StarLadder I-League StarSeries Season 3 LAN Finals Preview

As we move further into the year, the tournaments are coming thick and fast. Next up is the StarLadder season 3 LAN finals held in the Shanghai International Gymnastics Center. StarLadder will take place February 23rd – 26th and will showcase some of the best teams in the world.

StarLadder Prize Pool

The prize pool is $300,000 USD, split as follows:

Place $ USD Team
1st $135,000 TBD
2nd $60,000 TBD
3rd $37,500 TBD
4th $22,500 TBD
place 5 to 8
5th-6th $15,000 TBD
TBD
7th-8th $7,500 TBD
TBD

Courtesy of http://wiki.teamliquid.net/dota2/StarLadder/i-League_StarSeries/Season_3

StarLadder Format

The teams will be split into two groups, each containing four teams. The group stage will contain a double-elimination bracket with the top two teams advancing to bracket play. Bracket play will be a four team single-elimination bracket, with the semifinals being best of threes, and the final a best of five.

The Teams

Wings Gaming – Direct Invite

Wings StarLadder

Image courtesy of teamliquid.net

Roster:

Position 1 (Carry) – Shadow

Position 2 (Mid) – Blink

Position 3 (Offlane) – Faith_bian

Position 4 (Support) – y’

Position 5 (Support) – iceice

Wings have been missing from the competitive scene since ESL One Genting. After facing troubles with visas, they missed out on Dota Pit, meaning they have had very few games on the new patch. Since winning TI, Wings have not reached the heights that were expected by many fans.

Wings will be hoping to put in a good performance to try and secure an invite to Kiev. Considering the talent on show at StarLadder, Wings have a tough task ahead of them.

Prediction – 5th / 6th

Wings placement will rely heavily on the group that they are placed in. However, they have failed to impress since TI and will struggle to make it out of the group stages. They will be hoping to kick start their year with a decent performance to give them some momentum heading into the Kiev Major.

OG – Direct Invite

OG StarLadder

Image courtesy of teamliquid.net

Roster:

Position 1 (Carry) – Notail

Position 2 (Mid) – Ana

Position 3 (Offlane) – s4

Position 4 (Support) – JerAx

Position 5 (Support) – Fly

For some reason there seems to always be questions surrounding the ability of this OG team. Having proved at both Boston and DotaPit that they are one of the best, if not the best, team in the world, they will be hoping to impress at StarLadder. As winners of the Boston Major, they are guaranteed an invite to Kiev, so they hope to silence the critics once again with an emphatic display.

Predictions – 1st Place

OG have the pedigree and ability to win this tournament. Coming off the back of a second place finish at DotaPit, OG will be looking to step it up a level and finish first. Also, as EG are missing from the event, OG will feel confident with their chances.

Team Liquid – European Qualifier #1

Team Liquid StarLadder

Image courtesy of teamliquid.net

Roster:

Position 1 (Carry) – MATUMBAMAN

Position 2 (Mid) – Miracle-

Position 3 (Offlane) – MinD_ContRoL

Position 4 (Support) – GH

Position 5 (Support) – KuroKy

StarLadder will be the LAN debut for the new Team Liquid and they hope to start it off with a victory. Liquid will be coming into the tournament on the back of an impressive 12 game win streak. They hope that an impressive performance at StarLadder can secure them a direct invite to the upcoming Kiev Major.

Prediction – 2nd Place

Liquid are on an upward trend, however they will eventually cross paths with OG. Taking the W against Fly and the rest of OG may be a step too far for Liquid, but it will be good for the team to get some LAN experience together.

Team Secret – European Qualifier #2

Secret StarLadder

Image courtesy of teamsecret.gg

Roster:

Position 1 (Carry) – MP

Position 2 (Mid) – MidOne

Position 3 (Offlane) – Khezu

Position 4 (Support) – Puppey

Position 5 (Support) – pieliedie

This is the second major tournament that the new look Secret have competed in as a team. The first, DotaPit, did not go as planned. Secret ended up finishing in a disappointing 5th / 6th. Having displayed good promise early in the tournament by beating DC, they eventually fell in the losers bracket. Secret hope to prove that they can still be one of the best teams in the world. StarLadder provides them with teams they should beat 70% of the time.

Prediction – 4th Place

With Wings and DC both looking fragile, Secret have a real chance at finishing strong in this event. However, with the likes of Liquid and OG also competing, a top three finish may be just out of reach. This will be the chance for Secret to gain some momentum heading into the Kiev Major qualifiers.

Team VG.J – China Qualifier #1

VG.J StarLadder

Image courtesy of teamliquid.net

Roster:

Position 1 (Carry) – Agressif

Position 2 (Mid) – Freeze

Position 3 (Offlane) – rOtk

Position 4 (Support) – fy

Position 5 (Support) – Fenrir

This will be VG.J’s first venture into international competition. The squad is stacked with some of the best players in China and will be expected to perform well on home soil. Mid player Liu “Freeze” Change is a relative unknown in the international scene and hopes to put his name on the map at StarLadder.

Prediction – 3rd

VG.J posses some of the best talent in Chinese Dota currently, and with Wings misfiring and Newbee not at the event, VG.J are China’s only hope. With four veterans of Dota, this team has the makings of a world beater. The only question is whether they can realize their potential or fall by the side.

iG Vitality – China Qualifier #2

iG.V StarLadder

Image courtesy of teamliquid.net

Roster:

Position 1 (Carry) – Paparazi

Position 2 (Mid) – Sakata

Position 3 (Offlane) – InJuly

Position 4 (Support) – Super

Position 5 (Support) – dogf1ghts

iG.V are a small fish surrounded by blood thirsty sharks. Similar to Elements Pro Gaming at Dota Pit, they are slightly out of place. As they have been playing together for nearly a year, they hope to possess an advantage over some of the newly formed teams. Having failed at Boston, they have been relatively quiet. This is also their first appearance on the international scene.

Prediction – 7th / 8th

Dota games are not played on paper. This is the thing iG.V will be relying on heading in to the tournament. They are on home soil and will be hoping that the crowd can push them to victory. However, they are against several strong teams and will be hard pressed to mount any serious challenge.

Digital Chaos – America Qualifier

DC StarLadder

Image courtesy of teamliquid.net

Roster:

Position 1 (Carry) – Resolution

Position 2 (Mid) – w33

Position 3 (Offlane) – MoonMeander

Position 4 (Support) – MiSeRy

Position 5 (Support) – Saksa

In the last six weeks we have seen the two sides of DC. To go from dominating the field at ESL One Genting to finishing last at DotaPit is not good enough. DC are coming into the event in a weird place. They managed to qualify for the event beating NP in a playoff. However, a few weeks later they failed to qualify for DAC, losing to NP in the finals. They hope to make a comeback and put in a solid performance at StarLadder to secure an invite to Kiev.

Prediction – 5th / 6th

DC look out of sorts since ESL One Genting. The nature of the victory may have lead them to slack a bit heading into DotaPit. However, it is nearly time for the direct invites to Kiev to be announced. DC hope that they can reignite the fire of ESL One and put in a solid performance for the tournament.

TNC Pro Team

TNC StarLadder

Image courtesy of teamliquid.net

Roster:

Position 1 (Carry) – Raven

Position 2 (Mid) – Kuku

Position 3 (Offlane) – Sam_H

Position 4 (Support) – Tims

Position 5 (Support) – ryOyr

TNC are used to being the underdogs, so this time around will be no different. They are the second best team in SEA, after Faceless, so this will be a tough challenge for TNC. With Faceless likely to receive a direct invite to Kiev, TNC will be able to use the tournament as a warm-up for the Kiev Qualifiers. TNC hope to catch a few teams off-guard using their unpredictable play style.

Prediction – 7th / 8th

TNC are a difficult team to predict, considering the unpredictable nature of their play. They will be hoping to use this to their advantage and upset a few teams and achieve a decent finish.

StarLadder Final Thoughts

Team Liquid makes their return to international competition at StarLadder, and hope to return with a bang. Standing in their way is OG, the silent assassins that know how to win and win often. OG look to be the favorites for the event, but Liquid have the potential to win. Looking through the rest of the teams, VG.J and Secret have the potential to challenge in the later stages of the tournament. TNC and iG Vitality look to be the weakest of the teams, and will be hoping that they can cause a few upsets and end up with a decent position.

Overall Predictions:

1st Place – OG

2nd Place – Team Liquid

3rd Place – Team VG.J

4th Place – Team Secret

5th / 6th Place – Digital Chaos / Wings Gaming

7th / 8th Place – iG Vitality / TNC Pro Team

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Dota PIt

The Good and The Bad: Dota Pit Season 5

With Dota Pit in the books, it’s time to take a look back at the event. From great games to time delays, Dota Pit definitely had some good moments, some bad moments, and some moments in between.

The Good – Dota Pit

The Grandest of Finals

Dota Pit Grand Finals

Image courtesy of youtube.com

Having matched up in the Winners Finals, EG swept OG aside in emphatic fashion, finishing the series 2 – 0. Fans may have been worried that the Grand Finals would follow the same suit, but this was not the case. The Grand Finals went the full best of five, with OG being up 2-1 going into game four. EG managed to turn it around, mainly due to Arteezy’s excellent Lone Druid play. The series showed that OG and EG are still the teams to beat, even on a new patch. Demonstrating some amazing plays throughout, teams will need to be wary of these teams moving forward.

Le Balanced Fire Spirit

Image courtesy of youtube.com

After seeing mixed success at ESL One Genting, Ember made a resurgent return at Dota Pit. He was the most picked hero in the tournament, being picked 16 times and boasting a massive 81% win rate. Some teams have tried to counter the rise of Ember by picking up Invoker. This was very unsuccessful however. Invoker was picked up six times in matches against Ember, only winning one of those games. The Veil build-up allows Ember to be active early, a problem he suffered with in previous patches. In a meta that seems to be leaning more towards magical damage, the current Ember Veil combo seems to be here to stay. Teams will need to start finding ways to defeat this build.

Team Faceless show their true faces

Image taken at The Summit 6. Courtesy of esportsedition.com

Many people did not expect much from Faceless at this event, myself included as I had predicted them to finish 7th / 8th. Faceless managed to mount an impressive losers bracket run through the perilous best of one matches. Facing off against EG in the first game they played will have left Faceless fans fearing the worst. In fact, Faceless put up a valiant fight against EG, winning game one, but eventually losing the series 2-1.

In their losers bracket run, Faceless defeated DC, VP, and IG before eventually falling to OG in the losers bracket final. It can be argued that the best of one lower bracket games did work in Faceless’ favor, but the conditions were the same for every team.

Faceless proved that they can be contenders on the world stage with a strong third place finish. They will be hoping to build on this into the SEA StarLadder qualifiers.

Who needs Sniper when you have Lone Druid

Image courtesy of dotabuff.com

The addition of Talent Trees has opened up new ways to play heroes that for the longest time have had the same item build-ups. Lone Druid is one of the heroes most changed by the new Talent Tree options, which has brought forward the possibility of focusing more on building up items on LD rather than his bear. At ESL One Genting, LD was only picked once, and that was in a game that Wings Gaming went on to lose.

In this event, however, he was picked six times, all on the last day, and boasted an impressive 83% win rate. LD was completely ignored on days one and two of the event, and was only picked up by both EG and OG. With the dominance that EG primarily were able to show with the hero, expect to see LD appearing in more and more pro games coming up.

The Bad – Dota Pit

Schedule, what schedule?

Image courtesy of ambassador-baptist.org

Whilst the games at Dota Pit were great, managing to actually play them seemed like a bit of an issue. All three days suffered from delays, with the largest delay being a whopping four hours during the Grand Finals. The amount of delays for an event of this caliber is simply unacceptable. As a fan watching, it was unbearable at times, listening to the same playlist over and over on the Dota Pit stream. It definitely deterred people from watching the stream. The effect on the players was easy to see at the trophy ceremony, with the members of EG looking visibly exhausted when accepting the trophy.

What a difference two weeks makes

Image courtesy of twitter.com

Two weeks prior to Dota Pit, Digital Chaos took home the first place finish at ESL One Genting. Many people predicted DC to finish in the top three at Dota Pit. This did not happen, however. Following a disappointing day one, DC was eliminated from the tournament, finishing 7th / 8th. Being knocked out on the first day definitely hurt DC. It will be interesting to see how they bounce back from the event. Fans may argue that the format definitely played against DC, as they never really had a chance to get going. However, in the games they did play, DC looked out of sorts and a completely different side to the team that finished first at ESL One Genting.

That little something missing

Image courtesy of dotablast.com

Over the last couple of months, Dota fans have been treated to the best of the best in terms of desk hosts, with both ReDeYe and Machine proving that they are among the world’s elite hosts. Dota Pit however had neither of these names, and instead had KotL Guy and Sheever sharing the hosting duties. Now whilst I like both Sheever and KotL Guy as analysts / commentators, I felt that they did not make the best fit as hosts. This goes back to the recent discussion I had with ReDeYe, where he explained that sometimes it is detrimental if a host has extensive game knowledge, as they may dominate discussion. This was something that did happen on a few occasions during the event.

As a fan, I hope to see both ReDeYe and Machine attending more Dota events in the future. I also hope to see both KotL Guy and Sheever return as analysts / casters.

Best of ones are probably not for the best

Image courtesy of twitter.com

After waiting until two days before the event to announce the format, there was a lot of speculation among fans. However, Dota Pit shocked a few people by announcing best of one games for all the lower bracket games, including the lower bracket finals. Many people are fans of the best of one games as they can provide some of the most interesting matches in the tournament. From a viewers perspective, the best of one lower bracket games missed the mark, as fan favorites DC were eliminated straight away after falling into the lower bracket.

The scheduling of the days also seemed to be a bit bottom heavy, in that the majority of games were played on the last day. Normally the games per day reduce as you move through the tournament. Dota Pit opted for the opposite strategy. For the players that made it to the final day, the scheduling must have been extremely tiring. Combine this with the heavy delays, and Dota Pit was probably not the best tournament to compete in.

HONORABLE Mention – Dota Pit

Bringing the hype like no other

Image courtesy of youtube.com

It was announced that the stage host of Counter Pit, aka E-sports Hype Guy, would be hosting Dota Pit. He did not disappoint, from the first event to the last, he put a ton of effort in. Even after a massive four hour delay, he still attempted to hype up an exhausted crowd to cheer until the end.

Dota Pit Final Placings

Place $ USD Percent Team
1st $62,937  45% Evil Geniuses Evil Geniuses
2nd $34,965  25% OG OG
3rd $25,174  18% Team Faceless Team Faceless
4th $16,783  12% Invictus Gaming/Invictus Gaming Invictus Gaming
place 5 to 8
5th-6th  0% Team Secret Team Secret
Virtus.pro/Virtus.pro Virtus.pro
7th-8th  0% Elements Pro Gaming/Elements Pro Elements Pro
Digital Chaos Digital Chaos

“Table courtesy of http://wiki.teamliquid.net/dota2/Dota_Pit_League/Season_5”

Final Thoughts

Although there were some great games at Dota Pit, the heavy delays made this an event to forget. Overall, due to the heavy delays and awful stream playlist, Dota Pit Season 5 Finals is getting a Report and some time in Low Priority.

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Dota Pit

Dota Pit Season 5 Event Preview

Dota Pit Season 5 is the third major tournament of the 2017 Dota year, if you include WESG. The tournament will take place from January 20-28th and will be held in the Spaladium Arena in Split, Croatia.

Dota Pit Format

Dota Pit will be played in a double elimination bracket that will take place over the three days. All upper bracket games will be best of three apart from the Grand Finals which will be best of five. It was also announced that the lower bracket games will all be best of one! Best of one brings a huge amount of unpredictability and means that making a lower bracket run in the tournament will come with very high risks.

Dota Pit Prize Pool

The prize pool for the tournament was announced as being $125,000 and would be increased through the sale of in-game tickets and cosmetics. The most recent prize pool announcement was for $136,345. At the time of writing, the distribution amounts have yet to be announced.

Dota Pit Teams

The tournament has been hit with two teams pulling out, which has added two challengers into an already stacked field of teams. With ESL One Genting Champions Digital Chaos being joined by the likes of OG and EG, fans should be in for a treat with some top quality games over the weekend. So who is descending into the pit to try and win the event:

Elements Pro Gaming – Replacing Wings Gaming – Direct Invite

Image courtesy of teamliquid.net

Roster:

Position 1 (Carry) – Swiftending

Position 2 (Mid) – kole

Position 3 (Offlane) – Mitch

Position 4 (Support) g0g1

Position 5 (Support) – LeBronDota

Most people may have been surprised when it was announced that EPG were selected to replace Wings Gaming, who could not attend due to visa issues. However, they did nearly qualify for the event after losing to OG in the final series 3-2. EPG will be hoping to catch some of the teams by surprise and the format may work in their advantage. This is also a chance for EPG to prove themselves among the biggest teams in the world.

Tournament Prediction – 5th / 6th

EPG has what it takes to catch a team by surprise and due to the best of one lower bracket format, its possible that they can take a game and end up finishing 5th / 6th.

Digital Chaos (DC) – Direct Invite

Image courtesy of http://wiki.teamliquid.net/dota2

Roster:

Position 1 (Carry) – Resolution

Position 2 (Mid) – w33

Position 3 (Offlane) – MoonMeander

Position 4 (Support) – MiSeRy

Position 5 (Support) – Saksa

DC are coming into this event hot, practically on fire. Off the back of an amazing victory at ESL One Genting, the team now have their first LAN win. DC will be looking to build on their first success and carry that forward into Dota Pit. The difference, OG and EG are both returning to this tournament and did not take part in ESL One Genting. Fans will be hoping that DC can continue their fine form at the start of 2017 with another victory at Dota Pit.

Tournament Prediction – 2nd Place

This tournament will come down to a battle between DC, OG, and EG. The three powerhouses are almost interchangeable at the top of the pile and it will be interesting to see how the weekend pans out.

OG – European Qualifier #1

Image courtesy of teamliquid.net

Roster:

Position 1 (Carry) – Notail

Position 2 (Mid) – Ana

Position 3 (Offlane) – s4

Position 4 (Support) – JerAx

Position 5 (Support) – Fly

Dota Pit signals the start of 2017 for the Boston Major champions. This will also be their first competitive outing on the 7.xx patch. OG had several questions surrounding the team heading into the Major. Could s4 work in the offlane? Could Ana fill the space that Miracle- had left? How would the team manage following the roster changes? OG answered all of these questions in resounding fashion at the Major by winning the event in dominant fashion. OG will be hoping that they can continue the success of Boston and get their year off to a great start.

Tournament Prediction – 1st Place

OG have shown that they are a team to be feared. This will not be an easy tournament for them to win, but if any team can , it will be OG.

Team Secret – European Qualifier #2

Image courtesy of teamsecret.gg

Roster:

Position 1 (Carry) – MP

Position 2 (Mid) – MidOne

Position 3 (Offlane) – Khezu

Position 4 (Support) – Puppey

Position 5 (Support) – pieliedie

Dota Pit brings about the return of Team Secret. Having failed to qualify for the Boston Major, and amidst a dispute with former players, Team Secret looked in a bad position. The last event that Secret competed at was the ROG Masters in November, where they finished first.

With a new look roster, and hoping to make a resurgence in 2017, Secret will be hoping that they can impress the Dota community with a high finish.

Tournament Prediction – 5th / 6th

Similar to EPG, Secret are somewhat of an unknown quality. Fans will be hoping that this will work in their advantage and that the format of the tournament can help Secret show that they are still a force to be reckoned with in the Dota scene.

Virtus Pro (VP) – CIS Qualifier

Image courtesy of http://wiki.teamliquid.net/dota2

Roster:

Position 1 (Carry) – Ramzes666

Position 2 (Mid) – No[o]ne

Position 3 (Offlane) – 9Pashaebashu

Position 4 (Support) – Lil

Position 5 (Support) – Solo

VP are heading into Dota Pit with a point to prove. After failing to win both the Major and ESL One Genting, VP will be looking to prove to the world that they should still be considered one of the worlds best Dota teams.

VP, however, looked out of sorts at ESL, often times making confusing plays, something they are not normally known for. Lil recently tweeted that quick cast on Earth Spirit (one of his favored heroes) was bugged – https://twitter.com/LilJke/status/818737760668413952. How much of an impact this had, nobody can really tell.

Tournament Prediction – 4th Place

Based on their performance at ESL One, VP did not look like the same team that we considered favorites to win the Major. VP will be hoping to bounce back from the disappointment of ESL with a strong performance over the weekend.

Team Faceless – SEA Qualifier

Image courtesy of teamliquid.net

Roster:

Position 1 (Carry) – Black^

Position 2 (Mid) – Jabz

Position 3 (Offlane) –iceiceice

Position 4 (Support) – xy-

Position 5 (Supprot) – NutZ

Faceless are one the strongest teams in the SEA region. How much you can read into that is another question. Heading into the Major, fans were interested to see how the SEA powerhouse would match up with the world elite. The answer to this questions was shown pretty quickly. Having finished 9th – 16th, Faceless were left disappointed.

Fast forward to Dota Pit and Faceless seem to be re-establishing their dominance in SEA, and will be hoping that they can quiet the doubters with a high placing.

Tournament Prediction – 7th / 8th

Recently, it seems as if Faceless have been rotating positions depending on the hero being played, with Black often playing the four position Pudge, and xy- playing in the Carry role. Seeing as this worked out so well for Team Liquid at the Major, Faceless may be in for a tough time at Dota Pit.

Invictus Gaming – Replacing Newbee – Chinese Qualifier

Image courtesy of teamliquid.net

Roster:

Position 1 (Carry) – BurNing

Position 2 (Mid) – Op

Position 3 (Offlane) – Xxs

Position 4 (Support) – BoboKa

Position 5 (Support) – Q

Time has not been kind to IG. They have had a dramatic fall from grace since their victory at The International 2012 (TI2). The team has been going through a period of transition, but may be starting to find their feet on the world stage once again. Having recently qualified for the Dota Asia Championships (DAC) with a perfect record in their group, they will be hoping to use that experience at Dota Pit.

Tournament Prediction – 7th / 8th Place

IG are not among friends in this tournament, they are not in China and they are the small fish in the middle of the ocean. On the plus side, expectations will not be high for IG and they may be able to catch a team napping, especially in the best of one lower bracket.

Evil Geniuses – American Qualifier

Image courtesy of teamliquid.net

Roster:

Position 1 (Carry) – Arteezy

Position 2 (Mid) – SumaiL

Position 3 (Offlane) – UNiVeRsE

Position 4 (Support) – Zai

Position 5 (Support) – Cr1t-

Dota Pit will see EG’s first real foray into competitive Dota on the 7.xx patch, not including the show matches at Chine Top.

Recent games have seen Arteezy playing a large amount of Meepo in his solo games. Seeing as Meepo had decent levels of success at ESL, it would not be a surprise to see EG turn to Meepo in an attempt to progress in the tournament.

Tournament Prediction – 3rd Place

Although they have not played in any tournaments since the release of 7.xx EG are still a team to be feared and should make it to the later stages of the tournament. With a few surprise picks they may even finish higher than predicted.

Dota Pit Final Thoughts

EG and OG make their return to competitive Dota, and following the high level of play shown at ESL One, this tournament seems set to produce some amazing highlights. Overall, any of the teams predicted in the top four have the ability to take the tournament, but the quality of OG should win through on paper. But we all know Dota is not played on paper.

Overall Predictions:

1st Place – OG

2nd Place – Digital Chaos

3rd Place – Evil Geniuses

4th Place – Virtus Pro

5th / 6th Place – Elements Pro Gaming / Team Secret

7th / 8th Place – Invictus Gaming / Team Faceless

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ESL One Genting

ESL One Genting 2017 Tournament Recap

For the last three days eight of the worlds best teams ascended to the dizzy heights of the Genting Highlands to wage war in the arena of Dota. Lets recap what has happened throughout the event and also look at what the event showed us about the 7.01 meta.

 

Day 1 Recap

Group A: Virtus Pro v Fnatic – Best of 1

The Draft

Fnatic

Mushi – Lifestealer

InYourDreams – Templar Assassin

Ohiayo – Slardar

Febby – Bounty Hunter

Yamateh – Lina

 

Fnatic v VP Recap

Image courtesy of Youtube.com

Virtus Pro (VP)

Ramzes – Juggernaut

No[o]ne – Outworld Devourer (OD)

9Pasha – Omnikinight

Lil – Earth Spirit

Solo – Rubick

 
Both teams came out with pretty standard drafts. Nothing that really set the tournament alight, but considering that this was a best of one its not a surprise.

Game Recap

The early game went well for both teams and was pretty passive, at 10 minutes it was 4-5 kills for VP and Fnatic respectively. VP had eked out a small 100 gold lead a following a string of failed ganks and rough team fights, but by 20 minutes the story looked slightly different. VP now had the lead in kills, 13-9, and were also ahead 5,000 gold in the net worth chart. At this point in the game the cores of VP had started to become a problem. With Juggernaut and OD sitting atop the networth chart, a good 1,000 gold ahead of Lifestealer, things were starting to slip away from Fnatic.

The next two minutes however would bring about the beginning of the end for the game. After taking Roshan and having Juggernaut with a completed Manta Style, VP realised it was time to capitalise. By 22 minutes VP had turn one tier two tower into a full lane of rax. From this point on the result was academic as VP continued to take objectives until Fnatic called “GG” after 26 minutes.

Result : – Virtus Pro victory.

With this result VP progressed to play either Newbee or Team NP for first the seed in Group A. Fnatic however dropped down to face the loser of that match in the first elimination match.

Group A: Newbee v Team NP – Best of 1

The Draft

 

Newbee

Uuu9 – Lifestealer

Sccc – Queen of Pain (QoP)

Kpii – Centaur Warruner

Kaka – Mirana

Faith – Shadow Demon (SD)

 

Newbee v NP Recap

Image courtesy of Youtube.com

Team NP

Aui_2000 – Luna

Eternal Envy – Windrager

MSS – Dark Seer

Rose – Spirit Breaker

SVG – Ogre Magi

 

NP seemed to have a draft advantage in this game with a good “wombo-combo” with Dark Seer Vacuum into Spirit Breaker Charge. Newbee however had good ways to disengage if NP initiated.

Game Recap

This game was not as close as the first game of the day, instead it was a show of dominance from Newbee. Within the first 10 minutes Newbee had taken the lead in kills, 8-3 and had amassed a 10,000 gold networth lead.

This game showcased how good Song “Sccc” Chun is capable of performing as a mid player. Playing one of his signature heroes in Queen of Pain (QoP), Sccc dominated the game finish with 14 kills, one death and nine assists. Sccc was able to remain active on the map whilst also maintaining a very high level of farm, which saw him reach his item timings very early on the game.

Eventually after 46 minutes NP accepted defeat and called “GG”. NP however had something to be happy about despite the lose. Kurtis “Aui_2000” Ling was able to stay close enough to Newbee’s cores in networth even though the majority of the map was controlled by Newbee. This was a good sign for NP as their Carry player was beginning to perform well moving forward into the rest of the tournament.

Result : – Newbee Victory

With this victory Newbee set up a Group A winners final between Virtus Pro and Newbee. Team NP would fall to face a knockout match against Fnatic on day two.

Group B: Digital Chaos (DC) v Execration – Best of 1

The Draft

Digita Chaos

w33 – Meepo

Resolut1on – Luna

Moonmeander – Axe

Misery – Rubick

Saksa – Tusk

 

DC v XctN Recap

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 Exceration

Nando – Weaver

Gabbi – Timbersaw

Dj – Sand King

Owa – Slardar

Kimo – Shadow Demon

 

In their first game of the tournament DC immediately picked up the Aliwi “w33” Omar Meepo. Arguably the best Meepo in the world, fans watching the games were filled with excitement at what was to come.

Game Recap

Within the first 10 minutes of this game it looked as if Execration were more than up to the task of defeating the TI6 (The International) runners-up. Execration where able to take the advantage in kills in the first 15 minutes, taking the lead 12 – 5. Despite this lead in kills however, Execration were unable to prevent both Meepo and Luna from farming consistently for the first 15 minutes.

Unfortunately for Execration, following a couple of disastrous team-fights which saw them lose four heroes each time, by the 25 minute mark DC had taken the advantage with a 20,000 net worth lead. At this point the game was beyond the grips of Execration who chose to “GG” out following a great base fight by DC.

Result : – DC Victory

DC took the game to set up the winners final against Wings Gaming or WG.Unity. Execration would face the loser of the next match in a knockout game on day two.

Group B :- Wings Gaming v Warriorsgaming.Unity (WGU) – Best of 1

The Draft

Warriorsgaming.Unity

Ahjit – Morphling

Nana – Tiny

KanGaroo – Puck

Ahfu – Ogre

xNova – Skywrath Mage

WGU v Wings Recap

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 Wings Gaming

Shadow – Vengeful Spirit

Blink – Shadow Fiend

Faith_Bian – Slardar

Iceice – Pudge

y’ – Orace

Wings surprised people with the early Shadow Fiend pick (SF), while also by the end of the draft it was clear that the Vengeful Spirit was going to be playing in a core role. It seemed as if the innovative Wings Gaming had come in to the game with a strategy and rather than draft depending on what Warriorsgaming.Unity picked, they picked the heroes that they wanted to play.

Game Recap

Wings started the game by running an aggro-trilane top so that they could pressure the Morphling and stop him from pulling ahead. Unfortunately for Wings this did not quite work and instead limited the amount of farm that the carry Venge was able to get during the early game.

Within the first 10 minutes WG.Unity managed to amass a 2,000 networth lead over Wings. Having died three times within the first 10 minutes the decision to pick Venge in a carry role seemed to be the wrong one. The only saving grace was that Blinks SF had been dominating his lane and was atop the networth charts. This was until all five members of Wings were killed in a team-fight that would see WG.Unity lose no heroes and stretch their lead to 5,000 gold.

WG.Unity however had difficulty converting their large gold lead into taking objectives. Combine this with the fact that Wings were able to maintain control of the Roshan pit and claim the Aeiges of the Immortal consistently, WG.Unity looked like they were slowly losing hold of the game.

At the 36 minute mark WG.Unity had a 9,000 gold net worth advantage, however they had not been able to successfully push high ground. Finally Wings were able to punish WG.Unity multiple times, including in the deciding fight at the Roshan pit which would see WG.Unity call “GG”.

Result:- Wings Gaming Victory

This victory would set up the Group B winners final match between Digital Chaos and Wings Gaming

Group A Winners Match :- Virtus Pro v Newbee – Best of 3

Game 1

The Draft

 

Uuu9 – Drow Ranger

Sccc – Queen of Pain (QoP)

Kpii – Nyx Assassin

Kaka – Weaver

Faith – Witch Doctor

Newbee v VP Recap Game 1

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 Virtus Pro

Ramzes – Luna

No[o]ne – Juggernaut

9Pasha – Batrider

Lil – Pudge

Solo – Disruptor

 

Newbee made the decision to open with Drow and Weaver, something which VP has almost exclusively used in recent times. Going into the game it seemed as if Newbee had an advantage based on the draft.

Game Recap

Sccc was again given the opportunity to play Queen of Pain, one of the heroes he is best known for. His ability on the hero shone throw as we was able to maintain harass on the mid Jugernaught and eventually solo kill him in the first 4 minutes of the game.

Newbee showed the control that Chinese Dota teams are renowned for and were and grabbed control of the game and did not let go. It seemed as if VP were not expecting the support Weaver and also the Sccc QoP and they were heavily punished. After losing the decisive team fight at the 38 minute mark, VP realised they were too far behind and called “GG” to end game one.

Result:- Newbee Victory

Game 2

The Draft

 

 Newbee

Uuu9 – Ursa

Sccc – Outworld Devourer

Kpii – Sandking

Kaka – Pudge

Faith – Witch Doctor

Newbee v VP game 2 recap

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 Virtus Pro

Ramzes – Juggernaut

No[o]ne – Shadow Fiend

9Pasha – Underlord

Lil – Io

Solo – Disruptor

The first Underlord pick of the tournament made most fans excited. The panel were very surprised by the last pick Io and maybe Newbee were too.

Game Recap

The beginning of game two looked to be going in a similar way to game one as Newbee took an early lead of 3,000 gold at the 13 minute mark. Unfortunately for Newbee this was also the same time that Underlord would finish his Mekansm. With the Mekansm in hand VP were able to group as five and begin to push.

VP managed to gain control of the map and with a lineup containing heavy sustain and were able to end the game at the 22 minute mark with Newbee calling “GG”.

Result:- Virtus Pro Victory

Game 3

The Draft

 

Newbee

Uuu9 – Lifestealer

Sccc – Queen of Pain (QoP)

Kpii – Centaur Warruner

Kaka – Mirana

Faith – Shadow Demon (SD)

 

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Virtus Pro

Ramzes – Juggernaut

No[o]ne – Shadow Fiend

9Pasha – Slardar

Lil – Weaver

Solo – Abaddon

Having already played this lineup earlier in the day it seemed as if Newbee had the advantage going in to the deciding game of the series.

Game Recap

Game three of the series was unlike any game that had been seen on day one of ESL One Genting. The reason for this is that it was a show of complete dominance from Newbee.

Sccc on his signature QoP for the third time in the day, again proved why teams would have to potentially waste a ban on eliminating QoP from the game. Ending with 10 kills, 0 deaths and 12 assists Sccc completely tore apart VP.

VP looked a shadow of the team from game two as they let Newbee run away with the game. Eventually after 32 minutes VP finally admitted defeated and “GG” was called.

Result:- Newbee Victory

With the victory Newbee took top spot in Group A progressing directly through to the semi finals on day three. Virtus Pro would fall and face the winner of Fnatic v Team NP

Final Score: – Newbee 2 – Virtus Pro 1

Group B Winners Match :- Digital Chaos v Wings Gaming

Game 1

The Draft

 Wings Gaming

Shadow – Gyrocopter

Blink – Shadow Fiend

Faith_bian – Sand King

Iceice – Winter Wyvern

y’ – Rubick

 

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 Digital Chaos

Resolut1on – Viper

w33 – Meepo

Moonmeander – Dark Seer

Misery – Slardar

Saksa – Dazzle

This was an interesting draft for two reasons. The first was that DC picked the Meepo in the first phase, although they did ban out two of the possible Meepo counters in Ember Spirit and Sven they still left Winter Wyvern in the pool. Wings then responded by picking Shadow Fiend and Winter Wyvern along with a last pick Gyrocopter.

Overall it seemed that if executed correctly Wings had the stronger of the two drafts.

Game Recap

With Resolution going to the mid lane and Meepo going to the safe lane this was a switch up in roles for DC, which Wings took the opportunity to punish. Throughout the game Winter Wyvern was able to completely take Meepo out of the fight using his ultimate, Winters Curse, to lock down one of the Meepo’s leading to his eventual death.

With Meepo being shut down, it would fall to Viper to carry DC to victory. Unfortunately for DC this was not the case, Wings were able to limit the farm of Viper and with SF taking a lead in the early game things began to get out of control. After defending valiantly against the push from Wings, DC eventually succumbed to the pressure and called “GG” at the 47 minute mark.

Result:- Wings Gaming Victory

Game 2

The Draft

 Wings Gaming

Shadow – Terrorblade

Blink – Ursa

Faith_bian – Slardar

Iceice – Riki

y’ – Warlcok

 

 

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 Digital Chaos

Resolut1on – Naga Siren

w33 – Mirana

Moonmeander – Legion Commander

Misery – Leshrac

Saksa – Vengeful Spirit

This draft was a flashback to a land of times gone by. Both teams would have been comfortable playing in 6.88 so it was interesting to see how it would play out in 7.01 with the changes to illusions.

Game Recap

DC was the happier of the two teams as they were able to pick up Naga Siren, a hero that Roman “Resolut1on” Fominok is well known for.

The early game was very back and forth with Wings taking an early lead but due to the farming speed of Naga they were not able to create as big a lead as they would have liked.

As with all Naga games the clock hit 30 minutes and it became a foregone conclusion. If not for some sloppy play and over committal from DC the game could have been over at the 40 minute mark. As it was, Wings were unable to punish DC and eventually surrendered to the Naga tidal wave at the 57 minute mark.

Result:- Digital Chaos Victory

Game 3

The Draft

 Wings Gaming

Shadow – Lone Druid

Blink – Juggernaut

Faith_bian – Beastmaster

Iceice – Crystal Maiden

y’ – Bounty Hunter

 

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 Digital Chaos

Resolut1on – Wraith King

w33 – Ember Spirit

Moonmeander – Omniknight

Misery – Pudge

Saksa – Rubick


Moving in to the final game of the series, DC pulled out a draft that you would only normally see in low priority. Wings also went for something unpredictable by picking Lone Druid in the carry position.

Game Recap

With progression to the semi final and a favourable seed as reward for the winner of this game, both teams were conservative out of the gate.

In the early game Wings were able to get the lead in farm, with Chu “Shadow” Zeyu’s Lone Druid topping the networth chart. Shadow had opted to focus on the new Druid build that focused on getting farm on his hero rather than on his Spirit Bear. It seemed as if this was going to be a game that Wings were able to take the victory in.

DC however had different ideas, as they grouped up and made an aggressive smoke maneuver near the Dire Secret Shop at the 20 minute mark. This would prove to turn the tide of the game, as DC were able to secure four kills whilst Wings could only respond with one.

From that point on DC were able to maintain control and after another big teamfight Wings eventually admitted defeat and called “GG” at the 42 minute mark.

Result:- Digital Chaos Victory

With this win DC secured a place in bracket play on day three of the event. Wings gaming would face off against the winner of WG.Unity or Execration.

Final Score: – Digital Chaos 2 – Wings Gaming 1

Day 2 Recap

Day two of the tournament was the last day of group stages and the last chance the teams had to secure a place in bracket play.

Group A Knockout Match :- Fnatic v Team NP – Best of 3

Game 1

The Draft

 Fnatic

Mushi – Medusa

InYourDreams – Queen of Pain

Ohaiyo – Slardar

Febby – Kepper of the light

Yamateh – Disruptor

 

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 Team NP

Aui_2000 – Slark

EternalEnvy – Ember Spirit

MSS – Dark Seer

Rose – Spirit Breaker

SVG – Crystal Maiden

 

NP seemed to have an advantage when it came to the draft, and the last pick Slark seemed as if it could be potentially game winning for NP.

Game Recap

As had become the trend by this point in the tournament, the first 15 minutes of the game were relatively even, however after that point NP took control and never looked back. EE playing his signature Ember Spirit provided a wonderful showing of how to position yourself when playing Ember. EE ended the game with 10 kills, 0 deaths and 24 assists. Combine that with Aui_2000’s Slark who ended up with 14 kills, 0 deaths and 24 assists, this game was a pleasure to watch.

NP managed to maintain map control through and were able to suffocate the resources of Fnatic. Eventually after 39 minutes Fnatic called “GG” and ended game one of the three game knockout series.

Result:- Team NP Victory

Game 2

The Draft

 Team NP 

Aui_2000 – Ursa

Eternal Envy – Mirana

MSS – Beastmaster

Rose – Undying

SVG – Warlock

 

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 Fnatic

Mushi – Lifestealer

InYourDream – Tinker

Ohaiyo – Dark Seer

Febby – Riki

Yamateh – Disruptor

The last pick Tinker took many by surprise. This looked like it had the makings of an interesting game, with Fnatic facing elimination.

Game Recap

If game one was a show of dominance by NP, game two showed that they still have weaknesses.

Fnatic were able to maintain control of the early to mid game as NP struggled to contain both Lifestealer and Tinker. However even with a 14,000 gold networth lead Fnatic were unable to end the game.

Then the unthinkable happened.

Following a solo pick-off on the Tinker, NP were then able to kill the Tinker again in the next team-fight and also win the fight with minimal loses. From this point on it was NP who took the advantage and would eventually, after 74 minutes, force Fnatic into calling “GG”.

Result:- Team NP Victory

With this victory NP progressed to the Losers Final of Group A and would play against Virtus Pro. This was also the end of a disappointing tournament for Fnatic, who had only finalised their roster two days before the tournament, and it showed throughout the games they played.

Final Score: – Team NP 2 – Fnatic 0

Group B Knockout Match :- Execration v WarriorsGaming.Unity – Best of 3

Game 1

The Draft

 WarriorsGaming.Unity

Ahjit – Drow Ranger

Mirana – Nana

KanGaroo – Nyx Assassin

Ahfu – Slardar

xNova – Shadow Demon

 

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 Execration

Nando – Luna

Gabbi – Dragon Knight

Dj – Tidehunter

Owa – Sandking

KimO – Dazzle

It seemed as if XctN had the draft advantage going in to game one. They had managed to secure a very tanky lineup that seemed to counter what WG.Unity wanted to do with there lineup.

Game Recap

This game was settled in the draft, as WG.Unity did not have a great way to deal with the tanky lineup of XctN. In the first 15 minutes XctN began to pull out an early lead due to the good farm picked up by Luna as the early game progressed.

XctN were able to keep control of the game, however after losing a big team-fight it looked as if WG.Unity might have been shown a way back in to the game.

XctN decided that play time was over and took back control of the game, and the game ended at the 40 minute with a somewhat anti-climactic base race.

Result:- Execration Victory

Game 2

The Draft

 WarriorsGaming.Unity

Ahjit – Morphling

Nana – Juggernaut

KanGaroo – Timbersaw

ahfu – Earth Spirit

xNova – Disruptor

 

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 Execration

Nando – Puck

Gabbi – Naga Siren

Dj – Axe

Owa – Spirit Breaker

KimO – Winter Wyvern

The last pick Morphling gave WG.Unity the advantage going into game two.

Game Recap

The last pick of Morphling did indeed shape the game. XctN did not have an answer to Morphling and he was able to farm freely for the majority of the early game. XctN did try and put up a valiant fight however this game was all about the Morphlings ability to get kills and stay alive, whilst also maintaining an extremely high level of farm throughout the game.

XctN eventually conceded defeat and called “GG” after 26 minutes.

Result:- WarriorsGaming.Unity victory

Game 3

The Draft

 Execration

Nando – Mirana

Gabbi – Meepo

Dj – Batrider

Owa – Earth Spirit

Kim0 – Silencer

 

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WarriorsGaming.Unity

Ahjit – Juggernaut

Nana – Alchemist

KanGaroo – Underlord

ahfu – Nyx Assassin

xNova – Winter Wyvern

 

XctN surprised fans with the Silencer + Meepo opening picks. WG.Unity responded with the Winter Wyvern which was shown by Wings to be an effective Meepo counter.

Game Recap

WG.Unity picked the Winter Wyvern to counter the Meepo, but unfortunately for them Execration built the rest of their lineup around preventing this from happening.

Similar to the previous game, WG.Unity had no way to deal with the Meepo and he eventually farmed them out of the game. In addition to this the plays shown by Dj on the Offlane Batrider allowed XctN to maintain a firm grip on the game.

Eventually at the 47 minute mark WG.Unity accepted defeated and called “GG” ending their time at ESL One Genting.

Result:- Execration Victory

With this victory XctN would set up a rematch from their first group match with Wings Gaming. WG.Unity however were eliminated from the tournament, and although they did not perform well their were glimmers of hope for the SEA side.

Final Score: – Execration 2 – WarriorsGaming.Unity 1

Group A Decider Match :- Team NP v Virtus Pro

The Draft

Team NP

Aui_2000 – Luna

EternalEnvy – Mirana

MSS – Sand King

Rose – Spirit Breaker

SVG – Warlock

 

 

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Virtus Pro

Ramzes – Ursa

No[o]ne – Sniper

9pasha – Underlord

Lil – Disruptor

Solo – Ogre Magi

Team NP managed to secure a tried and tested lineup with Aui’s Luna starting to become one of his most feared heroes. VP was happy they managed to pick up the Underlord, a hero they have already had success with in the tournament.

Game Recap

The first 15 minutes of this game was very back and forth between the two teams. There were a lot of scrappy fights, resulting in one or two kills each time. That was until a team-fight broke out in the mid lane which NP were able to take advantage of. After killing three members of VP, they were able to take Roshan.

Despite trying to contain VP, eventually the power of the sniper became apparent, as he was able to sit in the back and continuously rack up kills and take objectives.

NP continued to fight valiantly, and nearly staged a comeback. VP however decided that the game needed to finish and managed to force NP into submission, resulting in a “GG” call from NP at the 55 minute mark.

Result :- Virtus Pro Victory

Game 2

The Draft

 Team NP

Aui_2000 – Slark

EternalEnvy – Ember Spirit

MSS – Dark Seer

Rose – Axe

SVG – Crystal Maiden

 

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Virtus Pro

Ramzes – Juggernaut

No[o]ne – Invoker

9pasha – Nyx Assassin

Lil – Slardar

Solo – Rubick

NP was happy with the draft as they had already played a very similar lineup in an earlier game. The difference this time is that VP decided to pick up Invoker who is one of the best counters to Ember Spirit.

Game Recap

This game was a showcase from VP on how to deal with an Ember Spirit. No[o]ne opted to go Quas/Wex Invoker to dispel Embers Flame Guard. Despite this disadvantage, NP managed to stay even with VP until the 14 minute mark.

Following a cataclismic fight on bottom lane, with NP losing five heroes, VP took control of the game.

Once VP had control of the game they did not surrender it. They managed to remain patient and controlled the map until NP called “GG” at the 33 minute mark.

Result :- Virtus Pro Victory

With this victory VP would advance to the semi finals to face Digital Chaos. NP were eliminated from the tournament finishing third in their group.

Final Score: – Virtus Pro 2 – Team NP 0

Group A Final Placing

  1. Newbee
  2. Virtus Pro
  3. Team NP
  4. Fnatic

Group B Decider Match :- Wings Gaming v Execration

Game 1

The Draft

 Execration 

Nando – Mirana

Gabbi – Invoker

Dj – Dark Seer

Owa – Spirit Breaker

Kim0 – Crystal Maiden

 

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Wings Gaming

Shadow – Juggernaut

Blink – Ember Spirit

Faith_bain – Magnus

Iceice – Underlord

y’ – Rubick

Having seen the success of Invoker against Ember Spirit, XctN decided to pick it up in this game.

Game Recap

This was a game of two halves. For the first 15 minutes, it was dominated by XctN, as they were able to pressure the Ember Spirit in the mid lane. Ember reached the 15 minute mark with five deaths and was behind on farm. Luckily for Wings, Juggernaut and Magnus were managing to stay close to XctN in terms of farm.

After the 15 minute mark however the game turned around. Suddenly it was Wings winning all of the team fights and getting all the objectives around the map. Eventually, the pressure from Wings became too much for XctN to handle and they called “GG” at the 34 minute mark.

Result :- Wings Gaming Victory

Game 2

The Draft

 Execration

Nando – Luna

Gabbi – Rubick

Dj – Slardar

Owa – Earth Spirit

Kim0 – Shadow Demon

Image courtesy of youtube.com

 

Wings Gaming

Shadow – Lifestealer

Blink – Shadow Fiend

Fait_bian – Centaur Warruner

Iceice – Earthshaker

y’ – Vengeful Spirit

A mid Rubick ?!?!? It seemed as if Wings had the draft advantage going into game two.

Game Recap

If game one was close, this game was the opposite. The early game was very passive, seeing only one kill in the first 10 minutes. Both teams stuck to farming and generally avoiding each other. Based on this, Gabbi made the decision to buy a Hand of Midas and get the Level 10 Talent that gives him 60 Gold per minute. The casters, especially Purge, seemed unhappy with this decision, as it would slow down his item timings.

The decision was proven to be an incorrect one, as XctN began to struggle against the line up of Wings once they decided to start pushing as a team. Following the consumption of nearly all the farm on the map, Wings began to push high-ground.

Wings were able to push XctN’s base with minimal loses, and eventually XctN admitted defeat and called “GG” after 42 minutes.

Result :- Wings Gaming Victory

Having secured the series Wings set up an all Chinese semi finals, as they faced off against Newbee. XctN were eliminated from the tournament finishing third in their group.

Final Score: – Wings Gaming 2 – Execration 0

Group B Final Placing

  1. Digital Chaos
  2. Wings Gaming
  3. Execration
  4. WarriorsGaminug.Unity

Day 3 Recap

Semi Final 1 : Digital Chaos v Virtus Pro – Best of 3

Game 1

The Draft

Virtus Pro

Ramzes – Luna

No[o]ne – Tiny

9pasha – Underlord

Lil – Chen

Solo – Witch Doctor

 

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Digital Chaos

Resolut1on – Juggernaut

w33 – Queen of Pain

Moonmeander – Sand King

Misery – Leshrac

Saksa – Shadow Demon

Interesting drafts from both sides heading into game one.

Game Recap

Game one of the series was very back and forth, with both teams surrendering leads.

In the early game, DC started strong, leading over VP at the ten minute mark. VP however were not frightened by the lead of DC, as they decided to take and win a big team-fight on the top lane, which gave them the advantage.

VP kept control of the map until the 20 minute mark, when DC took and won another team-fight with VP. From this moment on the game was pretty much in DC’s hands as they were able to push objectives consistently whilst also limiting the ability of VP to do the same.

Eventually, after 40 minutes, VP admitted defeat and called “GG” ending game one.

Result :- Digital Chaos Victory

Game 2

The Draft

 

 Virtus Pro

Ramzes – Juggernaut

No[o]ne – Ember Spirit

9pasha – Underlord

Lil – Earth Spirit

Solo – Lion

Image courtesy of youtube.com

 

 

 Digital Chaos

Resolut1on – Chaos Knight

w33 – Invoker

Moonmeander – Sand King

Misery – Mirana

Saksa – Shadow Demon

DC decided to pick the Invoker to counter out Ember Spirit which had seen mixed results in the tournament.

Game Recap

The early game of game two was very similar to that of game one, with both teams vying for map control. However, at around the 15 minute mark, DC was able to engage VP in a team-fight and come away with the advantage.

VP managed to stage a comeback, mainly due to Ramzes` Juggernaut farming very well and staying atop the networth charts.

Fast forward to the 27 minute mark and DC were again able to take a big team-fight victory, and began to push VP back inside their base. DC continued to hold the lead for the next ten minutes until VP made one last desperation play and jumped in on DC at the 38 minute mark.

DC however would come out on top, completely wiping VP, resulting in a “GG” call by VP at the 38 minute mark.

Result :- Digital Chaos Victory

With this win DC would move to the final to play the winner of Newbee v Wings Gaming. VP would be sent home with the top four finish.

Final Score: – Digital Chaos 2 – Virtus Pro 0

Semi Final 1 : Newbee v Wings Gaming – Best of 3

Game 1

The Draft

 

Newbee

Uuu9 – Lifestealer

Sccc – Templar Assassin

Kpii – Slardar

Kaka – Winter Wyvern

Faith – Ogre Magi

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Wings Gaming

Shadow – Drow Ranger

Blink – Dragon Knight

Faith_bian – Mirana

Iceice – Rubick

y’ – Oracle

Newbee had a very solid draft heading into game one.

Game Recap

This game was much like many of the others that Newbee had played throughout the tournament, in that they gained control from minute one and did not let go until the end.

The first 15 minutes of this game were very calm, with Newbee puling ahead and Wings having little to no answer for the power of the Newbee draft. At the 18 minute mark, the fate of the game was sealed, as Newbee won a team-fight, taking down all of Wings whilst not losing any heroes.

Wings held on for another 10 minutes, but eventually admitted defeat and “GG” was called at 29 minutes.

Result :- Newbee Victory

Game 2

The Draft

 Newbee 

Uuu9 – Drow Ranger

Sccc – Templar Assassin

Kpii – Clockwerk

Kaka – Weaver

Faith – Ogre Magi

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Wings Gaming

Shadow – Morphling

Blink – Necrophos

Faith_bian – Centaur Warruner

Iceice – Mirana

y’ – Witch Doctor

Wings surprised many with the Necrophos pick up. Would it prove to be a game changer?

Game Recap

Game two was a very different game from the first of the series, and showed a side of Newbee that had not been seen yet, that they were not all-powerful.

Newbee managed to get out to an early lead, and by the 20 minute mark they had amassed a 15,000 gold lead in the networth charts. Unfortunately for Newbee, no matter how many fights they won, they were unable to kill the Necrophos played by Blink.

As a result, Wings started to come back, and in a game where they were behind for 45 minutes, they eventually managed to overwhelm Newbee and the “GG” was called at 46 minutes.

Result :- Wings Gaming Victory

Game 3

The Draft

 

 Newbee

Uuu9 – Drow Ranger

Sccc – Medusa

Kpii – Clockwerk

Kaka – Rubick

Faith – Ogre Magi

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Wings Gaming

Shadow – Vengeful Spirit

Blink – Shadow Fiend

Faith_bian – Broodmother

Iceice – Earthshaker

y’ – Dazzle

With eyes on the final, Wings surprised everyone with a last pick Broodmother.

Game Recap

With a spot in the final on the line, both teams started out cautious and were even in farm until the 20 minute mark. Wings gaming grouped up early and began to take objectives, eventually amassing a 17,000 gold lead after 35 minutes.

Wings would have thought that they would be able to overpower Newbee. However, as a team known for their high-ground defense, Newbee was able to rebuff the push of Wings on multiple occasions. They were also able to win back to back team-fights, and eventually remove Wings’ gold lead.

Newbee began to stretch out a lead of their own, as Medusa began to take over the game. By 55 minutes, Newbee had turned the tables and were now 15,000 gold ahead of Wings. This lead was still not enough for them to finish the game, as Wings made use of the Broodmother to constantly split push, which was a problem for Newbee.

Newbee however remained calm and in control. Eventually after winning a team-fight, they were able to take the victory, with Wings admitted defeat and calling “GG” at the hour mark.

Result :- Newbee Victory

Newbee took the game and the series to set up a much anticipated clash with Digital Chaos. Wings would end up finishing in the top four along with Virtus Pro.

Final Score: – Newbee 2 – Wings Gaming 1

Grand Final : Digital Chaos v Newbee – Best of 5

Game 1

The Draft

 Newbee

Uuu9 – Lifestealer

Sccc – Outworld Devourer

Kpii – Slardar

Kaka – Sand King

Faith – Disruptor

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Digital Chaos

Resolut1on – Juggernaut

w33 – Shadow Fiend

Moonmeander – Legion Commander

Misery – Pudge

Saksa – Rubick

The OD pick seemed like it might cause DC some problems in team-fights.

Game Recap

This was a game that again showed the power of Newbee and their ability to control a game. The OD pick did turn out to be a problem for DC in team-fights.

Every time that Legion jumped in and Dueled an opponent, OD would be there with his Astral Imprisonment to disrupt the Duel. As a result, Legion was not able to amass many Duel wins, and ended the game with only 24 bonus damage, compared to OD and Lifestealer both ending with 28 bonus damage.

Sccc’s OD proved to be the major difference in this game, as he finished with 14 kills, 0 deaths and 8 assists. Newbee was able to control the game, and eventually, after a string of lost team-fights, DC admitted defeat and called “GG” at the 37 minute mark.

Result :- Newbee Victory

Game 2

The Draft

 Newbee 

Uuu9 – Morphling

Sccc – Ember Spirit

Kpii – Dark Seer

Kaka – Slardar

Faith – Witch Doctor

Image of youtube.com

 Digital Chaos

Resolut1on – Naga Siren

w33 – Ursa

Moonmeander – Legion Commander

Misery – Keeper of the Light

Saksa – Rubick

Newbee allowed DC to pick up the Naga Siren, did they have an answer for the hero?

Game Recap

Game two can be separated into two halves, before Naga got Radiance and after Naga got Radiance. Unfortunately for Newbee, both of which were dominated by DC.

The early game started with a string of failed ganks on Ursa in the mid lane. Newbee attempted to pressure w33’s Ursa, however, he was able to turn around the ganks and take two heroes with him to the grave. During this time, Naga was farming freely and heading towards a good Radiance timing.

Naga picked up her Radiance at 14 minutes, and from then on the game was just a matter of how long Newbee could hold on. The answer to that question was 53 minutes.

Newbee valiantly attempted to hold their high-ground, however DC were patient and forced all the lanes in at the same time, using Naga illusions. Eventually it was too much for Newbee, and they called “GG” at 53 minutes.

Result :- Digital Chaos Victory

Game 3

The Draft

Newbee

Uuu9 – Luna

Sccc – Shadow Fiend

Kpii – Underlord

Kaka – Sand King

Faith – Witch Doctor

Image courtesy of youtube.com

 Digital Chaos

Resolut1on – Juggernaut

w33 – Outworld Devourer

Moonmeander – Dark Seer

Misery – Slardar

Saksa – Rubick

Seeing the success of the OD earlier in the series, DC decided to pick it up for themselves.

Game Recap

Game three followed the same equation as game one, Newbee got the lead and kept it. The OD pick from DC did not provide the same success for them and seemed to be out of place in their draft.

DC spent much of the early game forcing Kpii’s Underlord out of the lane and into the Jungle. This however was not enough, and Underlord instead spent the majority of the early game roaming and setting up kills on the mid OD.

Sccc managed to control the game, playing his signature Shadow Fiend. After claiming the Aegis, Newbee made the decision to group together and push for objectives. This decision payed off, as DC were eventually forced to tap out at the 29 minute mark with a “GG” call.

This win put Newbee up 2-1 in the series. DC needed to win the next game to stay alive in the finals.

Result :- Newbee Victory

Game 4

The Draft

Digital Chaos

Resolut1on – Slark

w33 – Leshrac

Moonmeander – Sand King

Misery – Bounty Hunter

Saksa – Shadow Demon

Image courtesy of youtube.com

Newbee

Uuu9 – Luna

Sccc – Dragon Knight

Kpii – Underlord

Kaka – Io

Faith – Witch Doctor

DC came out with a surprise mid Leshrac, something that had not been seen in a long time. Would this surprise be enough to keep them in the tournament?

Game Recap

Having lost game three by a pretty big margin, most people expected DC to be on the ropes. Instead, they came out fighting. W33 spent the first couple of minutes using his taunt at the rune spots.

Newbee had made the decision to go for a high mobility lineup, but DC were not going to play into Newbee’s hands. In fact, it was the opposite. DC was able to push into the lineup of Newbee. During this time, DC was able to create the space for Resolut1on to be able to farm freely on his Slark, and by the 20 minute mark he had a fully completed Silver Edge.

Slark would prove to be the game winner, as he became too powerful for Newbee to kill, and would eventually finish the game with 9 kills, 0 deaths and 2 assists.

After 29 minutes of dominance from DC and realizing that they were too far behind, Newbee called “GG” and set up a deciding game five.

Result :- Digital Chaos Victory

Game 5

The Draft

 

 Digital Chaos

Resolut1on – Lifestealer

w33 – Queen of Pain

Moonmeander – Centaur Warruner

Misery – Mirana

Saksa – Shadow Demon

Image courtesy of youtube.com

Newbee

Uuu9 – Luna

Sccc – Templar Assassin

Kpii – Sand King

Kaka – Orge Magi

Faith – Witch Doctor

After three days of intense competition, it came down to one game for all the marbles. $100,000 was on the line, who would come out victorious?

Game Recap

With the crowd behind them, DC got out to an early lead in the deciding game five. Newbee attempted to take fights, but DC kept getting the better of them, and at this point the wheels began to fall off the Newbee train.

Image courtesy of github.com

With the crowd willing them on, DC moved from fight to fight, objective to objective, carried by some higher power. Icefrog was smiling down on DC from his high tower.

Resolut1on again dominated the game, this time playing Lifestealer, ending the game with 14 kills, 0 deaths, 8 assists.

Newbee began to crumble under the pressure of DC, and the end seemed to be near. Eventually, after one too many failed team-fights, Newbee finally admitted defeat at the 31 minute mark.

Result :- Digital Chaos Victory

Final Score: – Digital Chaos 3 – Newbee 2 

Digital Chaos Wins ESL One Genting 2017

With that final match, DC took the tournament and the Cinderella story was complete. After finishing second at The International and top four at the Boston Major, many people were left wondering if DC had what it took to win a LAN tournament.

At ESL One, DC proved the doubters wrong and showed the dominance required to win the event and start strong in 2017.

Final Positions:

1st – Digital Chaos

2nd – Newbee

3rd / 4th – Virtus Pro + Wings Gaming

5th / 6th – Team NP + Execration

7th / 8th – Fnatic + WarriorsGaming.Unity

Final Thoughts

ESL One showcased some of the best teams in the world, and on the new patch the games were nothing short of amazing. In a tournament missing both Evil Genuises and OG, Digital Chaos was able to seize the opportunity and get their first ever LAN win.

DC proved that moving forward into the rest of the year, they are the team to fear, and with Dota Pit just two weeks away, the world class Dota is coming in fast.

For full highlights of all the games at ESL One Genting, visit Dota Digest

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ESL One Genting

ESL One Genting 2017 Dota 2 Preview

In just a couple of days. the 2017 Dota 2 season kicks off with ESL One Genting. The tournament will take place from January 6-8th and is hosted at the prestigious Arena of Stars. For the eight teams competing in the tournament, they will be hoping that they can take home the first tournament of the year.

ESL One Genting Format

The tournament will be played in two stages. The first will be a group stage consisting of two groups, each with four teams. They will play each other in a double elimination format until two teams are left from each group who will proceed to bracket play. As with all ESL Dota 2 tournaments, bracket play will be single elimination. Meaning anything can and will happen. As a fan of the unpredictability that single elimination bracket play brings to competitive Dota, I am excited to see what the teams have in store for us over the weekend.

ESL One Genting Prize Pool

ESL One Genting boasts a $250,000 prize pool, which is a large amount considering it is possible to win the tournament only playing four series. The prize pool is broken down as follows:

  • 1st Place – $100,000
  • 2nd Place – $50,000
  • 3rd Place – $25,000
  • 4th Place – $25,000
  • 5th – 8th Place – $12,500

ESL One Genting Teams

Eight of the top teams will arrive in Malaysia, all with aspirations of winning ESL One Genting. The winners of the last ESL One event, OG, are not attending the event so a new champion will be crowned over the weekend. Lets take a look at who is fighting it out to be ESL One Genting 2017 champions.

Group A

Virtus Pro (VP)

 

Image courtesy of http://wiki.teamliquid.net/dota2

Roster:

Position 1 (Carry) – Ramzes666

Position 2 (Mid) – No[o]ne

Position 3 (Offlane) – 9Pashaebashu

Position 4 (Support) – Solo

Position 5 (Support) – Lil

Heading into the Boston Major, VP was touted by many, including myself, as firm favorites to win the event. Unfortunately for VP this was not the case, Evil Geniuses (EG) defeated them, resulting in a 5-8th finish.

With ESL One Genting just round the corner, VP will be desperate to avenge their failure at the Major with a dominant display over the weekend.

Prediction:- 1st in Group A

VP are famed for playing a chaotic style, combine this with their niche picks (Phantom Assassin / Weaver supports) and a single elimination tournament, I foresee VP performing very well and taking home first place in their group.

Fnatic

Image courtesy of http://wiki.teamliquid.net/dota2

Roster:

Position 1 (Carry) – InYourDream

Position 2 (Mid) – Mushi

Position 3 (Offlane) – Ohaiyo

Position 4 (Support) – Febby

Position 5 (Support) – Yamateh

Following disappointment at the Boston Major, Fnatic made the decision to drop three players from their roster. Leaving Mushi and Ohaiyo to look for three players in time for ESL One Genting, but they managed to pull it off. Fnatic announced their new roster on January 4th, a mere 36 hours before their first group stage game against heavy favorites VP.

Fnatic will be hoping that they do not regret leaving it to last minute to finalize their roster for the event. Instead they will be hoping to benefit from taking the time to select the correct players for each role.

Prediction:- 4th in Group A

Unfortunately, I think that Fnatic have decided on a roster too late. The team will not have had a chance to play together very much, and at this level of Dota, skill is not enough to win a series, let alone a whole tournament. ESL One Genting has come too soon for this Fnatic roster, and I expect that they will be hoping to use this tournament as a chance to bond as a team.

Newbee

Image courtesy of http://wiki.teamliquid.net/dota2

Roster:

Position 1 (Carry) – Uuu9

Position 2 (Mid) – Sccc

Position 3 (Offlane) – Kpii

Position 4 (Support) – Faith

Position 5 (Support) – Kaka

Newbee is currently one of the two best teams in China, the other being Wings Gaming, and will be hoping to assert their dominance on the international stage at ESL One Genting. Following a very disappointing 9 – 16th finish at the Boston Major, they bounced back in the recent Dota 2 Professional League Season 2 to finish first in the all Chinese league. They will be hoping that they can start 2017 with a bang.

Prediction:- 2nd in Group A

Combine the brilliance of Mid lane player Song “Sccc” Chung with the reliability of the rest of the team, Newbee are one of the favorites to take the tournament. Although I have predicted them to finish second in the group, it would not be a surprise if they nabbed the top spot from VP.

Team NP

 

Image courtesy of http://wiki.teamliquid.net/dota2

Roster:

Position 1 (Carry) – Aui_2000

Position 2 (Mid) – Eternal Envy

Position 3 (Offlane) – MSS

Position 4 (Support) – SVG

Position 5 (Support) – Rose aka 1437

Fan favorites NP boast an International winner, in Kurtis “Aui_2000” Ling. Aui, along with Shangai Major winner Jacky “Eternal Envy” Mao, will be hoping to lead NP to the ESL One Genting crown. Having formed in September 2016, NP will be hoping to build on recent performances and get the teams maiden first place finish at ESL One Genting.

Known for his insane plays and almost reckless abandon, EE will be hoping that the solidity of the four other players on the team will propel them to glory. Team NP are on the cusp of the elite Dota 2 teams, and they will be hoping that 2017 is the year they join the elite teams.

Predictions:- 3rd in Group A

Unfortunately for Team NP they are in the harder of the two groups and up against the likes of Newbee and VP. I believe that they will finish third in their group. If NP can start hot and catch other teams in their group by surprise, I think that they may have a chance at making it to bracket play. As heavy fan favorites, the Dota 2 community will be willing NP to greatness. Whether they can achieve it or not, is a different question.

Group A Predictions Recap

  1. Virtus Pro
  2. Newbee
  3. NP
  4. Fnatic

Group B

Digital Chaos (DC)

Image courtesy of http://wiki.teamliquid.net/dota2

Roster:

Position 1 (Carry) – Resolution

Position 2 (Mid) – w33

Position 3 (Offlane) – MoonMeander

Position 4 (Support) – MiSeRy

Position 5 (Support) – Saksa

DC recently finished second place at The International 6 (TI6), a few days later and to the surprise of many they made a roster change. They dropped fan favorite David “Moo” Hull and replaced him with David “MoonMeander” Tan. After a good showing at the Boston Major, finishing 3rd/4th, DC will be hoping that they can start the year with a victory at ESL One Genting.

In many people’s eyes DC have a roster with the ability to take the Dota 2 scene by storm, although they have yet to realize this potential. Will ESL One Genting be the start of a great 2017, or another bump in the road to greatness?

Prediction:- 1st in Group B

Being placed in the same group as the TI6 champions could be both a blessing and a curse. DC will be looking to avenge the defeat they suffered in the finals of TI6, and I fully believe that they will be able to at ESL One Genting. I expect them to finish top of their group, although they will be fighting it out with TI6 champions Wings Gaming.

Execration (XctN)

Image courtesy of http://wiki.teamliquid.net/dota2

Roster:

Position 1 (Carry) – Nando

Position 2 (Mid) – Gabbi

Position 3 (Offlane) – Dj

Position 4 (Support) – Owa

Position 5 (Support) – Kimo

2016 was a massive year for XctN. They have shown themselves to be one of the best teams in the South East Asian (SEA) region. However, 2017 started with uncertainty, XctN lost two players and were left searching for replacements. With the addition of Fernando “Nando” Mendoza and Joshua “Owa” Dela Serna, they will be hoping that they can continue to improve in 2017.

XctN will be hoping that their Mid player Khim “Gabbi” Villafuerte can make the same stylish plays in 2017 that he made in 2016 (Click here to see Gabbi’s amazing Puck play at MPGL in September).

Prediction:- 3rd in Group B

The difficulty with an eight team tournament is that you are inevitably going to face extremely tough opposition in the group stages. Unfortunately for XctN, this is the predicament that they find themselves in. Being grouped with the first and second place teams from TI6, Wings and DC respectively, means that their chances of making it out of group B are slim. I do, however, hope that they can prove me wrong as they are an exciting team to watch.

Wings Gaming

Image courtesy of http://wiki.teamliquid.net/dota2

Roster:

Position 1 (Carry) – Shadow

Position 2 (Mid) – Blink

Position 3 (Offlane) – Faith_bian

Position 4 (Support) – y’

Position 5 (Support) – iceice

2016 was a rollercoster year for Wings, which saw them achieve six first place finishes. This includes taking home the Aegis of Champions at TI6, and also winning ESL One Manilla in April. Many expected them to challenge for the crown at the Boston Major, however this was not the case. They achieved a disappointing 9 – 16th placing, followed by another disappointing finish at China Top 2016.

With the groundbreaking 7.00 patch still relatively new, Wings will be hoping that they can use their highly unpredictable play style to achieve a good placing at ESL One Genting.

Prediction – 2nd in Group B

Expect Wings to make it through their group relatively easily. In my opinion, it is a straight fight between Wings and DC for top spot in Group B. Wings have the skill and team play to win the entire tournament, however their most recent performances have been lackluster to say the least. I expect Wings to finish 2nd in the Group, but they may prove me and many others wrong.

WarriorsGaming.Unity (WG)

Image courtesy of http://wiki.teamliquid.net/dota2

Roster:

Position 1 (Carry) – Ahjit

Position 2 (Mid) – NaNa

Position 3 (Offlane) – KaNG

Position 4 (Support) – Ahfu

Position 5 (Support) – Wenn

WG are one of the best teams in SEA, and at the Boston Major they shocked many people by battling to a respectable 5 – 8th placing. WG are somewhat an unknown entity in the international Dota 2 scene. Apart from their performance at the Boston Major, they have mainly played in SEA based tournaments where they have seen great success.

Prediction – 4th in Group B

WG are going to suffer the same issues as I mentioned in relation to XctN. Their group has two of the best teams in the world, who have the potential to win the entire tournament. I expect WG to be fighting it out with XctN for the bottom two places in the group. There is always the chance that WG could potentially catch DC or Wings off guard, but I find this highly unlikely.

Group B Predictions Recap

  1. Digital Chaos
  2. Wings Gaming
  3. Execration
  4. WarriorsGaming.Unity

ESL One Genting Final Thoughts

7.00 has reinvigorated Dota, and I am excited to see some of the best teams in the world play on the new patch. With the ability of teams like Virtus Pro and Wings Gaming to make almost all the heroes work in some way, I expect to see a weekend of world class Dota

In terms of my overall event predictions, I think that Virtus Pro will take the whole event, with Digital Chaos finishing second.

1st Place – Virtus Pro

2nd Place – Digital Chaos

3rd / 4th Place – Newbee / Wings Gaming

5th / 6th Place – Team NP / Execration

7th / 8th Place – Fnatic / WarriorsGaming.Unity

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The International 6 Teams

 

courtesy of dota2.com

The Qualifier matches have concluded, and we have a clear image about who will be competed in the esports tournament with the by far largest prize pool.

Only 6 teams received a direct invite this time around, namely OG, Liquid, Newbee, LGD, MVP and Na’vi. Secret and EG also had to earn their spot, and they had some tough games at doing so too.

We also have four more teams that will claim the two remaining wild card spots. Namely:

 (Execration, SEA)

 (Escape Gaming, Europe)

 (Complexity, America)

 (Ehome, China)

Judging from the qualifier games, this International may make a very interesting tournament, at least gameplay-wise. This patch seems to be quite viewer friendly, to put it this way. Matches seem a lot more interesting than they used to be, probably due to the fact that in-game mistakes get punished a lot more, making for slightly easier comebacks. Also, the playable Hero pool has increased quite a bit.

All that remains is wait a few more short weeks to see whether this year’s International will be, as a lot of people believe, the best one yet.