If I had to sum up November’s ESL Go4GuildWars2 Cups in a few words, I’d describe it as entirely unexpected. The November Cup isn’t even half over, and yet we’ve seen titans fall, old rivalries rekindle, and newly formed teams accomplish great feats.
Kings Dethroned and Rekindled Rivalries
European powerhouse the Civilized Gentlemen have impressed us time and time again over the past two years-taking home big wins in events such as the Major League Invitational, the Tournament of Glory, and the World Tournament Series Invitational Qualifier, which earned them a spot at the World Tournament Series Finals in Beijing, China, in December. Favoring a power-focused burst team composition, TCG relies on keen coordination and communication to pull out wins. Unfortunately, as seen over the past two weeks, any lapse in the two aforementioned areas can cost them dearly.
In the first Go4GuildWars2 Cup, the Civilized Gentlemen didn’t even have the chance to make a livestream appearance, being eliminated from the cup extremely early on by relative newcomers Team Champignon in the quarter finals. Team Champignon went on that day to take second place in the inaugural event, losing to German team Made in Meta in the finals.
In week two, the Civilized Gentlemen came back with a vengeance, looking to grab the first place spot and regain their former glory. After three grueling matches in the finals against archrival team Cheese Mode, the Civilized Gentlemen were unable to secure the tie-breaking win on Battle of Kyhlo. TCG team captain Helseth is examining the losses and looking for ways his team can improve going into next week: “This ESL cup was the first loss I took when playing for the current TCG roster in almost a full year’s worth of time now, and it made us finally realize that we need to start actively looking into countering our opponents rather than just trying to win by playing our own game. In the future, we’ll be looking into what playstyle our opponent prefers and how to take them out of their game.”
As for Cheese Mode, team captain Frae feels fairly confident about their performance in the second cup and expects they’ll only get better as they finalize their roster: “You can expect changes for next week, as we were playing with two PUGs and are still missing a last member. For next week, we aim to complete the new five man CM roster and compete as a full team.”
It’s Not a Misspelling
Over in North America, things continue to heat up as two sister teams, the Absurd and World Tournament Series finalists the Abjured continue to duke it out in the cup finals, with the Absurd taking first place in both weekends back-to-back. I know what you’re thinking: Are the names a coincidence? Nope! Due to scheduling conflicts with the World Tournament Series Finals, a few members of the Abjured left the team and formed the Absurd, with priority one being to take their former comrades out at every opportunity. Both teams are packed to the brim with skilled players, and week after week, we’re seeing the strategies employed by each team evolve in an effort to better handle their counterparts.
Caed, team captain of the Absurd and former member of the Abjured, feels that there is a lot of room for the Absurd to improve going into next week: “Despite our unstable roster, we are all experienced players who have their own solid understanding of game mechanics, rotations, and teamwork. Our biggest issues have been team communication and synergy, which has forced us to improvise to try to win even and outnumbered fights… We’ll be looking to increase our map presence by getting everyone to think alike. You’ll likely see us working as a more cohesive team in weeks to come.”
Looking to Sunday
You can catch the next chapter of the November Go4GuildWars2 Cup this upcoming Sunday (and every Sunday after that) on the official Guild Wars 2 Twitch channel. The European Cup kicks off on Sunday 16 November at 16:00 CET (7:00 a.m. PST), and the North American Cup starts at 22:00 CET (1:00 p.m. PST). Don’t forget, these tournaments are open to anyone, and if the past two weeks have taught us anything, it’s that the outcomes are never as predictable as you might think. You can find more information on signing up at the ESL Go4GuildWars2 Landing Page.
We’ll see you in the Mists!