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Archive for the ‘All-Star 2014’ Category

LiNk (Cloud 9): player’s analysis and performance break-down

One of the most heart-breaking stories before the All-Star event in Paris, was Cloud 9 losing their captain, shot-caller and mid-laner (in that order) Hai, due to an unexpected medical condition. Despite of the huge set-back for Cloud 9, they rallied their forces and teamed up with CLG, who immediately agreed to loan their mid-laner, LiNk to the North American champions for the All-Star event. LiNk’s play-style and champion pool was very similar to the one of Hai and all things considered, that made him a perfect pick for Cloud 9. There was still the issue of shot-calling left and Meteos and crew had to decide who would try to fill in Hai’s big shoes, will it be a certain individual or more members pitching in at different times of the game? LiNk himself had some shot-calling experience, as CLG uses a 2 man shot-calling system with him and Aphromoo dictating their every move in the late-game, but was it realistically something that could be expected from him, after roughly one week of practice with Cloud 9? Most likely not.

Cloud 9 choose Link to join them in Paris

Instead, when they partnered up with LiNk, Cloud 9 were looking for a solid mid-laner, who would just do his thing, farm up and be relevant in the mid and late-game, while Meteos would help out Balls and/or Sneaky get going in the early game, dominate the mid-game and carry the team to success in the late-game. Being left to fend for himself most of the games, LiNk did a good job and averaged 76 CS at the 10 minute mark and 164 CS at the 20 minute mark. The numbers are not particularly impressive, but given his world-class opposition and the fact that he received little help from his jungler, they are not too bad either. In fact, the average would have been considerably higher, if we disregard the game versus OMG in the Group stage, where both the enemy jungler and support roamed multiple times to the mid-lane, to make sure that Xiyang would not have a hard time in lane, because their entire mid-game strategy was relying on that. In the first game of the Semi-final series against OMG, LiNk’s Nidalee was 12 CS ahead of Xiyang’s Lulu at the 10 minute mark, which should normally not happen and is a testament to his strong laning abilities, who were also praised by the mid-lane king himself, Faker.

The supportive mid-laner role that LiNk got to play for Cloud 9, basically means that you take more of a back-seat role and provide some support for your team, while others have the flashy KD ratios and the glory that comes with it. That being said, an average KDA of 2.50 over three wins and three heavy defeats is pretty respectable and if we break it down, one can clearly notice how clear the three defeats were for Cloud 9 and LiNk, who totaled 11/6/27 while winning and 5/12/2 while losing. A night and day difference, especially when we look at the assists. While it is true that Cloud 9 only dropped matches to SKT T1 K and OMG, the games were very one-sided, except for the first one of the semi-final series against OMG, where C9 had a real shot at winning, but were unable to keep their early game lead, due to a couple of bad decisions in the mid-game. Same conclusion can be drawn when looking over LiNk’s kill participation numbers, he averaged a decent 62,5% not standing out from the rest and doing what was asked of him. In all the six games played, he never got First Blood, or First Blood Assist and gave away First Blood only once, in the group stage game versus OMG, where he was heavily focused by the enemy team.

Link's most played champions at All-Star

Link did not get a chance to show more than three of his mid-lane champions, playing mostly Lulu and Orianna, two supportive mid-lane champions and a comfort pick, Nidalee, in the first game of the Semi-final series vs OMG. He had a 3.4 KDA on Lulu, 2.1 on Orianna and 1.0 on Nidalee. Asked about it, LiNk confirmed that this was the plan discussed with Cloud 9 all along and although he would have liked to play more aggressive champions like LeBlanc or Twisted Faith, he decided together with the team against it. Below, a table that pretty much sums up his entire performance

Link's performance breakdown at All-Star

Overall, both Link’s and Cloud 9’s performance at All-Star was above average and certainly above expectations, as many dooms-day scenarios threatened to unfold before the competition had even started. With the very limited time at hand, Meteos and crew have done North America proud finishing 3rd/4th, but more importantly, gaining the valuable international experience, which will help them out tremendously in both the upcoming LCS Summer Split and the World Championships that will take place in September, where the team is looking to have a better showing than last year and prove that North America has come a long way in terms of attitude, preparation and organisation. As the Korean teams have shown it time and time again, there are more factors to the success of a League of Legends team, than the five players, the staff that is behind them is equally important and relevant. If you are interested, you can check out Link’s and Lemonnation’s AMAs on Reddit, where they mostly talk about the All-Star experience. LeagueThoughts will also do a sum-up of those later on.

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All-Star 2014, Day 4: Recap

The final day of the All-Star was the last chance for the fans to either see their favorite pros in action in the All-Star Challenge or the two teams from the best regions in the world duel it out in the Grand Final of the All-Star Invitational. There was something for everyone in it.

The All-Star Challenge

Team ICE had a two point lead over Team FIRE at the beginning of the day, with 7 points still to be earned during the 1v1 and 2v2 duels. There are a few rules for the duels, clearly stated at the beginning of each one. First off, a player is not allowed to buy more than two Doran’s items and second, there are three ways of winning these duels, either get a kill on your opponent (two kills in the 2v2 one), down his turret, or be the first one to reach 100 cs. It was Archie and Shy who started things off with an incredibly spectacular duel, where Archie played Varus and Shy played Quinn. The first engage at level 1 was almost fatal for Shy who limped away with less than 30 hp, recalled and then took Archie down after a well executed level 3 fight. Point for Fire and Ice leads now with 4-3. In the second 1v1 duel, Cool and QTV battled it out in a mirror Lee Sin game. Over the course of the competition, Cool has proven himself as an extraordinary Lee Sin player and did not disappoint. He got the early minion lead and kept the advantage throughout the duel. Being 12 minions behind, QTV was forced to attempt a desperation move and tried to all in Cool, but ended up losing the trade and paying with his life for it. Ice leads 5-3. Next off, Doublelift and Madlife were pitted against Bjergsen and Diamond in the featured 2v2 match-up. Madlift went with the Arctic Ops Varus/Kennen combo, while Team Fire chose two representative champions for their side, Annie and Brand. It was Ice who drew first blood on Annie at level 2, but Fire replied immediately with a kill on Varus. One for one and the next death, regardless from which team-member, means defeat and in case of Team Fire, the end of the competition. Kennen finds a stun on Brand, but at the same time Brand stuns Kennen and the Flash+stun from Bjergsen’s Annie on both ICE members ensured the defeat of Madlift and FIRE tie it all up at 5-5. The last duel, the one chosen to be the big 1v1 duel would feature Froggen for ICE and Weixiao for FIRE and it would be a winner takes all skirmish, being worth three points. Froggen picked Yasuo and Weixiao chose Jarvan IV. A clear advantage for the Team ICE captain right out of champion select, which he abused extensively and bullied Weixiao out of the lane two times. After the second back, Froggen started to hit the enemy turret and kept basing on it, until it was no more. With that the Team ICE captain won the duel and the entire competition for his team. Team ICE prevailed, winning at the last possible second with 8-5, much to the delight of Doublelift and crew, who were jumping for joy.

Ice vs Fire, final result

The All-Star Invitational

The Grand Final everyone was waiting for, China versus Korea, OMG vs SKT T1 K, did not disappoint, at least the first two games of the series. In the first one, OMG got to play their trade-mark champions, having Gogoing on Rekenton, Xiyang on Syndra and San on Twitch. SKT got the early lead though, but thanks to their very good team-fighting skills and the fact that Twitch was able to blow up either his counter-part or Faker’s Orianna, the Chinese power-house slowly crawled themselves back in the game and even got ahead at the 28 minute mark. One small mistake from Allen’s Leona was all it took for SKT to kill him, get the baron and wrestle control of the game back. The match went back and forth for the next 13 minutes, right up until the moment that OMG found a double kill on Jax and Kha’zix and hesitated for a couple of seconds before going towards the baron with low health bars. SKT would punish them for their indecision, scoring an ACE and finishing off Baron Nashor. Out of the blue, Faker and crew were up 6k gold and in full control of the game, ending it in 51 minutes. This was the longest game of the tournament so far!

OMG vs SKT T1K (Game 1) Scoreboard

SKT T1 K started the second game of the series even stronger than the first one and had a commanding 6k gold lead at 15 minutes, with their star mid-laner Faker, being 4/0. It all looked like an out right stomp, when a rare mistake from Faker occured. He was recalling between his two mid-lane towers and got surprised by Shyvana’s roam and immediately killed. OMG carried that momentum in the next fight and got another two kills and one turret. The Korean World Champions would recover fast from the little hick-up and following a decisive push in the bot-lane, they got themselves three kills, the bot inner turret and a dragon to solidify their gold lead. Ten minutes later, the second game was already in the player’s match history and SKT needed just one more game to win the tournament.

OMG vs SKT T1K (Game 2) Scoreboard

In game 3, only one team showed up and that was SK Telecom T1 K. OMG could not put the two previous losses behind them and focus on the present and with their low morale going into the last game, they got pulverized by the Koreans. The scoreboard showed a mind-blowing 25-4 in kills for Faker and crew, who finished the game in a little over 22 minutes.

SKT vs OMG (Game 3) Scoreboard

SKT TELECOM T1 K have made Korea proud and have dominated the world stage once again winning the All-Star Invitational without dropping one single game, finishing 9-0. Their dominance just shows how much Korea, as a region, is ahead of the other ones and how much work the likes of Europe and North America have ahead of them. It’s a gargantuan task to accomplish before this year’s World Championships, but no one has ever succeeded without trying their best and hardest. Congratulations to SKT T1 K: Impact, Bengi, Faker, Piglet and Poohmandu and a big shout-out goes out to the amazing French crowd and the French live commentators, who were relentlessly pumping up the crowd and keeping it entertained. Merci beaucoup Paris, à bientôt!

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All-Star 2014, Day 3: Recap

The games from Day 3 are already part of our match history and we now know the two teams that will represent their regions in the Grand Final on Sunday. OMG (China) will face off against the World Champions, SKT T1 K (Korea) in a best of five series, at the end of which one team will get the 50.000 dollar check and the bragging rights until the next international competition, the World Championships in September. With that in mind, let’s take a look at how the teams performed on Day 3.

Team ICE vs Team FIRE (Pick 10)

Ice vs Fire (Pick 10)

In the fan favorites exhibition game Pick 10, the ten pros were “forced” on set heroes, chosen by you guys at home and the anticipated duel between Froggen’s Anivia and Bjergsen’s Zed went in favor of the first one, as Team Ice absolutely dominated the opposition thanks in part to Cool’s immaculate jungling and Madlife’s insane roaming ability and on-point hooks, who allowed Lucian and Anivia to scale up and just stomp the enemy team. After three days of competition, it’s team ICE who leads in points, 4-2, but all is still up for grabs as another 7 points can be won on Sunday, in the 1v1 and 2v2 duels.

Cloud 9 vs OMG

C9 vs OMG (semifinal) scoreboard

OMG vs C9 (Game 2) scoreboard

The match-up between North America and China went in the complete opposite direction than yesterday. If you want to read a more comprehensive review of the first game of the series, you can do so by clicking here. The second game was very much one-sided, as Cloud 9 failed to remove the strong elements from the first game, Gogoing’s Shyvana and Allen’s Thresh, fell behind early and never really recovered after that. At the end of the day, Cloud 9 had a very good overall performance, considering the fact that they played without their captain and shot-caller, Hai, but it was not enough to defeat OMG on this day.

SK Telecom T1 K vs Fnatic

SKT vs FNC scoreboard semi-finals

SKT vs FNC scoreboard semi-finals Game 2

The Korean representatives made quick work of the European champions much to the dismay of the home-crowd who kept on cheering for Yellowstar and crew until the bitter end. The two games were very one sided and SKT T1 K wrapped up game 1 in roughly 28 minutes and game 2 in under 26 minutes. Stellar performance from the raining World Champions, with Faker, Bengi and Piglet playing out of their minds, especially Faker who had an incredible showing on both Yasuo and Nidalee, ending the day at 14/2/12. As for Fnatic, even though the defeats were hard to swallow, they will surely learn a lot by watching the replays and fixing their small mistakes, which were always punished by SKT.

Conclusions

Europe and North America are once again out of the Grand Final at a major event, there is still a lot of work to be done for both regions to be able to catch up to the Korean and Chinese teams, but the gap seems to be getting smaller and steps are done in the right direction. If you want to take a look at the VODs from Day 3, you can do so by clicking here and be sure to tune in on Sunday at 13:00 CET for the conclusion of both the All-Star Challenge, where Team ICE and Team FIRE will face-off against each other one last time and the All-Star Invitational where OMG will go up against SKT T1 K to determine the winner of the All-Star 2014.

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OMG – C9 (All-Star Semifinals Game 1): So close, but yet so far…

Since both me and my partner are attending the All-Star event in Paris live, we have decided to pick one single game for each day to review. Today’s pick is what turned out to be the closest game of the day, game 1 between China’s OMG and North America’s Cloud 9. On the blue side, C9 ban Syndra, LeBlanc, Kassadin and pick Jax, Evelynn, Nidalee, Twitch and Zyra to face off against OMG, who banKha’zix, Morgana, Eliseand pick Shyvana, Nunu, Lulu, Lucian and Thresh.

OMG vs C9 (Game 1) picks and bans

2′ – OMG rotate their duo in the top-lane, but the same thing happens on the blue side as well and the two bot-lane pairs will face off in the top-lane, leaving Jax and Shyvana to duel it out in the bot-lane

10′ – The CS count shows a slight advantage for Jax in the top-lane, 68-61, an incredible performance from Link in the mid-lane, being ten creeps ahead of Lulu, who should generally dictate the pace in that match-up, 87-77 and another slight advantage in the bot-lane, this time for OMG’s San, 86-76

10′ – Meteos wants to help Balls capitalize on his early advantage and helps him tower-dive Gogoing, securing first blood for his team. Balls also downs the outer turret after that and secures the early 2k gold lead for his team.

11′ – Meanwhile, in the bot-lane a great hook from Allen, means the death of Lemonnation and both Thresh and Lucian retire to the safety of their turret with low hp from Twitch’s ultimate. As both of them were forced to recall and so were Nunu and Lulu, who were both aggressed by their counter-parts, Cloud 9 could pick up the first dragon of the game uncontested.

13′ – Evelynn gets caught in the enemy jungle and immediately killed by Shyvana and Lulu, a small mistake from Meteos which prevented him to snowball even harder and allowed Nunu to take his own red-buff and thus catch-up

16′ – Nidalee does a tremendous job of pushing Lulu out of the lane again and with the help of Evelynn, Cloud 9 destroy the mid outer turret. Meanwhile in the bot-lane, Nunu gives his duo a helping hand in taking out Twitch and the bottom outer turret of C9. When all is said and done, still a 2k gold lead for C9.

18′ – After getting down some initial poke onto Thresh, Cloud 9 felt confident enough to start the dragon, but it turned out to be a bad call, as the rest of OMG collapsed on them and in a rare moment when one can see Cloud 9 not on the same page, the team faltered, lost the skirmish 3-1 and the dragon at the end of it. It was probably in such moments where Hai’s decisive shot-calling would have come in handy.

C9 vs OMG (Semifinal) crucial moment

20′ – Meteos helps his duo-bot get a kill on Lucian and the three finish off the bottom inner turret, while OMG answers with the top and the mid outer turrets and the gold is almost even once again.

23′ – Both teams are looking for picks in the mid-lane, but it is OMG who find one on Sneaky, who is caught once again out of position and immediately killed by the Chinese LPL champions.

25′ – Taking advantage of their superior vision around the baron pit, OMG keep C9 guessing about their position and force them into face-checking bushes in order to get advantageous trades, a classic OMG strategy that pays off and they find a kill on Jax, before turning their attention to the baron. C9 want to contest, but are a little late to the party and can only find one kill as the rest of OMG runs away with the baron buff secured. Meteos and crew take the dragon as a consolation prize though and barely keep the gold lead.

28′ – With the baron buff on, OMG push down the mid-lane and destroy the inner tower, but Jax does a very good job split-pushing and takes down an inner tower of his own in the top-lane.

31′ – OMG manage to down the remaining two inner turrets as Cloud 9 is forced to watch, being unable to land several spears that would enable them to fight against this very aggressive Chinese team.

33′ – As the baron re-spawns, the same story would repeat itself: OMG take away C9’s vision and force them into face-checking bushes and into Allen’s majestic hooks to start off the team-fights. This time it’s Jax who gets caught out and killed as OMG steamroll over their opponents, winning the skirmish 4-1 and getting both the baron and the dragon at the end of it all, securing a comfortable 6k gold lead.

35′ – Meteos wants to steal OMG’s blue buff, but ends up dying as he was on top of a ward and the Chinese champions push down the bot-lane and manage to get the inhibitor down. As the camera was focused on the Jax-Shyvana duel in the top-lane, a big fight breaks out in the C9 blue-side jungle and the baron-ed up OMG dismantles the opposition, getting another 4-1 win, which allowed them to down all three inhibitors and close out the game in just under 38 minutes. A convincing performance from Gogoing and crew, who have showed they have learned from the mistakes they did yesterday. The second game of the series was even more one-sided and OMG secured themselves a spot in the Grand Final of the competition. Meanwhile, Cloud 9’s performance was somewhat lackluster, compared to the ones from yesterday and the day before, but we mustn’t forget they played without their captain and shot-caller, Hai, and as such, their overall performance exceeded expectations.

C9 vs OMG (semifinal) scoreboard

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All-Star 2014, Day 2: Recap

Day 2 is already behind us and we are half way through the competition. Four teams have secured their Semi-final spots: SKT T1 K finished in first place with 4 wins and 0 losses, followed by Cloud 9 in second with 3 wins and 1 loss, OMG in third with 2 wins and 2 losses and Fnatic in fourth win 1 win and 3 losses. The two semi-finals between SKT T1 K – Fnatic and Cloud 9 – OMG will be a best of three and will start around 14:00 CET, after the “Pick 10” match-up between Team Fire and Team Ice. Let’s have a look at how the teams performed yesterday.

Team ICE vs Team FIRE (Hexakill)

Hexakill ICE vs FIRE scoreboard

With the addition of Misaya (Team ICE) and Toyz (Team Fire), the ten pros descended to the Rift for another exhibition match of Hexakill. The strategy employed by both teams was the double-jungle one, with Archie and Cool jungling for ICE and Bjergsen and Diamond doing the same for FIRE. Despite a stronger start from Bjergsen and crew, ICE was always moving as a tight unit, creating havoc in FIRE’s jungle and there was also no escape for the laners from FIRE, when a 4 man gank train showed up from the river bush. The 4-5k gold lead from ICE transformed into a baron, then into a 10k gold lead and finally snowballed out of control and Doublelift and crew manage to tie things up with Fire, it is now 2-2 in points with 9 more points to be gained in the last two days of competition.

SKT T1 K vs OMG

SKT vs OMG scoreboard

The two favorites of the competition went against each other in the first game of the day in order to settle the rivalry once and for all, after going 1-1 at the World Championships and seeing their opponents play in the first day of the All-Star competition, OMG’s top-laner, Gogoing was pretty confident that his team was going to win. Faker dominated the beginning of that game, having 101 CS and 3 kills at the 10 minute mark. Despite that, the game was close due to OMG’s side-lanes who managed to out-edge their opponents. Two big positional mistakes from OMG in the 21st minute, meant the death of their support and jungler and SKT rushed the baron and found more kills around the pit to increase their lead to 4k gold. From that point on, it was only a matter of time before they could snowball the game out of control and finally destroy the Nexus at the 31 minute mark. Impressive victory from SKT T1 K!

Cloud 9 vs Azubu Taipei Assassins

C9 vs TPA scoreboard

Despite taking First Blood and the first dragon of the game, TPA were struggling in the bot-lane and a teleport from Balls was all they needed to get a double kill, a dragon and a solo kill in the mid-lane, where Orianna destroyed LeBlanc and opened up a 2.5 k gold lead for the North Americans. From this point on, Cloud 9 would never drop the ball and kept getting small advantages after each won skirmish and after 32 minutes the Nexus of the GPL champions would go down as Cloud 9, lead by the unkillable Meteos get their second victory of the tournament and avoid a potential three way tie for third spot with FNC and TPA.

Fnatic vs SK Telecom T1 K

FNC versus SKT scoreboard

Jax somehow managed to slip through the cracks and Impact immediately locked it in, which lead to SKT playing all the champions they got to play in the World Championship Final and who now have an SKT skin attached to their name. This was the first time that Faker chose to play with a skin, showing his dedication to the team. The game was very close, but due to the scaling nature of both Jax and Vayne, if the two teams would have been even through the early and mid-game, the Korean representatives would just take the late game by storm. FNC has kept the kill advantage throughout the game, but SKT’s superior objective control and farm has kept them in the match. A slight mistake from the World Champions, gives FNC 2 kills and a shot at baron, which xPeke and crew would not turn down. SKT are not ready to give up the baron so easily and a small mistake from Cyanide who went to close to the edge of the baron pit to clear a ward gave Faker the opportunity to use his ultimate on him and drop him like a fly. With their jungler down, FNC was in disarray and SKT took fool advantage of that, stealing the baron and getting themselves another three kills. This move basically sealed Fnatic’s fate and 4 minutes later SKT T1 K would just dismantle the enemy Nexus and secure their 4th victory.

Cloud 9 vs OMG

C9 vs OMG score board

The match-up between North America and China, turned out to be a huge upset. If you want to read a more comprehensive review of the game, you can do so by clicking here.

Azubu Taipei Assassins vs Fnatic

TPA vs FNC scoreboard

With everything on the line for both teams, as the loser of this game would be out of the tournament, FNC started the game strong finding kills everywhere, much to the delight of the home crowd. The two teams went neck in neck with an ever so slight advantage for FNC all the way until the 29th minute, where a misplay from Vayne, allowed FNC to take the dragon and win the next skirmish inside TPA’s jungle, 4-1. After that the European champions rushed the baron and ensured themselves a 7k gold lead. Although FNC would never let go of their lead, they took their time in closing out the game, heavily impacted by the importance of the game. However, after 41 minutes, they destroy the enemy Nexus much to the delight of the home-crowd, who finally had a reason to celebrate, Soaz and crew were in the semi-finals where they would get a shot at revenge against Faker and SKT T1 K.

Conclusions

At the end of Day 2, the GPL representatives, the Azubu Taipei Assassins are out of the competition and the two Semi-final match-ups are set in stone, Korea will take on Europe, while North America will battle it out against China, two spectacular semi-finals that will follow the “Pick 10” exhibition match-up between Team ICE and Team FIRE. If you want to take a look at the VODs from Day 2, you can do so by clicking here and be sure to tune in today at 13:00 CET for the rest of the action from the All-Star event.

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C9 – OMG (All-Star Day 2): Threatening preview

Since both me and my partner are attending the All-Star event in Paris live, we have decided to pick one single game for each day to review. Today’s pick is the battle for second in the rankings, between NA’s Cloud9 and China’s OMG. On the blue side, C9 ban Syndra, LeBlanc, Jax and pick Shyvana, Elise, Lulu, Twitch and Morgana to face off against OMG, who ban Kassadin, Kha’zix, Thresh and pick Trundle, Lee Sin, Orianna, Jinx and Leona.

C9 vs OMG picks and bans

2′ – OMG switches their duo-lane in the top-lane, but oddly enough, there are no 3v1 or 4v0 lanes, the two teams are content with 1v2 lanes and the jungler helping out their top-laner every now and then

8′ – Link’s slow start this game eventualy materializes in a kill for OMG, when LeeSin pays a visit to the mid-lane and gets first blood

9′ – OMG down the first turret of the game, as their duo finally distroys the top outer turret

10′ – The CS count shows a massive Shyvana, 62-19, Balls was just able to safely farm in a 1v2 environment, due to the fact that Leona is not the best support for these 1v2 scenarios, her melee range making it impossible for her to harass efficiently. In the mid-lane Orianna leads by a comfortable margin, 74-50, while the two AD-Carries are neck in neck, 81-79

12′ – Elise looks for a gank bot, while Lee Sin tries the same thing top. Both ganks fail, but C9 are having a go at the dragon and barely manage to down it as the Chinese team collapses on them and Lemonnation is left behind by his team-mates, one death for a dragon, that is a trade C9 will take any day of the year.

14′ – After completing his BotRK, Sneaky finds himself a double kill in the bot-lane in a straight-up 2v2 fight.

16′ – Elise and Twitch over-extend trying to kill Jinx, get the kill in the end, but the duo ends up paying with her live as they chased too far in enemy territory

17′ – Action in the top-lane, Lulu supports Shyvana in a successful tower-dive on Trundle, but the rest of OMG collapse on them and manage to find the revenge kill on Cloud 9’s mid-laner. The North American team comes out on top as they manage to take down both the top and the mid outer turrets.

19′ – As the dragon re-spawns, both teams are near the pit, ready and waiting. It is OMG who start it off and C9 with the perfect smite-steal, after Shyvana manage to ult inside the enemy team. In the team-fight that followed, Meteos came off huge, dismantling the enemy back-line and C9 manage to ACE their opponents, losing only Balls and Sneaky. Huge win for C9, who opened up a commanding 5k gold lead!

23′ – Cloud 9 finds a kill on Orianna in the mid-lane and immediately capitalize on it by downing the inner turret in that lane.

24′ – Cloud 9 take the third dragon of the game uncontested, as OMG is too afraid to explore past their jungle without vision control

29′ – After an extended dance inside OMG’s red buff jungle, the Chinese get jumped on and having previously missed their two big ultimates, the Solar Flare and the Shockwave, they fall pray to the North Americans. Two kills for zero for C9, who slay Nashor as well after the skirmish and up their gold lead to almost 10k gold.

C9 vs OMG crucial moment

32′ – With the baron buff on, Cloud 9 decide to push in the top-lane and get the inner turret down, while Shyvana was split-pushing in the bot-lane. Lulu decides to go and help Shyvana and the duo score a kill on Trundle, while in the top-lane, OMG only trade 1-1 with their opponents although they were up in numbers. This means a bot inhibitor and a top inhibitor turret for C9, who increase their lead to 15k gold.

34′ – OMG find a good fight in the mid-lane, as Sneaky went in too aggressive on the enemy mid-laner, but because of the huge gold lead, C9 manage to come out on top, 2-1.

36′ – Meteos and crew regroup and want to finish off the exposed inhibitor in the top-lane before the baron would re-spawn. However, OMG is determined to not let that happen and in the fight that breaks out, C9 come out victorious, 3-0 and end the game in a little over 37 minutes. What an exciting win for Cloud 9 and North America, who finish second in the group stage with a remarkable 3-1 score, being undefeated against every other region than Korea. The two teams will meet again tomorrow in the Semi-finals, this time in a Bo3 series and the biggest fear for the NA fans is that C9 might have shown their hand too early.

C9 vs OMG score board

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All-Star 2014, Day 1: Recap

Day 1 is already behind us, but there are three more action-packed days yet to come. With that in mind, let’s take a look at the highlights of the first day here in Paris, France.

Team ICE vs Team FIRE (URF)

URF Mode All-star scoreboard.

Bjergsen and Team Fire dominated the first game of the series and still managed to have some fun towards the end of the encounter when they were trying to pick people out of the enemy fountain with Blitzkrank’s rocket grab and the insane amount of damage that both Bjergsen and Weixiao had. In a later interview, team captain, Diamond, revealed their strategy: “I played a lot of URF with my friends and I knew Karma and Taric were overpowered so I told my team to pick those”.

OMG vs Fnatic

OMG vs Fnatic scoreboard

Despite a very strong start, the European champions lost control of the game at a dragon fight where they did not wait for the poke from xPeke’s Nidalee before engaging and instead got engaged upon by a Glitterlance from Lulu and from that pont on, OMG had ridiculous control over the enemy team’s buffs and their jungle finding picks everywhere. FNC had no answer to the aggressive plays-style that the Chinese showed and OMG had no problem in closing out the game in just under 38 minutes.

Azubu Taipei Assassins vs SK Telecom T1 K

TPA vs SKT scoreboard

In the second game of the day, TPA put on a very good game, despite being a little behind at the beginning of the laning phase. BeBe and crew were always 3-4k gold behind, but kept staying on-par with the reigning World Champions until SKT T1 K’s superior combat prowess and rotations shined through in the mid-game and they took control of the game. Having a monster Shyvana on your side helped as well, Impact’s play was absolutely flawless and he was a big reason for SKT’s domination in their first game of the day.

Fnatic vs Cloud 9 

FNC versus C9 scoreboard

The featured match-up of the day between the two LCS teams did not disappoint and kept everyone glued to their seats. If you want to read a more comprehensive review of the game, you can do so here.

OMG vs Azubu Taipei Assassins

OMG vs TPA scoreboard

Despite another slow start from OMG, giving away First Blood at level 1, the Chinese representatives overcame the deficit quite early and took control of the game, using the same strategies as in the previous game against FNC, deploying a solid control over the enemy team’s buffs. This was the most one sided game of the day, ending with OMG around the enemy fountain, trying to get more kills to their name, quite similar to the URF game we saw at the beginning of the day.

SK Telecom T1 K vs Cloud 9

SKT - C9 scoreboard

SKT correctly identify and nullify C9’s main threat: Balls. Stuck in a 1v2 for the first part of the game and giving away first blood, the C9 top-laner knew he would not have a great game. Having taken the early lead, the Season 3 World Champions would never let go and the 4k gold lead turned into a 10k gold lead and then into a 15k gold lead as SKT T1 K took the game by storm, having removed Cloud 9 from their comfort zone and forced them into errors they would not normally make.

Conclusions

At the end of day 1, hot favorites SKT T1 K and OMG both go undefeated increasing the tension before their long awaited duel today. At the other end of the standings, the European champions, Fnatic and South-East Asia’s TPA have yet to win a game and the loser of that game is most likely going home. TPA still holds the better end of that deal as they faced both SKT T1 K and OMG yesterday and face Cloud 9 and FNC today, two lesser dominant teams. At the end of the group stage, one team will be knocked out of the competition, while the remaining four will battle it out in the Semi-finals, tune in today at 13:00 CET to find out which. If you want to check out the rest of the schedule, you can find it at the bottom of the preview-article. Also, if you want to have a look at the VOD’s for Day 1, you can do so by clicking here.

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