Columns Purity 2004-now
The columns that Purity wrote for Smackdown from 2004 until this day are in this file, the earlier columns can be found in Columns Purity since wiki doesn't allow a file size large enough to contain all columns.
Day By Day
It has been ages, when I was sitting here for the last time, sitting back, thinking, evaluating, smoking, talking and writing about this game, a game to which some of us dedicated their whole or half their lives. Now I'm here once again, having some spare time, and doing the same as ever...
(This artical comes in two parts, note that it was too long for the database)
Many things have happened in the last eight months since the last update, that much that I won't talk about everything because or, everybody knows about it, or don't want to know about it, or will never know about it. This is probably the worst first alinea ever written in any sort of writing, what means that I can better start with that, which this is all about: QuakeWorld.
There wasn't much left of the season at the moment the last update went online. The playoffs were on the point to start and the division winners were all determined, seems. There weren't many surprises in the first round of the NQR playoffs. We saw cmf facing campbusters in those quarter finals. Few saw campbusters as favourites but of course everybody was cheering for haGGe to take some magic tricks out of his busted backpack. cMF was playing quite easy on Dm2 not having much trouble with Camp until hagge (who else) took over the map by himself and tried to make enough frags for his whole team to win. Too bad that he didn't had his day and Shiva was owning like always, resulting in a 25 frag win for cMF. The second map, cMF's choice, was quite entertaining though Camp was never able to gain a real control over the map and thus closing the gap or pulling of from cMF wasn't possible.
The second game was SR vs EGO-AQ who did a pretty well job in the group games and it looked like their teamplay was growing much stronger the longer the season lasted, though it wasn't very likely that they would stand a chance when playing Slackers. It turned out to be quite another story, AQcould give a proper fight on dm3 and lost with 55 frags. Dm2 was up, this, must have been the best Dm2 I've seen so far from AQ.Slackers had their usual fullstart keeping their name for the infamous SRLUCK. They took a good advantage of their fullstart and were leading with 125-10 after 10 minutes and everybody thought it the game was over and the scores would rise to something like 400 - -10 after 20 minutes. But then Lohjan Dag and Sandyman came in action, AQ took over and spawnfragged twice as fast as SR did and they equaled the game a mere five minutes later. Then God (or Sandymans internet-provider) realised that it wasn't supposed to be that way and sandy timed out. Just before that Diki killed two SR rl's at quad, almost killing goljat who was able to escape with one rock... He killed the timing Sandy (who had armor+rl) and SR took over and won the game. What can I say, SR luck strikes again?
Firing Squad met EarthQuake on their way to the half finals. It was supposed to be an easy game because eQ was mainly a cmt4/e2m2 clan during the season and not known for their outstanding skill on tb3 though they were very well able to win games on those (dm3 vs =X= too easy), which is quite hard if tb3 is only allowed in the playoffs.
FS wasn't able or simply didn't play with their best lineup (reppie, razor, blixem, Drejfus) as Imperator took Drejfus spot for the game. First map was e1m2 where it looked like only Xantom was able to do some harm to FS, the gap between the clans was 60 frags, I think we can conclude that eQplayed well. Second map was dm3 and it seemed that is was a formality that they played 20 minutes. FS was just doing their thing in a pretty relaxed pace while eQ wasn't able to break their ranks the whole game, FS winning 240-60.
The last game, and I thought this would be most interesting of the quarter finals in my last column, was Disorder - Clan-X. X was inactive and not doing well at all at the start of the season but it got way better in the end when the almighty Haj came back to help the guys out. They were able to field a star player team of Haj, Javve, Xerial and Phil (Casper/Vladde). The other two active players in X were Ztorm and Angua, in this game, Angua played because Javve wasn't there. I don't want to say that Angua is a bad player at all but Javve just seems to be better, that's why I was quite disappointed by that, though Angua always was a good e1m2 player. Now e1m2 came up, DS' choice, as always. And I think X surprised friend and enemy by giving DS a very, very close game. Though in some way DS just couldn't lose e1m2. We saw them having overtime when playing Campbusters (but maybe they agreed on that to cheat the fragrank) and still won and now this game... Which DS took away with an impressive three frags. Second map was Dm2 and DS just played it out, very easy (259-37).
With that we have the four semi-finalists of this fifth edition of NQR, cMF, FS, SR and DS. Look at those clans and the others that competed, what else can I say than, boring? It was so obvious which clans would be there as the last four, just like in NQR4. Then, look back a little further when we had LA, SR, cMF, FS, HF, tVS, ToT and RE being the top 8 of Europe and HGC who was challenging all top clans on Dm2. It was a lot more exciting than it was now, in my humble opinion. But let's not whine all the time, about the semi's. Firing Squad was facing Slackers once again and I hope by now that everybody knows that FS always had the biggest trouble with SR and were never able to win of them and just like always 90% of the people were just hoping to see FS pulling off a good game vs them for once. Thus the other semi was cMF-DS and that was a good game even before it was played, two top teams, both seemed to be quite well in shape (DS had some weird results though, but maybe we can blame it on non-serious playing or something likewise).
SR-FS turned out to be just another SR-FS where FS wasn't able to make a fist to SR and they were able to take away the match with, for a semi-final, a lot of ease. Only on e1m2 FS was able to make it quite a close game but then Hib came in and made sure they they didn't play more than the minimum of three maps. Little to say actually, let's hope dat FS will get over their SR problem. But we'll see that later on.
Second game was way closer than this one. The first map was e1m2 where cMF had a long time of control. But after some while Nabbe probably thought: Hey I'm not going to lose from SHIVA! So he got his skills rolling and won the game 1on4. Ok of course he was only able to play that well because he has a great team that did good backup. Second map was dm3, it didn't look very special it was cMF just showing their routine of superb teamplay on dm3 outclassing DS here with 75 frags, but of course it wasn't as easy as it looked. Then Dm2 was to be played to complete tb3, DS was on the better side in this game and was able to take away the victory with some good playing. If you ask me Dm2 is still a map that can go either way with the good clans, this time DS had the better cards and took the map home with 80 frags. Then dm3 came up again where cMF did the same trick as before, played very well, timed pents, kept control and just fragged to a 200-63 victory. The decider, e1m2, both clans good on the map but still DS had the better odds of winning. The game was close, exciting, good to watch with nice actions and DS was able to win with 40 frags.
So the final brought us DS-SR. I don't want to tell much about it, everybody has probably seen it, everybody has probably heard the whine and personally I think that Disorder should have won but well nothing to do about it. Slackers is walking away with the victory again, this time with 6 frags on the deciding map in the final, with ping advantage, winning two maps while 1 of DS' players is lagging like hell (mrlame) and one sick DS player (riker) on the other three.
ClanBase was quite disappointing if you ask me. In the shadow of div1 the other divisions went inactive and too many playoff games weren't played. The division three playoffs were finished on QhLan (I'll have to talk about the lan itself a bit later), in the div2 only one was played while div1 was completed in the way it was supposed to be, only cMF-tVS was a WO in the first round.
Div three. We saw Zoo playing Fudoh2 in the quarter finals where Zoo made some tasty meat balls of Fudoh2 on e1m2 and Dm2 winning with large scores, T-Moe was really on a roll. Then on the second e1m2 fudoh2 was playing way stronger than before when Drugs-Bunny replaced Phanter. They won it with 10 frags. The fourth map, Dm2 again (dm3 avoiding?) was a piece of cake for Zoo going into the semi's of the div3 playoffs! (what an excitement)
The second game was between GoH and JRQ. The games were quite even but it turned out that JRQ had a more solid team and was able to take the series home 3-0 proceeding to the next round where they faced Billy's Burgers (a bit misplaced clan?).
The first half final was Zoo vs T. T didn't have trouble with Zoo on Dm2 and dm3 only on e1m2 Zoo was able to make it a fair fight but still lost with 12 frags. The match BB vs JRQ was ridiculous 3on3 and was easy for BB.
After that it took about two months before the final was played, Billy's Burgers was already dead by then and all their members had other clans (Billy was back in HGC, FlePser went to HP and so on) but during QHlan (where FlePser was too) the final got finally played. It was a true thrilling 5 map game out of which BB got victorious with a 5-10 frag win on the deciding dm3. Congrats BB on winning div3 of CB.
It's too bad that division two wasn't played, only BWL vs ZAK but that can't be recalled as the best game ever so I guess we just move on to the next division, division one.
In the first round cMF got a walkover on tVS, in the other quarter final game Disorder took out Campbusters. Semi-finals were cMF-FS and SR-DS. SR - DS was a quite easy game for SR, it looked like DS would rather have played with nabbe/riker/akke/slime, they didn't field that team once in this semi, only able to win e1m2 losing three other maps bringing SR to the finals.
In the other semi cMF got the better start on dm3 and totally owned FS on it. Then FS was able to take home the second map, Dm2 with 70 frags. It kind of looked like FS had lost their ammo then as they lost the following e1m2 and Dm2 with quite big numbers.
In the final cMF was able to close in a frag or 50-70 twice on dm3 but lost Dm2 with 100. Though they did a very good job on e1m2 where they took SR down too easy ;-)
Enough about last season let's see what happened in between!
The most important thing was that QhLan took place once again and that it was a stunning succes, at least if you ask most gamers I think they will say that. We had the best 4on4 tournament ever on a lan, fielding clans like Lege Artis, Slackers, Firing Squad, Clan MalFunction, Tribe of Tjernobyl, X, The Divines, Griffins Tappra Gossar, EarthQuake, Campbusters, Fragomatic, The Axe Men and so on, almost every div1 team was there and a lot of top duelers made the trip too. It was great to see that many people attending and having such a strong playing field. There were eight people from Holland (of which five played), Pericles from Spain was there (Go Peri!! xD) and quite some finish top players (cMF, Xamp, Goljat and Gamer). I don't really know where to start on covering QhLan and if I should take it to the part of the socializing, the games or both. There where that many games in such a short time that it would take about ten pages to talk about all the games that have been played there, and then I'm only talking about the officials and haven't started on the other games.
Now about the LAN, it was quite hard to decide how to make the review of this lan but I'm just going to make it as good as possible with both personal and overall views of it. Wish me luck...
The competitions started with the 2on2 tournament and there were some surprises there. The biggest surprise to me was that two members of Assasins took out whole cMF in round two and three of the tournament but then got their ass kicked in round four (by sphere/inter). Though the fact that cMF lost of Daan and Callen was a sign for me that they weren't in a good shape, wasn't much impressed after the 2on2's but I was fully aware that they just had an exhausting trip from Finland. Though nothing really special happened I guess, we saw almost only teams that we expected there in the last stages like Dag/Space, Mrlame/Griffin, Gamer/Goljat, Sphere/Interceptor, Paradoks/Xamp, reppie/razor and so on. And as always it was Griffin&Mrlame vs Dag&Space. Like most of the other gamers I watched the final downstairs in the spec-room and Dag&Space were outclassed by Griffin&Mrlame with very small margins. The Dm6 ended 48-40 and the result of Dm4 was 48-41 so GTG had a hard time keeping them down though showed to be the better teams by winning them four maps in a row. Another game that has to be mentioned that was very close was the losers bracket final of Dag&Space vs Gamer&Goljat. G&G won Dm6 62-60 while Dag and Space took Dm2 44-37 and Dm4 59-56.
That must've been enough 2on2 for some time. The 1on1 tournament featured a lot of good duelers and some of the games were so close, this would've been one of the best 1on1 tournaments to watch in ages I guess.
In group 1 there weren't a lot of surprises. In the second round we saw reppie taking down xamp in two maps and fifi kicking out gamer 2-1. After that reppie lost 2-0 of Dag without having a chance of winning a map while fifi won sphere without too much trouble. In the group final dag won fifi 9-8 and 18-9 on Dm6. For the record, the best four players of each group were going to the playoffs, that makes Dag, Fifi, reppie and Sphere from this group.
The second group was a bit closer but I guess we had a little less top duelers in it. In the second round Mutilator won blixem 13-8 on Dm4 and 8-1 on Dm6. At the same time Seese was playing LocKtar: Dm4 11-15, Dm2 11-7 and Dm6 7-10 in favour of LocKtar. That while xterm was stunting versus Space winning the deciding map Dm2 2-0 and with that proceeding to the playoffs. We saw xterm rolling on while playing Goljat 18-8 on Dm6 and humiliating him on Dm2 5 - -1, the other game showed us muti vs LocKtar where LocKtar won Dm2 very close but didn't stand a chance on Dm4 and Dm6. Though xterm wasn't done yet with showing off his duel skills. In the group game final he won Dm4 of Mutilator with 11-6 then lost Dm2 8-2 but was able to win the deciding Dm6 with 9-5. We can say that it was quite surprising to see xterm taking down all the big gamers in this group, first starplayer sassa and after that space, goljat and mutilator. This brought Xterm, Mutilator, Goljat and LocKtar to the playoffs.
Group three, we saw razor, Inter, Janne and the oldskool ZetoR player Mazer here taking away the playoff spots. In the second round we saw razor winning his teammate Drejfus in two maps and Mazer won of Camp-nEpra in three Dm4's. Most surprising (to me) was Mazer giving such a close game to Janne in the round after while I only saw him playing again about two weeks before Qhlan after inactivity since NQR2 or something. In his game with Janne he lost Dm4 twice but quite close 14-7 and 10-6. Inter won his semi final of razor 2-1 and gave a WO to Janne in the final (I don't know why that was).
Finally the last group, there weren't many real surprises only some weird outcomes on maps. Griffin was playing in this group, and so was Fix who showed how good he can duel on Mindtrek lan last year, can't forget the other stars but they'll come in next lines. In the first round we saw Hamorai beating the famous Sandyman 17-15 on Dm4 and 10-4 on Dm6, the other first round games were not interesting as usual. Though one round later we saw haGGe playing Griffin and against all odds, he lost 2-0! Circle was playing Fix, I was watching the game and I was like: Circle is going to take down Fix so easy! But then fix came back very well on Dm2 and was able to win the map 8-6, on the second map Circle totally crushed him (50-8), then on Dm6 circle looked to be on the better hand but I guess he had some bad luck/spawns after which he couldn't come that close again, entertaining game. Nabbe won hamorai 21-18 on Dm4, Dm6 was easy. riker won his game is sqz without any problem. After that Nabbe-riker showdown, now give me one better game please? They played Dm4 twice and I can recommend the demo's, maybe not the best tactical/aim demo's but it was so close, riker showed he was really superior and won both the maps with ONE frag.
Griffin played Fix. On Dm4 fix took Griffin down 33-17 (??? !!), which was very impressive. But after that Griffin won Dm6 20-7 and Dm2 13-1, I didn't really understand how Griffin could play that Dm6 well while he played real bad Dm6's later, but I'll come to that in some alinea's more. After that Griffin didn't have too much problems with riker, this group: Griffin, Fix, riker and Nabbe to the playoffs.
In the first round of the playoffs FS two WO's were given, Griffin got a WO over sphere and inter one over LocKtar. Fix won riker 2-0 with Dm4 being close (19-16) while he won Dm6 with 20 frags difference. Janne took out Goljat on Dm2/Dm4 without too much trouble while mutilator kicked razor to the losers brackets with 2x Dm2. Fifi won of Mazer in two easy maps while nabbe stopped xterm's winning streak by taking him down 2-0; 20-2 on Dm6 and 11-9 on Dm4.
Of course there is one game left in the first round and everybody knows which game that is: dag - reppie. Dag already won of reppie in their group where we were shown that reppie had a lot of problems when facing Dag's ultimate CS style while he's as attacking as it can be. The game started with Dm6 which Dag won with 4-1. Then Dm4 was up, reppie was going crazy and won the map 20-6. Then the decider.... Dm2, it felt like the qhlan finals were being played at that moment, the end was so tense, reppie was able to take him down to 5-3 at last. Dag escaped sometimes with <10h leaving reppie dead or in need of health/armor.
After Dag lost he was whining about the fact that he met reppie in the first round while they met each other in the group, which was ridiculous indeed and I don't understand where it was good for, and he stopped playing 1on1, giving WO in the losers bracket.
About some other first round losers bracket games, riker got wo over sphere and it was mazer who wo'ed dag. In the meanwhile razor humiliated Goljat winning Dm6 33-11 and Dm4 36-9 taking his spot in the next round, the other game that was played was xterm vs locktar where xterm was on a roll again winning Dm6 45 - -5 (!) and taking Dm2 home with 10-2.
In the WB second round Griffin raped Fix on Dm4 with 36-0 (while he lost hopeless in their groupgame??) after that Fix won Dm6 with 26-0 (while he lost hopeless in their groupgame??) and damn the decider was close, didn't really get a good view of Griffin's superiority in the tournament yet as he won 4-3. Then Janne - Mutilator, I must say that it was a good game but Mutilator had some flaws in his game which was very sad, would've liked to see what would've happened then in later stages of the tourney. Janne won Dm4 9-7 and Dm2 4-1. reppie seemed on a natural high as he won Fifi without any problem (Dm4 30-12 and Dm6 20-4). Last second round game is the-interceptor playing nabbe, who won of xterm in the first round (which was quite good looking at his previous results). Though inter turned out to be one bridge too far as inter won 17-8 on Dm6 and 13-8 on Dm4.
Ah it takes so much space to review a double elimination 1on1 tournament, we're up to the lb round 2.5 where where fifi won riker 2-0 (easy Dm4, close Dm6). razor faced nabbe and crushed him on the first dm4, 50-19 but the second was as equal as it can be (with still having a difference in frags!): 23-22. Fix got a wo over mazer, who thought he didn't belong to be this far in the 1on1 playoffs because he got some wo's (of dag the round before). Then mutilator showed his strength by taking out xterm dm4 7-3 and Dm6 22 - -1 (his 45% lg lies fresh in my memory).
Half finals wb, Griffin meeting Janne, 2x dm4, 2x Griffin taking them home both not having loads of trouble. On the other hand reppie who met the interceptor seemed to have lost some of his magic power and crawled through the eye of the needle winning dm4 10-9 and Dm6 9-6. In the lb fifi took out razor 2-0 and mutilator raped fix, not just raped but really raped, maybe Fix was drunk but Muti won dm4 80 - -1 and Dm6 40 - -1.
In the next round of the losers brackets Janne met Fifi where Fifi turned out to be the better player winning 2-0 in quite winning Dm6/Dm2 with 6/7 frags. Mutilator met the Interceptor, both lost a close game a bit unfortunate in the winners bracket and this time Muttan lost at least as ridiculous of Inter, losing dm4 11-12 and Dm6 5-9, Inter making good use of tactical flaws.
We are coming closer to the finals with every word when reppie and Griffin play the winners bracket final where reppie won 20-14 and 39-13 (twice dm4), something that the many Swedish gamers attending to the lan did not like at all. In the losers brackets fifi lost dm4 of inter 34-14 but he bounced back on Dm6 taking it home 12-6 and after that winning the decider Dm2 6-4. After that it was Griffins turn to play Fifi. dm4 was 31-18 in favour of Griffin, Dm6 was 40-2 for Fifi and the deciding Dm2 20-0 for Griffin.
Then the final, because reppie won the winners bracket final he had to win one game (best of three) and Griffin two games to take the title home. The game started with dm4 which reppie won 29-13. After that reppie had the upper hand in the second dm4 but lost it 16-12 (some gay spawns? Don't exactly remember) and the first game decider was 21-7 for Griffin. I can't really say that this was played Griffin style. The games looked somewhat like reppie - Dag on dm4, Griffin wasn't playing as attacking as he normally does, though reppie did. Where I'm going, sometimes I still hear people (especially Swedes) saying that Griffin is the most attacking duel player there is. What I advise, and what most of you probably even seen yourselves, is watch this final. Then you can conclude Griffin ain't the most attacking player out there, in several occasions he was simply cs'ing what was most of the time being called 'playing smart' (so it's justified if Griffin does it and not if dag plays like that? Retards still exist).
Back to the game, I had some talks with reppie before the game and he was like 'If I lose the first best of three then it's over, because it will feel like he already won and I can't anymore', sorry if I quoted you wrong there rep, but I guess it was something like that and it turned out to be that way. In the second match Griffin won 11-2 and 14-5 on all dm4 games again, would have liked to see Dm6 and Dm2.
That was the 1on1 tournament again! Had some surprises, guess reppie surprised a lot of people (everybody I talked with before the tournament thought that he would be like koopa, big fuss and not coming far) by winning of both Dag and Griffin. Xterm won of some good and established players, Dag gave up and so on!
I'll come back with a small report of my view of the lan after I finished covering the tournaments, seems to be a bit easier. As most of you might have understood we got to the last, but not even close to leas, the 4on4 tournament. Let's try to give a quick overview over the the whole tournament not wasting too much time on useless information.
There were eight groups with 3 or 4 clans in them each, of all the groups the first clans went to the big playoffs and the second clan got a spot in the B-playoffs. The eight clans making the main playoffs (listed from winner group 1 - 8) were: FS, SR, =X=, GTG, cMF, Diva, LA and ToT. The clans going to the B playoffs (again listed in order): Campbusters, Axe.se, Hope, hips, ass, F0M, ToTb and eQ. As you see in the B-playoffs more div1 clans than other ones. To give some of the lineups which were very different than those in online playing: GTG with Griffin, mrlame, dakoth and ermac, cMF with fix/fifi/janne/siv, ToT with their (compared with who they field online these days) oldskool lineup of Slabby, Psycho Dad, White, and Oddjob who played very well and beat some top clans (which they wouldn't beat online with other people and different connections). Of course there was SR who had Xamp instead of Hib and LA for who Space played instead of their Striker who would've completed their most used (and best) lineup of dag/nabbe/riker/striker. There was Campbusters with the core Hagge, Eta-Beta and Broning, while Nepra was their fourth player. He tried to smash with keyboard as hard as possible everytime something went wrong, I think he was placing buttons back in somewhere during the third day...
Axe.se had Janozh, Final, Nikke and Xterm, Fom with Manu, Grisling, Offbreed and Molle, eQ fielded Jezaja, Bps, BOOSter, FireHoppir and Strife while there were two teams who were just formed for this occasion making the playoffs (we even sat next to each other): ToT B and a Dutch Hope like team. ToT B had Slime, Freddo, Seese and starplayer Sassa while Dutch Hope had FlePser, Springs, some newb named Purity and the oldskool owner Joint in the group games (really check the demo's this guy is the shit, he was a lot of fun to play with :-) ) and Mazer from ZR in playoffs.
That was more than enough useless information for now I guess, let's talk a bit about the games starting with the B-playoffs. In the first round the four div1 clans won, eQ, Fom, Campbusters and axe took their games home, all had problem with their enemys on dm3 but not much on the other maps. In the second round Fom won 2-0 of eQ winning dm3 with 25 and e1m2 with 100 frags. At the same time Axe Sweden kicked xAmpbusters to the losers brackets. In the first round LB ass won a close dm3 of hips. The other game was pretty funny because ToTb and hope were sitting right next to each other what gave some funny shouts over and back, ToTb winning that dm3 with about 100 frags. It seemed like ToTb grew into the tournament because in the next round they kicked out eQ with 200-90 on Dm2 while Campbusters won of ass.
The winners bracket final was a true thriller with Fom playing axe. It was insane how tight the game was, the first map Dm2. The last five minutes were so close clans not getting out of a five frag difference from another, in this time Fom had control of tele/water but died every time when attacking low-rl. At that point in the game that the game should be decided Fom took over ra-mh (with one minute left?) and was able to win 168-162. After that e1m2, Xterm got the first RL + MH while grisling got Q, Xterm went to quad with RL and got killed by gris who got his pack too. Though Axe had a 20 frag lead in the first 10 minutes and was able to build it out to 40 frags, but then, Fom took over, equaled, and kept it equal to the last seconds of the game when they won 195-191. Demos sure worth downloading for sure.
After ToTb kicked eQ out of the tournament they met Campbusterson dm3. Slime got to play better and better the longer the tournament lasted and it showed off again. At the end of the game sassa said: haha we win! On which Eta-Beta answered wisely: No, slime wins. In the losers bracket finals ToTb faced Axe.se on Dm2. Axe got the better start and had control of tele/water for most of the time but ToTb didn't have too much trouble with staying in touch with them, axe was leading 20-40 frags the whole game and ToTb was able to takeover with three minutes left though unfortunate enough not in control of low-rl/ra-mh so they weren't able to close the gap fast enough.
This gave us a B-playoffs final of Fom vs axe. This time axe won dm3 with a small 40 frags, Fom on e1m2 with only 20 and took the deciding Dm2 home with 90 frags making Fom NQR 4on4 B Champion, congratulations!
There we are, left with the 4on4 playoffs, most of the best teams of Europe, on LAN!
The clan that is the underdog in every tournament, who else than Slackers, met the legendary clan-X in the first round. Surprising everybody, SR WON 2-0! Who could've thought that (GG Goljat/Gamer)!
Second game fs-diva. First map was Dm2, both teams got one rl, diva taking low-rl/sec-ra and FS got high-rl and quad. Because diva's rl got killed by sg's FS was able to settle a bit control in the first minutes but diva didn't wait long with taking over, equaled the scores after 6 minutes and were in control for a very long time after that. It seemed to be game over for fs, they were able to keep the gap not too large for a long time but after 15 minutes the scores were 150- 90 for diva, with only three minutes left FS made the takeover having razor and Drejfus with rl's, scores being 160-105. With two minutes left it was 162-120 and it seemed like diva had won this map. One minute left, FS four rl's and diva slowspawning and hiding, 21 frags lead for diva ... thirty seconds left: diva 162 - FS 152. Seven seconds to go: 162-162, end game diva 162 - FS 165. Damn sick?
On e1m2 diva got a fullstart with Quad, RL and YA and were leading 45-15 after two minutes! Talking about fast fragging. They kept that lead for quite a long time but FS gained more frags along the game, reppie and blixem (go holland!) did a very good job and turned the map around. Diva wasn't outplayed totally and did pretty well keeping the scores close but reppie seemed to be the outclassing factor in the end as FS won 231-188.
cMF-ToT was up next, didn't have a very good impression of cMF yet while ToT did well with their 'old' lineup (slabby, oddjob, white, psycho_dad). On the dm3, Janne got pent, Fix RL and oddjob Quad but he was killed in a few seconds. The only one who got something was Slabby, he managed to get ra and lg but wasn't able to hold cMF away for a long time because they got the second quad and invaded RA with two rl's, White killed one of them and at that moment it was only Janne taking out the enemies while ToT was collection weapons. A few minutes later Oddjob got ra/rl but was killed by two enemies with rl/lg. With that cMF could settle the control, with second pent fifi controlled ya giving a full maplock. cMF was leading with 80 frags when everybody forgot about the third pent, so Psycho_Dad could take it without armor/weapon, Oddjob bored for him but he couldn't break the resistance at ra. Fifi tried to clear pent but was stopped by three ToT players, white ran away with it and cMF retreated to YA which Slabby cleaned with the next quad. ToT was 150 frags behind at that moment so the game was already played. Though they were able to make the scores look better during those last five minutes, making some easy frags. Game ended 216-101.
The next map was e1m2 and I'm writing another book already on those playoffs, way to go. Siv got rl/mh while ToT's Q was killed early by GL. cMF took YA control right away and was leading with 30 frags after five minutes not able to get a full lock with heavy pressure of ToT. ToT had two rl's walking around at any time it seemed but they couldn't take Q's and takeover ya/gl for longer periods. Even when Dad and Vit cleaned YA after 7-8 minutes there were too many enemies to gain control. After 9 minutes nobody had RL and the game was open with cMF leading with 40 frags. Fifi was the first one to get an rl without dying straight away with 10 minutes left, Psycho dad got the next one but wasn't able to attack quad with it, thus cMF still being in control of YA. From the 8 minute mark untill the end of the game ToT was in control of YA for about 90% of the time but they couldn't lock the map to catch cMF and lost the game with 60 frags.
The last but far from and least quarter final game: LA vs GTG. GTG with a way stronger lineup than their online team with mrlame, Griffin, ermac and dakoth, not only stronger than online because of mrlame being there but too because they had 13ms for a change instead mrlame's and Griffins lagging connections where they are used to. LA fielding Dag, Nabbe, riker and Space. On e1m2 Mrlame got rl/mh, Nabbe quad and Space ya/gl. All were killed in the first minute while Griffin took the second RL with which he settled the control for GTG. Control shifting from time to time after that while GTG stayed in the lead, 80-70 with 13 minutes to go, Griffin running quad. It was insane how fast Griffin (plus whole both teams) were fragging, Griffin having 50 frags after ten minutes and the scores were 120-90 GTG still leading while LA had ya control. A few minutes later GTG turned sides again and LA was found on MH, GTG on YA/Q and Griffin even cleaned that after 14 minutes.
Insane fragging was shown by Mrlame and Griffin running Quad after eachother, being stopped by LA from time to time. When one died the other took over in most of the cases. In the meanwhile LA was desperate (and succeeded sometimes) to get people with rl and armor, but were teased by ermac and dakoth constantly at ga/rl. GTG got A LOT of quads in the final part of the game but couldn't be as controlling as before, not having many rl's in team, nor did LA. GTG was in a 3- frag lead for a very long time and the game ended 217-185 with Griffin scoring 83 frags (rank 54) with Mrlame being second with 61 (16), talking about a team focussed and supporting two players ;-)
Second map was dm3 and as we know, this ain't Mrlame's best map. GTG Fullstarted deluxe with rl, pent and quad, LA got the first two LG's. But GTG's RL's were killed by riker (ra/lg) and Dag sneaked with the third RL to pent and took over RA. They held this control, had four players on 2nd pent and took it (score 70-30 at that point). Scores being 140-50 after ten minutes where Nabbe got pent and killed 2-3 enemy rl's at ya after pent ran out. Dag played a great game and showed his skills once again, seemed to own GTG by himself at some points. But then Mrlame got the two quads before pent and killed almost all LA rl's, leaving only Nabbe alive, but he died at pent facing both Mrlame and Griffin with amors and rl/lg. Thus Mrlame got pent and Griffin took RA control (scores 190-90). GTG's control seemed to be safe but LA took over again a few minutes later, not getting the tight grip on them like before, but they could make some frags. Mrlame still running quads, he did quite well, was just killed a bit too often to get LA under. LA won the map 231-121 Dag running away with 81 frags and an astonishing 91.3% effi, guess his backup was good :P
The deciding map, Dm2. riker got low-rl and sec-ra but was killed by Dakoth who got the other RL and quad. GTG got a 45-5 lead when Nabbe got Q and killed almost the whole other team. After the Q it was Mrlame/Griffin vs Dag/riker with RL's. Mrlame got quad while dag and riker could do nothing/little with their rl's. After seven minutes (78-36) LA took control and after 10 minutes the scores were 98-87 still GTG in the lead. After 11 minutes LA took the lead and were still in control. But after a great team effort of GTG they took over, LA probably not being aware enough, LA was leading with 20 frags and griffin got Q while ermac and dakoth saved tele. GTG was leading with ten frags after fifteen minutes, the game was still open for anything. Griffin did some quadruns and the others the hard work, with two minutes left GTG was leading with 60 frags, which ment losers brackets for LA. The game ended with a 216-149 score and Griffin with 80 frags.
This was probably the biggest surprise on the lan. I can only conclude two things from this game: Griffin and Mrlame are two of the best 4on4 players out there with 13ms and "Vi saknar dig Juan".
In the semi-finals FS faced SR. As we know FS always has the biggest trouble with SR and couldn't win any official confrontation between the clans.
On Dm2 SR fullstarted with Gamer getting low-rl/sec-ra and Paradoks taking high-rl/quad. They had a tight grip on ya/water/quad for 8 minutes, but then [fs] all got rl and killed every single SR player, taking over the the map, SR was leading with 75-18 after 8 minutes. After that FS started to frag fast and after twelve minutes they tied the game 83-83. Though with six minutes left SR made their strike back, drej being without rocks, reppie and blixem were on low health and razor was at low rl, Gamer took his chance, took Q and took over. It seemed to be a settled control, but reppie did very good rj'ing to tele-exit from bigroom, taking out two SR rl's, giving teamys the packs, saved tele and blixem got next quad. With three minutes left in the game FS was leading with 50 frags and they won 183-121.
Dm3, Goljat RL, reppie pent and blixem Quad. It looked like FS was going to settle control but Goljat carried his rl to sng and took ra control. Even though SR had ra control FS had more rl's and almost all the quads. FS was in the lead in those first minutes, it looked like the second pent would decide who would get control as FS took over RA just before it, the score was 50-38 at that point, when Xamp got pent with 5h no armor and no weapon, Goljat bored but left no rockets though gamer had 10, Xamp got to ra but reppie killed him when pent ran out. FS had ra control for the next 7 and a half minute, Drejfus got the 10min pent without weapon, then SR took ra over, until last pent, in the five minutes that were to decide the game the control of ra shifted every thirty seconds it seemed. Slackers gave great pressure on quad during the whole match and the game stayed inside 10-20 frags, though FS was able to keep the lead all the time, I think some of us remember this situation in the SD5 playoffs were FS lost their lead in the last minute on both Dm2 and dm3, this time it didn't happen, they could even increase their lead in the last few minutes and won it 164-135! I think this was another surprise because FS never won SR before, then on the other hand is SR not favorite for any match, so it shouldn't have been this surprising.
Then the other semi, GTG-cMF. Mrlame and Griffin showed some awesome skill in their last game when facing LA and everybody was watching to see if they could pull off another stunt like that.
e1m2, ermac got a late rl (nobody spawned it) and Janne took ya/quad. cMF was leading the whole game while GTG was pushing quad from mh/ga, they did pretty well but were not able to take over YA longer than a minute, mrlame just fragging on like always but not being able to make the difference, cMF won 260-165.
Dm3 Siv got first rl, Griffin got pent and mrlame quad. GTG got ra though couldn't run and take out cMF's rl's at YA. GTG was leading with four frags and ra/q control after five minutes when mrlame decided to take quad/ring with 200/200 rl instead of going for pent, thus jarrex got pent, took over RA and YA; a minute later GTG was without rl's, game tied. Halfway the game cMF was leading with 42 frags when Griffin came from YA with rl/lg, took pent/quad and cleared ra. The problem was that cMF was able to keep three weapons in their team and got ra back again 2.5 minutes after pent but couldn't settle it under their control as ermac did the job for gtg. cMF had increased their lead to 63 frags after 15 minutes, mrlame got pent, quad and rl but Fix was at ra-top with eyes and killed him. Control went from side to side in the end, 188-125.
I didn't spend a single word on the losers-brackets yet where one map decides who wins the game. In the first round LB games DIVA won of =X= on Dm2 with about 100 frags. The other game was LA-ToT. LA got fullstart control deluxe on dm3 and were leading 70-7 when ToT took over with second pent and after 10 minutes ToT was still in RA control, they got the third pent scores LA 90 ToT 75. ToT closed in to 10 frags but then riker took over RA when Slabby and White were shouting at each other. Three minutes later Oddjob took the last pent, brought it to ra, got RA/RL but then faced two LA lg's and it was game over, LA won with almost 100 frags.
In the second round LB's LA met SR on dm3. SR got RL, Pent and LG and LA got Quad. It looked like SR luck owned it again but Dag and riker took out all SR rl's with their shaft's. Dag was unlucky killing Xamp at second quad without getting his rl nor the quad which champ got half a second before he died. After five minutes the scores 37-28 for LA and Dag got pent with GL. Things were looking bright for LA at this point in the game. They had three rl's, pent and SR had no weapons, but then the tables turned (SR LUCK?). Champ killed nabbe at YA he got killed right after, then Paradoks spawned Nabbe's pack, killed both riker and Space and ran away with 11h, gg, la was leading with 20 frags at this point. Dag took over RA with a Q-run a few minutes later but when he tried to clean YA he was a bit unlucky that all SR rocks full hitted him (oh sorry, that is of course skill only). SR was leading after nine minutes in the game and got the third pent too, SR was just cruising because LA couldn't get frags, finally LA got Q/RL, got killed by a grenade in the back. After 15 minutes SR was leading with 35 frags Xamp had Quad and SR had ya under control, Dag was waiting at lifts, then Xamp came up and killed Dag with a few cells in the last second that his Quad lasted. Paradoks took the pent and SR didn't face much resistance in the last five minutes, oh well LA took out all SR rl's when riker gave away his pack to Goljat who got RA and settled SR control. SR won 198-130.
The other game here was GTG vs Diva. Everybody wondered how good GTG would be able to do after winning LA and losing cMF. Diva threw out e1m2 and GTG discarded dm3 leaving Dm2 to play. Mrlame got low-rl+sec-ra, Dakoth got high-rl+tele-ya and circle ran away with Quad, though he couldn't run very far as Dakoth killed him. GTG used their start well and were leading 52-6 after three minutes. Halfway the game Diva placed their takeover, GTG was leading with 60 frags at this point. Diva closed in and were about to take the lead when gtg kept fragging, two minutes long the game was inside three frags and all the time gtg was leading. In the last two minutes of the game GTG did what they had to with some good Q-runs from Griffin, taking home the game with 149-131.
It was time for one of the last games in the tournament, GTG-SR, only four clans were left at this stage, those two in the LB and cMF and FS in the WB. Paradoks got low rl and RA while ermac took quad, high-rl (with Q-trick) and killed Para making the start pretty well. After seven minutes SR took over (score 70-25) and five minutes later they equaled the scores 90-90, and increased theirs constantly. GTG's score was still stuck at 90 after 16 minutes while SR (xamp) were (was) just fragging along and they won 206-129.
The winners bracket final brought us the game cMF-FS, FS surprised everybody by taking out SR against who they normally don't stand a chance while cMF won GTG in the semis who caused another upset by taking out LA.
The game started with Dm2 where Silver got low-rl and with that sec-ra and quad because nobody went through tele, about five people were trying to do a quadhop. But razor went through finally, got ya/rl and let silver kill his rl. After that cMF was in a good position, got 3-4 rl's with at that point reppie and blixem putting pressure on them.
After four minutes FS took the control while they were about 25 frags behind and tied the game after eight minutes. Then when ten minutes of the map had been played FS was without rl's and cMF got four, locking the map (including low -rl for a short time). With five minutes left it looked like FS would gain control (they were 40 frags behind), short after drej almost bored his quad, the minute after reppie took quad, had three rl's in their team, only reppie without one; he died when entering low-rl. Next minute reppie did have rl and shot his way into ra-mh. One minute left 154-138 in favour of cMF when drej and raz died at low, cMF four rl's FS two. reppie killed Siv giving razor rl. Thirty seconds left, cMF 156-145 FS. razor quad, goes to path, meets Janne with rl and decides to go via big, eats some rockets from low goes back to plats and eats a rock again then dies by Fix rocket. cMF took a close game home 159-148.
Dm3, razor spawned lift, sg'ed fifi, who spawned ya, in-air and snatched pent. Silver got the first rl and drej ran away with ring/quad/ra. Silved died by blixem's ssg at ya right away. Things are looking good for FS as they have the only two weapons in the game, razor with rl and reppie with lg, reppie is being sg'ed to death and razor can't get quad, Janne steals it and razor bored at ra-low. But then when two minutes were passed by, FS has three rl's at the ra side of the map with reppie taking quad. Almost all the players were at second pent, reppie was able to take it and got Drejfus to bore for him when he tried to safe ya in which he didn't succeed. At that point it was blixm holding ra and running quads while the others tried to get and hold a weapon and armor at the same time. At half-time FS was leading with 57 frags, FS got two rl's, blixem at ra and razor at ya, cMF had one, fifi at lifst, fifi bored at rep and rep spawned the pack but was unfortunate because razor got pent and killed both him and an enemy. At that point things turned around, blixm died because fifi could steal a rl, cMF got quad and FS was without weapons when reppie got killed at sng.
With seven minutes to go FS was leading with fifty frags while cMF got a total maplock. At last pent Janne was keeping lifts, reppie jumped out of window with mh/rl, JX mid-aired him, hit him at the ground again and took pent. The lead of FS decreased to 28 frags at this point so they really needed that pent to get back in the game. cMF got the lead with three minutes left, were running quad and had both ra and ya safe. FS got some weapons in those last minutes but couldn't do enough to take ra or quad, cMF took it away with 172-153 with blixem having the best efficiency (he was doing ra for like 10 minutes).
That gave us th final of cMF vs SR where they played dm3 as first map. Goljat got the first RL, Fix delayed and took pent while Silver got quad. Fix killed Goljat's rl with some help of his team entered ra but was surprised there by a 50% LG of Xamp who had ra/mh/lg. Paradoks got the third rl. Things were looking good for SR, Paradoks with rl/ra, Xamp ra/lg and Goljat ya/lg but then four cMF players went for quad where only paradoks was of SR, fix got it, Q ssg'ed Goljat at ya, took his RL pack and cleared RA. That was the start of the Fix show. It was like the inhuman skills he pulled off on Mindtrek were back for this game, the fast paced game, almost looking to be too nervous (not being able to stand still) playing style and good aim showed off. cMF was in control of the map, Fix running quads raking up the frags. He only died once due to Xamp's shaft until the game was halfway where he died at window while Fifi got pent. cMFwas leading with 66 frags at the time. When there were only five minutes to go cMFwas leading 172-55. Fix got the last pent, it was rather weird as he was standing on paradoks and fifi's heads when he got it, anyway fifi bored for him and they just went fragging on.
The last minute was funny, cMFdecided to enjoy the sauna at pent, when Goljat joined them until Xamp came in with Q/LG, first he was looking around to see what to do, then shooting three cMF'ers with something like 4 cells, final score 219-83.
Second map was e1m2, Paradoks got RL and MH, Goljat Quad but was killed and Janne took YA and with that the second RL, killing Paradoks at YA and taking the next quad. cMF got the early YA control with that. After five minutes the score was 63-32 and cMF was still in control of YA, SR was putting pressure on them, especially on quad but they couldn't get there yet. Though a minute later Goljat got a YA killed a cMFrl at start and took the next RL that spawned. Though in the minutes after neither of the teams could either decrease cMF's lead of increase it. cMF was leading 30-50 frags the whole game and it ended like that, 200-153 for cMF. Taking away the QhLan6 4ON4 tournament.
I really looked forward to this tournament, for months actually, and I can't say it let me down. Might've been nice to see LA with Striker and SR with Hib, but the competition wasn't any worse without them. Really great games were played there.
Now I'll go and tell some of my own experiences of the LAN. I agreed with FlePser and Springs to go QHlan, which was rather extraordinary because how nerdish are you to go and drive from The Netherlands to Sweden to visit a QW lan. I surprised myself here and we actually did it. The plan was to drive to Kopenhagen the first day to visit the city, going out there and sleeping well for the last time before the hard grounds of the lan. Things turned out a bit different.
First FlePser and Springs were delayed a bit, then I crashed our car (just the way it should be) and we got a way bigger car, in which we could even sleep, some hours later and that while I only had to pay 136 euro, now how much better does it get. That meant we finally left at 18:00 the day before the doors would open with a trip of 1200 km in front of us.
The trip itself was rather well, the worst thing was that it was snowing all time in Germany, the only country where we could've driven faster than 120km/h. It was rather funny that was drove the wrong way, we were planning and driving into Denmark from Germany and then taking the bridge from Kopenhagen to Sweden, when we thought we should have entered Denmark already we suddenly drove into a place where a ferry went from Germany to Denmark. In the middle of the night, in the freezing cold, three Dutch guys in t-shirt were looking at a map where they were, walked back and stood in the line between the cars to pay their tickets. Oh my ^_^
The boat turned out to be rather luxe, there was even restauration where we bought some food and we thought Paradoks brother was behind working there aswel because he looked a lot like him, msg me if it was really him Paradoks, he said he never heard of someone called Paradoks tough so I fear the worst.
We drove on to Kopenhagen and went over the bridge. Just when we thought we entered Sweden safely some people with fluoresce yellow shirts jumped on the road and stopped us, we were caught by the douane!
We had to unpack the entire car and while they were looking what kind of boxers we brought with us, we were lead away to some other rooms where we got stripped. Springs and FlePser had to go first, I think they had something with underwear because they had to undress until they only were wearing that. I was rather lucky I suppose, wearing my boxer over my pants so I didn't have to drop them. It was alright, only fucked up that we had to pack the whole car again, they could've at least done tht in return for us stripping in front of them.
Anyway enough crazy things! We just drove on from then through the badlands of Sweden in the darkest hours of the night. I think we saw Stockholm at 8 in the morning, I got the last nightly driving turn and wasn't able to sleep in the car (my god I spoiled myself in the past years) so I was pretty bad already when we found the Galaxen halls. We knocked sometimes on the front door but nobody heard us, walked some rounds around the building, threw some snowballs, I smoked some cigarettes while trying to stay awake and then we decided to go and drink something in the very nice coffeeshop (unfortunate enough not a Dutch one) where we woke up a bit. An hour or maybe a small two hours later we got inside.
When we arrived we thought we would be the first to be there, expect for the crew of course. Though it turned out that razor, reppie, blixem, Rappie, Cure, SideFX and Pericles already arrived there a few days earlier. Oh, of course I can't forget another one that was there already: LINK. So with us being there all non-Finnish foreigners arrived. I must say, I haven't followed all the tournaments too well as I was more socializing, smoking and having fun than playing QW, I think I played two maps in the first two days.
It really was great to meet a lot of the people you are normally talking with or playing against, I think I've missed many though because I didn't get to talk with everybody who I wanted to talk with at all. That was quite a shame, so next year please make QhLan7 seven days long! Thanks already :p
About the lan itself, I must say, if you ask me the organisation was done very well, of course there were flaws and most of them were the same as those in earlier events, but I know that those will be helped out of the world, sooner or later.
The venue was nice, there were enough eating places inside 100 metres and you could buy some food and drinks on the lan itself. I remember White said he wouldn't come if he had to sit on the places near the toilets but I think those were the best because it wasn't very noisy there, you had more space and especially it wasn't as hot as inside the big room.
About the people, one of the first things was that I thought that Pericles looks like Ral, yes the soccer player, and I even heard more people thinking that, despite his somewhat clumsy english he was understandable and a very nice person. I sat next to Manu (from Fom) in the hall at first, well didn't really because I was never playing but my pc was parked there, when I found out that Link and Sandyman's screaming was too loud to handle so when the 4on4 tourney started, or actually before it, I moved my pc to the toilets where all the ToT guys were sitting, just like Springs and FlePser. The ToT guys were a story apart like they always have been, but nevertheless as fun as always. Of course there was Slabby who screamed even louder than Link and Sandyman together and then of course the replies of White, Oddjob and Psycho_dad which was good to watch :-)
Can't forget Sassa of whom I always had somewhat of a distorted view because of his stupid commentary on games (you know, sixth map in NQR finals and Secret RL on Dm2) but when meeting him on lan he turned out to be great, always fun when doing things with him.
We had the LA guys he missed Striker for sure, we had Hellfire who didn't team together, there were the SR guys of which only the headadmin of QW Paradoks himself could speak english, and he did a good job on that I must say.
Besides those there was an Iranian invasion with players like Xerial, Past, Vortex and of course our own Springs (there were way more btw). We saw mrlame laming around like he should, griffin with his clean cfg, fov 90 r_drawviewmodel 1, reppie surprising most swedes with winning of Dag playing with some crap 15 monitor. Drejfus who had the best computer ever, with a virus, it took two or three hours to get a clean install which delayed the 4on4 tourney for ages, but it was np!
I forgot loads of people, we couldn't have missed Panic who brought entertainment here and there and Hagge who sat behind his pc with a grumpy face all lan, Nepra who tried to break his keyboard in two because camp lost all their 4on4 games, raket who tried to find some ping whine but that turned out to be rather hard and I can't forget our dear 4on4 teammates Mazer and Joint. You guys probably think who the **** is Joint, well Joint guys, didn't play qw for 5 years, played with SM in the old days and had the biggest trouble finding his way on the maps, but he was a great guy, we lot's of laughs with him :-)
Anyway, let's move on a bit. I can't exactly remember when the 2on2 tournament was played I only remember that I was sleeping during both the 2on2 and 1on1 sign-ups. But I think 2on2 was the first day and 1on1 the second.
One of the best things was that we went to Stockholm. I agreed with the guys from ToT (Slabby, Psycho_Dad, Oddjob and White) to go out on the first night, after that some guys of f0m and diva said they would come too and Sassa agreed with the IRAN owners that they would go with him. Though instead of 30 people only 8 went, but it wasn't less fun :-)
We were there with Sassa, Springs, FlePser, Pericles, Rappie and SideFX and drove with two cars to Stockholm. I haven't got a clue anymore how why came where but I believe we were just walking around a bit and went into a random club to drink beer ^_^ which is always good of course. I heard later that it was a club for people who live in Stockholm and speak at least two languages fluent, anyone except Swedish. You understand, it was a high-class place. It was very good to be there at least, finally a couch, beer, cigarettes, friends and women, what else can a man wish. Talking about cigarettes remember us getting them Sassa? Sorry just a personal note here, was a funny moment there :-))
I haven't got a clue what I've done the second day, I think I was just at the lan sleeping through the 1on1 signups, talking with people and smoking with ToT and reppie outside, almost like another day on irc but then facing one another. Can't say it was bad though, the third day was almost the same, next time I'll go a week or two to Sweden to go out more and see if there are good clubs and women, sounds like a plan to me.
In the last night after the 4on4's I went to hang some in the spectator room where we watched some demo's with Drejfus, Mutilator, blixem and Sassa commenting live. I must say that was the best commenting I ever heard of Sassa, it was great, I laughed my ass off for ages while we were watching how Griffin was playing Lege Artis duel style owning them on e1m2 and Dm2.
In the end it was time to pack the car and drive home again but we were all so tired, I socialized all lan, FlePser became the King of QhLan6 because he didn't play for about 10 hours (sleep) on the entire lan and Springs was somewhere in between. Because of that we decided to take Sassa home and slept at his place as returning favour and man we needed that sleep. After the lan FlePser stayed a day of four with me to have a QHlan afterparty and that wasn't bad either.
At least I can look back at a good time of winter fun and I hope everybody feels the same.
Once again the update of my column took way too long, maybe I should push myself on making one every one or two months that would be so much better than this, there are loads of tournaments played in since I updated for the last time in the end of november last year. I think that I will not talk about every tournament as much as about another because the update will be a page or fifty then and nobody will read it, except for the few maniacs that really love the game and have too much time.
Let's start with the usual things. Akke, slime and dag decided to put up a ladder because Link's project Team/Up is delayed for ages due to an incompetent designer. The activity was huge and there were quite some nice games played until aKKe said 'Quakeworld is dead.' and killed the league.
Then there were two national leagues, TTDML as a follower of the famous UKCL and GeQL, going in the footsteps of DECL.
After the first week of TTDML, two of the div1 UK clans went inactive, numeric and gauntlet, they were replaced by Dutch hope and the german clan Porn. The league was played on one UK map per match, the mappool was: ukclDm2, e2m7, ukcldm6, punish, ukpak2, e2m2 and in the 4v4v4v4 final qffldm2. Turned out that porn was rather inactive and didn't win a game, Dutch hope on the other hand did a rather good job beating porn twice, winning 4k on ukpak2 which was unexpected and lost of them on e2m7 because Serox owned. JAMS put them back in their place on ukcldm6 but then hope struck back on e2m2 taking control from start and raking up the frags, especially murdoc.
In the other games 4k didn't have much trouble with their opponents, got two wo's from porn, took down jams on ukcldm2 and had a very nice game vs jams on punish which they only won with 35 frags. When the final arrived 4k was leading with 16 points, jams with 12, hope with 11 and porn with a rather disappointing 3 points.
It looked like 4k had already won the league because the last team in the 4v4v4v4 final would still receive one point. The final turned out to be a very close ffa game, hope won with 304 frags followed by jams with 276 and with a single frag less 4k in third, porn was last once again with 275.
After the game the admins were very generous towards hope and let them play porn on ukcldm2, if they'd win the game they would have 18 points, just like 4k, and in case winning with more than 102 frags they would be champions on frag stats. Hope took the map home 265-39 which was enough to win the tournament what can be called surprising.
In div2 we saw fips, ts, dh and a2k fighting for a good ranking. It turned out that fips totally dominated the season took home the maximal 22 points. They didn't have trouble in any game except for one, when they were facing the rtcw clan of crit who almost won them on e2m7.
Tortured Soles and DH were in a great battle for the second spot, their game on ukcldm6 was only won on four frags by DH but TS won e2m2 pretty easy. When the final was coming up both clans had 12 points so the final would decide who would get the second place. The final turned out to be a bit different than expected, fips won, that wasn't the unexpected part. Though, a2k became second, TS took the third spot and DH was last with only three people playing, giving TS the second spot in div2 with 14 points, DH got 13 and a2k ended with 8.
The other tournament was GeQL which was rather great. We saw three legendary German clans coming back, SK, iBh and TDI. The form was a ladder with fourteen clans. iBh dominated the league winning all their games 2-0 with 9719 frags for and 2767 against. The 'final' of the league was iBh-TDI, iBh with reppie, ayv, 123 and mae and TDI with blixem, darkwarrior, raptor, uig (on Dm6) and duce (on Dm2). The Dm6 was very close with iBh taking a small lead from the start while TDI was fighting very well during the whole game keeping the scores close while iBh had the upper hand, scores iBh 370 - 350 TDI. Then on Dm2, TDI's choice, Dark spawned water, went through tele which an iBh player opened, took high-rl, quad and killed the low-rl spawned iBh player who just came out of secret ra giving TDI control. After about ten minutes Maestro from iBh took Quad and made a takeover, from that point the game became really tense with iBh coming out as the winner with 179-158 not losing a single map during the whole tournament.
Many other things were played, like International Bot Challenge where we could enjoy the LG skill vs a frogbot from people all over the world. It was refreshing, the interceptor won, thumpa from the us was second and react from austalia became third. You can find three south american, one south american and two north american people in the top ten, shows the world wide aspect of the tournament, good to see the skill of some players from outside europe if you ask me.
In the American 1on1 tournament that was held by the qw.nu crew was that exactly the same thing. Quite some of those games were very exciting and really good. We saw some top duelers like Def, KovaaK, fiend and yogic enter the tournament. For me the highlights here were the games kovaak-yogic, kovaak-fiend and fiend-def. High class qw was shown in more than one game, definatly worth checking out demo's from. Can't forget, Def won the tournament winning fiend in the final, while kovaak/squeeze were the semi-final losers. Quite some people would've liked to see kovaak in the final instead of fiend because of his great Dm6 play but he couldn't get past yogic in the semi's, won Dm6 9-6, lost Aerowalk 12-14 and dm4 7-15.
Survival (second part of Day by day)
We saw <a href="http://www.quakeworld.ru/" target="_blank">qw.ru</a> organising a 1on1 tournament with eight players, all from another country, with reppie, avenger and arnette taking the three highest spots. Arnette won Avenger 3-1 after which he met reppie in the final and actually won him there 3-2, reppie was lagging but didn't feel like playing on another day. About a week later the Grand Final was played and that time reppie didn't lag and took the tournament home, arn won dm4 18-6 after which rep won aerowalk (31-5), dm6 (25-2) and ztndm3 (15-9).
The idea behind this is nice and the <a href="http://doom3r.qhlan.org/2on2/2on2.html" target="_blank">2on2</a> tournament which is running at the moment with top teams like griffin/mrlame and goljat/gamer in it.
There were some smaller tournaments held in the meanwhile, one of the more entertaining and in the picture ones was <a href="http://www.quakeworld.nu/index.php?page=news&id=429" target="_blank">Povdmm4</a> where some of the finest pov players fought for the title. UL, Xamp and Inter we invited while others tried to take the fourth spot in the main event. The last four in the qualifying rounds were Dag, Xerial, Vladde and Mirage. After Dag won of Mirage and Xerial showed off when playing Vladde Xerial (surprisingly?) took out Dag and claimed the last spot in the tourney.
There it turned out that Xamp had an off-day (or should we say he couldn't cope with the level of playing? Who knows) and didn't win a single map. Xerial was surprising though, he won Xamp (like they all did), had very close games with Inter (he lost with 1 and 2 frags) and even won a map of UL. The best games were UL-Inter where UL won 2-1 every map decided on a single frag, it definatly is something to be repeated with more competitors, I expected the second part of this tournament quite some time ago but nothing has been mentioned about it yet, arrange that please :-)
Have to mention here that there has been an <a href="http://www.the-endif.tk/" target="_blank">endif tournament</a>. The idea was nice but the groups were pretty weird divided. In bracket A we saw Camel winning 2-1 of Xantom in the final while in bracket B UL took out Molle 2-0 in one semi while Inter won Arnette 2-0 in the other. After that UL took Inter out 2-0 kicking him out of the tournament. In Bracket C Kzuu won the final 2-0 of Fausto giving a final of UL, Kzuu and Fausto. The final wasn't very hard for UL, he won both his games 3-0, Camel and kzuu didn't even play their game.
Not to forget, a dm2 duel tournament took place with some big names like Kippo (!), Shiva, Billy and UL. After some good dm2 action UL won the tournament. The same crew organised a dm2dmm4 tournament (where Insane showed his insane skills) and a <a href="http://www.students.tut.fi/~leppan36/bracket.html" target="_blank">dm2 2on2 tourney</a> which is still running at the moment but heavily delayed due to summer. In the 2on2 tournament we see loads of good teams.
In the Second round Paradoks and Xamp were surprised by Diki and T-Moe (Matinkyln MILTON and Lohjan DAG) who beat them 2-0, though they couldn't keep it up when they lost the round after of Xantom and Booster. ToT (Psycho_Dad and Oddjob) and FS (reppie and Razor) made their quarter finals in their part of the brackets but FS got a WO, loads of WO's were given because of the inactivity, which is pretty sad. After that we saw HGC (Insane and Billy) taking a WO on Sandyman and Havz and another one on FS what earned them a spot in the winners bracket final. Before those two WO's they won their games of Hagge & Zhin and XN & Slam.
In the other half of the winners bracket Shiva and Fifi won of Slash/Mja, Griffin/Slugfest, Masai/Boome and Nikke/Xalibur before entering the WB semi's. Nikke and Xalibur were looking good before facing those two by giving Stalin & Pusling and Cougar & Harvester a ticket for the losers brackets.
Xantom and Booster were having a fine tournament, they won of Mazer & Hixo and Diki & T-Moe who took out Paradoks and Xamp. Their opponents in the next round were Gamer and Goljat. They played their games with Apokalypze/Dakoth and Mega/Zarrow, after those games Xantom/Booster were the next victims of this duo.
This leaves two games in the winners brackets, Game and Goljat vs Shiva and Fifi and after that the winner vs Insane and Billy, both should be high class games. In the losers brackets we've got Xantom/Booster, Cougar/Harvester, Nikke/Xalibur, Milamber/Orion (who came the whole way in the LB, losing their first game of Gaara/Bastard), Oddjob/Psycho_Dad, XN/Slam and reppie/Razor left. Still ten games have to be played here before the winner of the LB is decided. Let's hope every game will be played and that no WO's will be given.
The Trickery crew that organises TTDML is running a <a href="http://tdc.daddied.com/" target="_blank">duel tournament</a> too with dm2, dm4 and dm6 as only maps allowed. Some good duelers attended like LocKtar, Xalibur and Oddjob. LocKtar didn't have much problems in his games. Only Predsr gave him a hard time (with 20ms better ping though), dm2 was rather easy but dm4 ended 16-15 in favour of Predsr and dm6 12-11 for LocKtar. Oddjob was doing well by taking out Xalibur 2-0, 14-4 on dm6 and 13-9 and dm2, but then lost to Ender in the semi's 2-1. On dm2 Oddjob didn't lag yet and he won 16-3, on the later maps he got some nasty PL which might have cost him the win, dm4 21-17 and dm6 18-12. The WB final was LocKtar-Ender, LocKtar won dm2 22-12 and dm6 22-13.
In the meanwhile uiG was storming through the losers brackets, after he lost of LocKtar in round two, where he beat oosi, canius, snake, sae and grind to put himself in the last four of the tournament. Just like uiG, Xalibur lost in the second round (of Oddjod). He met Gaz in his first LB game who didn't give him too much trouble. His next opponent turned out to be Predsr who lost his deciding map of LocKtar with one frag. Predsr once again got some nice ping advantage (maybe the admins favoured English servers whenever an English player was on because the league is English, or the other players are just fine with a worse ping) won dm4 14-10 but couldn't keep up with Xalibur on dm2 and dm6, losing respectively 8-5 and 13-8. Xalibur was going on with winning Unicorn and he got a rematch vs Oddjob, who was lagging once again and won dm6 pretty easy 28-9. Even though Oddjob had this lag he could put up a great fight on dm2 which went in double overtime after which Xalibur could secure his victory.
This meant that the last game before the LB final was played between two guys who came all the way from round 2 in the LB. uiG-Xalibur, the game started with dm4 where uiG was able to play some impressive quake and won 14-10 but Xalibur didn't let him bother that and cruised to the LB finals when he won dm6 18-7 and dm2 20-7. Now in the LB final Xalibur had to play Ender, the game wasn't as close as you might expect when there are only three players left in a tournament but Xalibur was able to win 18-5 and 21-2 on dm6/dm4.
The final Xalibur vs LocKtar is still to be played, go and watch it when the Trickery crew puts up some cams, it should be a nice showdown between two good duelers.
It looks like I really have to start with the part I'm looking up to most of all, <a href="http://www.nqr.nu/" target="_blank">NQR</a>. Once again I should have done a mid-season update but it didn't come to it. I hope I am able to write some about everything. I promise you guys, next season I will write more often and especially when the playoffs are going on (at least if Smakdown will be on track again!).
Working from bottom to top seems to be the best way once again, here comes in division five!
When the season just got underway Veni Vidi Vici and Batida Swing, from Holland and Belgium, were looking very strong, by winning all their games they were the two biggest candidates to win the division. When they had to play BS wasn't able to field their whole first team but VVV played very well. Dm2 was a prey for BS after which VVV won cmt4 and e1m2 with solid teamplay. About halfway the season BS became pretty inactive and wasn't able to play all their games, their best player, Crusader (ex-4k Tryso) only played one match in the whole season.
Later on Oblivion went active after some years of inactivity, yes Oblivion, the clan with e3m2 as homemap, the one where Dreejfus used to play. They were playing very well in the groupgames and were able to win the division, only losing of VVV and BS. They had one point more than VVV who lost of Danube and Boeg. The game vs Boeg was rather weird, all players had ping 40+ only Stax of Boeg had 26. Boeg won e2m2tdm with 6 frags (174-168), with Stax making 60 and dm3 150-123 with Stax scoring 55.
Going on two division four. We saw quite some former division seven teams here, Assasins, FIPS and POFF. Assisins showed last season that division seven wasn't the right division for them at all and they proved themselves worthy in division four. Though the top squad here was Jihad Warriors with Fausto who signed some top players for his team, making it more like a division two clan than division four. The polish players Ecto (ex-BAD div3) and Docent (ex-HGC div1) were with them, together with evil_b and Springs (ex-hope div1) and last but not least optimizer (hope now). I think this should say enough about the strength of their team. This wasn't even their whole squad, they had Blu, Mixu and Envi too, when these three were playing together with Fausto, then they would have had a division four team. They even managed to lose a match (of Osams) because only one of their good players was in there (Optimizer), sided by Envi, Fausto and Blu.
The fight for the second place was a tight call, Assasins ended with 34 points while Osams and Jgarna had 32. hHh was a candidate for winning the division in my opinion but they didn't field their best team (Slash, Jogi, Tib, Duce, Dopeskills) every game so they lost some here and there. Respect goes out to GoH, the oldskool clan which clearly had trouble playing in this division, playing 11 games and losing all, light points for them were winning e1m2 of ZR and SM.
Talking about ZetoR, of course they made their comeback this season, there was little left of the team that rocked NQR2 and Villains1 but it was good to see others playing again. The guys that were playing for ZR in the old days that we liked playing episode maps in 4on4 were back to kill once again. Jaguar was there leading the team together with old mates like Mad, Perza, Trug, Geuzer and Hude who every oldskool player remembers. Great to see them back in action, keep it that way guys!
In division three we saw about the same situation as in division four with one clan that is placed wrong totally. Here it was SKK who fielded a division two team with Case, Molle, Persuader and Pepin. They only lost three maps in regular season, e2m2tdm of Hippusnik (with Barbro instead of Molle), cmt4 of Zoo (with Barbro instead of Case) and dm3 of AG (with Euphoria instead of Case).
Enough about misplaced clans. Behind this clan the fight for the top spots was close, very close. Zoo and Qand played very well, Qand without Vana and Fix was degraded to division three. They lost two games this season, one of SKK and one (surprisingly) of JAMS, where Grind played very well for jams. The actual 'final' of this division was seen as Qand-Zoo. Though, both teams didn't have their best players online. Nevertheless the game was good to watch and pretty close with Qand taking cmt4 138-123, which Zoo probably didn't expect. Then Zoo surprised Qand on their turn by winning e1m2 196-162 with T-Moe and Jkova making the frags for them. The decider (e2m2tdm) was great to see, Zoo took the early control and were leading with about 75 frags but Qand got a great takeover and were able to overcome Zoo just before the game ended and won 168-156.
In the end Zoo got the second place, Qand in third (with two games less played), JAMS got the fourth spot and AG walked home with nr.5.
Division two, or should I saw division one-two. It looked like the division two tried to get more division one players than division one itself. We saw Fappers with Fifi, Jester, Mooniz and Vore; NRU with Silver, Havz and Sandyman; CN with Jerry, Exile, Forsberg, Crazymac and Blau, then Reverend (Valla/Whajna), Avenger, Milton, Wigorf, Haj and UL in different clans.
Probably because of those great lineups none of the teams was able to dominate the division. CN won it while they lost three games (Kala, BWL and Hope), with Paranoids following them on four points, they had a real solid season taking the second spot, but they lost even five games. Zero and Milamber did loads of hard work for Paranoids with Aken, Crash, Orion and Uncie to support them. We saw them doing some sick things together, and even <a href="http://www.nqr.nu/battles.php?id=378" target="_blank">alone</a>. Team Freedom became third with Valla doing some crazy things throughout the season, he played really well and showed that once again when Free won Slackers in AM on dm3 with Valla leading his team to victory. Just like Paranoids they lost five games in the regular season.
In fourth came the brace Russians of Bored with life who had the, maybe, most earned <a href="http://www.nqr.nu/battles.php?id=474" target="_blank">victory</a> of division two by taking out Fired with an average ping of 76. I thought BWL would fall back when Killis left them halfway the season, but after he left they showed their power and played just as well and maybe better than with him.
In fifth place came Dutch Hope who had a <a href="http://www.nqr.nu/battles.php?id=444" target="_blank">thrilling game</a> versus ONE (Avenger's clan). They won e2m2tdm easy, lost dm2 on 8 and won the deciding e1m2 with a mere four frags, ONE hiding on dm2 and Hope hiding on e1m2.
Hope was just mid-div2 early in the season with wins of ONE, SSC and MNY and losses to Fappers, Freedom and Paranoids but because Akira and Little Horn went inactive two extra players were needed, which turned out to add something to the division one level in div2 with Wigorf and Haj with who every game went to 2-0.
The last two clans taking a gold playoff spot were NRU and Fappers who didn't play every game with their best lineup at all. Behind those two Fired, GTG, SSC and Kala claimed silver playoff spots. Kala turned out to go up and down with winning of <a href="http://www.nqr.nu/battles.php?id=381" target="_blank">CN</a> nd <a href="http://www.nqr.nu/battles.php?id=373" target="_blank">Freedom</a> which was very impressive but then losing eight games of lower placed clans!
Division One, playoffs coming in sight!
What can I say, it looked like the better clans only aim was getting in the playoffs and then be in shape and play with their best team. We saw some new clans this season and some others leave. cMF who didn't lose a single game in NQR5's group games wasn't able to field a team this season. Neither did we see Axe, Qandrane, Clan X or Disorder back this season. For some time it looked like cMF and HF would play but sad enough they didn't come to it. Disorder and Lege artis even became more alike because Shiva and Slime joined LA.I hoped to see Dag/aKKe/Nabbe/Riker/Striker active. Remember Dag/Nabbe/Riker/Striker who only lost two maps together in about 45 games and the fact that LA before last NQR/QhLan only lost two matches out of 52 officials, the SD4 quarter final of HF when Pietro had bad lag and the SD5 final without Dag.
Where I was heading, LA had Dag, Riker, Striker and Shiva active this season and not Nabbe and aKKe. Then we saw some revivals. The Viper Squad returned (!) with Ihminen, Blaze, Mirage, Maga and Snoop who played DD and more great old Finnish clans. With Xamp and Hib being in SR their first team was Ihminen, Blaze, Mirage and Maga, they did great. Then we saw Divines, before entering NQR their team was sphere, circle, phaze and darklord, with Inter as backup, which was very strong but it didn't last because sphere and phaze went inactive at the moment that Xerial and Javve of =X= joined.
Another new clan was BGSR, formed by Link because he had some internal trouble in Axe, he took LocKtar with him and mrlame who was going to play with HF but he couldn't get on teamspeak because of his bad connection so he ran away mad to go and play BGSR, while angua and ztorm came from the disbanded clan X.
There were loads of surprising results starting with Firing Squad winning of Lege Artis and with that they were being tipped by loads of people being the winner of the season. Actually FS stayed undefeated on tb3 with reppie/Blixem/Razor/Spoink for weeks, until they met Divines who surprised friend and enemy in this game. The first map was cmt4, not fs favourite for sure, where Diva won 160-155 (ok Diva had ping 28 and fs 42). FS had bad pings but they showed how the game is played on dm2, 319-92 with e1m2 as decider where fs went down 232-155. After that game FS lost of SR (as always, except on qhlan WB!), this time with 5 frags on dm2 while being left hopeless on dm3 after an SR start.
The game that was best to watch this season was BGSR versus SR if you ask me. BGSR demanded equal pings and even got 1ms advantage according to SR. Now, the game took off with dm3 where SR got control after three minutes and just increased their lead more and more during the game, winning it 242-82. The second map was e1m2 where SR got an early lead with a maximum of ~45 frags but BGSR was closing in slowly. Without about 8 minutes left the scores were as good as tied and it stayed like that till the last minute when BGSR won 194-170. Then the deciding map cmt4, this was so close, the biggest difference between both clans was 12 frags until the last minute. When BGSR got a small grip on the game and were able to win it 156-137.
Slackers lost another game, of tVS, with again cmt4 as decider. Slackers won dm3 219-128 while tVS bounced back on dm2 and showed why they had the name of being unbeatable on the map winning it 204-144 after taking over SR control. The decider cmt4 went up and down tVS got the better start but suddenly SR totally owned them, tVS couldn't score a frag for 2 minutes, in the total time there SR got 65 frags and tVS 10, the score going from 30-60 to 95-70, then tVS found it and got a 60 frag lead with a few minutes left with SR coming a bit closer in the end, but it was too bad for them, but it was too late; tVS won 203-167.
We saw quite some interesting things besides this, AntiQuad had a record streak of 20 lost maps which is quite an achievement, then Fragomatic and Fudoh showed they truly belong in division one by ending 8th and 6th, Earthquake was pretty surprising. They only lost of SR, LA, FS and Diva while not making mistakes versus any of the other clans. Winning of tVS 2-1 (won cmt4, lost dm2, dm3 171-146) and they one 2-1 of BGSR, 170-168 on e2m2tdm with Link playing for BGSR instead of Vladde after which Vladde did come in and BGSR won e1m2 227-148. The decider was dm3 where eQ was didn't have much trouble with BGSR and a nice mrlame drop with the final score being 196-104.
I'm just writing on while I almost forget one game, FS-BGSR. Firing Squad missed blixem, but after a long time of being away we saw Crit coming in action once again. The teams played one get2net the danish server. On e1m2 FS teamplay seemed to be solid, plus Link was playing instead of Vladde, 232-161 in favour of FS. On the second map it showed that Crit had been away for quite a long time even though he was doing a fairly nice job. Vladde came in to replace Link and BGSR was able to take the map 145-141. What happened next is something that many people will remember. Mrlame and Paradoks were having some shit (like always) and I'm not going to say who was right and who was not, after some bad remarks mrlame kicked Paradoks a few times from the server when Paradoks decided to ban mrlame before the decider was played.
After these events Paradoks said goodbye as an NQR admin, starting his resign with As a result of my inability to be 100% impartial and handling solutions with wisdom and grace, I have decided to step down from the NQR crew.
We've landed at the playoffs. We saw the first eight teams of division five and the clans ranked from third to tenth in division four fighting for the Bronze title.
Osams (division four number three, just mising out Silver playoffs) played Charlatans (division five number eight), should be an easy win for Osams. Charlatans did a fairly good job on dm2 while bost clans suffered severe lag, the score was 188-100 for Osams, dm3 was easy for Osams, they were strong on the map the whole season and won 180-55.
In the second match was Oblivion vs oLW, I thought this was going to be a close game because Oblivion won division five and olw was the last division four clan that made the playoffs, but nevertheless oLW won cmt4 187-89 and e2m2tdm 159-147.
After that Damneds (div4 nr6) faced a2k (div5 nr5), the first map was cmt4 where a2k, being and English clan, won 218-105. Then it was up to Damneds to win dm2, 147-143. The decider went to a2k with 158-95.
hHh got an easy ride in their first game when playing boeg, winning cmt4 260-66 and e2m2tdm 242-110 with Duce and Ponk showing their skills on e2m2tdm. It looked like the non-tb3 maps were pretty populair under the lower-division clans.
The early in the season strong clan Batida Swing just made the playoffs by ending seventh, their opponent was Jgarna who finished fourth in division four. To most people's surprise BS won e1m2 178-123, but after that the real surprise was coming. One of the BS players had to leave and they did not want to give walkover so they decided to play 3on4 on Jgarna's map, dm3. With Dragon, thx1138 and (the dutch) snake they won it 105-85! Was that a surprise or not?
VVV faced POFF and POFF sure showed their strength on e1m2, 209-151, the second map was VVV's homemap, cmt4. VVV didn't have a problem with poff at all there and won 221-101 with the decider being dm2. This seemed to be a bit weird because VVV wasn't looking very good on dm2 but they proved me wrong by taking the game home 202-135 with Dek playing an outstanding match.
HoLy played Danube from division five, I though that Danube would cause a mayor upset by actually raping holy on dm2 318-47 but it turned out a little different. Holy got a grip on themselves again on e1m2 and won 171-106 and were able to take the decider, e2m2tdm, home too. Or should I say, Joke won the decider? He had 81 frags, the next player on his team got 35 and Holy won it 180-141 talking about MVP.
The last first round game was between the div4 nr8 and the div5 nr3, FIPS and PMS. On dm3 FIPS got it on their hips and won 116-92. PMS took cmt4, you wouldn't expect that of a Swedish clan playing and English one but PMS had been practicing cmt4 all season long and showed that they really know it by winning it in a thrilling game 126-120. After that they were just going on and won e1m2 183-149.
I think we can conclude that the division five clans were doing very well versus the divisions four clans because four of them won their games of the clans in one div higher.
The second round featured the match oLW-Osams, but too bad that Osams missed one of their starters so they lost 2-0 while they could still give a good game on dm3 by keeping the score close 138-106 but on cmt4 they didn't stand a chance 108-124.
hHh who played a strong match first round game played a2k in the second round. I had the feeling that hHh really missed Slash and Jogi (who didn't play a single game near the end of the league) in this match up. Hhh was left without any chance on dm3 losing it 156-103 but took their map home (dm2) with 60 frags. In the decider, e2m2tdm, hHh wasn't able to make the difference and lost it with 50 frags exactly. Division five is moving on.
There was another sure division five semi-finalist with the game VVV-BS coming up. VVV won cmt4 convincingly with 178-102 while BS left them without a chance on dm3 by winning 212-69. The decider was e1m2 and it was so close, VVV was leading towards the end when Trev got spawntelefragged with armor/mega/rl just before quad by an enemy (he got shot at the spawnplace), while shooting. At that point BS took the control, how unlucky can you be, VVV decided to go and hide in the end but they got very unlucky spawns and got killed right away every time. With one second left BS got the last frag and the game went in overtime, but at this point BS had four RL's and VVV none so they could do nothing to prevent their loss, 212-178.
The last quarter was played between holy and PMS, cmt4 turned out to be so close, with PMS winning it 151-150. Holy got some strong play going on after that and won e1m2 183-145 and the decider dm3 169-78.
The semi's were played best of five, Olw a2k was up first with as first map dm3. A2k got RA at the start of the map but olw took over soon enough and wasn't threatened in the later stages (164-92). On dm2 a2k got a nice grip on the map for thirteen minutes when olw got control but they ran out of time to close in the remaining 18 frags. Cmt4 was a2k's prey again, they played it well from ya and got enough people on the quads while olw was working from ra/rl but they couldn't come close, 158-117.
The fourth map was e2m2tdm, olw had to win to stay in the game. It went back and forth, a2k had quad/ra pretty often but they couldn't do enough with it. With a few minutes left they were leading with about twenty frags and it looked like they had reached the finals when Olw did what they had to, took over, a2k slowspawned and lost with six mere frags. The last map was the only one remaining, e1m2. Olw got the better start and it looked like they were going straight to the finals. Though they lost YA and it looked like a2k would make a serious comeback when Elgen showed his worth for Olw and brought down the damage. Then with four minutes left a2k really took and started to chase Olw all over the map, not watching YA anymore. Olw won 150-121 and earned themselves a spot in the final, so close as a2k was.
The other semi final was BS-HoLy. It was a darn shame that BS had to field a crap team for this game because Dragon wasn't allowed to play of his parents due to his bad grades in school. BS cmt4 with 100, even won dm2 161-120, but then lost e2m2tdm with 55 and dm3 150-85.
This ment both division five teams were out. The Bronze match in the Bronze playoffs was between BS and a2k. This time Dragon was allowed to play again so he could join his brother in arms (Snake) to fight a2k. Dm3 went to BS with 138-88 (Snake scoring 62 frags). A2k was looking strong on cmt4 this season and they did a good job by winning it 172-144, though Dragon still made 66 frags. In the thrird game, dm2, BS didn't have much trouble with them as they won 203-116 while a2k went on owning kenya, when they won e2m2tdm 191-169. The decider was e1m2. Dragon made clear he had something to make up for the missed game and played a strong match, scoring 77 frags (next on 47/48) and with that BS won 200-151 and captured the third place in the Bronze playoffs.
In the final OLw rocked Holy on dm2 197-55. On the second map HoLy did a good job winning once again a close game, this time e1m2 with 168-162. It looked like HoLy shot their powder after that game because they were left without any chance in the last two maps. OLw won dm3 220-71 and cmt4 with 186-109. Congratulations HoLy for becoming second and oLW for winning the Bronze playoffs.
Going over to the semi-pro's. Numbers one and two from division four attended in the Silver playoffs, just like the top ten of division three and the numbers 7-10 in division two. Alright this is taking ages and I don't think anybody reads it anyway after 18 pages of writing so I will try to keep it short.
Kala did what they had to and won ASS easy 2-0, which wasn't very weird because it was div2 vs div4. AG showed they were going really strong and beat JAMS 2-0 with 100 frags on both maps. Then SSC crushed Maniacs on dm3 and won cmt4 with 150 frags. The potential div2 clan SKK caused the biggest rape and won Boyzone 361-13 on dm2 and 286-28 on e1m2.
I was really looking forward to Fired Jihad Warriors though JW couldn't field Optimizer, Evil B, Springs and Docent but Blu was playing and Evi_b timed out during the first map and Springs during the second. Fired won dm3 176-110 and got a fullstart on dm2, 277-57.
Qandrane won a close cmt4 of Dybbuk, lost dm2 but then won the deciding e2m2tdm with 200 frags. GTG tried to get the same scores as SKK and they came close in their game with Vets, dm2 330-56 and e1m2 281-34.
Zoo and Hippusnik fought for the kenya title and of course Zoo won, as real kenya masters, 80 frags on e2m2tdm and 55 on cmt4.
Kala faced AG in the second round, won dm3 184-94, I expected that to be closer, and e2m2tdm 209-169.
After JW, SKK disappointed me by not fielding their best team. Molle and Persuader weren't able to make it so Barbro and Euphoria had to take their places, but it gave s one of the most boring games. 312-52 on dm2 and 291-66 on cmt4. Would really have liked to see the scores when Case, Molle, Persuader and Pepin played.
Fired-Qandrane, Qand missed Ananas and Fortuna so their lineup was Mel/Mega/Ripa/Bigis; e2m2tdm: 188-148 in favour of F and dm2 292-117.
It looked like only the winning teams in this round had their best team because in the last match Zoo won of GTG because Ermac was missing and Slugfest played instead of him, it was his only game of the season for GTG. Zoo won e2m2tdm with 170, UL could save e1m2 243-167 (yes 243 and Slugfest had 27...). On dm3 UL's powers weren't enough to make up the missing Ermac and Zoo won 148-129.
In the semi's we saw Kala vs SSC. Kala showed solid teamplay on dm3 and won it convincingly with 184-106, then on cmt4 Milton put up a great show with some insane moments. He stole a quad while Kala was in control of YA, he bunnied around RA and made the jump from GL to YA with a quad-lg in his hands, killing the enemy and taking his rl-pack. Another moment like that was when he entered YA with three rocks and killed three RL-enemies with those. But even Milton's dominance couldn't save SSC, Kala won 176-139.
On dm2 SSC made a great comeback after being locked down by Kala, they were behind big time and Kala tried to keep their loss of frags low but they couldn't keep the frags on their side and lost 165-151 bringing SSC back in the game. Had the feeling that this would give SSC a mental boost, maybe enough to take it to a fifth map but they got a bad start on e1m2 and Milton couldn't make enough frags after SSC's takeover came too late, 228-135.
The other semi was Fired vs Elintarha (zoo). Zoo won e2m2tdm 215-159 with T-Moe and Jkova doing a hell of a job, after that Fired got a lock right away and fragged their easy way to victory, 390-22. Then Zoo picked cmt4, I though they would win but Fired proved to be very focused on the Quads which are the key to the map and were able to snatch the victory out of Zoo's hands 160-122.
On the fourth map, dm3, Zoo made tactical errors that cost them the control to never get it back, 237-38.
The game for the third place went between SSC and zoo, the latter was a man short at the start of the game so they played dm2 3on4, a rape from SSC's side was expected but they took it easy or Zoo played very well by making the score 299-71, it doesn't look very good but it could have been 400-0 too. On e1m2 ssc just got their thing rolling and won the map 228-147, after which an interesting game took place on e2m2tdm. Jkova and T-Moe showed once again that they master this map by topping that fragrank, doing a lot of good work for their team, but they were just short of dragging out a fourth map losing 212-199.
The final, Kala-Fired. First map, e2m2tdm, Fired didn't win this any time before so I thought kala would win but Fired played really well and won 205-146, I think the ping 70 for all the Kala players was very hard. On dm2 Fired did what they always do and won 165-141. While F they put up a strong teamplay performance on dm3 212-100. Congratulations Fired for becoming the twenty-first best clan in NQR! What a prestation.
Finally the Gold Playoffs, there were some qualifying games for the division two clans entering the competition. NRU won of Freedom 2-0 and HGC won 2-0 of Hope without Haj. BWL didn't have much trouble with 4k either, though cmt4 was rather close 141-127. Too bad Serox couldn't make it for 4k.
The first round games were pretty interesting, we saw Slackers playing without Gamer and with Champ. Winning a close dm3 of AQ who only won two maps in the regular season, with 166-130. Then on dm2 AQ took the only opportunity they got and won 221-126. In the decider AQ's resistance was over and SR won 255-145.
F0M showed their strong form once again by beating ToT 2-0 on dm3 and e1m2 with 60 and 120 frags. After that FS showed why NRU belongs in div2, with 123 instead of blixem they won dm3 214-110 and dm2 243-122. Who were really put back in their place were Paranoids, they lost dm2 296-53 and e1m2 237-25 of BGSR, I guess the start didn't really helped them on both maps. EQ won 2-1 of HGC, winning cmt4 and e1m2 while they lost (as expected) dm2.
Then tVS faced Hyphen on e1m2. Gibbs, Fix, Hagge and HangTime fought for their lives and won 197-188! Then on dm2 tVS got their things sorted out and won 207-119 while Raptor and DarkWarrior replaced HangTime and Hagge. On the deciding cmt4 tVS played a strong game 207-146.
An upset was caused by LA-BWL, LA was one player short so they wanted to play with Phantasy (he was in in NQR4 with <a href="http://www.nqr.nu/nqr4/clans.php?id=57" target="_blank">QuadRangers</a>) so both clans agreed that the clan that won would get a WO, because clans are not allowed to add members during the playoffs. LA won 2-0 and received the WO.
In the last game CN played Fudoh, too bad CN missed Crazymac. E1m2 ended 239-181 and dm3 192-144 in favour of Fudoh. Would have been nice to see Exile, Forsberg, Crazymac and Jerry or Blau.
In the quarter finals SR played with Gamer again who has proved to be a vital part of SR's teamplay and it showed off when playing F0M. Dm3 was so close for 15 minutes, Fom was only behind with 7 frags when penta spawned, but SR-luck stroke once again and they got it with a score of 115-108, from that moment Fom got three more frags (in five minutes) and the game ended 210-111. On e1m2 it was over earlier for F0M, after about seven minutes SR got ya control, tied the game, went over them and won 295-119.
FS and BGSR were smart enough to arrange their match at the moment the icehockey final was played, I guess nobody expected to see Sweden in it, but they were. After a long delay they started to play e2m2tdm 3on4 which was really boring. Then on e1m2 Angua came in and the game was dead close until Vladde timed out and FS could establish their 'victory'.
The Viper Squad took out EarthQuake easier than at least I thought they would. EQ put up a decent fight on dm2 but after all it was 186-128 for tVS, then eQ decided to play e2m2tdm instead of cmt4 because of tVS` strong performance on cmt4 during the regular season. That turned out to be a bad choice, Ihminen with quad, armor and shaft isn't a good combination for the enemy on a fast paced map like this, 270-151.
In the last quarter LA took care of FUDOH in a nice two map game, 213-76 on dm3 and 280-114 on e1m2.
Firing Squad was facing Slackers once again. They did a good job on dm3 by keeping it close for ages, but it wasn't enough to hold SR from victory 166-138. SR got their luck again on dm2, getting the start and a 120-20 lead but FS stroke back and was able to close the 100 frag gap to sixty but not closer, 183-123. Then on the last map, e1m2, SR played well and won it 265-149.
The other semifinal was LA-tVS which took off with dm3.for the first time this season we saw Nabbe coming in action, together with Dag, Shiva and Riker. It was close, like many games this NQR, and the final score was 189-180. It starts to look like tVS is really getting their unbeatable status back on dm2 as they beat LA 198-184, the next map e1m2 was a strong one for LA though. Riker and Nabbe let us taste something of the e1m2 skills of the old Lege Artis, Disorder and Lithium. For cmt4 Striker came in to replace nabbe and even though tVS was going very strong there the whole season LA rocked it and won 227-139.
tVS and FS didn't play the third/fourth place game so we'll just move on to the final. Slackers got early control and made more frags until the third pent after which LA took over and was leading in frags. With only three minutes left SR took over control and was leading, then a minute later LA took over AGAIN, tied the scores with less than one minute left when they got owned by SR in a most ridiculous way, 138-131 for SR.
On e1m2 LA got an early lead and kept it for about nine minutes even though the scores stayed very close, SR took over and the game stayed close for a little while when SR got a lea of fifty frags, game ended 210-176. I was astonished that Nabbe played dm3 and not e1m2. Nabbe and Riker have always been a superb team on e1m2 so I really wondered why they took him out.
On dm2 LA took the lead from the start and never gave it out of hands, twice SR came very close to them down but after twelve minutes LA settled it and increased their lead every minute to 214-130. As fouth cmt4 was chosen, LA played well there versus FS and tVS and got the better start. But when a minute or two were played SR took control and didn't give it out of hands for the rest of the game, 254-119.
This NQR gave us again a very unexpected winner, the underdog for the title won! Who could have thought that after they became SD3, SD5, NQR4 and NQR5 champions!
Of course I can't stop this update here, let's move over to the order of the day.
The <a href="http://qwwc.quakeworld.nu/" target="_blank">QuakeWorld World Championship</a> isn't over yet. It has been played except for the final. We saw loads of games taking place, it was good to see such activity, especially in the smaller countries, but I am quite sad about the fact that several countries lost because they couldn't get their best lineup on the field. England lost both their games while missing key-players and Germany lost of NA while they missed Spoink. Not to start about Holland losing of Russia without having their over-important player reppie and only having Blixem in 4on4 without sound! We saw Finland and Sweden winning all their WB games and Sweden winning Finland in the WB final 4-1. In the LB Russia won of DK, NA and NL to gain their spot in the LB final. Denmark had a strong team with Paradoks, Crazymac, Forsberg and Sweep but lacked good duelers. Paradoks couldn't find his old form on dm6 and the others were simply not very good duelers. It would have been great if Jerry was with them, he used to be good in duel. Nevertheless they won all their 2on2 and 4on4 games, went out on the duels versus both Germany and Russia. This could only happen because three duels, one 2on2 and one 4on4 were played in each game. Then Russia beat won of Holland while reppie would very likely have won dm4 1on1 and 2on2, with a little luck Optimizer would have won dm6 duel and reppie/Blixem/Murdoc + someone would have taken home dm3 4on4. But well like I mentioned before loads of games missed best lineups. Like Germany who lost 2-3 of NA while Spoink, their dm6 dueler and MVP in 2on2 and 4on4 missed the game.
Respect goes out to the Russians who have proven that they can cope with bad pings, as they won of Fired with ping 70 in NQR and now won of NA with minping 100 in QWWC with a thrilling last map, dm2 duel Slam-Thumpa 8-7.
In the LB final Russia faced Finland. The dm2 duel was easy for Fifi 15-0, then Slam and XN tricked Goljat and Gamer by taking dm2 2on2 home 37-22. The dm3 4on4 was even without Fix, Milton and Goljat easy for Finland, 184-80. Gamer won the dm6 duel of B1aze 5-3 and Doom beat HLT on dm4 17-7.
The only game that awaits us is Finland versus Sweden again and I must say that I've got a strong feeling that Sweden will again because of their strong duelers. Dag on dm6, Inter on dm4 and UL on dm2 should give them the win already. If they can field Dag/Space in 2on2 and a top team in the 4on4 they win 5-0.
Another tournament running at the moment, which is as well delayed by summer, is <a href="http://quakeworld.nl/" target="_blank">QWCL </a>, the CTF tournament. The league is divided in two divisions and the plans are to hold playoffs now but I don't know if it will come that far now that everybody is so inactive. In division two we have a NA team which is playing very well concerning their pings. They only lost one single map, e2m2 of a2k with Adde, Hustak, Willgurth and Qmole. The rest of the clans are known DM clans: POFF, SSC, Osams, GoH and JAMS complete the division.
In the playoffs we will see SSC face SD, the only map where SD might be able to win of SSC is ctf5, it sure depends on the server where they play too. Hib is with SSC for the tournament which makes them a lot stronger. After that SSC will face a2k, who got a bye in the first round, it will be interesting to see who will take that home because I haven't got a clue. SSC with the better players (Hib, Milton) or a2k with more CTF experience. Then we've got poff-jams which will very likely go 2-0 to poff and as last MPOS-GoH, that should be 2-0 for MPOS.
Division one showed us some old CTF clans coming back in action again like Oj! With Diamond, Max_Rebo, Zerzes, Gato, Forau, Remove and Zerzes. VVV who were playing NQR div5 last season were playing too, trying to get their old skills back. But the clan that won of everybody so far is a mix of the best CTF and the best DM players, fab-5. Space and Error were the best CTF players (at least, they seemed to be) and are now playing with Dag, Slime and Shiva in this league. They only played three games in the season though not playing versus VVV and Oj! We will see in the playoffs how strong they really are, at least on e2m2 they will win of every clan.
Because NA was way too strong for division two and divisions one featured seven clans they were given the eights playoff spot in division one, though Accelerate dropped out and thus you could see it like they take their place.
Fab-5 earned a bye in the first round while VVV is playing MF. Their game in the div was close, VVV won ctf5 like they use to do. Then they lost e2m2 badly, they were forced to play on a Swedish server though which certainly did not help them. The decider was with equal pings again and VVV won it 812-717. It could turn out to be a very interesting game, but if VVV has their team sorted, and can play 5-5 like they used to instead of 4-4 which all clans seem to want to play these days, then they should win 2-0.
DQM, a new clan compared to clans like Oj and VVV, is the most active clan of the past year, they have been practicing a lot and it seems to pay off, they were able to close in on fab-5 on ctf5, a map where CTF skill and speed counts as much or even more than aim. Even with Error's great speed and Space's fine defending (he is sick on e2m2), the scores in DQM vs fab-5 on ctf5 were 812-563, this may mean that VVV can beat fab-5 there, but time will tell. If VVV wins of MF and they play fab-5 with a normal team, 5on5, we will see.
I was about to say that DQM has to play NA in their quarter final. I truly can't say who is going to win this. NA did a great job in division two and DQM has been very active. I place my bets on DQM here, it would be an easy 2-0 but a close 2-1 is another option. In the last game Oj! will play Hell, if Oj get's a team they will win 2-0 because Hell used to be decent on e1m2, but that is not allowed.
If all the games will be played I would recommend watching VVV-MF and VVV vs Fab-5; the latter on ctf5 to see VVV's speed and teamplay (if they play like they used to) and on e2m2 to see fab-5's insane skills there.
It seems like Fab-5 will take the title in division one, NA already won division two but the fight for the win in the playoff will be tight. A2K is strong on e2m2 but lost of POFF and MPOS (Osams) in the regular season and if SSC has their things on a row they have a chance too.
Another tournament that has to be mentioned is a small <a href="http://www.desdichado.se/aksel/dm1/players.html" target="_blank">dm1 duel</a> tournament. The players left in the competition are DareDevil, Billy, Huli-Man, Caban, FlePser, FireHoppir, Znappe, Quesus and moris. Vladde and valla went out on the hands of respectively Caban and FlePser.
Then we've got a <a href="http://realm.pl/~immortal/liga/ladder/" target="_blank">DMM4 Ladder</a> taking place at the moment with as approved maps povdmm4, end and endif. With some good players like The Interceptor and Arnette competing but it seems like it's bleeding to death. Who knows, maybe it will be great next season.
After ages of waiting <a href="http://duelmania.quakeworld.nu/" target="_blank">DuelMania</a> started a new season, number four. I believe that with 289 competitors this is the largest duel tournament in the history of QW, it had a qualification and losers brackets from round One what means that there are fourteen rounds in the LB. Some big names already went to the LB because they chose the throw out the wrong map for the decider, so both Arnette and LocKtar lost, but maybe they will get to round 10-14 in the LB.
Some great duelers, like whole fs (reppie, blixem, razor, spoinka), fix, fifi, gamer, pkk (who won paradoks), mrlame, inter, UL and jogi are still in the WB. I recommend watching some of these games too.
In round four we've got several games coming up, Fix lbnator, which Fix should win concerning his duel experience. Then Fifi has to face blixm, the latter is very inactive and I don't think he'll be able to win of Fifi, at least aerowalk should be a certain win for fifi.
Like mentioned before, pkk won of Paradoks, 2-1, he won dm4 twice (64-10 and 28-17) while losing dm6 30-4. Apparently Paradoks thought he could win dm4 when he chose dm4 to be decider. Gamer went to the fifth round by taking out Slam 2-0, same score on dm2 and 16-11 on aerowalk.
The Interceptor vs Phantasy is a game what could turn out to be very interesting. Phantasy used to be a fine dueler but I haven't got a clue what is left of that, I remember him playing very well on QhLan (not last, 5) while not many people expected that, some even asked, who is that Phantasy guy? Anyway, we can't forget that Inter's aim is great and he has gained loads of duel experience in the last years, so it might just go 2-0 to Inter.
Spoinka played vs Antiloop and won dm6 and dm4 with four three frags. reppie faced Riker a few days ago but after gaining a fair lead on dm4 they both went on easy mode when rep won 44-31, Riker clearly wasn't good enough for reppie on aerowalk, 46-8.
Directly after he played jOn, who won of Jezaja without trouble, for their round five game and won that 2-0 too. UL showed his form by winning the Russian Delitel 2-1, losing ztndm3 and winning dm2 and dm6 wait fair differences.
In the remaining games Razor should give Zyan and jogi bent, a spanking while omny and seese should be pretty close. Then we've got Stalin mrlame, I think stalin (who beat raket in round three, something many people didn't expect) isn't very active though he should be able to win a map, but mrlame probably does what the people expect and win 2-0.
Only one more game has to be played, Valla versus Vore. Vore impressed me a lot with his playing style on Mindtrek, where he was the one to break Fix' ~25 map winning streak at the moment he won dm4 in the duel final with a score like 50-4. Really insane, his opponent, Valla, is a dm4 player too and it will be good to see which of the two is the better player. As long as they don't CS these games should be very entertaining for the spectators.
The last two players that made the fifth round are Vladde and XN, XN is turning out to be a surprise in this tournament and won aerowalk 34-7 and dm4 18-7 of Xalibur in this round (4) and he won Scenic the round before, not to forget that he took out Arnette in round two by winning ztndm3 and aerowalk, he lost dm4 though.
Vladde got WO's in round 1 and 2, then beat Jester 2-1 in round 3 before he met Optimizer (a great dueler, but still young and unexperienced with officials, so very nervous), who beat Diki in round two. He won dm6 because he telefragged him while Optimizer had ra and levelcontrol, after that he made some spawnfrags and played ultimate CS. He was simply better on dm4 while Optimizer was still looking very shaky, not having his normal aim or gameplay at all. Let's hope that Optimizer will grow a bit in the tournament, without being that nervous.
Those were all fourth round games, all I can say about DuelMania at the moment.
Coming two the last part of my update, only two competitions left to discuss. The first one I'm going to talk about is <a href="http://www.daddied.com/ttdml2/" target="_blank">TTDML 2</a> or just Trickery 2, easier to remember.
The season entered it's last stages with again, just like season one which they won, Dutch Hope going strong in division one, with no lost points they lead with two before JAMS. The other clans in Div1 are Denial with Crit, HangTime, Keyser, Oppy and Andy, ranked third with eleven points, Elintarha with seven points and then two inactive competitors, Gatugeng and Four Kings. Gatugeng played one game, that of the first week and won that of Zoo which earned them three points.
In division two fips & friends has the lead, just like Hope they are undefeated. They are followed by TS and JAMS2 who have eleven points both, as a2k had nine and OLw six. I think the best game in this division was Jams2 TS, or better Telly vs TS. He played 1on3 on ukcldm2 and with one minute left the score was 19-17 in favour of TS with Telly having RA, RL. Unlucky enough he got killed just before last quad and then lost 32-17. In division one Jams-DN on e3m1, last weeks game, was very nice with Jams taking the map 141-125. Another great game on e3m1 was played by fips & friends vs jams2. This time jams2 DID have four players, they got a late takeover when F&F saw they couldn't do anything anymore they decided to hide. Jams2 wasn't smart enough to check GL which is a common hiding place, two of fips were hiding there. But Gaz had the best hiding spot, behind the Exit-Tele, not to be seen from any position. Eventually fips and friends won 129-108.
Coming Monday are the finals of both divisions. There will be decided who is going to win this seasons leagues in some odd 3v3v3v3v3v3 games, on of both division. The winner takes six points and the last one, so everything is still open in both divisions. Go and watch! The games are played on <a href="http://maps.quakeworld.nu/?a=maps&name=titan2" target="_blank">titan 2</a> which you can download there.
This leaves us with only one more tournament, NQR Summercup.
We saw quite some voided games and walkovers in the first round but I think most inactive clans are out now. In the Classic Cup we see some good clans like FS, GO (fudoh), Freedom, Forsaken and Kobolt (Xantom, FireHoppir, Jezaja, Serox, Avenger) participating, just like slime rules (shiva, riker, killlis), GTG (with mrlame, UL and griffin on ping 26 are they deadly), BB (Billy, Canius, Keyser, Era), AQ, hyphen spartacums and many others there should be great matches coming up. Dutch hope and Game Over already gave us a preview of what is coming in their second round game with some insane action, dm3 went with one single frag to GO (Sargon timed with RA/RL and died that was sad) because two of Hope's hiding guys were killed with two seconds left! Then Hope won GO's map, e1m2, with 199-174 and the decider cmt4 was just as close as dm3 but this time GO went hiding but Hope couldn't catch them quick enough, 150-147 for GO (demos on CH-TV for the ones who would search them).
I think this competition is going to be great if all the teams can field their players. Then in the classic cup there are only five clans left after the 'eights' finals. Eights finals with only five games instead of eight, this will be very weird, because after every round clans get other fixtures it can be that one clan wins in this round and then will receive a WO in the both the quarter and the semifinal and thus cruising to the final, but I think if that happens, they will draw the teams again to make that team play.
In those eights finals we saw Dutch hope winning of Zoo on skteam and cmt3, 3on3 because Zoo could only field three players. The other games are FIPS-VVV, L0-GO, SSC-mums1 and free-FS. It would be pretty weird if FIPS or VVV would end up in the final without playing after this round, wouldn't it. Leftovers is another new clan, just like Spartacums (Angua, Devil, Xorgal, Raket and Bengan) and Kobolt, with Jon, Phantasy, Nepra, Nightman, Terror, Strife and Goblin.
I count on FS, SSC, GO and FIPS going through, looking at the games. But VVV has a chance too, though I think they don't know the other maps at very well what will make it hard for them to proceed. Maybe L0 can cause an upset if they practice the kenya maps and Free could win if FS hasn't got their best lineup.
Alright people, after hours of writing, loads of cigarettes, beers and meals, it looks like there has came an end to this 22 page update, and that in lettertype ten... Oh my, I write so much that not many will read it but it feels really good that I could finish this just before leaving for seven weeks for summer.
Another season is over, Slackers got another title and little changed in division one. We hope that Clan Malfunction and HellFire will be back next season to give them a hard time, but only time can tell. The activity in the lower divisions is growing, and so is the way they encounter the game. Maybe they have seen how far they could come with a lot of practice. We are counting on you guys.
A total mess
or should I say gone to return again?
About eight months ago I uploaded my last update, even though Ive written another one my computer crashed two days before I was going to upload it and I didnt feel at all like writing those 15 pages all over again. Now I moved things feel different.
Twenty days before my three year anniversary as a column writer at Challenge Smackdown Ive moved back in with a friend I used to live with.
The first time I moved in here I started writing, Im close to 150 or maybe 200 pages later by now. When I moved to the place Ive lived for the last 2 years, I started playing quake again, that was 18 months ago, and didnt have much time and need to write with everything I had (and wanted) to do.
It mustve been around a small month ago when I decided that I had an overdose on parties, women, alcohol, quake and study. Thus I began thinking of what my possibilities where, and there were quite some. In the end I went with moving back in here for six months to try and see how good I can get in golf. Since I still have my old apartment its most likely I will move back in there in half a year and start quaking again but we will see about that later.
For the ones that are interested, I quit playing quake in Europe for a few months because I havent got much time. The few hours that I have got left will be spend on playing in NQR.na because Ive got a team with great guys there and I put in a lot of time and effort to get the teams together and form a league.
There is no chance Im going to write the update I was going to post again. Maybe I will do small reviews in the coming weeks of certain events but Im not sure how much time I will have left since I am really busy now with training (8 hours a day) etc. Nevertheless it is crystal clear that Im going to write way more than Ive done in the last year.
After this not so short and maybe very boring part about what is going on with myself at the moment Im going to come down to things that might interest you: Quake
There have passed two seasons since my last update, which was just before last summer. Even though Im not going to write about them now I would like to congratulate the winners of those seasons Slackers and Clan MalFunction, damn great job guys, it has been so long since cMF won a tournament that I would almost forget about it! And of course the first time in ages Slackers doesnt take home the crown, big up for cMF!
Then Leftovers and The Forsakens for winning the NQR summer cups, yes it has been that long since I could upload an update.
Last but not least am I congratulating Firing Squad with their great victory in NQRs invitational cup, taking down their angstgegner Slackers! They have lost in every single regular season game and SR kicked out FS from the playoffs in SD5, NQR4, NQR5 and NQR6 but this time FS came on top for the first time online (they have won SR once before at QHLAN5). After their Clanbase victory FS now takes home their second title, congrats.
Lets start with the smaller competitions that are going on, and sorry but I wont write about all of them because then this update will be really long again and nobody is going to read it, plus I havent got time for it now.
There are two duel tournaments running allowing only one map, dm2 and dm4. Both are not running optimal with a lot of inactivity but Im sure both of them are going to reach the end. Dm4 has less than ten games left to play and the players left fighting for the title are all representing different countries reppie (nl), locktar (se), fucu (fi), paradoks (dk) and insane (pl).
I think that reppie is going to take home the title after taking down LocKtar in the semis, pkk in the final and insane in the grandfinals.
In the dm2 tournament there are some crowd pleasers like kippo and, once again, locktar. Alongside with though players like mem, stiker, billy and seese.
It has been announced that the following tournament will be dm2 2on2 which should be very entertaining too.
Then the CTF league has been brought to NQR. The playoffs are going on in it right now with games coming up LA-HELL and DQm-IA in div1 and in div2 qw.ger-poff and MPOS-Maffia.
I expect both LA and DQM to win without any trouble, they did the same in the group games. KoI played close with both LA and DQm but lost deciders with very small margins in both those and in their game with IA. VVV didnt qualify because they only played two games. LA will most likely win 3-0, the match between DQM and IA will be more interesting. The Americans are specialized in the CTF maps, ctf2m3 is their homemap and with a little luck they will take that home. E2m2 and e3m6 are sure victories for DQm and with all respect for the Americans but I dont see them winning more than ctf2m3.
The final would be LA vs DQm. LA has ctf2m1 as base since they took in Gato and Diamond from the old Swedish clan Oj! DQms map is e2m2 but LA is really strong there so I expect DQm to pick ctf5 and e3m6 where they have a good chance of winning. That would leave ctf2m3 as decider, last season space/error/slime/dag played as fab5 winning every single map they played, including a lot of ctf2m3 games. Dag and Slime were great as defenders and Error and Space in midfield and attack. Though this season they are without error and slime, with the two Ojers like I stated before. That makes it really hard to say how good they really are but still I will have to go for LA to win the tournament 3-2 in the finals with a thrilling decider.
Another NQR tournament that was being held alongside the regular season was the custom map tournament. It turned out to be quite a disaster with a lot of teams dropping out and eventually cancelling the whole league because of inactivity. The idea was great but it turns out it wasnt possible to keep it alive, probably another try is made in summer.
The next new thing is that NQR is hosting an AM like ladder. Apollyon tried to get the same thing by hosting one at ESL but people couldnt find the site and the backoffice was a drama. That probably caused not many teams singing up and the longer the ladder was hosted the less people played.
NQRs ladder is going at least as well as AM did. Its an easy site, a lot of teams signed up, a lot of maps are allowed and a lot of games have been played considering the time the ladder has been up. Im really looking forward to the cross-division fights that are being played there, always good for a nice upset!
Another season is fairly well on its way, it took quite some time to start up div1 but they are making up some for the time they missed out at the start of the season.
In division six KTF and RoT will be fighting for the top spot. I give RoT the best chances because KTF has got really bad pings in UK, they will play there because the RoT guys are from Portugal, except for the Dane Latency (Vanquish).
Division five looks like WAR and knockbacks prey even though samojedit is leading div5a so far it doesnt look like they will be able to overcome either knockback nor WAR. WAR has strengthened their lineup with psymorph at the end of last season and added the old TDI player Eclipse and EID player Zhil before this one, giving them more of a div3 than div5 lineup. Besides those we see the north American team illuminati wrestling with their pings trying to pull off some tricks, they dont succeed this season yet but Im sure they will in the next.
Another north American team, The Boss, is playing a division higher and doesnt do a bad job at all, trailing the Swedish jokkmokk city team with quite some ex-fnu/maniacs members. On the other side of the division (div4a) are the metally troopers showing how the war is being fought taking home all games so far.
In division three four teams are without a loss but three of them havent played more than two games. Dybbuk made a solid season start with three wins in a row and Osams is playing like KoI in CTF, losing as much games as possible with the smallest difference in the deciders, a sport on itself. BLT seems to have a winning team with players like havz and heddan if they get some prac. The poles easy to kill arent very easy to kill this season and are looking for a spot in a higher division next season. Besides those Suspected seems to have a solid div2 team but is placed in div3, I dont think they will have much trouble with making the finals even though Im not totally sure about their activity. Still with ex-Fom players like Molle and Offie they will do good for sure.
Division two is very interesting this season because it is one big group fielding three teams that played in div1 last season (DT, SSC, para), the winners from div3 and div4 (vvv and pe who added krab and moltas since their div4 win) and all of the other teams played div2 last season, except for The Pures who are new but have some well known players with dexter, FlePser, kippo, LocKtar moris and nielz.
Now Death Team added XN to their ranks they are playing really well and didnt lose a single game so far in the season. SuddenDeath is another clan that is looking strong and is a good candidate for the title. Then we have the surprise of div2 so far, HPR with the new fix Joulukuu and oldie but goodie rampage. VVV looked promising at the start of the season but Trev joined the army and Drag isnt with the team anymore, means they miss half of their lineup from last season. Billie has been added but well have to see how they are going to do the rest of the season.
Kind of the same counts for Zoo who are missing their starplayers T-Moe who retired after their div2 victory last season and Diki who went back to AntiQuad. They are very inactive but still managed to win their first two games of the season, it is a big question if they will be able to play enough to make the playoffs though.
The Boefjes should get a decent season as well now they added HangTime who came from the disbanded Hyphen.
Then last but not least division one. It has been tightened up a little since last season because people thought the lower div1 teams werent capable of competing with the rest what just caused some rapes and division stuffing. Thats why the admin crew decided to small the division down.
Some clans dropped out since last season, first of all Slackers. Because Hib didnt have the feeling he had before in SR (team used to be with fellow countrymen Gamer/Goljat and of course Paradoks) now that Xerial, Circle, Crazymac and just lately Javve joined. Thats why he decided to join his fellow fins in cMF what made Goljat decide to not play at all anymore (he already played barely). This left SR with ParadokS, CrazyMac, Xerial and Javve, they didnt seem to have enough trust in themselves and time to play NQR and SD so they dropped out and just play NQR ladder.
Another team that dropped out is my own, ToT. Because White and Seeker quit the game and Slabby and Psycho_Dad are really busy studying it left Hamorai and me to play the games. Besides us there were Sibbit and Lethul who came back from 3 years of inactivity and of course Nopee who came along with Psycho_Dad from div3-Thangodrim but it wasnt enough.
Like mentioned earlier, Hyphen disbanded too. I dont know the exact story but it came down to the fact that the members were way too inactive to keep things going on. This is really sad if you ask me and it still looks to me their best season was their first when they fielded HangTime, DarkWarrior, Raptor and Spoink. I think most of us remember them taking down Slackers in NQR4 with as decider e1m2 in a game which Goljat referred to as: harder than playing Flaming Fist. They defiantly put their name on the map then but sad enough fell back into inactivity and could never live up to the expectations at least I had from them. One of the last mid-european div1 teams going down
GTG started the season nice with three 2-0 wins and two walkovers. People might think this is lame but its simply the only thing you can do, if you read the rules you can only ask for walkovers a week after the game shouldve been played and after that you have the chance in the catch-up week but no WOs are given then. What means you can be really screwed if three of your opponents dont want to play and you dont report WO.
The team that is most active alongside to GTG is last seasons winners cMF but they dont seem to be in best shape. They have got Zhin and Jus back from the army but lost Angua to it. Maybe its the changing lineups they have that makes them lose some games or its just the best tactics quake has ever seen, but they dont seem to be close to the form they were in last season. They have got Fix, Fifi, Jus, Hib, Hlt, Siv, Zhin and Angua on free days, so its pretty hard to say what the best lineup is. Even Archi played a map and did seriously good with nine frags.
Its basically impossible to say who are going to take the six playoffs spots but if I had to put my money on it right now I would go for LA, GTG, F0M (do I sense something Swedish?), FS, cMF and KOFF if they play with decent pings.
I have been pulling strings inside the SD hierarchy since last summer to see what was possible related to starting up the tournaments again. Now that Apollyon got his internet back things got rolling and I made sure that the tournament would be worldwide gathering information about players and admins in both America and Australia. In the end I kind of let Australia do their own thing and made a razzia in America to get people to form teams etc. In the end it came there but due to some rule changes it has been decided to move to NQR after all.
The teams that have got most chance on winning this tournament, or rather the only chance, are The Boss, Confederacy and 5 Angry Men. It will be interesting to see how those teams are doing even though I think 5ams chances are getting smaller since Yogic retired and Fiend doesnt show much life signs. Not talking about the fact that HangTime and I are not allowed to play at the same time nor that I dont have time to play, especially not that late. Damn that sounded really bad, The Boss has got a really strong team and if their players internet isnt lagging I give them most chances of winning by far. I dont understand though how they can be the strongest American team of the moment (probably) and still be in div4 in NQR while fired and American gangster were in DIV2 of NQR when even the divisions were smaller. I guess the only explanation is that boss is not as good as those two teams were and the other teams were more used to the ping in Europe maybe.
The end of this short update is coming to an end, there is only one tournament left to talk about and that is Smackdown Europe. There have been a lot of people asking for this in the past two years and not without reason. It has been a league class forever and it is back. There are quite some teams that fell out so far but Im sure the playoffs will give some interesting fights. The best thing about smackdown is that you can get big surprises with teams not being limited to their own divisions.
Group A seems to have quite a strong playoff team with HGC, F0M, GO and paranoia if all of those will play their games. Group B would give us LA, boefje, MNY and the pures if they play. But the inactivity is very big in this group. Group C and D are already down to eight teams (from ten), C will most likely have cMF, SD, Osams and Luis Clan while Group D would give KOFF, Insanity, AntiQuad and 4Honor.
The biggest contestants for the title are of course LA, cMF, KOFF and F0M, we will see in the coming weeks how things develop.
Actually Im pretty glad that I wrote an update again. It feels like I wrote the worst update Ive done ever, but still it feels like a new start of something nice. Lets hope it really is and that there will follow many decent updates from now on.
Over and out
Can you believe it?
Yes people, this is going to be a huge shock. An update on my column! Who could ever have thought that. After all the time of inactivity on the writing part I have the feeling now that there seriously is something to be done about it. Even though some people are writing pretty nice predictions on the different sites that host leagues these days (as we all know these are EQL and NQR).
Lets just get it on!
It sounds pretty decent to start with a preview on the semi finals of EQL. The first game is going to be Lege Artis vs Leftovers which could be seen as the old owners playing the new kids on the block.
Leftovers sure have both impressed and shocked the community during the last two seasons with both good play and unexpected moves like adding Paradoks to their lineup and changing their name to Slackers. That is one thing that is going to work against them for sure. Cage/Ricks0n has quit already but Paradoks is signed up with Death Team what means well most likely see leftovers play with murdoc, insane, dragon and krab; the four players that used to form the basic team together with cage. Another point is that seese and goblin got back active last two weeks what might make their decision on the lineup pretty hard and we can see some surprises there.
In the other corner there is Lege Artis. A clan that doesnt need introduction and is famous for losing important playoff games when not fielding their optimal team. A few years ago we saw the barely unbeatable team of dag, riker, nabbe and striker dominating the scene (we all remember when they lost the SD5 finals with dag in spec, who came home drunk from a party at his work or something similair) but when this season took off we saw some other players on the roster. The old friends from Lithium had been called to join the forces to Antne (Aniol) and Inferno showed up, inferno stuck around and played the whole season, Antne went inactive though. Another new face is Rock who is best known from Zetor and has played with cMF and tVS in the past. Most games have been played by nabbe, riker, rock and inferno but in the last weeks dag is picking up activity and weve seen him star in a few official maps again, I count on dag, riker, nabbe and inferno playing.
That is some pretty boring introduction of the game and if I will go on like this its going to be another ten page update that nobody will read! Quickly over the game itself: Looking at L0, the loss of cage and the strength of LA who picked up activity again and got Dag back in their active roster it seems like e1m2 will be a safe base for the oldies. L0 will have to pull off something really special to take that home, insane has ping 51 which doesnt help on e1m2 especially, dragon doesnt like the map at all and its not krabs best, maybe they will field seese and/or goblin instead, dont see them making the needed difference.
On the other hand L0 is really strong on dm3, with murdoc and dragon who have played active for the last few years (like whole l0) in the time that maybe half of the scene and 75% of div1 quit they got a great base on dm3, together with the experience and skill of insane and the backup of krab they should be able to take this map home which is the weakest of LA. It will show how much the loss of cage and the missing of paradoks hurts the team, if they cant win this l0 wont have a chance at all.
The last map which is dm2 can go either way, nothing changed there, I guess it will always be a lotto map, LA has got the personal skills to take out anyone on it plus they dont seem to have weak players there. Dm2 is the base of insane and they will have good chances if they will get their game together, probably on dm2 l0 will be missing their strong individual fourth the most because they wont be able to take the series home without winning dm2. In case I read the rules on the EQL page in the right way, but a lot of things in there are missing or put down wrong, the playoffs will be best of five. In that case I predict LA winning the game 3-1.
The other semi final game is going between two clans that have been around for quite a while even though the Finish team has took a pretty long break! Im talking about the Viper Squad and Firing Squad as you know. TVS has been away for a long time but every time they make a comeback they seem to be able to do it without changing their roster too much, at least the two brothers in crime, Ihminen and blAze are always around and the same goes with Mirage. During their last comeback they had Maga as fourth, but all he plays at the moment is some secret povdmm4 games with Elec. This season they are having Milton as their fourth player who signed a one season contract, next season Goljat will take his place.
In Firing Squads camp some changes have been made in time, we all remember reppie, blixem, razor and spoink forming the first team and later on 123 replacing blixem. This season Spoink is too busy with his study so the old school FS member gem has stepped up to play his games. He is still from times that FS played with blixem, crit, ploppie and gem, you might remember them winning Flaming Fist on e1m2 in SD2. Good rumours are though that spoink is going to play next season!
This is going to be a very intense match-up. Not so long ago both teams played their group game, tVS won with 60 frags difference on dm3 and 15 on dm2. The only thing that can be said in FS defensive is that they had keyser who played his third and fourth map of the season and that 123 had a terrible off day with 14 and 16 frags. Now the playoff game will show if those are real excuses or that they are simply not good enough to take tVS down. The trouble tVS had to face this season is that Ihminen has been the quadrunner for the past eight years and Milton has been running quad in SSC for the past six years, what means one of them has to give in. The way its looking to me dm3 is FS best map and they can take anyone down on dm2. From tVS its the other way around, their best is dm2 and they can win anyone on dm3, but both clans share a weakness on e1m2. This a game that is very hard to predict because any map can go either way. Nevertheless FS can win any game because of reppie and razor, the only thing is that they need two team mates that dont fuck up, thats why 123, gem and keyser might be the deciding factors in this showdown, weve all seen them play well and weve all seen them play... not so well! Looking at the practice results of the two clans earlier this season, when FS fielded gem (unlike in the eql group game), when they beat up tVS rather easy I think FS will take this down in a 3-2 thriller.
By this time we are two pages and thirty minutes, of my not so expensive, time later and it seems logic to start with the predictions on NQR. At a point that everybody gave up hope on ever seeing either Quakeworld.nu nor NQR back they pulled it off and are back in action!
What is pretty interesting to see is that EQL is running the old NQR system and that NQR has took over the old SD system but spiced it up a lot. Back in the old SD leagues clans simply signed up, some got seeded and everybody got mixed around. Now clans have been placed in three different cups which are all based on skill. Every single cup has been divided in four groups that contain four or five clans in both the Gold and Silver Cup, in the Bronze cup there are six or seven teams in all groups. Out of those four or five clans the best two teams go the to cups pro-playoffs and the third and fourth team will attend in the amateur-playoffs. This means that the system is being way more friendly to the different teams than it that SD was which was concentrated on the best clans in the field.
The main reason that Im writing again is that the scene is back. Clans are coming together, people are playing again, there is competition that we havent seen in years. After hordes of people quit in 2005 because of several reasons, WoW was one of them and later on Q4 came out what made some people quit. But I think a lot of people were just fed up with QW for the moment and had better things to do in real life, just like me. The great thing that we are seeing at the moment is that when EQL started last September players began coming back again. This season there are so many good clans playing again that its pretty hard to name any season since NQR3 in which there have been such a list. Besides that, its been practically impossible to get a div1 practice game in the last two years or maybe even three but at the moment you games every single day, everybody seems to be active. Just look at it, clans like Lege Artis, Slackers, clan MalFunction, Fragomatic, Firing Squad, the Viper Squad and KOFF are playing, not even starting on teams like AntiQuad, Death Team and the two SuddenDeath teams.
This means that its time to write. As I have noticed before Leftovers changed name to Slackers after they added Paradoks to their lineup. Then we saw KOFF coming back from Q4, they were pretty disappointed be in div3 of the clanbase cup and came in second. Now they are haunting QW again and playing better than ever! Then we see cMF who just took a bonus season last in eql2 since their activity was really low. Soon angua will be back from the army (about a month) and then the will be a main contender to take any title, like they have been top3 in all 4on4 tournaments they entered in since 1997, except for eql2 ...
There have been done some group previews already so Ill keep it short (right, like I can ...). In group A there are two of the mayor candidates for the title (but ok, there are in two of them in every group probably) and they have been playing the EQL1 finals two month ago. Teams like SSC, Triada and Death Team are making the group complete. F0M has got four players on their roster and really stabile and safe, FS on the other hand are changing and their backup players are not putting up very consistent performances, sometimes div1 but the next div3. Thus I would place F0M on top of the group, FS second, SSC in third because they get milton back, DT in fourth because the lost Paradoks and Triada as last because they lack both teamplay and knowledge of who to field on what map.
Group B has got two clans that have been away for quite some time. Even though Slackers played in EQL1 and had the <a href=http://www.challenge-tv.com/index.php?mode=demodetail&demo=30203 target=_blank>game of the season</a> with Firing Squad on that dm3 which I recommend anyone downloading if you havent seen it yet they werent really active. Now they are back with a totally new lineup which only fields Paradoks being an old member. KOFF on the other hand is back with everybody they played with in the last seasons. Having Gamer, Scenic, Eh (Zygot) and Jukka (their last lineup) together with Nicam and Wallu who played with koff before and PKK whos the new kid on the block, being with MNY before. Jukka doesnt seem to be in his best shape at the moment but he was very good during NQR ICC so I expect him to get back in shape any time and otherwise some of the other players would.
Then you got Elintarha and Suddendeath2 who are both decent teams but wont be able to come close to ]sr[ and koff. Those two will just be out of their league and so will sd2 be for Zoo most likely. I predict SR taking the first spot just because they have seven active members at the moment, getting koff in second, sd2 in third and thus Zoo in fourth.
The third group, C, is pretty hard to write about. Taking in credit that Oblivion just split up since Mutilator left them to play with Lege Artis and that Djevulsk quit because of better things in real life there are only three teams left in this group. That cMF is going to take the first place in this group is pretty clear. They have been inactive for the last month and I havent seen them play at all but its clear that they have got incredibly good players and got the skill to take anyone out. It seems to me like angua will get back from the army at the time of the playoffs but Im sure hell be able to play enough in the groups to make sure that theyll end up first, with players like Fix, Fifi, Siv, Hlt, Vore and of course Angua.
The other two teams in there are AntiQuad with as starplayers NuSSi and Diki, with the underdog pinemaster Harvester, but I dont think they will be able to beat cMF. The fourth team is 3tk who are almost back to a totally polish lineup, they have been playing with cia, slb, tom and kat in their last eql games, only fielding polish players which is quite nice. Its good to see them stick around on the highest level but theyll need some more practice together to be able to win some important games, Im sure they will be good in the amateur playoffs.
Now its time for the last group in this Gold Cup, which is probably the overall strongest group. With LA, tVS, SD and LS in there its killer of a group. LA is favourite in there and tVS will most likely take th second spot. The point is that SD has been very strong in the beginning of the last season when they were still active but their activity fell back since. At the moment they are working on it and it seems to get a bit better now but still I dont think it will be enough to get themselves into the pro playoffs. Then the fourth team is Loser Squadron, they are a combination of GO and Axe with TCO, Hixo, Naille, PreMortem and Timmi. They were not looking forward to playing in this group, which is kind of understandable with those opponents, if they will shape up they can win SD and take a map from tVS though. Im looking forward to see them in active action at least.
To me it seems fine to call it a day at this moment, feels like I did a good job at not making this another ten page update. Lets hope you all enjoyed it and Im sure Ill be writing some more in the near future. Its been a pleasure writing a column again!
The end of a new start
Even though it has been just seven days ago that I wrote and published my last update it's clear that another one has to be written at this very moment. As most of you (I sincerely hope all of you ...) understand that is because the both the second semifinal and the final of EQL2 itself will be played coming sunday.
I expected the playoffs to drag on like always but in this case the admins are scheduling the games and for the first time in qw-history it seems to work!
Let's begin with what happened last night when the Viper Squad played Firing Squad. First of all Firing Squad came up with a quite unexpected lineup, they have played as good as the whole season with reppie, razor, gem and 123. That is because keyser always plays has his soccer games on sunday, that's what you get with professional soccer players I suppose, and spoink has took a break to focus on his study. About ten days ago Spoink got back to the game and played some pracs to get himself back in shape for the playoffs.
On the first map Firing Squad played with reppie, razor, spoink and keyser. The Viper Squad had the same team as always with Ihminen, Milton, blAze and Mirage. In the first seconds it looked like FS wouldn't have much problems with getting control and making the first five minutes theirs. With Spoink spawning the first RL and razor with pent it looked safe in all ways. Spoink was taken out by a good team effort from tVS (blAze had quad) and razor wasn't allowed to use his rl either. This meant that tVS got control early in the game and they never let it go. For almost the whole game they had ya safe, the ya camper checked on high-bridge often and the quadrunner went to bridge every time too. This made it very hard for FS who clearly weren't used to teams that put so much pressure on water area. Despite some sole tries from the few weapons they got outside there was little they could do and tVS totally dominated them, only in the last minutes FS got some control and frags which might have gave them a good feeling for the next map maybe. In some way it looked like FS wasn't used to playing with this lineup at all, which isn't really strange because they haven't played much like this, tVS on the other hand displayed some great teamplay and maplocking skills.
Dm3 being FS best map and totally outplaying them there, plus dm2 being tVS best it was looking good for tVS. Even though FS got the better start with quad they gave away control early in the game, control switched around and with quite some minutes left it looked like tVS was going for a win, they had both tele and low safe, it seemed nothing could go wrong. Then FS made a takeover which totally turned the map around, they spammed two of their rls, one at tele and one at low, got quad and control. They closed in quick and with one minute left it was as good as game over. Until it turned out that none of the fs players was in time at quad. reppie went for it but bored when rocketjumping up with Ihminen being at quad shooting him. He killed razors rl too and made spoink bore after that, he took the quad and saved the victory for tVS.
It was all looking great for tVS, it wouldn't have been weird if FS was totally demotivated after first being immobilized on their own map and then losing out from a safe situation in the last seconds. It being a best of five series they would have to win the remaining three maps in a row while tVS only needed one more. The third map came down to e1m2 of course, the first rls got flooded and nobody had control of ya nor quad. Then gem was chasing milton through ga up to ya where two other fs players waited for him, they shot miltons rl down, gave away his pack which reppie got with ya. After that reppie didn't lose the ya side for more than ten minutes. TVS didn't spam ya much, they mostly retreated to mega where spoink and razor were putting pressure on them constantly. reppie only took a few shots in there while gem held an eye on ya/gl, since he couldn't afford losing his rl without having another one constantly at ya. With four minutes left reppie finally died and tVS got the control of the map back. They made a lot of frags in a short time but there was simply not enough time to overcome the big lead that FS had made in the 15 minutes before. FS even went hiding to be completely sure of winning, don't forget to check their mm2 talk in the demo hehe.
A sparkle of hope came in FS eyes after this game, reppie had pulled of a great game and things were looking a bit better. TVS probably counted on winning 3-0 after the first two maps but more was to come. After that rape in the first dm3 FS decided to go for dm2, apparently they weren't sure of winning e1m2 again. Gem switched places with keyser again who did some awesome quadruns in the first dm2. FS got the better start and even got both 2nd low and 2nd high but the one waiting at quad was a tVS player who kindly took advantage of razor who rocketjumped up there and gave away his rl. This gave tVS the control again, the third time FS gave up a better start. But they overcame it this time and after ten minutes the game was still dead close. FS got control though and made sure that there was nothing that could stop them this time.
Now tVS were the ones with the bad mind, after winning the first two the series were unkindly stretched from their point of view and a final fifth map had to make the decision. Without any talk they changed back to dm3, where the series started with the kinda rampage of tVS. Once again FS got the better start with spoink rl and razor pent, but spoink his rl got killed at window for the second time. Another time they managed to give tVS the early control. It was just a matter of minutes for them to take things over and be sure to have ra and quad under control. At the third quad razor got stopped from taking it by the enemy and got killed twenty seconds later. After five minutes tVS was leading with about 35 frags when spoink got pent. He did a good job with it, despite the fact that he didn't see ring, he managed to clear ra and get it safe, he got killed at the next quad. Then it was reppie's time to save FS. He had ra, rl and mh. With that he took ra in his control right after tVS` quad ran out and they held control of it for the next five minutes.
At the time of the third pent tVS was still in the lead with 20 frags. The pent was taken by razor who killed the enemy quad with it. That pent ensured FS of longer control of ra. After eleven minutes reppie got the quad and cleared the map from enemy weapons, with the next one FS tied the game, about 12:30 had been played. A minute later FS came in a bit of trouble but spoinka held ra safe and gem had ya under his control, it was still looking good for FS who were leading with about thirty frags at the time that pent spawned. On the point where pent spawns were both rl'ed spoink and sg-blAze, blAze got it, mirage bored his rl on him and blAze went to quad. In the meanwhile Milton was at sng with 200/60 rl/lg and ring but he didn't report in mm2 that he had ring (maybe blAze didn't hear Milton say he took it, or he didn't say it at all), he shot a rocket to quad when he came jumping from ring to quad, saw blAze there, jumped down and took mega, giving him 200/160 rl/lg, then he went spamming he got ring but blaze didn't read it and tk'ed him ...
BlAze got his quad to ra and it wasn't looking bad, the only point was that when he left to check on ya it was safe, then reppie went up ra and gem sneaked in ya with lg when blAze left there. The last five quads went to tVS while FS held ra safe, they got more and more rls there and when quaded Ihminen tried to enter ra he got rockets from several fs players in his face so he had to retreat. Spoink held the fortress at ra/sng with rep and gem. With less than minute left and the scores being 20 frags in favor of FS reppie and gem got killed in a try to take the last quad, only leaving spoink with rl but it was too late for tVS to make up the difference in frags. Firing Squad won the map with 16 frags and with that taking the series home 3 maps to 2!
That kind of went like I predicted, 3-2 for FS and the game being a true thriller! With the exception of the first map all the maps were close and not at a single moment boring. This means FS is going to meet the winner of LA an L0 in the final sunday. Since I already did the prediction on the semifinal game and because I think LA is going to win that, I will do a prediction on the final which I, obviously, think will be FS-LA.
There is goes, the last game of the season. The first season in a while that is having exciting playoffs (and NQR9 should be even better!) has two the best teams of all time playing in the finals (at least if LA wins the semifinal).
Let's put down a bit of history on this matter. LA was at their top in their early days, the reason they didn't win more titles than they did is because in SD4 they lost a playoff game to hf when pietro had ping 200 and pl 50. I said what happened in the SD5 final last column, when dag didn't play and they lost 3-1 to SR, in both tournaments LA were the best team in my opinion, thus losing out twice due to not optimal player fielding and pietro's connection. They won NQR3 by defeating cMF in the final, which is the only big title they took home. In NQR4 they didn't play but some of their members played in DS who lost to cMF in the semifinal in a close 5-mapper, we all remember the SR-luck in the final when they won the fifth map with two frags. In NQR5 it was DS playing the final with SR and this time they lost the fifth map with six frags.
Can you imagine if LA fielded dag in the SD5 final and cMF and DS won those leagues that were decided on two and six frags that the name of SR wouldn't be as big as it is? Everybody was always talking about how SR dominated the scene, but ok, maybe I'm the only one who doesn't think it's like that. In NQR6 LA was back and played the final with Slackers, this time they weren't in great shape and in my opinion didn't field the best team, on all maps they got shiva. He is a great player but at the time didn't fit in their teamplay, especially when you know that LA has lost two maps when fielding dag, nabbe, riker and striker in officials (they played about 50 official games). In NQR7 Slackers was the better team in the semifinal leaving LA without title again. After that they took a break and now they are back in action!
Time for FS, the first we've seen of them is playing Villains where they lost the quarter final to cMF, then in SD2 they were the only clan to take a map from Flaming Fist. Losing to N0skill in the playoffs (with Milton who they just played yesterday), in SD3 they lost in the quarters to Lithium, winning e1m2 obviously. Then in SD4 they won tVS with one frag on the third map of the quarters, we all remember that; in the semifinals HF was too much for them. Then in SD5 they lost the quarter final to SR with 7 and 10 frags on the two maps, there comes in the SR luck again! Alright this is taking too long, they played about ten more leagues but lost to HF and SR quite a few times, then they won the CB cup over cmf in the final and they took home NQR.ICC beating SR with ONE frag on the deciding map, guess the sr luck changed the other way around for the first time in history there. Then last season they lost the EQL final to fragomatic in four maps.
What my point was in the beginning of all this is that despite both clans are being considered to be topclans for ages they haven't won that much. LA only won NQR3 and a couple of QhLans and FS won Clanbase and Nqr.icc, this means that both clans will be eager to add this title to their records.
Enough of the boring history and over to the game!
Actually through the years little has changed for both clans. This is something that could be seen as strange because with both teams the lineups have been changing a bit but it's still clear that FS' best map is dm3 and their worst is e1m2 (yes in the old days it was their best map but when reppie and razor joined things turned around), in LA's case their worst is dm3 and their best is e1m2! Looking at their groupgame where FS won dm3 and LA e1m2 like expected but FS only won with 45 and LA with 25. Then the deciding dm2 was Firing Squads favor winning it 243 to 160. The thing is that I don't expect either of the teams playing with the same team as they did in the groupgame. It seems to be that FS will have reppie, razor, spoink and gem while LA would have dag, nabbe, riker, inferno and rock. The additions of spoink and dag to their teams makes both their lineup a lot better and makes it even harder to predict. Still it seems like FS will win dm3 and LA e1m2, the dm2 will be random, funny as it is.
FS showed weakness on the first dm3 in the semifinal but when gem played instead of keyser in the decider it looked a lot better. LA on the other hand will be very hard on e1m2 if they have dag, nabbe and riker in their lineup, FS had a hard time on the map last season but is looking a lot better there at the moment. Then dm2 will be a hard pick, looking at their groupgame you would say FS has the better chances but if LA has a fullstart they can profit from that to the fullest. One of the weak points of FS in the semifinals seemed to be that they can't make use of the better spawns on game start, that is something I haven't seen from LA. A fact is that tVS used their mm3 very well to chase down FS' first rls and LA is just like FS a mm2 clan so maybe FS will have it easier at gamestarts in this final.
Looking at the overall picture it seems like FS is rather sure of dm3 and even though LA might have a really strong team they won't be sure of e1m2 because FS has practiced a lot more than LA has and they are looking pretty strong on it with reppie and gem representing the old Dutch skills on the map (ok, back in the days reppie wasn't very good on e1m2) and with razor and spoink they have a great lineup. FS had a lot of pracs without reppie in the last weeks, even fielding the old maestro (whiplash) often, that probably helped the others getting in shape alot, in the semifinal only razor seemed to have some weird actions. Then on dm2 the lineups won't really matter I think, it's a matter of who is getting control and what team is attacking better together, managing to make takeovers. To me it looks like this will be as close as the games between FS and tVS were with again FS coming out on top with a 3:2 win.
That was it for this EQL season! Hope to see you all this sunday when both the semifinal between LA and L0 and the final game will be played. Besides every one of you should realize that this end of EQL2 is the start of a new era in QuakeWorld. After a long time of waiting all of the top clans are back in action and games are being played with a level as high as we have seen before. They are as intense as one can just dream about and the names of legendary players are roaming around servers. Maybe QW really never dies ...
Final stages of EQL4
Here we go again, the same story as always, it has been way too long since I wrote my last column. But you might guess it, its getting worse this time, I promissed to write the playoff predictions for division one, two and three and as you probably know, the first games have already been played Despite the games you are still reading this, it just felt too bad if I wouldnt write anything.
Lets kickoff with division three, the final rankings have been heavily influenced by activity of the different teams. The team that played most games, Hippusnik, claimed the first playoff spot and with this is garantueed a promotion to division two next season. That is something that might count for more than just the two best teams this season because its sure that division one is going to be larger than it is at the moment, twelve, sixteen or maybe eightteen teams, what its going to be will be sure at the start of next season. Several teams made sure that they wouldnt get in the playoffs by not playing enough games to be able to gather enough points. Title candidates Vxj for example only played four games and then had enough, Unidentified Quake Entity and BaconMen got stuck on six games and a fair amount of points but couldnt get more played than that.
At least it was clear that this division had too many teams because nobody played all games, there were fourteen teams, Hippusnik played most games with eleven, two short from all, average number of games played is around 7.5, not even near the thirteen that could have been played. This is something we didnt see in all divisions, the fact that some only had ten or nine clans really helped. Division six had trouble playing all their games having only six teams but in division two, four and five almost every game has been played which is rather extraordinary.
Lets move on to the first game which took place last night between JUGS and Hippusnik. Looking at it beforehand this had to be an interesting game in all matters, both teams have quite a history build up even though Jugs has played under different names than this. More of you might remember Paranoids who played in division two several seasons ago and of course Milamber used to play in Inner Circle while later on we saw Zero in Hyphen. All in Paranoids is one fine Hungarian team, just the luck of the draw to pick Hippusnik who are from Finland, low ping game garantueed Hippusnik has been around since NQR5 where they played in division seven, I guess its safe to say that they have improved quite much through time while they have only took in two new members since then, both are starters though, ex-Koff Bandit en ex-Paranoia Mingle.
During their groupgame Zeros fragrank went off the charts on dm2 and e1m2 while hips put on a solid performance on dm3 and won it. This time the things were different, during the groupgame Jugs had the pingadvantage with all of their players on 38ms while some of hips had 51ms, now it was the other way around with all of hips players on 38ms while two JUGS had 51ms. One thing was the same though, on the maps where Hippusnik changed Miroslav for Oyf they lost. Maybe their teamplay doesnt work but its rather obvious that it happened before, what did happen before but not this time was Zero going on a fragstreak. JUGS did manage to win one dm2 but that was all they could do and thus Hippusnik advanced to the final with a 3-1 win under their belt.
The fourth map was dm3, like the first map, this probably has to do with the rule on best of five games. A few seasons ago I harassed the admins because they didnt have a rule about them at all, then they talked about it and came up with this ridiculous rule that says play TB3 first then as fourth and fifth map the maps that both teams picked first. Im not sure but if the rules say that you have to play tb3 first what is there to pick in the first three maps? Besides if you turn out to lose the first map bigtime you might want to change your pick, wouldnt that be nice anyway to give an option to play a different map? That is the only reason they said that you have to play tb3 in first instantion, basically because they dont want that one map is being played five times in a row. A bigger problem with this rule is that the fifth and deciding map is always the homemap of the team that was leading 2-1 after three maps. Im not sure but I cant remember a league in which the decider has been set as the homemap of one of the teams by rule
What they got on divisions with five maps is just hilarious, all they say about the playoff games is: First there will be 5 maps to pick from even in the playoff or qualification matches. and then they go on about how to pick the decider in regular season games. Now a good rule, like in normal leagues, is just based on logic. Both teams pick a map, if its 1-1 after those maps both pick one map again. In case one of the teams is leading 2-0 the team that is down can pick the third map and in case they win it the other team picks the fourth of course. When the score is 2-2 teams can agree on a decider and if they cant do that they throw maps away until one remains. Then if you really want to have the precious diversity in maps just add a note that maps cant be played three times in tb3 divisions (this means you get exactly what happens now concerning mapdiversity, two maps being played twice and one once in case of a five mapper, it is possible that one map remains unplayed in a game that ends 3-1 though) and that all maps have to be played in five map divisions or whatever they want. Ive tried to make them change this often but it wont work, dont ask me why because the rule is very unfair now and lets face it, there isnt even a rule for divisions with five maps.
Enough with the whine, the other game in division three features Rebellion of Thunder and Easy to Kill. We all know Easy to Kill of course who started out in NQR7 division four and worked their way up to division one in EQL2 after they did a good job in division two from EQL1. At the moment they entered division one most of their players went inactive and they got smoked, not winning a single map. Last season they still had some trouble in division two where they only gathered one point thus we find them in this division now. They have picked up a decent level of activity again to make sure that they wont slip away more than they already did and well see them in division two again next season. Rebellion of Thunder on the other hand is quite an old clan compared to most and used to be totally Portuguese, these days there is little more of that left than the flag on the eql site and the names of the old players. With players like Cruelty (ex-4k^Tryso), Latency (he was in SR for a day or two), Macavity (jerp from Dqm), Pericles (ex-3tk), hedfuk (ex-fs) plus the englishmen swoop and splif (ex-4k too) they got quite some big names in one division three team while Nitemare is the only of the old Portguese players that is still active. It seems to me that they are doing well these days without practice, just playing for the fun of the game rather than being the best and there is nothing wrong with that.
In the groupgame RoT won two-nil with Latency playing very well. Both maps, e1m2 and dm2, were close though with forty and fifteen frags difference. My guess is that this game will prove to be likewise, high pings for both teams (fifty to sixty) with especially RoT depending on the form of the day from their players. All of their players can do well but some are a bit inconsistent, playing great one game and not being so well in the next. It seems like their most stabile players are Latency, Hedfuk and Pericles but things just have to work out. This season Easy to Kill added Domin and Capone to their roster which increased their activity now that HangTime and Son are inactive, Pericles left for their opponents in this match and Ayv is not around too often.
Easy to Kill has always been a dm2 clan, with Slabiutki, Cia and Tom who have been in 3tk since the start they are doing a good job there. They had some close games this season but seem to be building up some teamplay now their activity increased. I would have to give RoT the advantage on e1m2 while dm3 could go either side. Both clans have showed their skill on this map during the season. Since they didnt play it in the groupgame its hard to say whos going to win that, like I said before it seems like a lot will depend on the form of the day of RoTs members and who they field. Despite that and the fact that the pings will be high it should turn out to be a great game, if both teams can get their things together we will see some good quake being played. My guess is that RoT will take things home 3-2 with 3tk winning dm2 twice but things can go either way.
Next up is division two, this season turned out to be one of the closest ever, almost every game was played and the only team that couldnt keep up with the others was Tribe of Tjernobyl. Their lineup has changed a lot lately but they are getting more active now with some of the older members picking up activity like the oldskool Lethul and others like Psycho_Dad, Hamorai and White making appearances again. As I said before it was all very close, Oblivion who ended second last had ten points, being five points away from making the playoffs. Freedom with the always fancy duo Valla and Znappe was the clear winner during the regular season, getting 21 points, only losing to Osams who didnt even reach the playoffs. Since Im so late writing this Freedom already played and lost their first game to Elintarha three maps to one. Quite some drama was what we saw in the groupgame they played before this game where Freedom would have given Zoo a map to make sure they would make the playoffs instead of D2. All of this is guessing of course, since Freedom lost three maps to them in the semifinal it seems like they earned their way in the playoffs without any doubt.
One reason that could be given that Freedom didnt achieve as they normally do is that Sweep played instead of Dahmer. The latter played about every map during the season while Sweep hasnt been active for two years. Despite all that Zoo is a very stabile team with some great players, actually it surprised me that they werent promoted to division one last season after they made the division two finals and added Diki aka Lohjan Dag. They have been in division two for about five seasons now, several times they played good enough to be promoted but it never happened, I think its clear that they will move up this time. Their lineup is very solid with players like Diki, Niomic, Ananas, Jkova and Mursu.
In the semifinal with Freedom they were whiped out on the first dm3 thanks to Valla and Znappe who showed why they were clear first during the regular season. Then on dm2 it seemed like it was game over after a few seconds already when Znappe got low and secret while Valla picked up high and quad. Zoo managed to take over in a few minutes though turning the odds in their favour. They showed their skills by holding the lock pretty well despite Freedoms attacks. I heard several people say that Freedom should just give all the rls to Valla if they want to win and maybe they were right, most attacks from Freedom werent succesful, only in the very end they managed to take over but by then it was way too late. E1m2 was a map worth watching, control switched often like its supposed to be and I dont know if I ever saw Zoo flooding enemy rls this good. On contrary to Freedom Zoo showed some great teamplay while Valla had almost as many frags as Sweep and C together. In the second half of the game Zoo got control of ya/gl and build up a lead big enough to lose it in the last minutes. They went hiding and Free couldnt catch up, fourteen frags more for Zoo. This put Zoo in a 2-1 lead, Freedom chose to play dm3 again of course where we saw Diki and Ananas showing some skills to win the third map in a row. Valla was topfragging again but Znappe had a serious offgame which didnt help Freedom. There we have the first upset of this season, Zoo advancing to the finals where they have to face USSR or Losers Squadron.
These two teams have been around for quite a while too, that is if you see USSR as a combination of Death Team and 4H. Their clan at least has some of the core members that were in Death Team like XN, Gorgoroth and Camperoid while the Glad, B1aze, Disconnect and Doom used to form 4H together. At the start of the season it seemed like USSR wouldnt play their games but after they added XN they got active and showed some serious Russian skills making just enough points to make it into the playoffs. Losers Squadron on the other hand has some oldskool players who have been in many teams together like TheChosenOne, PreMortem, TiMMi and Hixo. They had Arnette added as a late addition and he might be of great worth in the playoffs. It seems like their best lineups are XN, Gor, Camp and probably B1aze, because hes been more active than the others, for USSR while LS would have TCO, Pre, Hixo and Arnette.
In their groupgame LS managed to win two to one, winning dm2 and dm3 while USSR took e1m2 home. I find that rather surprising because TCO tends to put on a show on e1m2 while USSR does that on dm2. Both teams probably didnt play with their best players though but if well see something like this in the semifinal it will be an interesting match without any doubt. With the addition of Arnette I will have to give LS the upper hand while you never know what USSR can pull off if XN plays his game. There is a very good possibility that this match turns out in a good five mapper with some close games. I think LS will win dm3 and e1m2 while USSR takes home dm2 but since USSR managed to win e1m2 in the groupgame they might surprise us, take home another map and take it to the fifth where I think LS will have the upper hand and face Zoo in the final.
This leaves us only one division, division one. I have seen quite some whine, especially from Dahmer, on the EQL site concerning the fact that the so called div0 would be too good and have to be banned from QW. Now this is an interesting statement, lets ban the best players from div1 and give them a division of their own where they can play two games a season! Ridiculous of course, actually if you take a closer look at the division one table you will see that only the top four teams have played all their games. The other six teams all had two or three games left to play and those games would all have been inside the lower ranks themselves (since top four played all games), as you understand this means that the div0 teams gathered a lot of points because they are so good plus played all games, things wouldnt have looked as bad as they do now if everybody just played all games.
That the number of games played really is an important reason of the difference was kindly shown by LegeArtis who played six of their nine games and are now outside the playoffs because Suddendeath who played all of their games got one point more. Personally I expected more of this season but some teams let me down. The just mentioned Lege Artis is one of them, I thought they would make the playoffs without any doubt with their starplayer lineup of Riker, Nabbe, Shiva and Xantom but it turned out to be more of an FFA lineup than LA ever fielded plus the fact that they didnt play any pracs after the first weeks of the season. Clan MalFunction made me rather sad, they won NQR9 and since Angua is back from the army I thought he would put up a nice show with their starplayers Fifi and Fix but nothing turned out to be less true.They might have been the least active team of them all, played with different lineups every game and werent as close as good as they were last season. With those two active there would have been at least five good teams instead of three.
We saw the Satanic Slaughter Clan playing some great games with Slackers and Lege Artis in both they won a map, especially ex-Noskill teammates Milton and Skisso showed they didnt forget how to play QW on the highest level. Antiquad kind of played like always, being a decent team in mid-div1 while Veterans and my own Dead Rabbits were kind of sad last with two points. Veterans got their two points winning us while we got one from them and one from SD. Personally I expected more from DR but Interceptor went idle just before the season, DARKL0RD is busy with studies and Grisling lost his connection about a month ago. Time to write about the things that lay ahead of us.
The two semifinals will be played between Slackers and Firing Squad while the other features KOFF and Suddendeath. Im afraid this last one is going to be a rape like game. KOFF has showed very solid teamplay, in earlier seasons their team had a weakest link but it now they all seem to be on top of their game being rather equal having Gamer, Eh (Zygot), Scenic and Jukka. Contrary to KOFF the lineup of SD has changed a lot through the different EQL seasons, we have seen players like Stiker, Retic, Nussi, Splash, Daizuki and Primus pass by. This season Sassa was inactive too, he just came back this week. The whole the season SD played with coreplayers Bps and Ok98 while Molle (ex-SD2) and Mille (ex-Vets) stood by their side. I must say they did a good job getting in the playoffs, even though that is of course because LA and cMF didnt claim it but SD deserves it. I just hope they wont get raped as bad as in their groupgame with KOFF. I must say that KOFF seemed to be better in the first half of the season than they look now but SD should be a small hurdle for them, my prediction is 3-0. It will be interesting to see what KOFF can do in the final.
Now were at the last semifinal, Slackers against Firing Squad. Weve seen this game very often in SD and NQR playoffs. All but once (NQR ICC final) Slackers came out on top, these guys really used to be FS nemesis. Slackers lineup changed though, maybe the feeling in the FS team changed too. There has been some controversy about this game already since ParadokS might not play, he has been away for a few weeks and it seems that he lost the eager to play so SR might be fielding the old Leftovers lineup of Murdoc, Dragon, Insane and Krab. The last of those has been lagging bad lately so if ParadokS is really not playing it might turn out to be one weird match. SR played their groupgame against KOFF with the same lineup and didnt even do that bad, they won dm2 with two frags, In$ane was hot while Krab had some serious trouble having ping 66 pl 6 (cant be good). On dm3 Zygot and Scenic secured the victory and on e1m2 Gamer showed his former team (even though none of the current Slackers played with him) how its done.
Firing Squad on the other hand seems to be totally back in shape, for a week or so it looked like reppie was out of shape, at least he didnt show the skills we except him to, but we are spoiled. Last week he seemed to be totally back and in their game with KOFF Razor and Spoink showed that they are in superb form. Now if ParadokS does decide to play this is going to be one of the best matches in a long time. Both teams showed their strenght not only this but in the past seasons too but Firing Squad has had their best season in quite a while. During the earlier EQL season they had some activity problems as both Razor and Spoink lost their connections when they moved during EQL1 and Spoink only played the playoffs in EQL2 after he quit to focus on studies during the groupstages. In EQL3 they only played three games and then seemed to have had enough. This season though they have been very active and had a stabile lineup with reppie, Razor and Spoink playing all games, having Keyser as fourth in most and Blixem in a few, their teamplay is very solid.
Since their groupgame took place in week one its hard to draw conclusions from that, both maps went to Slackers with about forty frags in that game. Another point is that neither of the teams seems to have a weak map which should make things very interesting. The outcome of the game will depend for a great deal on the fact if ParadokS plays or not, it seems rather unlikely that he doenst play but even if he plays Slackers will suffer from the fact that he has been away lately and thus they have had little practice. Nevertheless he will have to play to make this a great game and I think it will be. In case ParadokS shows up I give Slackers the upper hand to win 3-2 but still its just a guess since FS has showed some serious good form lately, question is if they will suffer from their SR trauma again in this game, at least I hope not. My prediction is that FS wins 3-1 if Krab plays and that SR wins 3-2 in case ParadokS plays, that it will be a five mapper seems inevitable and FS still has a just a good chance of winning as SR (maybe even better looking at FS form lately and the inactivity from ParadokS) but I give SR the upper hand because they won FS so many times in the playoffs before.
Since that was the last game its time to round things up. All I have left to say is that I would really like to see a bigger division one next season, I was talking with an EQL admin this week and he confirmed that division one will be at least twelve teams in EQL5. Important is that we will have to see who signs up next season to play, maybe new teams are being formed, tVS could come back or maybe we will see f0m again. Things like those will be important to make the decision on how many teams will play in division one. Personally I like the system used in NQR7, with 18 teams split up in two halves. Has to be said that back then QW was more active and there were a lot more teams that would have qualified for the regular division one but still it would be nice. Besides that, the lower teams get more games with regular teams rather than the div0 teams since they will of course be divided too.
Now the only thing left is that the games have to be played, I expect to see some great matches and hope that someone will give us commentary. See you there!
Thoughts of an oldie
The past year is one that should go into the books as one of the best in the history of our twelve year old game. Ever since Quakeworld.nu went down and World of Warcraft came out during NQR8 the scene has had a lot of up and downs considering the activity and amount of players and clans. NQR used to have 80 to 100 clans signed up, ever since we are still blessed with 50 to 60 clans every season but its a lot less. Another very important reason is of course that all of us are older than when we started playing this game. Every now and then when Im in a conversation with old quakeworld friends we get to a point where you actually realize how long it has been since this game came out. In just a few days, on the 24th, Qtest came out exactly twelve years ago, think about that, what your life looked like back then.
Even though there is still the occasional drama, of which I have to say that I personally miss at times, the far majority of the the people have matured a lot. Many of us should remember the legendary Lame-ever updates by Link which date back to the days of Villains. Controversial games like FF-tVS in Smackdown 2 where FFwanted to play with Dag while tVS wanted to play on LAN which was impossible to schedule or what about SR-tVS in Smackdown 3 with the back office chosen decider. So many things happened that caused mayor upsets, cant forget ParadokS banning Mrlame and stepping down from NQR crew drama or Riker getting banned for faking.
Everybody is older now, people have more things that are higher on their priority list than quake, like a full time job, study and of course women. Its been like that for a while now but especially in the last few seasons it struck me. From the moment EQL started their first season there have been problems surrounding division 1, as you all know there simply werent too many teams that were able to compete for the victory which made the seasons not too interesting. During the last months several people told me again how important it is for the scene that division 1 is active because there many of you, including me, who just like to watch good teams play. NQR11 has a great lineup in, not only, the gold cup, looks like its going to be a great tournament. One fantastic thing is that clans like No Pasaran! and Dies Ater are playing in Gold Cup, I say it takes a lot of guts and nerves to do that and for me its another example of how the scene matured.
I wrote a whole paragraph but didnt get to my point which is that most people, unlike Skillah, play a lot less these days. Last EQL had a great division 1 when looking at what teams signed up, before the season started and in the first month everybody was still active and playing. Though most people, and so do I, take quake a little more relaxed these days. Personally I play because its fun, not playing 20 hours a week and wanting to win everything that bad makes the game a lot more enjoyable. It looked like more people thought about quake that way and I cant say that is a bad thing since the attitude is very nice and relaxed if you ask me. A bad thing was that last EQL the activity died, then the site went down and nothing was said about what would happen concerning playoffs, which were announced to be played on QhLan. In the end Itsinen made the best out of it, he had to do about everything alone and its great that we finally got playoffs but it was disappointing too since almost every team had been inactive for a few months.
Now you think that was a lot of melodramatic crap and some negative stuff, why was last year one of the best? It is because after a very long time of people spending time writing on the qw.nu forum how to save quake finally something has been done and new people stand up. There were two seasons of ignition, 4on4 leagues have a rookie division, even though duelmania went down people took up the responsibility and started ownage, a nice quake (ez) tv system is being worked on a lot now. This year is looking to be just as good tournament wise, its great what people are doing for the scene. LGC is still running and now Phil came with a 1on1 ladder, there are plans being made for a 1on1 and a 4on4 kenya tournament, NQR is up and running again, partially thanks to mli who now hosts a CTF ladder too. He and Mushi are working hard on getting some CTF action again which is really great and last but not least Sassa is organizing his not.nqr11 silver tournament.
One thing that might be a bit of a deception for all tournaments is that people play less these days. I remember the days around NQR6 and NQR7 when it was possible to have several active tournaments and leagues at the same time, CMT, CTF, duel, custom duel and more. Im afraid that these days everything will be less active with a lot of competitions, the only thing we can hope for is that things wont die out like last fall. Molgrum has been working to get a custom 4on4 tournament running in the past months with which Ive helped a bit but the main reason that it didnt start yet is that were afraid that nobody will sign up. For now the plan is to start it when NQR is a little bit further on the way or maybe even during or after the playoffs. Besides that there have been several discussions in our crew about running a duel tournament. We all agree that the scene can use one so sit tight, its being worked on.
The Quake Nations Cup is still running too even though I dont have the slightest clue what is going to happen there. Cant say the structure is very clear but my hopes are still up, the idea behind this is great. Really looking forward to the playoffs, there are quite some interesting matches possible, the national team games always have something special surrounding it. The only thing Im missing is some good old commentary like HangTime, Gaz, Blitz and many others used to do. I personally enjoyed the commentary by Phil on the two lans there were last year very much, it would be great to have more of that for big games. Some good time to put quake on tv, get a beer, food, hang on the couch and just relax!
A fresh summerbreeze
While one season is coming to its end we have a new competition starting already with EQL7 kicking off any day now!
Despite the regular whine from clans that claim to be misplaced NQR11 turned out to be a great success. First congratulations go to the Viper Squad who were favorites from day one and lived up to that role without any trouble. After some controversy early in the season the Russian team 3B managed to take home the Silver cup having a strong team with the, mainly from dueling, reasonably well known guys XN, Bulat and Delitel with Bublik as fourth. They earned themselves a place in division one for EQL7 this summer and Im looking forward to see if they can cause any upsets.
Suddendeath sure was one of the clans that caused some upsets last season. While Dakoth and Bps left the team they took in the two brothers Overdose and Votary, building up some nice chemistry after practice. Later on Phrenic returned to his old team too and they managed to reach the semifinals where they played some very close games against the Finnish team KOFF, which mightve had a different outcome if Phren wasnt moving about that time, still a very good performance by Suddendeath there!
A completely new top team was formed by some players weve seen for a long time in this scene. By now Im sure everybody knows Star Alliance who have Reppie, Bps, Lakso, Goblin and Mawe in their lineup with LocKtar stepping in to play a dm2 once in a while. They had a minor upset in the quarterfinals beating the inactive Fragomatics but then ran into the too hot Viper Squad in the semis, still taking home third place in the competition by beating Suddendeath in the losers final which, finally, was played once again. For now their lineup remains as Firing Squad still hasnt decided to come back in action even though Spoink has returned to the playing field as he joined Dies Ater, maybe well see the old clan back after summer.
Newcomer to division one this season is Sega gubbar, they already did a great job in Silver last season with MM and Mooseman but now they have The Interceptor and XantoM from Fragomatic and B1aze from No Pasaran! (they are in division two this season), Sega should be a good force in division one after a bit of a practice together. A late sign up was Clan MalFunction, its always good to see them entering. Lets hope they can get some practice for a change, even though they dont like to prac! If they can get some games with Fix, Fifi and Mem they might show us some of the cMF skills we used to see. Though it seems as if The Viper Squad isnt reachable by anyone at the moment, partially caused by the inactivity of the other teams.
The Russians I named earlier, 3B, played in the Quake Nations Cup as Russia B where they played some nice games, only to be kicked out by Sweden A in the losers bracket semifinals 2-1, winning a very close e1m2. Looking at their performance at that level makes me even more curious to see what they can pull off in division one. When checking the division one teams it will probably only become relatively high ping games against Slackers and Dies Ater as all the other teams are Swedish or Finnish (hard one for Reppie in SA though).
Going back to the nations cup. Doing a quick review of the group games the thing that strikes me first is that Denmark isnt a shade of what they used to be. Back in the days of QWWC Denmark was a recognizable force with players like ParadokS, CrazyMac, Jerry and Forsberg. Of them only ParadokS still plays and hes busy playing poker, even though in the past week he picked up some QW activity, Denmark only played one game in QNC and that was without him. The same counts for Poland, who made the winners bracket finals in both QWWC editions, they have lost some of their old glory. A notable thing is of course that nations could field more teams. Most striking example being Sweden with three teams in the competition, Oblivion played as Sweden B but I rather had seen Griffin, Mrlame, Dakoth and Ok98 there who wanted to sign up too. Other than that teams seemed to be afraid of Finland and there didnt seem to be any big upsets.
Since all teams went to the playoffs the groups were mainly to decide in what bracket the teams would end up. The first round showed us five walkovers, just leaving three games of which only United Kingdom versus Russia B was interesting, UK having players like Marvel, Gibbs and good old Serox. After Russia B won dm3 with about 30 frags dm2 came up which went into overtime when UK managed to take home the win. The deciding e1m2 went to Russia B again and thus earned themselves a spot in the next round where they faced their counties A team. Russia A has members from No Pasaran!, aided by Gor who plays in Malice. They managed to get a 2-0 win in another close game where Xpr lead the way for Russia A on dm3. In the meanwhile Finland collected their fourth walkover after which they were a class apart against Russia A in the winners bracket semifinal, playing only their second game in the competition.
The second half of the winners bracket had some nice games like in the quarter final Sweden C, who have Mille, Ake Vader, Krab, TheEvilDog and mm plus the before this game added LocKtar, against the Netherlands whose main players are Reppie, Murdoc, Dragon and Purity. After a quite safe 50 frag win by the Netherlands on dm3 it was time for dm2. Sweden C quickly took control and locked down the map well. They kept control for about ten minutes and build up a solid 100 frag lead. From that point on the Netherlands started taking over and after a few minutes they locked down the map, tied them and Sweden C started some insane flooding but because the Netherlands managed to hold their ground it resulted in a 100 frag win for them.
As expected Sweden A, with players like XantoM, phren, bps, goblin, mawe and lakso, cruised through the group games and the first rounds of the playoffs, kicking down Germany to the losers brackets before they ran into the Netherlands in the winners bracket semifinal. As Dragon had 100% efficiency on dm3 for almost 19 minutes while Reppie ran most quads they secured the victory there quite comfortably. On dm2 it was all about Sweden, they never got into trouble there. The deciding e1m2 turned into a true thriller as it went into overtime where NL managed to get the upper hand in the last minutes.
In the losers bracket there werent too many games played but in the later stages we saw some nice ones. For example the dm3 between Germany and Sweden C was very exciting with just one frag dividing the two teams, Sweden C coming out on top as the winner, and the match. Then like I said earlier we saw Russia B (3B) against Sweden A in the losers bracket semifinal where Russia won the e1m2 with just a few frags difference. The other semifinal is between Russia A (no!) and Sweden C, of which the winner will play Sweden A. Both should be great games to watch, the winners bracket final between Finland and the Netherlands is scheduled on coming sunday, as in all games featuring the Viper Squad, its most likely going to turn out into their favour.
The last QNC matches should provide us with something nice to watch and of course EQL7, now featuring cmt3 and cmt4 for all divisions. All in all looking forward to the action coming up!
Exploring the land of duels
July 2007, the fourth mechanic that the telecom company send in the past month left without tracing the problem. My good friend and I did our job well six months ago, getting a working ADSL line is impossible for both his ex-, my current, neighbors and me. Telling the mechanics that the outgoing telephone line of the three apartments, that have their front door in this alley, is cut one meter from the street, about 20 centimeters above the ground, is not an option. You cant see the cut, there is no way of explaining it. Just my luck, like I would know I would live in this place myself. At least I work at the ISP so I can get rid of my not working telephone line without too much trouble. The decision to go with the route of the least resistance has been made, I decide to get cable.
It has been about four months since I moved and had internet at home. The experience of not even being able to go online was surprisingly good, but having a connection again gives me some sort of a trusted feeling. As soon as I log on to IRC I notice something has changed, the feeling seems to last when playing quake. Without a doubt the break and the full focus on real life has caused me to put things in a different perspective. Where before there was a constant drive to play well, now there is a smile and joy even when playing nowhere near good. After a short while it is clear that not only the fun of playing has increased but on top of that I seem to play better than before.
After playing active for a couple of months with one the best and funniest teams Ive been with, Slackers II, I went more or less inactive, just like everybody did for rather unclear reasons in the second half of October. What started out with hope on the best tournament for division one in years went out like a lone candle. Along with both Slackers teams, Fragomatic, KOFF, Clan MalFunction and Firing Squad all went very slow on activity, leaving only the Viper Squad somewhat active. A few months later we saw them win the heavily delayed playoffs while the site of EQL6 was still down. Looking back almost one year later there is no way of suppressing the feeling that this was our last chance on a tournament like we used to know it, with all the big names, all the great games and more than just a few contenders.
Quickly after Hawr1x brought us some light in darker days with a competition that sure did bright up my playing days. Featuring all the succeeders of the game we play, there was a cup that hadnt been organized in three years, the Nations Cup. Ever since the 10v10 death32c nations cup in 2003 the national games were something very appreciated by me. No wonder I was excited that someone took up the burden to host it and along with the idea of playing in a team consisting of the flying dutchman himself, Reppie, together with Dragon and Murdoc with whom Ive always played, talked and laughed a lot, it couldnt get much better. Being happy that we didnt receive close to the amount of walkovers some others did, the games itself were great to play. Despite that some of us barely played outside officials we did great and had a good laugh more than once. For example when Dragon won his first poker tournament while idling in a game because there was no other of the few remaining Dutch players online, or when Reppie was having nail fights with the Czech! Having good old Mja and the over active Skillah, who made his debut in the final map of the grand final, around made the picture complete.
Back in the days when I started playing quake, on a very old and bad computer, I played 320200 windowed to get a decent fps and had no sound. Being just a little newb I had no idea how to fix the sound problem so I played without it for quite a long time. Dueling without it was not much of a pleasure so I focused on 4on4 and it stayed that way for years, playing maybe ten duels every year. This slowly changed when I joined Slackers II and someone named ParadokS told me that playing 1on1 would improve my 4on4 skills too. Once in a while I would take the time and play a few here and there, thinking about getting serious about it I started to play more for a week or two before I moved and the pause from internet came around, after which the dueling went back to practically being non existent.
Luckily our scene, being as old as it is, still features a lot of people that have played for a long time. People that have played duel, some for maybe over a crazy amount of ten years and definitely a lot for more than five. During those years players learned how to move, where to shoot prediction rockets and grenades, how to keep your opponent out of certain areas and getting better timing on items. Hearing every sound while building routine and gaining experience on strategy, learning the common routes people take to get to the point they want to be. Crawling into the mind of the one they are facing, figuring out their thoughts and anticipating to them.
The time was there to shake off the layer of rust that a combination of water and the summer sun left on me. In my first games two weeks ago, after being pretty inactive since the nations cup, dk invited me for some games, a player that has achieved a lot in quake 3. When he beat me on dm6 I realized there is a long road ahead of me. When playing different maps it looked a lot better but it became obvious I had to get back in shape would I want to compete with experienced players, I was not sure if I wanted to put the time and effort necessary into it. Just over a week later when I logged on to IRC and ran into virus, an old Dutch player, we dueled some and agreed to both sign up for QWDL.
After having played maybe one hundred duels over the length of years it felt like it was time to make a change, have a fresh look on the game when the opportunity arose in the form of the QuakeWorld Duel League. Thinking on one hand it would be fun, refreshing and a learning experience, on the other hand I saw a great challenge ahead. Not having the slightest idea of how my level of play was compared to others I played Mille, who was rather rusty, five days ago. After beating him on two maps and getting spanked on the third the competitive side of me came on top. Wanting to see how good I can get in a short relative short period of time I decided to give it a try and start playing more. An encounter with one of the most active players of today was inevitable. The fact that Cage quit several years ago is one of the reasons Slackers is still around, at least the way we know it now, because after he quit Leftovers was looking for a replacement, came across ParadokS and renamed to Slackers. So far hes had no problems showing me all corners of the maps and giving me advice.
It have been an adventurous last few days to say the least. From the feeling of getting somewhere when giving players from high divisions a hard time to the idea of giving up after losing to people placed ten or more divisions lower. The ups and downs between games are huge, between winning with a good amount to losing with more. It is obvious that just like in 4on4 there are no real shortcuts, you need game time, experience and routine to get to a decent level. Especially when your aim isnt working the way youre used to, or would want to, these factors together with tactical play can make up for a lot. Luckily were blessed with the presence of challenge-tv where we can find a great amount of demos featuring top players of all times, giving everyone an opportunity to study their tactics and learn from it.
Over a year it has been, since Ownage was here, it is good to see that there are still new people stepping up to organize competitions, the community has waited quite a while for an all round duel tournament. The divisional system that has never been used for duels before looks interesting to say the least, I wonder how it will turn out to work. The questions for me that remain are how long it will take to get rid of the rust and how steep the learning curve will be. Even though the luck of dot should be on my side Im placed in division two with five others, Insane, Krab, Mille, Murdoc and Xalibur, who all have this too! Whatever the outcome of my matches I am, probably just like everybody, looking forward to the action, all the big and smaller games, the upsets and the drama.