Heroes of the Storm GosuAwards winners

 

Welcome to the 2nd annual GosuGamers Awards for Heroes of the Storm. Today, we honor the best players, teams, casters, community members, and competitive moments of 2016. Each category has two winners. One has been determined by the community vote polls. The other award is handed out by the GosuAwards committee, comprised of GosuGamers crew and other community members who put together the nominations for this year’s awards.

BEST COMPETITIVE MOMENT

BEST COMPETITIVE MOMENT

Fnatic upset vs. MVP Black

It's hard to recall any other moment in 2016 that brought as much excitement as Fnatic eliminating MVP Black during BlizzCon. The context and significance of Fnatic's victory stems from how powerful Korean teams (MVP Black especially) were throughout the entire year. Western fans had all but accepted a Korean Grand Finals at BlizzCon and nobody expected Fnatic to stand a chance.

But then the games started and Fnatic defied all expectation. They didn't just defeat MVP Black-- they made it look easy. Winning the series 3-1, Fnatic shocked the entire Heroes community and, perhaps, even themselves.

MVP Black vs. Team No Limit

The Tyrael trait to finish the nearly dead core is a moment that still leaves us in disbelief.

Fnatic upset vs. MVP Black

MATCH OF THE YEAR

In the first two games, things were looking like business as usual for MVP Black. L5 was a strong opponent no doubt, but the MVP Black signature momentum seemed out of control. MVP Black was winning with stylish drafts; Alarak, Malfurion and Artanis entertained the audience with flashy wombo-combos and off-meta heroic picks. There were rumors going that L5 was strong enough to defeat MVP Black, but after two losses in a row they seemed unfounded.

Then, L5 woke up and won four straight games in a row, defeating MVP Black and landing a major blow to the team's unstoppable reputation. It was this amazing comeback and incredibly unique series that paved the way for L5 to become Ballistix and go on to win the 2016 World Championship at BlizzCon.

Fnatic vs. Ballistix - BlizzCon 2016

For the sheer tension and excitement of watching the David Fnatic try to topple the Goliath MVP Black.

STRONGEST MECHANICAL PLAYER

STRONGEST MECHANICAL PLAYER

MVP Black Rich

As one of the few players to stay on the same team for just about a full year, Rich has led MVP Black to an amazing record, never losing to a non-Korean team until they met Fnatic at BlizzCon. While he has one of the most diverse hero pools in Heroes eSports, Rich’s assassin plays are legendary, especially Thrall.

Rich's Hero control is so precise, a sort of mythos has been created around him. Is it true on the Korean ladder everyone bans Illidan because of Rich's influence? Are all of those highlight reels of Rich playing Alarak or The Butcher possible for a normal player? Is there anyone more deadly with a Melee Assassin? In 2016, the answer was a firm no.

Ballistix Noblesse

For immaculate control of Warriors, Muradin mastery, and uncanny positioning prowess.

TEAM CAPTAIN OF THE YEAR

TEAM CAPTAIN OF THE YEAR

Ballistix Noblesse

Any team captain worth their salt understands that their role on a team isn't just conducting interviews or making decisions when no one else wants to. A team captain must set an example and create a culture that helps their team flourish, all while demanding the very best out of themselves and their teammates. Noblesse managed to do all of this while simultaneously toppling Korea's best teams and winning BlizzCon 2016

What is most refreshing is Noblesse's open and carefree attitude when it comes to dealing with mistakes or game losses. Thanks to this attitude, Ballistix maintains a "No blame" policy when it comes to team wipes or mistakes, and have stated many times that they "are not afraid to lose". Ironically, this seems to make them unstoppable.

Fnatic Quackniix

For bringing the passion and energy required for Fnatic's opportunist playstyle and incredible comeback potential.

TEAM OF THE YEAR

TEAM OF THE YEAR

MVP Black

It's not easy being on top. A top team becomes the entire community's nemesis and their play is watched and studied more so than anyone else. No Heroes team knows this feeling better than MVP Black in 2016. They have been, by far, the most winning team of the year and demonstrated a commanding lead over Korea for the majority of 2016. Despite sometimes looking like they had no real competition, MVP Black has always shown respect for their opponents and rarely if not ever held back.

MVP Black has become a household name in competitive Heroes and they owe it to a fantastic 2016. 

Murloc Geniuses

For showing up out of nowhere and raising the NA standard of Heroes significantly while living the eSports dream.

MOST ENTERTAINING TEAM

MOST ENTERTAINING TEAM

Fnatic

Fnatic has their own style of play and people love to watch it. When most teams retreat, Fnatic doubles down and engages harder. When other teams use their global mobility to safely soak, Fnatic is aggressive, flanking with Falstad or stalking somewhere completely unexpected with Dehaka. Fnatic doesn't just thrive under pressure - they create it with their chaotic, skirmish heavy style of play.

It's hard to not get excited when you are rooting for Fnatic, as they have managed to take a group of 5 playmakers and turn them into a remarkably stable team.

Two Bees Determined

The cheeky team name hints at their even cheekier drafts. Expected the unexpected when these Bees start buzzing.

BEST ANALYTICAL CASTER

BEST ANALYTICAL CASTER

Dreadnaught

As the first Heroes pro player to make the transition to caster, Dreadnaught has also been one of the most successful. Dread set his own records as an impressive healer with Tempo Storm and, when he moved to casting, he took his knowledge to the next level. Dread adds deep analysis before, during, and after matches to share with viewers and fans specifically why teams make certain moves.

As a former player, it’s easy for Dread to get into the mind of teams when it comes to game drafting and gameplay. For this reason, it's hard to find anyone else who can accurate and quickly assess why a team is struggling or what the real story behind the draft screen is.

Grubby

For a keen attention to detail and bringing things to light strategically that nearly everyone else misses.

Dreadnaught

MOST ENTERTAINING CASTER

MOST ENTERTAINING CASTER

Wolf

It can’t possibly be easy to follow multiple regions simultaneously, but Wolf does it flawlessly. He brings precise and entertaining analysis to everything he does. Wolf’s energy and expert game knowledge keeps you glued to the screen during every game he casts. Instead of just throwing out game facts, he makes watching Heroes just as entertaining as playing it.

One of the most entertaining aspects of a Wolf cast is the narratives and personal player knowledge he brings to the broadcast. It creates the backdrop and context for the incredible hype that we all know Heroes can bring.

Gillyweed

For bringing boundless energy to a cast and going above and beyond the call of duty when casting tournaments, big or small.

Khaldor

RIVALRY OF THE YEAR

RIVALRY OF THE YEAR

Fnatic vs. Dignitas vs. Misfits

We all know NA Heroes fell into a bit of a slump and in Korea teams seem to take turns being undefeated for months at a time, but what about the EU scene? Who is dominant there? Who represents the region? Frankly, it's hard to say and even after a year of grueling competition we still don't know. Dignitas, Fnatic, and Misfits are so evenly matched that it seems like very tournament they meet in is a true coin toss.

The "Best in EU" title is ever elusive and highly sought after. This 3-team Rivalry lasted throughout all of 2016 and it shows no signs of stopping.

NA vs. Twitch Chat

For being the constant reminder of NA Heroes fans lack of confidence in their region and the players who may or may not have been "THE PROBLEM"

NA vs. Twitch Chat

META KING OF THE YEAR

META KING OF THE YEAR

Global Heroes

Even the smallest of patch or map changes can make the biggest differences, and in 2016 we saw a major shift in prioritizing Global Heroes because of it. With the rise of new maps like Towers of Doom, Warhead Junction and Braxis Holdout, it became increasingly important to be in multiple places of the battleground at once. 

It started with just Falstad and Brightwing and eventually ETC’s Stage Dive came into favor. In recent months since Blizzcon, even Dehaka has become a force to be reckoned with. It's no secret that Heroes with passive Global movement are inherently top tier and this was never more evident than in 2016.

Sanctification and Mighty Gust

For being the two most important heroics in competitive Heroes for nearly a year. Sorry Void Prison, you don't make the cut this year.

Global Heroes

DRAMA OF THE YEAR

DRAMA OF THE YEAR

Arthelon's Practice Schedule

All it took was one Redditor to point out some antics Arthelon mentioned while he was streaming one day. Quotes include comments like "When I watch Rich play, I tell myself ‘ok so he practiced that’. One hour of practice and I could do that". Considering the state of North America v. Korea in 2016 we can all agree it might take a little over an hour to improve to the level of Korea.

At this point, it doesn't really matter if Arthelon was being totally serious or if his remarks were just off-hand banter. The timing was just right to cause a firestorm of criticism, memes, and infinite references throughout the entire year every time an NA Team lost on the international stage. The arrogance of the comment left the community with a bad taste in their mouths and was the perfect ironic backdrop to a year of NA dissapointment.

Lucifron and Vortix leave Heroes

At the time of their prime, Lucifron and Vortix were considered to be some of the most strategically advanced Heroes players around. Their sudden departue permanently crippled Team Liquid and weakened the entire EU region.

Arthelon's Practice Schedule

MOST INFORMATIVE STREAM

MOST INFORMATIVE STREAM

McIntyrelol

McIntyre has been playing Heroes competitive for about as long as anyone could have. As an early pioneer of the NA scene, he has seen countless metas come and go. All of this becomes evident once you start watching his stream. Accompanying his GM level play is insightful commentary and near constant talent discussion and appraisal. He explains why he picks a talent and then calls out when it was useful or the times it wasn't.

McIntyre has a habit of picking one Hero for a day and meticulously playing that Hero, changing the builds and assessing whether or not his playstyle is working. His YouTube content and stream are filled with in-depth information and is a crucial stop for the Heroes player looking to improve their game.

FollowGrubby

For taking the time to go over every patch note line-by-line and answering viewer questions exhaustively.

MOST ENTERTAINING STREAM

MOST ENTERTAINING STREAM

Chu8

The original Nova main, Chu8 has seriously leveled up his competitive accolades since last year. His team has qualified for the HGC and he still retains the ability to climb to the Rank 1 Grand Master spot nearly every season. Despite all of his try hard mentality, Chu8 still has one of the most entertaining Heroes streams around.

Chu8 is the hub of most Heroes in-jokes and his stream following is rabid in their support of him playing Heroes he hates. Chu8 streams for long hours and never really seems tired-- where does he get the energy?

Trikslyr

For playing underpowered heroes at max effectiveness and being a beacon of inclusivity during his friendly, laugh filled stream.

MOST IMPACTFUL HERO RELEASE

MOST IMPACTFUL HERO RELEASE

Li-Ming

Over the course of 2016 there were 15 heroes released. Several of these were strong on release, and ended up being staples of the pro scene for some time, but none can match the impact that Li Ming made the moment she was unleashed upon the Nexus. The incredible damage, never running out of mana, the resets and, of course, “Ess of Johan” made Li-Ming an absolute terror. Out of all of the heroes released in 2016, Li-Ming has seen the most competitive and casual play and is still one of the most popular heroes to date.

Even though she received immediate nerfs, her impact was already felt, and it’s going to take something special for a hero release to have a similar effect.

Auriel

For introducing the concept of Support heroes with playmaking abilities and remaining competitvely viable for quite some time.

Li-Ming

Photos by: ESL, Blizzard, Dreamhack, Inven Global, OGN, Liquipedia

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