ATXI Final Four: Exodus. & HYDRA RELOADED

The many-headed beast and the long journey. It could be an epic poem, but instead it's an epic space battle.

Exodus.Exodus. are the quiet men of the competition. Their path to the final day has arguably been the easiest of the semi-finalists, with their undefeated run seeing them dispatch Jihadasquad, Exiled Ones, Transmission Lost and Late Night Alliance to the losers bracket. var adunit_index = 4000; if ((adunit_index != 1000 & adunit_index != 1001) || (adunit_index == 1000 && device_category != 'MOBILE') || (adunit_index == 1001 && device_category == 'MOBILE')) { if (active_ad_units[adunit_index] != undefined) { console.log('Dyn Unit Legacy', active_ad_units[adunit_index], adunit_index); googletag.cmd.push(function () { var adunit_index = 4000; if (typeof(pubwise) != 'undefined' & pubwise.enabled === true) { console.log('Dyn PW'); pwpbjs.que.push(function() { pubwiseLazyLoad([gptadslots[adunit_index]], true); }); } else { console.log('Dyn Direct'); googletag.display('div-sjr-4000'); googletag.pubads().refresh([gptadslots[adunit_index]]); } //googletag.pubads().refresh([gptadslots[4000]]); }); } } It wasn't until they held against THE R0NIN that they showed their mettle, pulling off a 2-1 victory against a side who had defeated some impressive teams already.Their tournament history is short but solid, their debut run in last year's Alliance Tournament seeing them reach the semi-final before losing to last year's surprise winners, Verge of Collapse.They were unfavoured in their previous rounds; against Late Night Alliance, they masterfully faced down an enemy who, on paper, arrived in the arena with a strong counter to their chosen fleet composition. They went on to deliver a clinical performance in the deciding match against fellow semi-finalists THE R0NIN.Exodus.'s business-like approach and low profile is an asset. Far less is known about them and even though their opponents are the fearsome HYDRA RELOADED, who will have undoubtedly done their homework, only a fool would write Exodus. off entirely.HYDRA RELOADEDThe clear tournament favourites ran rampant through the early stages of the competition, demolishing opponents without breaking a sweat or losing a ship. They've shown that they are supremely skilled, ruthlessly efficient and tactically canny. They are running like a finely-tuned machine.As commentator Bacchanalian stated after watching them in action, “If other teams aren't afraid of HYDRA RELOADED, they should be.”They've also got something to prove, with the ghost of the previous year's controversial banning to put to rest.A degree of “metagaming” is tolerated by CCP Games and so spying, ransoming, and other extra-curricular behaviours do occur – it is part of the staple of EVE Online, after all. However, the manner in which HYDRA RELOADED took the title of Alliance Tournament IX in 2011 gave CCP pause with regard to how far such behaviours should go. The degree of collusion between the two finalist teams (HYDRA RELOADED and Outbreak.) made a mockery of the competition and the subsequent year CCP went to great – and controversial - lengths to prevent similar damage from occurring. The title holders and their “B team,” Outbreak., were found to be in breach of the rules and were not permitted to compete.Now they seek to regain their title and redeem their name and few it seems can stand in their way. That said, their Best-of-3 clash against Pandemic Legion saw them lose their some very expensive unique prize ships, their powerful flagship and their undefeated record. As Arnold Schwarzenegger said in his seemingly unwinnable confrontation with the Predator, “If it bleeds, you can kill eet.”SEE ALSO: Pandemic Legion and THE R0NIN All the EVE Alliance Tournament XI Viewing Resources You Need (Popcorn and Beer Not Included)

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Broken paramedic and coffee-drinking Englishman whose favourite dumb animal is an oxymoron. After over a decade of humping and dumping the fat and the dead, my lower spine did things normally reserved for Rubik's cubes, bringing my career as a medical clinician to an unexpectedly early end. Fortunately, my real passion is in writing and given that I'm now highly qualified in the art of sitting down, I have the time to pursue it. Having blogged about video games (well, mostly EVE Online) for years, I hope to channel my enjoyment of wordcraft and my hobby of gaming into one handy new career that doesn't involve other people's vomit.

Published Aug. 5th 2013

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