StarLadder XII Day 2 - ViCi Gaming and Invictus Gaming dominate
With Secret eliminated it's now time to focus on the upper bracket semi-finals. Cloud 9 are the only Western team still undefeated but face a massive challenge against the new roster of ViCi Gaming while Invictus Gaming and Team MY battle it out to discover who will continue their good form.
Schedule for April 25th:
Team Secret vs. Alliance: 0-2
ViCi Gaming vs. Cloud 9: 2-0
Invictus Gaming vs. Team MY: 2-0
LB Round 2: 17:30 CEST
LB Round 2: 17:30 CEST
WB Final: 21:00 CEST
LB Semi-Final: 21:00 CEST
View our Survival Guide for Day Two
Team Secret drop out of the competition in the opening round and in turn lose their long held position as the top team in the GosuRankings. ViCi Gaming replace them as the top team in the world following their disaster StarLadder performance, but can they make their new position count as they come up against Cloud 9? Expect two close games as we return to the double game format with Invictus Gaming and Team MY battling it out on the second stage. A victory for either team places them into the upper bracket final, a loss places them in a difficult situation of pushing through the lower bracket. Expect some big plays from all four teams.
Main Stage: ViCi Gaming vs. Cloud 9 2-0
ViCi Gaming had an easy opening round against London Conspiracy, so much so that the entire series was completed before Cloud 9 had even finished their opening game. The Europeans are now the last Western team in the upper bracket and face a stern test against the Chinese titans. The past encounters show that ViCi Gaming have won the last three of their previous encounters and GosuBet has them with a large advantage. Cloud 9 looked like they struggled in the opening game against Team Tinker and seemed to throw the game at multiple occasions. Could this mixture of form cost them going up against their Chinese opponents?
Game One ViCi Gaming wins
ViCi Gaming arrived late and looked relaxed out of their usual team uniforms and immediately drafted a Zeus and Sniper combination against Cloud 9's first pick Troll Warlord and Phoenix. Hao's Juggernaut secured first blood against the Europeans and his team claimed an early farm and kill advantage. A counter initiation fissure to force Clockwerk out of his cogs meant Cloud 9 lost four heroes in a bad team fight and ViCi were starting to get comfortably ahead. A team fight around the Roshan pit saw FATA-'s Bristleback earn a triple kill, dispose of the Aegis and Cloud 9 got some much needed gold and experience with an eventual team wipe. By the 22nd minute Cloud 9 had closed the gap after another team fight with heavy losses on both teams but ViCi continued to expand their kill advantage into the mid-game. While lurking around the map avoiding any aggressive pushes, EternaLEnVy's Troll Warlord repeatedly threatened to split push top lane. By 41 minutes ViCi had broken into Cloud 9's base and forced several buybacks, but were unable to claim both barracks. A smoke gank on FATA-'s Bristleback allowed ViCi to push to take down the mid lane and another successful team fight brought a swift end to the first game of the series.
Game Two ViCi Gaming wins
A last pick Broodmother for ViCi Gaming was ready to cause big issues in the second game, but instead the hero gave up first blood long before the runes had spawned and a second time as the laning stage began. Cloud 9 had picked up the Io and Tiny combination with Puck and Phoenix backing them up and looked strong through the early game. iceiceice's Broodmother became a massive problem for ViCi with five deaths in the first ten minutes and even Puck was getting solo kills on Super's Magnus on the mid lane. Hao's Troll Warlord had a 4k net worth advantage but as soon as it came to a big team fight he repeatedly died, notably in a four kill massacre on the mid game by 18 minute. But things gradually turned in ViCi Gaming's favour. A massive team fight saw 9 heroes die on the bottom lane with only Hao surviving, while his counterpart EternaLEnVy just seemed to get caught out repeatedly with a questionable decision to pick up a Blink Dagger on his Tiny. With an Troll Warlord armed with an Aegis able to bring down a tier three tower, Bone7's Phoenix flew into the middle of the ViCi Gaming roster and managed to pull off a great supernova to assist his team in a massive four kill defense and then replicated his success just minutes later. The battles continued through the mid game, but ViCi took a first set of barracks and forced buybacks as they tried to bring an end to the series. Cloud 9 had their backs to the wall following a series of misplays and with the Tiny and Io dead without buybacks Cloud 9 were forced into the lower bracket.
Second Stage: Invictus Gaming vs. Team MY 2-0
The GosuBets have this down to the wire, two teams that are untested with their new roster internationally. Both teams surprised their opponents, Team MY dominated the now eliminated Team Secret in two of their best-of-three series while Invictus Gaming just dominated Alliance beyond all expectation. How will the two Eastern teams fare against each other? Only time will tell, but Invictus Gaming hold a slight advantage and might try to force the tempo on an aggressive Malaysian lineup. But will they succeed?
Game One Invictus Gaming wins
Invictus Gaming dominated Alliance with a Spirit Breaker in their second game but it was Team MY that drafted it along with a first pick Troll Warlord and Windranger. Invictus Gaming instead turned to the Sniper, Luna and an offlane Earthshaker. Invictus claimed first blood before the laning stage had even started and continued to apply pressure on their opponent. With only kyxY's Troll Warlord ahead in farm, Invictus were in in cruise control of the early game and were claiming towers. With kyxY repeatedly shut down on the top lane Team MY were crippled by Invictus's aggression. Clearly ahead but with little objective play, Invictus seemed more content to pluck kills and make their opponent suffer. By 27 minutes the Chinese had taken a first set of barracks while leading by 22 kills and another dominant team fight saw Team MY call 'GG' after only 29 minutes.
Game Two Invictus Gaming wins
Invictus Gaming armed with a Sniper, Morphling and an offlane Earthshaker made sure they had early control of the game. Warding JoHnNy's farm in the jungle, using Faith's Treant Protector to kill the courier to delay Kecik.Imba's bottle. But it was Team MY that picked up an early kill advantage. Their advantage continued through the early game with kyxY's Gyrocopter securing a large lead on the networth charts. But while they struggled to push their advantage, Invictus's Morphling and Sniper were gradually picking up farm as the mid-game approached. With towers going in MY's favour, the game fell into a lull with Invictus Gaming trying to slow the game in their favour. After a series of pauses Ferrari_430's Sniper secured a triple kill as kyxY lost his advantage. A big team fight around the Roshan pit saw Invictus survive an assault from the Malaysians and with the Aegis now in their inventory, Invictus looked likely to secure a upper bracket final position. 45 minutes in and a beyond godlike streak for Ferrari_430, Invictus were almost able to take two lanes of barracks. Forced to defend their base at all costs Team MY played cautiously, the Malaysians had no chance against a farmed Sniper and Morphling combination and the game ended before 50 minutes to push them down into the lower bracket.
Round 3 - Best of 3
Round 3 - Best of 3
Round 4 - Best of 3
Best of 5
More content on GosuGamers