|MLG Championship Anaheim Preview|
Evil Geniuses were bound to come across some trouble in their unprecedented run, and that is exactly what took place at the MLG X Games Invitational. Lack of practice was cited as the reason Evil Geniuses fell short to both Team Kaliber and OpTic Gaming. This point is hard to argue against as Aches and the rest of his team realistically did not feel threatened by their competition. Evil Geniuses practice would often take place at the actual tournament as it did at UGC Niagara, where they were sent to losers by an open bracket team only to go on and win the entire tournament. Slaying power was the key to victory for Team Kaliber and OpTic Gaming against EG, and it showed. Evil Geniuses clearly need to get back to form if they want to be successful at MLG Anaheim. This team was extremely unhappy with their bronze medal finish at the X Games, and so expect the reigning World Champions to come into MLG Anaheim polished and ready to reclaim their place on top. With the number one seed, and their motivation as high as can be coming off of a loss, expect Evil Geniuses to target no less than a first place finish.
If you want to talk about storylines, look no further than the journey of OpTic Gaming in Call of Duty: Ghosts. Their road to this point in the game has been difficult, and the team went through a lot of alterations. The acquisition of Proofy was the turning point for OpTic, and it finally paid off at the MLG X Games Invitational where they were able to claim gold medals and a place in eSports history. OpTic Gaming were on point as a team and in full synchronization at the X Games. Their consistency throughout the entire event was at an all-time high. OpTic overcame every mismatch at and were able to finally live up to the slaying ability that most everyone knew they were capable of. They did not lose a single Search and Destroy map through the entire tournament, and their respawn gameplay was solid as well. All eyes remain on OpTic Gaming heading into MLG Anaheim. It will be interesting to see if their win at the X Games was a one-time phenomenon, or if OpTic can finally begin a winning streak of their own. One thing is clear, OpTic Gaming will have to live up to their X Games performance if they hope to walk away with their second straight championship title.
EnVyUs were surrounded by some controversy at the MLG X Games Invitational. Many viewers and even Nadeshot himself believed that EnVyUs purposely lost their match against OpTic to avoid an early bronze medal match trip at the hands of Evil Geniuses. Whether this is true or not may never be truly known, but what is known is that EnVyUs had a rough weekend. After decimating Curse Orange, OpTic Gaming seemed to have simply outplayed EnVyUs, which had almost never happened before in tournament. EnVyus were only able to take one map away from OpTic, and then went on to lose to Team Kaliber, which put them in the bronze medal match. Needless to say it was not the performance most expected out of EnVyUs, who are widely recognized as the second best team in the world. Despite admirable play out of Nameless, his team managed to fall below the wayside and were not able to capture a medal. Nothing major needs to be adjusted, but Studyy and Parasite are going to have to fulfil their roles as slayers if they hope to bounce back from their X Games performance.
Team Accomplishments – Finished 4th in Season Two of the MLG CoD League
FaZe Black is a team that have yet to play as a complete team at a LAN tournament. For this reason there is hesitation in seeing how their weekend will play out at MLG Anaheim. With Saintt on board in place of Saints for UGC Niagara, FaZe Black managed to finish 5th and went home with some money to boot. Saints has been acknowledged as one of the best slayers in the game, and a finish outside of the money will be a monumental disappointment for this team considering their open bracket run, and fifth place finish at UGC Niagara. This is the most important tournament for this squad, and their performance will dictate what will happen in the future with each of these players.
The story of Curse’s Call of Duty rosters is interesting to say the least. Curse Orange managed to qualify with Saintt in place of Crowster for the MLG X Games Invitational due to their combined pro points. Curse Orange failed to place top eight in Season Two of the Pro League, and now it is Curse Black that will have their opportunity to represent the Curse organization in the Championship Bracket at MLG Anaheim. Curse Black exists as a team without much of an identity. Mochila is the standout player on this roster, and has been named a top three assault rifle player in Call of Duty: Ghosts by many. This places a massive weight on his shoulder, and on the shoulders of his teammates as well. Their most recent tournament was UGC Niagara, and Curse Black began in the Championship Bracket only to be ousted by EnVyUs and OpTic Gaming. MLG Anaheim will be a true test to see if Curse Black can hang in there with the best Call of Duty teams and show that Curse remains as a forceful organization in Call of Duty.
In quite possibly the most disappointing team performance at the MLG X Games Invitational, FaZe Red managed to finish dead last. This result is unfortunate because a lot of people want to believe that FaZe Red can at least maintain a decent finish as they did at the Call of Duty Championship 2014. Ever since the pick-up of Theory, FaZe Red have lacked the supreme slaying power that is almost a necessity at this point in Call of Duty: Ghosts. Proofy was a major asset to this roster, and the team has noticeably struggled without a powerhouse slayer as Proofy had been. OpTic and Evil Geniuses have both proven how important it is to slay first, and play objective second. At this point it sounds like a broken record, but Classic needs to prove himself at MLG Anaheim as a slayer. FaZe Red as a team need to adopt the playing style of Evil Geniuses if they hope to nullify their performance at the X Games.
Similar to Curse Black, Denial is a fairly new team that has yet to accomplish anything major. They are underdogs in this Championship Bracket, but in the same sense, are four talented players looking to make a name for themselves at MLG Anaheim. They were formerly known Erupt Gaming until they switched organizations over to Denial, and they also picked up N0xide off of their substitute roster in place of PRPLXD after his departure. Zoomaa will be the first to tell you that his team will place top three at the very least at MLG Anaheim, however the road to victory will be a tough one for Denial considering their potential opponents in the Championship Bracket at this tournament.
Coming in surprisingly with the eleven seed is Team Kaliber, who struggled consistently in the online environment for Season Two of the Pro League. Their Championship Bracket clinch literally came down to the last few league matches where they managed to match up against teams that forfeited due to the fact that it was impossible for them to qualify in the same regard. By the skin of their teeth, Team Kaliber grabbed the final position in the Championship Bracket at MLG Anaheim, and were fortunate to do so. In terms of recent accomplishments, Team Kaliber has really turned a corner in competitive Call of Duty. They went into the MLG X Games Invitational with the mindset of winning, and they fell just short. En route to a gold medal match, Team Kaliber dispatched of OpTic Nation, Evil Geniuses, and Team EnVyUs respectively. Crunch time was a gold medal match against OpTic Gaming where Team Kaliber took their opponents to a game five in the final match of the tournament. Unfortunately for tK, they could not overcome OpTic Gaming, but no head can be held low with a silver medal at an event where many thought Team Kaliber would not even make it through group play. Sharp and company are glowing with confidence at this point in Call of Duty: Ghosts, and all indications are that they are ready to follow up on their extraordinary performance at the X Games Invitational with another at MLG Anaheim.
Coming out of the United Kingdom are a team by the name of Epsilon. They made an appearance at the Call of Duty Championship back in March and managed to turn a lot of heads despite their lackluster finish. For one, Epsilon went to work on OpTic Gaming and gave them a quick loss in group play. Led by the assault rifle work of Swanny, Epsilon had a decent run at the tournament only to fall to both FaZe Red and EnVyUs respectively. Needless to say, people are really anxious to see more of the Epsilon lineup at a North American competition. Since the Call of Duty Championship, Epsilon have parted ways with Flux in favor of Joshh. MLG Anaheim will be Epsilon’s chance to redeem themselves after falling apart in bracket play at the Call of Duty Championship. Epsilon are facing an opportunity to prove themselves as one of the top teams in the world when they go up against the best that North America has to offer at MLG Anaheim.
TCM Gaming were a team that showed promise at the Call of Duty Championship earlier this year. They managed to make it out of their group, however they were only able to earn one win after group play had ended. TCM drew Complexity, now Evil Geniuses, in the first round of bracket play only to lose 3-0. Their tournament ended when Rise Nation earned a close 3-2 victory over the highly acclaimed European team. Since the Call of Duty Championship, TCM have parted ways with a top Euro player by the name of MadCat. In place of MadCat, TCM acquired Peatie and went on to finish in second place in Season One of the Gfinity Pro League. Along with Epsilon, TCM will be looking to prove that European teams can hang with North American teams in competitive Call of Duty – something that still remains as a looming question within the community.
(c)Issei, Chillean, Denz, and Damage
Their success at the Call of Duty Championship 2014 precedes them as MLG Anaheim approaches. Formerly known as the Trident T1Dotters, Curse AU is recognized as one of the strongest Call of Duty teams out of Australia. Their wildly aggressive Search and Destroy tactics took center stage as they managed to walk out of the Call of Duty Championship with fifth place and $70,000 dollars to boot. The circumstances of their qualification for the Championship Bracket deals more with Team Immunity’s inability to travel to Anaheim for the tournament. Team Immunity managed to win ACL Brisbane over Curse AU, however travel expenses were out of the realm for Immunity, and Curse AU capitalized on the opportunity. Curse AU currently possess the number five seed at MLG Anaheim, expect them to do their best to upset some North American teams and possibly finish within the money.
Published on 20. Jun 2014