Historically, the rules surrounding doping in esports have been famously ambiguous. Most rulebooks include lines banning general cheating and performance enhancing substances. However, should items such as energy drinks be prohibited as well? Finding the right limits has always been an issue for companies and administrators. After all, there’s a myriad of things that can impact a player’s results.
Among these arguably unfair advantages, there is one that to this day remains shrouded in mystery and controversy. There exists an ultimate weapon capable of single handedly improving the performance and potential of entire organizations at once.
Beyond energy drinks, questionable hardware and even certain drugs, there’s the smile of one man; a man with the face of a Greek statue and the voice of an angel. Maurice “Amazing” Stückenschneider is not only beloved among an entire community; he’s also feared by his enemies. Wherever Amazing goes, a strange phenomenon follows. For years it seemed like his mere presence was capable of bringing up the level of play of any person around him. However, recently, avid viewers and experts think to have finally found the source of these unexplained events:
The charming, beautiful smile of Amazing.
The early years of the Smile
Perhaps aware of the dangers of his abilities, Amazing spent the early years of his career in relative obscurity. He competed for several local teams such as Team Acer and Peculiar gaming in regional leagues and obtained good results. He finally debuted in the LCS as a part of Copenhagen Wolves in Spring of 2014, where he gained a reputation thanks to his mechanical skill in champions such as Lee Sin and Elise. However, and despite some MVP performances by Amazing, Copenhagen Wolves would be later relegated after going 8-20 in Summer.
Soon after, TSM picked up Amazing as their starting jungler in place of Brian “theOddone” Wyllie. The fact that such a successful and prestigious organization was willing to give him a chance deeply moved Amazing, and, accidentally, he began to smile. Suddenly, Bjergsen began displaying incredible synergy with the German jungler despite having played with him for only a short time. TSM finished third in the Summer regular split, going 16-12 and later beat rivals C9 to win Playoffs. In that year’s Worlds, for the first and only time in the team’s history, TSM advanced to quarterfinals in the post-Korean era.
But fate knew that Amazing’s influence had to be stopped, less the time-space continuum be destroyed. Therefore, very early on in the tournament, TSM had to face eventual winners, Samsung White. Even still, Amazing’s smile was powerful enough to make the Korean super-team try an uncharacteristically aggressive composition. TSM would hand them their first and only loss in the tournament.
But Amazing’s powers to make the impossible happen didn’t just stop in NA. It was time for the German talent to go back home.
The Prime Smile
xPeke, a man known for his talent in gathering skilled players, saw the potential on the face of Amazing. In turn, the German jungler was very happy to receive a chance from an EU LCS legend and former World champion. With their interests aligned, both would join in forming Origen. During his time on Origen, Amazing let his smile particularly loose. Impossible things easily became plausible for him and his squad.
The team went from challenger league into the EU LCS in record time. Dropping only a single game in the tournament, they beat Millennium Spirit to secure their place in the Spring Split. Once inside the official League, they quickly proved to be capable of aspiring to the top spot. They juggled second place back and forth with H2K, while at the same time bringing the fight to an undefeated FNATIC. Strong performances would lead them to end 12-6, right behind an 18-0 FNATIC.
The one defining characteristic of Origen during this period was having solid players in every single position. They were the symbol of consistency and balance; almost as if some mysterious force increased the abilities of all the players and promoted clean coordination.
Not only did the team qualify for 2015 Worlds, but they would also famously make it all the way to the Semis before fate once again decided to stop Amazing’s conquest and put eventual tournament winners SKT in his path.
As a player, Amazing would go on to continue his impressive success as a member of FNATIC, but soon after a transition period would begin for the star jungler.
The Guiding Smile
From 2014 and all the way up to 2017, Amazing had only been apart of dominant rosters stacked with good talent and staff. His smile elevated good talent into World-class talent. But, as the saying goes, with great power comes great responsibility. Deep down, the jungler knew he had a duty toward the low-tier teams and rookies of the scene. Only he could be capable of bringing them up, of giving them a real chance to compete. Amazing would begin to aspire to guide others, and eventually, to be a coach.
His time in Schalke is quite telling. Amazing’s incredible performances elevated the recently rebuilt organization. After a disappointing 8th place finish in Spring, they came all the way back for a 3rd place finish in Summer and a 12-6 record. They earned a bye to the finals of the regional gauntlet at a chance at Worlds. However, a re-surging G2 would deny them the opportunity and end their season in a dominant 3-1 set.
But it was the time spent with 100 Thieves which perhaps marked Amazing the most. When he was called in, the team was in the middle of a terrible losing streak. Though the lineup had talented players, they didn’t seem to click and morale was very low. Communication and motivation issues plagued the roster and it was difficult to see them having any chance. Amazing’s smile was particularly powerful in this instance. He came in with a constructive, productive view and immediately lifted the spirits of everyone. From 10th in Spring, 100T finished 8th in Summer with an 8-10 record, only missing on playoffs by a single loss.
The Gentle Smile
Amazing was announced as the coach for a Misfits lineup underestimated by most. The Organization was coming off the back of four failed Splits in a row and was facing serious controversy concerning their talent and roster. No one gave Misfits a real shot at being good in 2020. Even the most loyal of fans expected mediocre performances from a group of apparent no-name rookies put together way too late into the Offseason.
But Amazing simply proceeded to do what he does best: make the impossible happen with a smile on his face. After a bad first week, Misfits never looked back and began an incredible winning streak. They ran through the likes of Origen and G2, looking dominant all the while. The most notable aspect of this Misfits roster is their ability to grow and develop. They win on the back of very solid fundamentals, proactive play and (pun intended) amazing coordination.
The German jungler turned coach has earned a new reputation. Beyond a star player, he is an all around asset to any team. His analytical prowess, his experience, his attitude and, of course, his dimensions shattering smile make him into a priceless utility.
Perhaps there is no better way to describe him: he’s simply Amazing.
Featured photo from 100 Thieves and Riot Games
“From Our Haus to Yours”