This season will consist of fewer divisions than the previous one, so I'm avoiding the term div<x> and instead using "high-mid-low" while describing my expectation, or in many cases the clans own wishes to where they want to play. I've seen a lot of predictions and summaries about divisions and leagues, and I've found it a little tedious cause of the repeated and famous conclusion: "<insert clan> will most likely do great in <insert div> if they're active and practice a lot." Sigh.. It's a well known fact that most of us get better with practice, so I'll try to keep the repeating stuff out. Originally I was trying to write some small news on as many clans as possible, but it took too much time, so the reviewed clans is mostly focused around old clans doing comeback, new clans and lineup changes that will make an impact on the clan in question. If your clan is left out and most clans are, I'm sorry. My research skills aren't that great.
I would like to start with the most active clan at the moment, as a little tribute to their contribution to the community: Most of us have noticed how much
Fusion is playing these days. In EQL8 they ended first in the group stage in div3 but later got shafted by the admins in playoffs due to inactivity. More recently
moltas has joined. He has clearly boosted the team performance, and is by my definition a team in between high and mid. It's always an inspiration to see squeeze play from over there, and if moltas can stay in one clan, this looks rather interesting. I'm unsure of their expectations for EQL9, but if they end up in the second highest division, I would predict a safe playoff-spot for these guys.
The former e1m5 heroes from early NQR are back. Yes, I'm talking about the Norwegians in
The Axemen. The team consists of 4 of the original players, some former
Naim players and a Swedish mascot or two. They've been trying to fish
TheChosenOne out of the evil Azeroth. He has promissed a comeback for EQL, but how active he'll be remains uncertain. With the returning
Sassa as a TP-preacher (wannabe Link (?)), these guys might be seen in both the highest and 2nd highest divisions if they can get a gold-lineup together. However they might end up with two even teams in the mid-divisions, being a serious threat to anyone with their current activity.
While I was gathering stuff for this preseason-stuff, I had a talk with
Druidz. He expressed his concern with the current activity and skill-level in the highest division. It might look like his wishes has been answered. Cause who haven't noticed
Slackers practicing again? They actually look slightly hot even before the season has started. I'm a little uncertain about their lineup, but I've seen
zero play some lately, and even
javve has been spotted slightly interested in QW again. If
the Viper Squad can keep up the same pace from EQL8 and SR get back into shape, we might see a slightly more interesting final this season?!
Another clan that is stepping up to the highest division is
smala are said to be their lineup. They were rather inactive last season, but whole div2 looked rather dull back then. :/ I'll guess we'll have to cross our fingers that this season will be better, and that Quakeklan will contribute with some activity!
With EQL closing in fast,
Åke Vader has been a busy drone. It seems as if he's trying to form two teams under the rather interesting clan name:
Legion of Doom. One of the teams seems to be a rookie team, but the other looks rather hot. I don't think the lineup is done yet, but
kingpin has been seen practicing under the clantag together with Åke. I'm expecting to see these guys in high or mid, but it's rather hard to tell before the lineup is finished.
On to the clan that reminds me of Vengaboys. A fresh new clan called Vagabond.
sailorman have been looking for a clan lately, but instead figured out they're better of creating a brand new one. It looks like they've been able to recruit
Flintheart. The activity of the last two is questionable, so I think this clan is still searching for one or two additions. As with
the Legion of Doom, it depends on their final lineup to see what division they end up playing in.
Enough of the Swedes already, let's turn our nose towards sauna-land and
Bukkake Samurais. Yes, you heard right. BS is a Finnish comrade-clan with
xenic as the key player.
Rohva among others doesn't hold the same quality, so this clan has expressed their wish to play in the lowest division. That might be tough to justify when they have
xenic in their lineup. But if EQL ends up with 3 divisions, I guess this clan might fall between mid and low. And then if they're allowed to play in the lowest, I expect
xenic to take them to the final.
Comfortably Numb finished first in the group stage of the rather slim 6th division, unfortunately no final was played. This season
faustov has gathered 3 other CN-players and created
segfaulters, and in addition brought in
record. As a consequence they've stepped up their game and will perhaps be seen playing in the mid division next season. Even though half the clan left for
Comfortably Numb is still running strong according to
Jon_Snow, and has recruited some Hungarians from
Lizards in order to be ready for EQL9. I wish them the best of luck.
On the less joyful side we have
the Viper Squad that have some lineup troubles. I suspect
diki will be stepping down for a while due to irl stuff and the fact that it's hard to get div0 practice in the scene at the moment. tVS hopefully have some less active replacements in their roster, but will they dominate as much as we've seen the last couple of leagues? In a spectator point of view, I guess I hope not.
Unfortunately the list of clans we won't see next season is almost as long as the one above.
KOFF seems to have gone into hibernation due to
Gamer being inactive. However, I hope we'll see the remaining active members in alternate clans.
Fragomatic didn't even play a single match in EQL8, so I suspect that they won't even sign up this season. I might be surprised though, since I haven't been in contact with any of the members.
Cannon Fodder and
Suddendeath#2 are two other clans that I suspect have ceased to exist. Some of the players have gone inactive, and others have moved on to new clans.
As an ending I would encourage all active players out there that grasp on to a tiny hope that their teammates gets active.. I see so many people that end up not being able to participate in a league because they kept hoping their inactive teammates would magically come back and rule the world. Go find another clan with active players. Our community needs clans that play regularly, not 50 clans that don't play. Now I'll leave it up to you to speculate who's hot, and who's not in the commentary field.