Pro League Season 2 Challenger Cup
With the Pro League Season 1 behind us and the finals several weeks out, I take a look at the challenger cup and what could come of it. Many of the rulings for the challenger cup have been publicly announced in a forum post which are shown below.
- To keep their spots in Pro League, the three bottom ranking teams at the end of the Pro League season will need to compete in the Challenger Cup and earn first, second, or third place.
- The bottom ranking teams in the Pro League will automatically earn the top 1, 2, and 3 seeds in the Cup.
- The Challenger Cup is a 16 team double-elimination tournament.
- Seeds 4-16 will be given to the top 13 teams on the Guild Challenger leaderboard.
- Teams consisting of Pro League players on the Guild Challenger Leaderboard will be discounted and the next eligible team will be contacted for an invite.
- All Pro League region/eligibility rules apply to the Challenger Cup.
- Pro League Season 2 rules will be in effect for the Challenger Cup (no class stacking).
Apex Prime, Ez Pz Lemon Squeezy, and Zero Counterplay have locked in the #1-3 seeds, while the 4-16 seeds are yet to be confirmed by ArenaNet. I was able to make contact with a few of the teams and confirm their participation due to their leaderboard standing.
With the #4 seed projected for eDream, they’re looking like one of the top dogs in the running. They had previously given it their best shot in the season one qualifiers back in November, where they fell short in the double-elimination tournament as they lost to Ez Pz Lemon Squeezy and ASAP Zerg. Their roster going into the season two qualifier is rather similar with Trig, Kenya, Eternity in the squad. This time around they’ll have some additional talent with Bear, formerly of Never Lucky, and Amon who is returning to the scene after a several month hiatus.
These two additions will certainly help the group moving forward, but what will the team make of it? Bear and Eternity have both played in the Pro League as Eternity subbed in week 6 for Zero Counterplay and Bear was a large part of Never Lucky, which gives these guys some great experience. However, Amon is returning after a long break and is yet to see some action. Although we know the date for the challenger cup is yet to be confirmed, it will be after February 20th which should hopefully gives these guys more than enough time to get their teamwork up to a respectable level. Watch out for this team to go on a long run in the challenger cup.
With season one being a bust, Apex Prime is back to the drawing board. What seemed like a great start for this team turned out to show a severe lack of commitment and enthusiasm to the Guild Wars 2 PvP scene. It is confirmed that Quilja has left the roster for good, leaving some shoes to fill. Morfeus, Hman, Trackful, and Tarcis will be searching for a new fifth over the coming weeks which is yet to be decided.
Looking at these players on an individual basis, many of them have played several classes in the past but we know they want to head back to their roots. With Morfeus on guardian, Hman on revenant, Trackful on revenant or engineer, and Tarcis on necromancer, they have a solid core. We know these guys are willing and able to adapt, so the above classes may not be set in stone, but is a good place to start. Perhaps they will be looking for a druid or thief to fill in that last spot.
Looking forward, we know Apex Prime will be doing everything they can to qualify for season two and with it being double-elimination, it should make them that much more confident in their skills to get past their opponents. I expect a long run for Apex Prime and potentially a top three finish with a good fifth.
Talk about a rough stretch. Aerodynamique, Aeroxe, Moobs, Qwho, and Ipno didn’t quite work out and with a few of these guys already out of the picture for their season two roster, what comes next? Early on we had anticipated Zero Counterplay to dissolve after the first season, but it seems like they will continue to push strong and fight for their spot in season 2.
I have been able to confirm Aerodynamique, Aeroxe, Moobs, and Ipno will be staying on the roster, which is quite surprising given the rumors moving around different roster shifts in the past few weeks. These players that will be joined by Cyndaquil, which will be a massive change in how this team operates. Cyndaquil was previously a part of Cunning Stunts but went on a bit of a break from Guild Wars 2. Now back in the thick of things, he will be hoping to make Zero Counterplay a team to be feared as they look to make their way back into the competitive scene.
In week 6 we saw Zero Counterplay take on Team PZ with Cyndaquil and Eternity, in which they nearly took them down one of the matches. This has definitely shined some light on Zero Counterplay’s potential moving forward, despite ending their season with an 0-7 record.
Ez Pz Lemon Squeezy
Ez Pz Lemon Squeezy’s season might not have went as well as they may have expected. I have confirmed with Ementon that they will be keeping four of their five members, as Chudat will be unable to participate moving forward. A new fifth member is still being decided upon.
Their only two wins during the regular season were against Never Lucky, who won’t be in the qualifiers, and Zero Counterplay. They dropped their set 2-0 to Apex Prime in week five, which is the team I would assume they are hoping to avoid throughout this tournament. Thankfully for them, they have the #2 seed locked in with their 7th place finish, meaning they wouldn’t run into them at all in the winner’s bracket of the double-elimination tournament. Their only possible matchup with Apex Prime would be in the loser’s bracket if both teams happened to make it to the loser’s bracket finals.
Perhaps one of the most underestimated teams in the tournament, nG-eSports is a bit of a wildcard. Although I was unable to confirm their participation I am expecting Nicked and his group to show up and give a good performance. Falling just short of a spot in the season one qualifiers after losing to Team PZ in their qualifying match, Nicked has rebuilt their roster and performed admirably in previous Academy Gaming tournaments.
A projected #5 seed for this team will give them a good boost going into this tournament as they look to pick up one of those three empty Pro League spots for the season two.
Only Team North Africa
Only Team North Africa, previously known as Best Team North Africa, will be a projected #6 seed in the challenger cup. A compiled roster of Zuko, Darth, Tao, Almighty, and Bubby will be quite the force to be reckoned with. With a few performances in the Academy Gaming Weekly Cups we have seen bits and pieces of their strengths and weaknesses.
I had a chance to ask Zuko how well he thinks his team will do in the challenger cup, “I think we have a really good shot to qualify. The teams we are watching out for are obviously the three Pro League teams and then eDream. We’re excited to be in and will be doing our best to qualify.”
Projected at a #7 seed, Ascendancy will be working hard to make their way into the Pro League scene. A roster with Hazard, Sivvy, Rhin, Surrge, and Caspian has taken the stage before in Academy Gaming tournaments, performing with great promise. They will be an underdog in this tournament as they will have their greatest challenge ahead of them with matches against some of the aforementioned.
I had a moment to speak with Hazard who said replied, “eDream for sure. Kind of Only Team North Africa, but not as much as eDream. … Yeah eDream has some good players for sure.”, when asked what teams they were worried about facing. This will be one of the teams to keep an eye on for some upsets.
Be sure to stay tuned to GuildWars2.com and AcademyGamingNet.com for more information on the season one finals and the challenger cup.
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