On Thursday March 23rd 2017 the ESL Go4Paladins Europe fourth and final March Qualifier Cup took place; one last opportunity for teams to go big and qualify themselves for the €500 Monthly Finals as well as to take home a piece of the €400 cash and in-game prize pool! This week 40 teams rose up to go head to head, many old, many new, and many just itching to start getting competitive experience with Lex; the newest Flank category Champion to join The Realm who was also available for this tournament!
Click Here for the Week 4 bracket.
As mentioned, Lex was available for teams to play this week in the ESL Go4Paladins Europe Cup, and with zero hesitance Carbon6 immediately took this in their stride, going so far as to first pick them in the Round of 64 vs their opponents of RSU Gaming on Jaguar Falls. Whilst KROADER performed well on this champion it is worth noting that for a player widely regarded to be one of the best aimers in Paladins and a world-class Androxus player, a lot of missed shots were seen – likely caused by a lack of familiarity with the new Champion’s 0.7s fire rate and visual akimbo offset. This inconsistency frequently let kills slip away, however the rest of Carbon6 was often there to compensate and by the end of the game KROADER appeared to have found their rhythm and their shots were packing enormous impact.
Little was seen of The Law this game, Lex’s execute ultimate being used in limited environments due to a lack of team-wipe opportunities, however Carbon6 took control of the game through team-play over wombo combos and found swift victory to advance to the Round of 32 where they faced WASD Paladins.
Again, Jaguar Falls was selected as the map for this showdown, and once again Carbon6 immediately prioritised Lex in the Champion Draft alongside Makoa following WASD’s unusual Drogoz first pick. WASD rounded out their draft with a Frontline-heavy point stack composition; Ruckus, Barik, and Ying being key cornerstones of this draft, Grohk picked up too to round things out. With the Deployable nightmare’s primary counters from Shock Pulse and Fire Spit unavailable to Carbon6, they in turn elected to counter WASD’s draft with the double support combination of Mal’Damba and Pip; Dread Serpent and Evil Mojo picked up to fully disrupt their opponents on the objective, and during the early-game this worked exactly as intended.
As itemisation came online the balance of power began to change and it was Resilience that was the game changer here, especially on WASD’s Ruckus played by TooTooT5. Early prioritisation into this item allowed them to escape Carbon6’s support Ultimates early, activate their Flux Generator boosted Repulsor Field providing their team with a massive Damage Reduction aura, and keep their team alive through the onslaught of damage that followed. From here on WASD Paladins held the key to this game and were able to convert from a 2-2 tie to a 4-2 victory due to their good combination of pick-prioritisation and setup from Shock Pulse’s slows, preventing Carbon6 from stabilising and providing WASD with the momentum to push the payload home.
Across the rest of the bracket games proceeded quickly until the Quarterfinals where set outcomes began to diverge heavily from the expected norm. On the upper-side of the bracket, Wolves eSports beat out the top seeded team District 69 in a 2:0 sweep, and Interlopers, the first place team from last week’s Go4Paladins Europe Cup #3 were eliminated by the brand new team of Faceless in another 2:0 sweep.
Upset was certainly in the air, and both the Semifinals and Finals looked to be nailbiters, with Wolves eSports taking on Flash Point Paladins – a matchup that was to be repeated a day later in The Gauntlet where one team would obtain the final European wildcard spot at the Paladins Spring Masters LAN of 2017 – however due to being unable to field a full roster for these sets, first Flash Point Paladins, then Wolves eSports forfeit their matches and withdrew from then competition. In this unexpected turn of events, the lower-side Semifinals matchup between Faceless and Burrito Esports occurred as the final match of this tournament.
Despite Faceless’ earlier performance vs Interlopers, they were no match for Burrito in Game one; Burrito shying away from prior favouritism of Jaguar Falls drafted Frog Isle during the Map Veto as the first map to be played and demonstrated masterful knowledge of Champion compositions here to best support their play. Thiel’s Makoa time and time again found environmental kills onto high value targets through the use of Dredge Anchor, and Bird’s unusual Grover pickup provided line of sight lockoff which fully shut down Cybe8s Kinessa at every opportunity; one root from a Deep Roots buffed Crippling Throw confirmed two follow up Axes onto the Bounty Hunter without intervention from their team, almost always guaranteeing a kill at long range.
Burrito on a high of victory and feeling perhaps overconfident in themselves drafted a composition in Game two of what for all intents and purposes was made up of five Flank champions (at least in terms of playstyles); Androxus, Buck, Skye, Fernando, and Bomb King were brought to the clifftop scenery of Jaguar Falls vs a far more typical composition from Faceless. A much closer match than the first, faceless used good map knowledge and incredible reactive Mal’Damba play from HowToSmurf to go toe-to-toe with the European juggernauts and shut down their style-play in order to push this Semifinals set all the way to three games, coming to a close on Stone Keep.
Here Burrito turned things up a gear, running a typical draft with devastating execution Faceless fell 4-0 in under eleven minutes. Whilst Burrito have time and time again proven themselves to be a squad that enjoys keeping things lighthearted in tournament play, they certainly know when to get serious!
Your March Week 4 Standings are as follows:
1. District 69 – 275 points
1. Burrito Esports – 275 points
3. Interlopers – 190 points
4. Flash Point Paladins – 135 points
5. Wolves eSports – 130 points
6. B@LTIKA 5 – 95 points
7. WASD Paladins – 85 points
8. Team Dvij – 80 points
A full list of the standings can be found here.
Our Eight Monthly Finalists decided, this coming Thursday March 30th 2017 the ESL Go4Paladins Europe series closes out March in style with the €500 March Monthly Finals! Stay tuned to ESL Paladins on twitter and Facebook for information about when and where the broadcast will go live. And never fear! ESL Go4Paladins Europe will be returning again in April with a brand new month of Qualifier Cups leading up to the Monthly Finals. Check out the link below to sign up with your team and show us what you’re made of!
The ESL Go4Paladins Europe Cup series is a repeating monthly circuit of Qualifier Cups every Thursday, concluding in a Monthly Finals on the last Thursday of each month with the top 8 teams by cumulative points from the month in question facing off for a guaranteed prize pool of €500! Visit esl.gg/PaladinsESL for information on how to sign up, upcoming cups for both the EU and NA regions, and all future ESL Paladins announcements!