Saying farewell is never easy. Especially to a dear old friend that has served you well. For around the last year Black Ops 2 has been the catalyst for a rebirth of console LANs in South Africa that has seen more tournaments than ever before. To a small degree, this revolution even saw players move platforms from the PS3 to Xbox 360. While some may find the idea of playing for a very slim chance of attending a major international tournament a laughable one, it has meant a newly rejuvenated community, and that’s all that really matters right?
So back to the farewell. This past weekend saw a two day Zombiegamer and 2upGamers eSports event at Trenchtown. Day one was the farewell (which was surprisingly light on tears) of Black Ops 2, while day two was set aside for FIFA 14 and Injustice: Gods Among Us.
Day One: Saturday, 19 October. Black Ops 2.
With two no shows on the day, the tournament kicked off with 14 teams over the double elimination event. With a number of the well-known teams in attendance, the competition was always going to be fierce.
The top seeded teams avoided the first round battles, but early casualties’ included Real Gaming and ViNCO, who dropped to the loser’s bracket. Top seeded Team Adept struggled to find their early rhythm, and dropped a map in each of their first two games, but still kept themselves in it and improving. Team Astra – seeded second – got off to a more confident start and took both of their opening games 2-0.
Battles were raging between opponents desperate to get into the top three money spots, and the loser’s bracket was a tough place to be. ViNCO were knocked out by My Favourite Team, while new team Undying Legion Concept managed to gel until they were dumped out of the tournament by Real Gaming. POWA, who managed fourth place at the last event, looked on track to improve on their previous placing until they came up against Hazard who knocked them out to head into the loser’s bracket final.
Their opponents came from the most consistent team of the day up until that point. Team Astra faced Team Adept in what was essentially the semi-finals, by which time Adept were hitting their stride. The match saw Slums host Hardpoint which was a tough battle which bounced back and forth between the teams until Adept gained the upper hand and the map 250-196. Search and Destroy on Standoff was an equally thrilling affair, but Adept showed their experience and grabbed the map 6-3. Astra now had to face Hazard in the loser’s bracket final to try again against Adept.
Yemen was the map, Hardpoint the mode and Hazard were not about to make it easy for the more fancied opponents. The round proved to be highly entertaining with Astra taking it 226-203. On Express for SnD, Astra had it a little easier and took it 6-2 to ensure a 2-0 win overall and head back to face Adept.
The final was a best out of five affair, with Astra needing to beat Adept twice to ensure victory. And it looked good at the start. A comprehensive 250-105 victory on Raid kicked things off for Astra, and the spectators and admins prepared themselves for a long battle. Adept levelled matters on Standoff 6-4, and went ahead with a 1-0 win in Capture the Flag on Slums. After their earlier control in Hardpoint, the spectators fully expected Astra to level things on Standoff. And things looked like it might just head that way, but Adept once again proved the more experienced team and held on to take the map 229-181, and the final LAN for Black Ops 2.
1st Place: Team Adept (R1 600 cash)
2nd Place: Team Astra (R600 cash)
3rd Place: Hazard (R300 cash)
Day Two: Sunday, 20 October. FIFA 14.
Let’s be negative for a second. Injustice: Gods Among Us proved to be a non-starter. With only three pre-registrations, of which only one player actually arrived, we are now debating whether we will run it again. We would like to, but without support, well, it’s a no-brainer really isn’t it?
By contrast, FIFA 14 saw 20 players enter. Not the biggest attendance for a FIFA tournament we’ve hosted, but it is clear Sunday may not be the day for virtual footballers. Of the 20 players, seven represented Sony’s platform, with 13 on Xbox 360. Playing out on their preferred platform via a double elimination bracket, the two winners on each platform then faced each other in a home and away final, while the runners-up on each platform did likewise for third and fourth place.
As mentioned earlier, Sunday proved not to be a good day for some of the more tradiotnally fancied players. On the Xbox 360 side of things, Lee went undefeated to secure his spot in the grand final after beating Yazeed. On the PS3, Talieb continued his current form to beat Mubeen 3-2 in the final.
Both the grand final and third and fourth place matches kicked off on Xbox 360. Mubeen grabbed a crucial away goal against Yazeed in their one-all draw. Talieb grabbed three away goals against Lee in a 3-1 first leg win. Heading to the PS3 match, both Yazeed and Lee needed wins, with Lee needing goals too.
In the play-off for third, the match was a tight affair, with neither Yazeed nor Mubeen able to penetrate the other’s defensive line. The match ended goalless, handing Mubeen third place due to the away goal rule.
In the grand final, goals were more abundant. The match ended 2-1 to Talieb, with a goal in around the seventieth minute being the one to which Lee conceded defeat. The 5-2 aggregate win handing Talieb the first place and R400 cash.
1st Place: Talieb (R400 cash)
2nd Place: Lee (R200 cash)
3rd Place: Mubeen (R100 cash)
4th Place: Yazeed (R50 cash)
Gameplay footage from the Black Ops 2 matches will be uploaded as soon as humanly possible.
Our congratulations to all the winners. Our thanks to all the participants. A special thanks to the Call of Duty community who have supported us this year – we hope to bring you bigger and better events with Ghosts. A thanks to the crew who make the events happen – Dylan, Astrid, Emma and Glenn. Thanks to Mweb Gamezone for the use of their game discs and support. Thanks to Apex Interactive for the sponsored Gioteck headsets.
About 2upGamers eSports
2upGamers eSports is the collaboration of the original 2upGamers brand – owned by Glenn Alexander – and the Zombiegamer Events wing operated by Zombie Dredd (aka Clint O’Shea). The aim is to bring increasingly professional console eSports events to the gamers of South Africa – both in a private capacity and as an affiliated MSSA club. SA gaming’s time is now, and can only be a success with the support of the community.