The Vanquished: Alliance Tournament XI Day Two in Pictures (Part Two)
This is the second part of our snapshot of Day 2 of Alliance Tournament XI, EVE Online's premier eSports event, in which 64 teams compete over 3 weekends for the title of tournament champion and the prize of unique, powerful (and very expensive) ships.
Yesterday, in The Undefeated, we took a look at the sixteen matches which saw the winners able to claim they are still unbeaten in their march to the final, whilst the losers - although not out of the competition - were relegated to the more arduous path.
But the final 16 matches of the first weekend undoubtedly had the highest stakes.
The double elimination format meant that every one of the teams competing in these matches had already suffered a defeat and a second loss would mean an early exit from the tournament.
Months of planning and the hopes of hundreds of supporters were all that stood between these plucky eSports pilots and the ignominy of becoming one of The Vanquished.
Here's an overview of how they fared. The winners of each match are emboldened in the match title.
Match #49: SCUM. vs. Of Sound Mind
1. Of Sound Mind pilot XavierVE's energy-sapping Bhaalgorn battleship finds itself getting a taste of its own vampiric medicine as it suffers the influences of capacitor destabilisation and tracking disruption from the SCUM. fleet. The golden streaks indicate that the SCUM. Dominix trio are linked in an energy-creating chain further enhancing their performance.
2. SCUM. show no mercy as Of Sound Mind's strategy begins to collapse. With their Bhaalgorn and Oneiros logistics cruiser already destroyed, the Of Sound Mind survivors find themselves desperately trying to even the score by bringing down the SCUM. Guardian logistics cruiser. Here, Rinas Rinah's Vengeance frigate has been all but immobilised and his armour is beginning to buckle as he watches smidster's Guardian's last moments.
Match #50: R.E.V.O.L.U.T.I.O.N vs. CAStabouts
3. Despite being outnumbered, R.E.V.O.L.U.T.I.O.N's 9-ship fleet quickly evened the odds by making short work of CAStabouts' setup. Here, surviving Kronos marauder battleship pilots Jackal Lord and Cyna Copper valiantly try to take down jennifer 1's Dominix battleship before their inevitable defeat. Sadly, they failed.
Match #51: Goonswarm Federation vs. Outbreak.
4. A ruthlessly efficient Outbreak. quickly targeted and destroyed the Goonswarm Federation Scimitar logistics cruiser flown by BlackSabbath, immediately putting them on the back foot. What followed was the systematic dismantling of Goonswarm Federation's fleet, along with their hopes of staying in the competition. In this shot, we see yet another Dominix battleship, this one piloted by the hilariously named Nasty Spanker.
Match #52: Wormhole Holders vs. Perihelion Alliance
A match with the lowest ratio of starting ships in the competition so far, Wormhole Holders' eight-ship fleet led by a trio of Vindicator battleships found itself suffering a loss to the 6-ship Perihelion Alliance setup featuring 3 Dominixes and a Navy Issue variant. Here we see Wormhole Holders attempting to effect a late change of fortunes by trying to down Suolia's Oneiros logistics cruiser.
Match #53: D3vil's Children vs. Rainbow Dash Friends
5. Just the combination of the names of these two teams evokes a poetic imagery befitting of EVE Online; the offspring of Satan playing with a My Little Pony. In this shot, the battle is joined as a Rainbow Dash Friends Hurricane Fleet Issue battlecruiser piloted by chenshar bears down on besieged Vargur marauder battleship, seeing Warrrules' galleon-shaped vessel's shields stripped and his armour battered.
6. The loss of the Vargur and Augustus Richter's Sleipnir command ship effectively declawed D3vil's Childr3n. With the offensive threat reduced, Rainbow Dash Friends bring their weapons to bear on Jokelerie's Scimitar logistics cruiser. His demise would hasten the destruction of the remaining D3vil's Childr3n ships and leave Rainbow Dash Friends to gallop gaily to victory.
Match #54: Babylon 5.. vs. Sicarius Draconis
7. Like many teams in this year's competition, Babylon 5.. favoured a triumvirate of Dominix battleships to lead them to victory, however Sicarius Draconis leveraged a Vindicator battleship focused fleet composition more in keeping with last year's tournament trends to effectively bake the populist space potatoes.
Match #55: Moist. vs. Surely You're Joking
8. A surprise early strike from Surely You're Joking saw Moist.'s Basilisk logistics cruiser, piloted by Arnold Whatshisface, reduced to damp space dust, but a reply in kind soon saw drol tack's Scimitar violently removed from Surely You're Joking's active service. More exchanges didn't go so evenly for Moist. and they were soon left with only these three Scorpion Navy Issue battleships. However, the points were still close.
9. The match came down to a long-range missile-hurling battleship slug-fest between the three Moist. Scorpion Navy Issues and the two Surely You're Joking Raven Navy Issues. The next to fall would reduce damage output enough to render further kills unlikely. Unsurprisingly, with six supporting assault frigates (and a Vigil), it was Surely You're Joking who delivered the punchline.
10. Surely You're Joking clearly felt that the match was all but won and celebration was in order, as a quick ammo change saw one of the frigates start pelting the Moist. battleships with harmless but colourful fireworks.
Match #56: Choke Point vs. JIHADASQUAD
11. In yet another clash of Dominix battleships, it was Choke Point's that saw its way to victory here. The real work already done and the majority of the enemy destroyed, Jar'ed dances around Crrrazy Ivan's Dominix in his Vengeance assault frigate, peppering the helpless battleship with rocket barrages.
Match #57: Noir. Mercenary Group vs. HUN Reloaded
12. At the cost of only 4 assault frigates, HUN Reloaded made short work of the entire Noir. Mercenary Group fleet. Here Darth Gabe's Basilisk logistics cruiser idly receives capacitor energy to support remote repair abilities it is unlikely to need as the rest of the HUN Reloaded fleet chase down the last remaining Noir. Mercenary Group ship, a Proteus, piloted by former internet spaceship politician, Alekseyev Karrde.
Match #58: Quebec United Legions vs. Angeli Mortis
13. A devastating opening assault by Quebec United Legion saw the entire Angeli Mortis frigate and cruiser support fleet obliterated without reply. Marshalling the firepower of their surviving Scorpion Navy Issue missile platforms, Angeli Mortis begin a desperate comeback attempt by pounding Qc Sokar's Tornado battlecruiser...
14. ... Improbably, less than a minute later Angeli Mortis find themselves in the lead, as the points gained from downing the Tornado are boosted by TheCorrupted straying beyond the arena boundary and forfeiting his ship. Quebec United Legions now on the back foot having lost a significant portion of their ability to deal damage, but with three-quarters of the time still to play, the match remains on a knife-edge.
15. Despite Quebec United Legions' best efforts to recover, Angeli Mortis capitalise on their opponents' mistake and continue to target-paint and destroy hostile after hostile. In shot, Thomas Hornigolds' Manticore stealth bomber has become the focus of the reign of missiles.
Match #59: Kill It With Fire vs. Urine Alliance
16. A Urine Alliance Enyo assault frigate rains yellow death over Dev Aldard's Harpy assault frigate as Kill It With Fire's burning hopes of victory are slowly extinguished.
Match #60: SOLAR FLEET vs. Darkspawn.
17. Despite the early loss of the crucial logistics cruiser, SOLAR FLEET put on an impressive display to defeat Darkspawn., whose Hurricane Fleet Issue battlecruisers can be seen here, BlakPhoenix's in the foreground under heavy fire.
Match #61: Heretic Initiative vs. WHY so SeriOUs
18. In yet another clash of the space potatoes, Heretic Initiative and WHY so SeriOUs both fielded fleet setups which included triple Dominix battleships supported by a logistics cruiser and a wing of frigates. Here we see the WHY so SeriOUs battleships in tight formation "cap-chaining" to support their "tinkertanks" (ie. micromanaging and sharing their ship's capacitor energy to better sustain other energy hungry systems).
Match #62: Mildly Sober vs. The Obsidian Front
19. The battle joined immediately between Mildly Sober and The Obsidian Front, with both teams opting to begin nose-to-nose at the very centre of the arena. Here we see a Mildly Sober Megathron battleship unleashing a devastating hybrid blaster salvo on Ynot Eyob's Brutix Navy Issue battlecruiser. A second Megathron, piloted by Zondor, takes fire from a distant Brutix Navy Issue whilst an Obsidian Front Vexor cruiser orbits the fray.
20. Against the contrasting backdrop of a fiery nebula and an ice-clad planet, both fleets suffer losses. The Obsidian Front's cruiser wing, comprising Thoraxes (centre) and Vexors, supports the remaining Brutix Navy Issues and engage the lumbering Mildly SoberMegathron battleships.
21. Elsewhere, a dizzying dogfight takes place between the small and agile Enyo assault frigates of Mildly Sober (Norb DaBeaver's Enyo seen here taking fire from Proposition Joan) and the slower but hard-hitting Talwar destroyers of The Obsidian Front. However, the outcome of their clash is largely irrelevant as the final Mildly Sober Megathron falls, giving The Obsidian Front an insurmountable points lead.
Match #63: Dead Terrorists vs. Sadistica Alliance
22. In a match which saw Dead Terrorists lose three Vexor cruisers before successfully downing Sadistica Alliance's Oneiros logistics cruiser, here we see islador's Ishkur assault frigate applying some propulsion jamming to Letelio Denmun's Oneiros as Sadistica Alliance attempts to reply in kind.
23. The tide turned, the pendulum swung and the Vindicator exploded. Unsurprisingly, as last ship standing, larf1986's battleship was unable to solo its way through the entire Sadistica Alliance fleet. Although he did give Kmita Eisenhorn's Dominix a bit of a scare before finally having the good grace to be a dead Dead Terrorist.
Match #64: Synthetic Sysyems vs. The Kadeshi
24. The opening clash between Synthetic Systems and The Kadeshi becomes sees Nanaki's Vindicator become the sole focus of The Kadeshi's combined firepower. As a Kadeshi Armageddon oversees the assault, the Vindicator's shields and armour are quickly stripped, as expected repair support from Ipex's Oneiros logistics cruiser is unavailable due to electronic countermeasures being effectively applied.
25. Synthetic Systems have been dealt painful losses but are still in the fight, as Ipex's Oneiros valiantly stands against The Kadeshi's onslaught, drawing fire from other team members who might still be able to effect a comeback. however, Aton RA moves his Prophecy command battlecruiser into position to ensure this doesn't happen.
26. Having successfully neutered Synthetic Systems, The Kadeshi go about the business of efficiently exploding all the ships. Here we see Kraschla's Hyperion battleship vapourised by an unremitting barrage of lasers and missiles.
27. The final moments of the weekend are heralded by what was quite possibly the most spectacular light show yet as Flickette's resilient Damnation battlecruiser resisted immediate incineration from a hail of hot laser death.
For further coverage and information on the competition, check out:
All the EVE Alliance Tournament XI Viewing Resources You Need (Popcorn and Beer Not Included)