On December 11th, patch 7.01 released, and the North American Winter Semi-finals happen to be on the same day. In short, the patch added the Infinity Blade on the island as a mythic rarity weapon, and that means there can only be one in existence per match. Although it is a mythic rarity, and only one player can have it per match, it is still overpowered. In the new patch, planes had a very small nerf where the user and everyone on the plane will take 25 damage if the plane explodes. This didn’t stop the contestants from stalling the entire match and dive bombing a build fight. Every contestant knows that no one had time to practice or train in the new patch, so the odds are in the favor of the Plane and the Sword user. These items may be fun in public matches but not for competitive.
The plane is a third-party player’s dream vehicle. With unlimited ammo, free safe rotations and the ability to dive bomb any build fight with no repercussions, it would be a disservice to you and your squad if you don’t pick this up. The only drawback is user error, and even then, it is very forgiving. Players who get blown up flying or riding on the wings of the plane only receive 25 damage. As shown in the Winter Skirmish, contestants still used the vehicle. It’s not fun to play against, and it is not fun to watch.
The Infinity Blade
With increased health and shield pool, free regeneration, increased movement speed and the ability to destroy structures, there is no draw back to using the Infinity Blade. Contestants such as Neace, Psalm and Liquid Chap used the sword during the semi-finals and agree that it is very broken. Neace solidified his placements with one match obtaining an absurd amount of kills, and Psalm and Chap followed suit. Chap even took the time to create pixel art mid match to prove a point. His unsportsmanlike behavior and not taking the match seriously resonated with the audience.
NA played a different game than EU
Watching both the European matches and the North American matches shows that it is a very different game between the regions. European players did not have to play with planes or the Infinity Blade, leaving the game entirely up to skill and game sense. Another point is that European players had time to practice and hone their skills, whereas North American players had none.
When one million dollars are on the line, contestants will use the most effective tactic available: the meta. Fans should not be angry at the contestants for playing their hearts out and trying to win. The players are just using the tools that are given to them, and whether we like it or not, we shouldn’t chastise and belittle them. The contestants themselves are also wondering why such an obviously broken items went into the game. Fans aren’t happy with the sword and the planes are fun but in a LTM (limited timed mode). Epic isn’t deaf, the backlash is apparent and you would have to be deaf and blind not to notice that the competitive scene is not happy.
Only time will tell if Epic will stop changing the meta and the pace of the game a few days to a few hours before a competition. Hopefully the glider redeploy, zombie spawners, planes and the Infinity sword will teach them a lesson. The competitive scene doesn’t want major changes before a competition, and wants communication as to why the implantation entered the game.
Featured image courtesy of @Cosinejoe.
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