Chapter 1: OG’s Looking Great.
It’s the last day of the group stage at Starladder minor and 2 more teams will be eliminated. We start the day with OG versus RNG, loser is el台湾宾果iminated. We see a classic Notail Furion support which is played so many times in the TI8 Grand Finals that got me thinking that anything can work. Surely enough, it was a great harasser in the lane, forcing Monet to get out of the lane, even with Lanm’s help.
Meanwhile Topson looks dominating with his Morphling too. The game didn’t last long as Morph was so fat plus getting a early Aegis thanks to Troll makes the whole game unwinnable for RNG. 台湾宾果Game 1 drops to OG.
While the first game looked really one-sided, it’s a different story in the second game. It was an Alchemist game for Topson plus Lycan by ILTW. While the game has always been in favor of OG thanks to Alchemist, RNG actually got some gold lead in the final moments of the game. Yet, one teamfight costed them as OG’s pushing lineup makes buildings look like butter. The game was a massacre with more than 80 kills, but OG came out on top as the team that could push high ground the quickest.
OG might have won here but they can’t celebrate just yet as they will face Old But Gold next to decide who’s leaving the minor.
Chapter 2: SEA Dream Gone.
Before we head to OG’s game, let’s take a look on the other group, where it’s Demolition Boys versus BOOM ID. Game 1 was an exciting one, with multiple ups and downs from both sides, and quite many kills too. While Demolition Boys had the advantage till midgame, a fight or two gave BOOM ID the edge back.
But that comeback was short-lived as BOOM ID gets teamwiped despite Troll having Aegis. Jeimari (from DB) is having a great game as Ember despite BOOM ID’s lineup of so many disables, his insight allowed him to only die once the entire game.
The first game was close for DB but BOOM ID takes the loss and snatched a win back in the next game. This time, DB did not stood a chance as Alchemist did not manage to get out of midgame to become active. A decent Radiance timing at 11 minutes but it just wasn’t enough against BOOM ID.
Finally the last game, unfortunately for SEA fans, BOOM ID slipped hard this time. Picking one of the worst winrate heroes of the meta, Phantom Lancer and Dragon Knight, sealed their fate here. While DB went for a more reliable lineup, having Morphling which didn’t die onceis definitely a clear sign that the game is in their bag. DB’s teamfight-oriented lineup makes it hard for even PL to get close. Tidehunter, Brew and Undying, leaves no prey for PL to quickly kill. Thus, DB proceeds to the next series against Gambit. Winner proceeds to the playoffs.
Chapter 3: Another Elimination. Nothing to See Here.
While OG not making it to the finals is pretty much an expectation, we probably didn’t expected them to be eliminated in the group stage itself. In first game, Topson is not having the best Ember game as Illidan’s Leshrac keeps zoning him out no matter where he goes. You know it’s a sad day for Ember when you can’t even be aggressive for even 2 seconds against Leshrac’s ultimate. Any longer and Topson might just feed. Meanwhile bzz’s Slardar with the insane bashes are just on point too.
But in the second game, OG fought back with ILTW playing Ember instead. Things looked better for OG as OBG’s push strat backfired. OG’s teamfight were just superior with Ceb’s Tide and Jerax’s signature Earth Spirit.
It finally came to the last game, OG has been clinging for tournament life all this while but it ends here. After a series of ups and downs, it didn’t take long until the midgame when the advantage was clearly on OBG’s side. Illidan has been known for his carry role, so his PA being godlike is not a huge surprise to many. But the overall teamwork they had in teamfights made them so deadly even Topson’s Monkey King could not deal with the madness. Thus, OG has been eliminated once again, in their third ever minor, which means OG still has not attended in any major since TI8.
Chapter 4: Expected Winner.
And the last series of the day, Gambit versus Demolition Boys. In game 1, DB was on point with their ganks and managed to earn themselves some lead. But they were unable to pick off Daxak’s Ursa or even fn’s Shadow Fiend, so it was mostly supports’ death. In the end, a close fight costed DB so badly that it led to a high ground GG push. Gambit took the first victory.
However, unlike the first game, Gambit wasn’t fooling around anymore. Again, with Ursa, the early game was easily dominated as DB watched helplessly from the trees. Somehow, DB was able to keep the gold lead rather even but even if Gambit couldn’t kill Ember, they can still high ground push effectively. GG is called and Gambit are your final Playoffs qualifier.
Chapter 5: It Ain’t Over!
While it’s the weekdays today, the minor doesn’t stop just yet as we proceed into the Semifinals of the Starladder minor. Congratulations to Flying Penguins, Gambit, VG and OBG. Stay tuned!