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V5 dealt first loss of the split by Weibo Gaming’s Huanfeng

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Victory Five have been handed their first loss of the 2022 LPL Spring Split to Weibo Gaming, after a competitive three-game series between the two LPL juggernauts.

Today was a battle between longtime Invictus Gaming teammates TheShy and Rookie in one of the most highly anticipated matchups of week three. And immediately the series began with a very risky draft from V5, as they allowed Weibo to grab both Caitlyn and Corki, two power picks in the current meta. In response, they drafted a dive-heavy composition with picks like Samira, Xin Zhao, and Nautilus to attack the damage heavy carries.

Game one began instantaneously as V5’s Rich challenged TheShy after hitting level two first, as he narrowly got the solo kill with just three HP to his name. As a result, TheShy was zoned out of the top lane and forced back after nearly dying once again. Tempted by the potentially missed wave, he stayed as V5 jungler Karsa’s perfect jungle path assisted Rich as the top laner got his second kill in under four minutes.

V5 had complete control of both the top and mid lane, with only the bot lane for Weibo holding an advantage in the early game. But V5 jungler Karsa was everywhere on the map, as he applied his early game lead to a dire bot lane situation and brought it back to an even point.

Weibo’s AD carry, however, still remained a threat on the treacherous Caitlyn pick as the game remained even at the 30-minute mark. And shortly after Weibo support On attempted to find an engagement onto V5 AD carry Photic before immediately dying.

To make matters worse, Huanfeng was then caught out of position by Rich as V5 was able to grab the baron. With four dragons to their name and a baron buff, V5 was able to carry that lead to a 35-minute victory.

Image via screenshot of LPL English Broadcast.

Game two began, and right away it became clear that Weibo’s win condition was through Huanfeng, as jungler SofM prioritized the bottom half of the map, allowing Huanfeng to freely apply pressure to Photic, grabbing the first tower at 15 minutes.

Weibo was able to build off of this lead from Huanfeng, grabbing every single dragon at spawn, a baron around the early 20-minute mark, and eventually the game in a short 26-minute decimation from the Weibo AD carry as the match entered the deciding game.

Screengrab via LPL

In the final game, Weibo was able to win the draft, maintaining their bot lane picks from game two by grabbing Xayah and Rakan, while also being able to grab Corki for Weibo mid laner Angel. With Karsa on the Gragas, the early-game pathing was more passive. 

It was not until the eight-minute mark where a fight broke out in the top side river near mid lane to where V5 was able to grab a two for one, followed by the Rift Herald. This was then followed by the first tower going to V5, which was shortly followed by the bot turret going to Weibo. 

With two sides of the map each controlled by one team, the final game became a battle for mid priority, and at first, it was going the way of V5. The Corki rockets from Weibo, however, zoned out V5 from certain objectives like dragon in the mid game.

This led to a repeated pattern at the 30-minute mark when Weibo created a fight around the objective, where Weibo was able to kill the entire V5 side. With no members left on the side of V5, Weibo was able to grab the series win, as they improved to 4-1, as V5 dropped down to seventh place with a 3-1 record.

Screengrab via LPL

Huanfeng was the clear standout of the series as the win condition for Weibo was centered around his early-game lead on Xayah in games two and three. Furthermore, even in their game one loss, he was still the only win condition in that game as well. 

Weibo will play one match in Week Four as they look to improve their record to 51 against FunPlus Phoenix, who currently stand at a 3-1 record with a new lineup built around LWX.

Meanwhile, V5 will play two matches in Week Four and will look to secure a 2-0 against the struggling OMG and bottom-dwelling Invictus Gaming.

The final day of Week Three will take place on Jan. 27 starting with TOP vs. OMG, followed by the competitive battle between Bilibili Gaming and Royal Never Give Up.

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OpTic Texas Forfeits First CDL Series As Tempers Flare

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It was a season debut like no other, and owing to some memorable and somewhat tragic moments, it’s one that won’t be forgotten for a while. For OpTic Texas, it was a heartbreaking season opener, with a complex and (in the eyes of some) potentially malicious situation bringing about the decision to forfeit the fixture against Minnesota Rokkr. It doesn’t matter if you’re blaming the stability of the game or the decisions of Rokkr’s Cammy, it’s a sour situation all-round.

In the closing seconds of the third-round match, a Control on El Asilo, Cammy summoned an SAE – a GA’d killstreak. There’s a known bug concerning the SAE at present, and it causes the player to freeze in place upon kicking it off, and that’s exactly what happened. There were single-digit seconds left in the game when Cammy called it in and owing to the bug surfacing, the COD League rules determined that the entire round should be replayed.

At that point, OpTic Texas had already won the round.

Controversial, To Say The Least

optic texas forfeit scump

This isn’t how Scump wanted his final season to begin. (Image Credit: COD League)

There are several key pieces of information to take away from this situation. Firstly, given that the SAE killstreak is GA’d, Cammy shouldn’t have been running it in the first place. Furthermore, as a top-tier professional competitor, he should have recognised what it was that he was about to deploy, as the in-game menu does allow for a preview. Unfortunately, owing to limitations in the Modern Warfare II platform, once Cammy had set the SAE up, he couldn’t remove it again.

For now, there are arguments hailing from all sides of the debate. There is the party that believes Cammy was playing maliciously, deliberately using the SAE to trigger the bug and force a replay, especially considering there was no way that Rokkr could have won at that moment, and triggering the bug did bring a replay order around. There’s another party that believes it’s an unfortunate series of events made up of several mistakes and shortcomings of the platform.

Fortunately, Cammy was on hand after the match to explain the situation from his perspective:

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Astralis announces new LEC 2023 roster

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Another LoL news was introduced as the European League of Legends team, Astralis, has announced its roster for the upcoming LEC season. While keeping mid laner Dajor and the bot lane duo Kobbe and Jeonghoon within the organization, Astralis also acquired Finn from EXCEL and 113 from Karmine Corp.

Ready for the new season

One of the most famous esports organizations especially in the western world, Astralis never had great success in League of Legends. Unlike its success in different gaming titles, Astralis failed to achieve anything worthy in LEC. The team placed ninth in LEC 2021 Spring, 7-8th in LEC 2021 Summer, tenth in LEC 2022 Spring, and lastly, ninth in LEC 2022 Summer.

Despite the disappointing result of the last split, Astralis decided to keep its core within the organization and make a change for the top side of the map. Last split, Vizicsacsi and Xerxe were the top laner and jungler of the lineup but Finn and 113 will replace them in the upcoming LEC season.

astralis-2023-lec-roster

Image Credit | Astralis

As mentioned, Finn will take on the top laner responsibility. The Swedish player started playing professionally under the Magistra roof and player for nine different teams before signing a contract with Rogue to compete at LEC. He attended Worlds 2022 with his team and then signed with Counter Logic Gaming. After a year in North America, Finn made his return to Europe with EXCEL. This year, he will be a part of the Astralis roster.

The new jungler of the organization is the young Turkish player 113. He started career in Turkey, with SuperMassive Academy. After his success with the team and insane solo queue performance, 113 was acquired by Giants Gaming. He spent the last season with Karmine Corp with names like Cabochard and Rekkles and won the EU Masters 2022 Spring Trophy. He recently parted ways with the organization to join Astralis.

The original core remains

Other than the top side of the map, rest of the 2022 Summer Split roster will remain within the organization. The German mid laner Dajor, Danish marksman Kobbe and South Korean support Jeonghoon are going to stick with the team. Looking at the roster from last year, only Vizicsacsi and Xerxe are not going to be a part of the team. Dajor, Kobbe, and Jeonghoon had decent individual performances last year but they failed to show it as a team. Astralis lacked chemistry last year and that is why they failed to qualify for playoffs.

On another note, the organization has not made it to the playoff stages since it was founded. Astralis’ success in the European LoL esports world is surely not optimal. However, the organization still tries to form the best roster combining talented players to succeed in the region.

The new Astralis roster will compete against some of the best LoL players as the competition in Europe is pretty tough. With the combination of youngsters and experienced players, Astralis might be a real threat if they can build the chemistry needed. All of the players are very talented on an individual level but their communication and chemistry will decide their performance in the ucpoming LEC season.

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Almost caught the captain: KuroKy to lead Nigma in 2023 DPC despite retirement rumors

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Nigma Galaxy spent the last Dota Pro Circuit season away from the spotlight in the second division of Western European DPC. Despite making it back to the first division, the team’s future has been rather foggy; that fog has started to dissolve as the team announced KuroKy will remain at the helm.

Rumors surrounding KuroKy’s retirement started to pop up after The International 2022 as the team had been silent for a while. Though Nigma hasn’t officially confirmed the rest of its Dota 2 roster, the organization has been hinting that the majority of the roster could stick together for the 2023 DPC season.

At the time of writing, KuroKy is the only confirmed Nigma player for next season. However, Nigma has been posting content that could be seen as a verification for four other members. GH was featured in a YouTube video in early November where he addressed the rumors surrounding the Nigma roster. The position four player said that “everything was fine with the team.”

Another social media post by Nigma featured SumaiL and Miracle- shaking hands, meaning four members of the team were confirmed in various ways, only leaving Mind_Control in the dark. Nigma’s offlaner has been missing since the roster shuffle season began.

The only official roster change for the team is in the Coach position as rmN- was replaced by ImmortalFaith, formerly of Gaimin Gladiators. Given Nigma’s hiatus from the highest level of the competition, a coach with recent TI experience is likely to become one of their greatest strengths in the upcoming season.



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