OpTic Gaming Wins MLG Worlds for 9th Victory in AW
The final tournament in Advanced Warfare went to the Green Wall in impressive fashion.
Before the CoD: Advanced Warfare circuit even began, OpTic Gaming made a big splash. With the additions of perennial competitors Crimsix and Formal, OpTic showed that they weren’t messing around and were ready to take the CoD eSports scene by storm. And so they did.
For the better part of the next 11 months, OpTic dominated the landscape in CoD while maintaining a roster that was mostly the same, a feat that is a rarity in this particular eSport. The team found success early on with a roster of Nadeshot, Scump, Crimsix and Formal.
When Nadeshot decided to take a step back from competing after the team fell short of winning CoD Champs in March, he was replaced by Karma and the team didn’t miss a beat. Overall, OpTic won eight different events throughout the year, a record for one Call of Duty game. This weekend they set their sights on their ninth win at MLG’s World Finals in New Orleans. It was MLG's 100th event.
Pool play sweep, bracket play ease
The tournament started on Friday with pool play. At the top of the Pro Points leaderboard, OpTic was the first seed in Pool A, where two teams would advance to the championship bracket. A trend with the team that would continue, they had one of their most contested matches early on in the weekend.
Their first match was against Team Infused who pushed the Green Wall to the brink, forcing them into Game 5 where OpTic clutched up to win the series 3-2. After that, though, OpTic was business as usual with 3-0 sweeps of Team Kaliber and XGN Competitive as they finished Friday at 3-0 in pool play.
Saturday came about with one match left in pool play, and OpTic punched their ticket into the championship bracket with a relaxed 3-0 sweep of Thrust Nation. Up next was a day full of matches against teams who had succeeded in their respective pools.
Switching to a best-of-seven format, OpTic dispatched tough opponents with increasingly impressive play: Up first was JusTus, OpTic defeated them 4-1, followed by a matchup with their rivals in Team EnVyUs who they swept 4-0 to move on Championship Sunday.
OpTic’s biggest test of the weekend kicked off their day on Sunday as they faced Team Elevate, a squad that had been turning heads all weekend long with dominant play. The talented young team of TJHaly, Slacked, Saints and Octane were out to prove they belonged with the big boys.
They woke up OpTic early on with a win in Game 1 Hardpoint to take a 1-0 lead, but OpTic evened it out with a 6-4 win on S&D. Elevate was equal to the task again, however, as they pulled off a strong 13-5 win on Uplink, showing chinks in OpTic’s armor for the first time all weekend.
From then on, it was all Green Wall, as Crimsix and Co. clutched up with their eyes on another grand finals appearance. They won Game 4 Hardpoint 244-206, Game 5 S&D 6-2 (punctuated by a sniper collateral double-kill by Karma) and Game 6 Uplink 9-7 to earn a spot in the last grand finals of AW, where they would meet up with Denial eSports.
It was fitting to see these two teams in the finals, as OpTic won most of the events in AW, along with FaZe, and Denial who won the Call of Duty Championship in March. If OpTic were to win these finals, it would be hard to argue against them as the undisputed best team in AW.
Grand finals vs. Denial
Going up against the strong team of Huke, Slasher, Classic and Temp, OpTic had their potential toughest matchup of the weekend in the grand finals. Having to win two best-of-seven series to defeat OpTic, though, was an even tougher task for the Denial team.
The series kicked off on Retreat Hardpoint, arguably OpTic’s best map and gametype combination. It was a close match early on as OpTic took a 66-47 lead after the first two hills. In a back-and-forth battle throughout the matchup, OpTic held a lead until Denial took the lead with two minutes left, shocking OpTic with a 207-179 win in Game 1 lead by Temp’s 45 kills.
OpTic tried to bounce back in Game 2, which was Search and Destroy on Recovery. OpTic turned it around quickly with 3-0 lead and finished off the game with a hotly contested 6-4 victory, as Formal dominated with a score of 10-5 as OpTic tied the series at 1-1.
Game 3 saw the series move to Uplink on Detroit, a game mode that OpTic had struggled with over the weekend. They took a quick 4-0 lead, but Denial answered back with 7 of their own to take a 7-4 lead into the second half. Not wanting to fall into a 2-1 hole, OpTic clutched up to score three unanswered to win the game 8-7.
Up next was DLC map Compound for Hardpoint, Denial jumped out to a big lead after the first three hills, but OpTic pulled the score back to manageability. With Scump and Crimsix struggling on the scoreboard, Formal kept his team in the game until OpTic got hill control and brought themselves back to within six points with three minutes to play.
It was the next hill where OpTic dominated to take a slight lead into the final two minutes as the torrid pace continued in the intense matchup with a 232-209 win. Formal finished strongly at 44-39.
With just one game left to win, OpTic and Denial headed to Game 5 S&D on Solar and the Green Wall had every intention of ending the Advanced Warfare circuit then and there. Led by Crimsix’s 6-0 start, OpTic flew to a 4-0 lead in the non-respawn game mode, leaving Denial dizzy with their fast-paced dominant play. But the Wolf Pack kept their composure to win three rounds in a row. But OpTic’s hot start was too much to come back from. OpTic finished out the game 6-3 to win the series 4-1 and the $100,000 grand prize.
OpTic Gaming won their record-extending ninth tournament in Advanced Warfare, the most in any single CoD title ever, making them the undisputed best team in AW, with respect to FaZe and Denial. With Black Ops 3 on the horizon, the question now is, will this team remain together and stay dominant in a new Call of Duty title? With their accomplishments and accolade, it’s a fair guess to say, yes.
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