gold and LGD seemed to be able to stay alive a little bit longer.

As the next baron spawned, Vici was looking to take the two inhibitors down again so that they could just recall, sit out the baron that LGD took as they moved in for the inhibitors.

On the contrary….LGD came out of their fountains after the empowered recalls with FURY AND RACED AS HARD AS THEY COULD FOR LGD’S BASE!

A game, a game of throws some might call it, got thrown towards the likes of LGD who managed to pick up game one to disbelieve of VG’s Dandy.

As the second game went into the draft, it was quite clear that Vici Gaming was here to take the win for the second game, LGD on the other hand were trying out some other picks. Riven mid, Khazix Jungle and Miss Fortune ADC.

TBQ applied a bit of pressure early after We1less got ganked mid at level 2 by four people and managed to pick up a kill on Hetong. This was pretty much the highlight for LGD until Flame managed to pick up a triple kill with his Shyvana in dragon form.

Vici was not going to let LGD style on them and started to slowly turn up the heat which came to a real explosion when they found a dragon fight. That fight went in favor of VG with 5-0 since We1less was not yet aware of how to enter a fight as Riven. The triple kill in that fight that got onto the God of Vasilii helped him to get far ahead of Imp’s MF and to apply more pressure inlane.

As soon as Vici took the outer turrets from LGD it was the same ol’ story as the games before, apply pressure, obtain vision control and suffocate the opponent. In contrast to other games, their opponent was not that much troubled with it, perhaps only Flame(who has been trolled by LGD in both games he played this week). LGD was getting their asses kicked but on the player cams it didn’t seem to bother them.

Right before the 20 minute mark Vici managed to ace LGD again and slowly entered their base.

A clean game from Vici Gaming who ended the game with a 38-5 score to split the series.

Results Day 3:

Master3 vs Snake 1-1
Team World Elite vs Energy Pacemaker 2-0
King vs Invictus Gaming 2-0
Vici Gaming vs LGD Gaming 1-1

Standings after week 10:

Roster for Week 11:

Day 1:

LGD Gaming vs Gamtee
Master3 vs Energy Pacemaker
Star Horn Royal Club vs Invictus Gaming
Edward Gaming vs Vici Gaming

Day 2:

King vs Gamtee
Star Horn Royal Club vs Snake
OMG vs LGD Gaming
Edward Gaming vs Energy Pacemaker

Day 3:

LGD Gaming vs Invictus Gaming
Team WE vs Gamtee
Edward Gaming vs OMG

Vici Gaming vs Master3