August 2nd, 2016 marked the beginning of the largest tournament in eSports history. Four teams, one from each of the four regions battled it out in a GSL style bracket to secure the two Wildcard slots at the group stages of The International 6. With a massive $19 Million+ prize pool and guaranteed prize money as well as bragging rights to all the participants, the pressure on the teams and players was enormous.
Here’s how the first game of the tournament played out.
Complexity would be kicking themselves in the heels for their mistakes in the NA qualifiers and having to go through the Wildcards is never pleasant. They went up against Pro turned caster turned pro, Troels “Synderen” Nielsen’s team Escape Gaming. The victors would be one step closer to making it to TI while for the loser it would be the long hard road from the lower bracket. This NA vs EU matchup went all the way with 3 close games deciding the future of the teams.
Escape went for a slightly out of the meta mid QOP while Swindlemelonzz started out in the jungle on his offlaneBeastmaster. While he did secure his own farm and levels, it was Escape who pulled ahead ever so slightly in the early game. However, Complexity won a big team fight in the radiant jungle to even out the game. Escape felt the need to go for some objectives and went for Roshan and while they did secure the aegis, it was a less than comfortable retreat with them losing heroes on the way out.
They chose to avoid engagements, instead relying on Era’s Morphling to farm up for the late game but Complexity were having none of that. Key pickoffs in the jungle and bot lanes allowed them to push towers with the help of the BM Necro books, netting them a significant gold advantage. Escape’s team fight seemed good on paper but the Oracle pick from Col completely shut down the QOP’s burst and with Morphling lacking a bit in the damage department, Escape eventually fell to the Col lineup.
Max “Qojqva” Broecker was put on his trademark Lone Druid on the mid lane as Escape opted for an aggressive tri-lane with Era’s Juggernaut leading the charge. Complexity did manage to pick up the Timbersaw but it was the SwindlemelonzzBatrider that led to their eventual downfall. Their one position Sven did not get off to the best of starts with the aggro tri lane contesting him while Escape’s Nyx was in a comfortable position as the solo safe lane.
Nyx’s early level 6 and subsequent rotations were crucial in securing time and space for the LD who finished up his Radiance+Midas by the 17-minute mark. Col were caught napping as they were farming their ancient stacks as Escape wiped all five members and secured themselves an insurmountable lead. With the LD farm accelerating at an increasingly high pace, Escape easily mowed down objectives including 2 sets of raxes and a Roshan before Col had to tap out.
Two very surprising picks from both sides as Escape go for the QOP yet again while Col pick up a Batrider for Swindlezz. With players having a torrid time with these heroes in the earlier game it seemed questionable as to why they opted for these picks. While the QOP was faring better this game, the Batrider suffered a similar fate as the last time. But Col did manage to pressure the safelaneSlark but Yapzor’s 4 positionMirana picked up the pace with an 18 min Aghs Scepter. Complexity were put in a tough spot all due to their poor decision making as they only got one T1 tower as Escape picked up a T1 a T2 as well as a kill on the Batrider.
Col’s decision making went from bad to worse as they smoke on top of a ward despite carrying a gem and proceed to walk into Roshan. They get completely wiped, aegis and all as Escape show up to contest. QOP and Beastmaster fail to respect Col’s heavy right click and fall without buyback as Col quickly run down mid to claim raxes. They decide to go for Rosh immediately after as Escape pull a successful fake back with the Moonlight’s Shadow managing to get the Roar on Jugg and locking him down and finishing him off. The rest off Col also fall as Escape claim bot as well as mid raxes. Complexity try Rosh again and get wiped for the second time after securing aegis yet again. They go for the Hail Mary play, walking down mid and losing all 5 and are forced to call gg.