OpTic Gaming Wins $1,000,000 and Undisputed Halo Supremacy After the World Championship Finals 2017
All around the world, Halo teams fought through the qualifiers for a chance to be part of the ESL Halo World Championship 2017 Finals. The 12 teams who made the cut met at the ESL campus in Burbank, California, for three days of intense competition. The aim? To find out who would emerge with $1,000,000 and the title of Halo World Champions.
All 12 Teams Come Out Strong for Day 1 of Finals
In the first day of competition at Finals, teams fought for seeding points heading into the double elimination bracket. Though no one would be eliminated, Day 1 was a chance for each team to start the weekend strong and set the tone for the rest of Finals. As many predicted, the North American teams dominated the rest of the world to kick off an exciting first day, with OpTic Gaming and Team Liquid leading the pack in the winners bracket.
Str8 Rippin vs. TMMT Crowd Pleasers
In an incredible end to Day 1, Str8 Rippin and TMMT Crowd Pleasers met in the final losers bracket match of the day in a heated Best of 7 series. Str8 won the first three games of the series, taking the third win in CTF after APG landed a ground pound with less than 10 seconds left on the clock.
CP retaliated with three straight wins in an attempt to execute a reverse sweep and signaled a choke after the third win. The crowd was going wild heading into Game 7, and the room completely divided. With the series tied 3-3, Str8 managed to stave off CP and take the final win of the series on Regret Slayer and move on to the winners bracket.
Str8 Rippin wins 4-3.
— ESL Halo (@ESLHalo) March 25, 2017
Everything Heats Up for the Second Day of Finals
At the end of Day 2, only four teams would move on to the final day of competition. Despite an impressive performance from Fab Games esports, the last European team went home midday.
EnVy vs. Luminosity Gaming
After taking a harsh loss to Splyce that landed them in the losers bracket, EnVy began an incredible winning streak all through Day 2. Everyone on the EnVy roster was playing at a high level, making great call-outs and executing clutch plays as they unapologetically eliminated team after team. In their last series of the day, EnVy continued their reign of terror against Luminosity Gaming.
It was in this series where Huke had what was arguably the greatest play of the whole championship. He flawlessly executed a vicious Killing Frenzy with the Needler in Game 2 on Rig Slayer, before Snip3down took a carefully aimed headshot to secure their second win of what ultimately became a 4-0 sweep to send Luminosity home.
EnVy wins 4-0.
— Team EnVyUs (@TeamEnVyUs) March 25, 2017
Team Liquid vs. OpTic Gaming
The last series of the day was between Team Liquid and OpTic Gaming. Liquid, even after coming out of NA Qualifiers in second place, was considered an underdog heading into Finals. The months-old roster, who had never won a tournament together, were proving their doubters wrong with every winners bracket match they won. In the final winners bracket of the match, they faced OpTic to enter the final winners bracket match of Day 3.
OpTic were dominant heading into the series against Liquid by winning their first three games. They were looking to continue their winning streak in Game 3 on Truth CTF. Liquid fought hard and won their first game of the series with a clutch ground pound from Rayne to bring the score to 3-1.
However, the last effort push was not enough to stop OpTic from more than doubling Liquid’s points on Empire Strongholds, ultimately to end Game 4 with a score of 100-44 -- to secure their spot in the Grand Finals match.
OpTic Gaming wins 4-1.
By the end of Day 2, OpTic Gaming, Team Liquid, Team EnVy, and Str8 Rippin would be the last four teams to see Day 3 of Finals.
OpTic Looks to Take it All in Day 3
Day three of the ESL Halo World Championship Finals 2017 was arguably the wildest day of the tournament. Let's take a quick look at some of the highlights.
EnVy vs. Str8 Rippin
EnVy and Str8 met in first the losers bracket matchup of Day 3. EnVy had battled through the losers bracket and was on a 12-game winning streak going into their series against Str8, who had come back from a 4-0 loss against Liquid to eliminate Splyce from the tournament. If Str8 won the series against EnVy, they would be able to get their revenge on Liquid in the final losers bracket match of Finals. However, EnVy was not about to let that happen.
Maintaining their momentum from Day 2, EnVy won two close games against Str8 before securing an amazing 100-36 win to bring the series to 3-0. Str8 looked like they might come back when they capped their first two flags within the first minutes of Game 4 on Truth CTF, but EnVy came back after Huke and Mikwen both got Overkills and capped three flags in a row to eliminate Str8 and move onto the second losers bracket match.
EnVy wins 4-0.
EnVy vs. OpTic Gaming
Despite Liquid ending their winning streak, EnVy looked to continue their aggressive offensive campaign against the 2016 World Champions. However, OpTic was not about to let the EnVy take the win so easily. Tensions ran high, both sides were on vicious killing streaks as they both attempted to break a 2-2 tie in Game 1 on Coliseum CTF before the game went into overtime. Frosty capped the flag for OpTic in the first minute of OT to take the first win of the series. In Game 2 on Plaza Slayer, OpTic took a slim lead in the last two minutes to secure their second win in a row against the Fall 2016 Champions.
— ESL Halo (@ESLHalo) March 26, 2017
After taking two losses in a row against OpTic, EnVy started Game 3 by taking the lead on Rig Strongholds. EnVy had picked up a 48-0 lead before OpTic nearly stopped EnVy in their tracks and took the game 100-63. In CTF in Game 4, OpTic was ready to take the whole series home, capping one flag. But it took all their offensive energy to suppress a full-court press from EnVy. In a fast paced game, OpTic focused everything on keeping EnVy from regrouping as they played every second of the clock, not even realizing they had won until the room exploded with cheers when the last seconds ran off the clock.
OpTic Gaming wins 4-0.
— ESL Halo (@ESLHalo) March 26, 2017
After their amazing journey throughout the Halo World Championship 2017, OpTic Gaming came out yet again as World Champions and proving that they are this year’s greatest Halo team in the world.
Before the champions took their trophy home and got some well-deserved rest, I was able to ask Lethul a few questions in an interview that was originally published on the ESL website.
Here's to next year!