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Posts with tag MLG

Breakfast Topic: Do you follow competitive WoW?

Breakfast Topic Do you follow competitive WoW
Just because World of Warcraft doesn't have its own tab on Major League Gaming (MLG) doesn't mean there's no such thing as competitive WoW. While relatively few WoW players crack into competitive arena PvP and the game's not currently part of the e-sports circuit, WoW Insider's interview with Venruki, a member of last year's Battle.net World Championship champion 3v3 team, reveals a world of devoted players with intense focus.

But do other players care? A post about competitive gaming on Blizzard's official forums reveals that plenty of them do. The thread has become a highly rated post with enthusiastic player feedback. Whether or not the game will receive tweaks to help it become a compelling e-sport that attracts viewers, however, remains to be seen.

Do you follow competitive WoW? Do you read with curiosity when you spot something about WoW as an e-sport, or does the topic leave you cold?

Filed under: Breakfast Topics

StarCraft vs. Warcraft: What is the WoW community missing?

For the past year or so, I've been living a double life. To some, I am a skilled and tenacious night elf priestess, adventuring through Azeroth at the charge of the Holy Light, healing the injured and saving the incompetent. To others, however, I am but a lowly brood mother, commanding a swarming, parasitic army with occasional success against my enemies across the Koprulu sector. Don't follow me? Basically, I've just been playing a lot of StarCraft 2 whenever I'm not raiding.

Still, being heavily invested in WoW and StarCraft has really felt like living two lives at times, especially when you consider how dramatically different they both are. And I'm not talking about the gameplay; obviously one would expect an MMORPG and an RTS to be incomparable. What I mean is that that the culture and community that surrounds these two games are distinctively different, despite the fact that the games share some of their playerbase with one another. You'd think that one game community would be pretty similar to the next, but they're not.

The whole thing has left me with a lot of questions to turn over in my mind. Is it possible that the WoW and StarCraft communities could learn from the other? Seven years in, is it even possible for the WoW community to change in any significant way at this point? And if so, is there something missing in the WoW community? To explore the idea further, I started making a list of all the things I thought the StarCraft community had that the WoW community was lacking.

Read more →

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion

MLG DC starts tonight for WoW

If you're not keeping up with the PvP tournament scene, this is a friendly reminder that MLG DC starts tonight at 8:00 p.m. EST. You can watch the MLG stream at MLGPro.com when it starts. I'll be in attendance at the event personally, so if you have any questions you want answered by the teams and players, leave a comment and I'll do my best.

The WoW tournament will only run for a couple hours tonight, then continue all day Sunday. Notable teams competing are Nerdstomper Blue, the winners of MLG Raleigh, and their sister team Nerdstomper Black. Also in attendance are Arenapwnage, Evil Geniuses, Complexity Red and Black, Skill Capped, and Penguin Smash.

Unfortunately, as World of Ming reports, the tournament will not be played with the new 4.0.1 patch. Apparently, there was a conflict with MLG's viewing client and the new patch.

Filed under: News items, PvP

Nerdstomper Blue win MLG Raleigh

The latest WoW champions in the 2010 MLG Pro Circuit are the members of Nerdstomper Blue, who claimed their victory Sunday evening in Raleigh.

It was a close win for Nerdstomper Blue, after its opponents, Evil Geniuses, won the first set of the finals three to one. Evil Geniuses entered the finals from the lower bracket, though, and needed two winning sets to claim the championship. Things seemed doubtful for Nerdstomper Blue after it lost the first two games of the second set, but it made an impressive comeback, winning three games in a row and taking the championship. In addition to the $9,000 prize for first place, Nerdstomper Blue will now be seeded favorably at the MLG Finals in Dallas later this year.

If you missed the livestream, you can still watch the rebroadcast from Sunday's games at MLG's site.

For those of you who are curious, Nerdstomper Blue used a shadowplay comp (priest-warlock-shaman) for their first set against Evil Geniuses, then switched to RLS (rogue-warlock-shaman) for the second. Evil Geniuses used RLS for both sets.

Congratulations to Realz, Glickz and Kollektiv of Nerdstomper Blue!

Filed under: News items, PvP

Curse acquires MMO-Champion

Yesterday, Curse.com announced the acquisition of MMO-Champion from its owners, Major League Gaming. Boubouille, the big dog over at MMO-Champion, is heading to the Curse team as well. This is some pretty exciting news for the Curse network!

Curse, which already has one of the largest repositories of WoW addons and mods for download, as well as the venerable World of Raids outlet, adds on significant prowess in the WoW information community. With content from all three channeled into each other, you can expect big things from all involved. Read the official press release over at Curse or MMO-Champion.

Some of the questions that I personally had about the acquisition were, happily and thankfully, answered by both World of Raids and Boubouille himself. Curse currently has a premium subscription-based service, and I wanted to know if we could expect something similar from MMO-Champion in the future. Boubouille answered on his website:
I'm not going to bullshit you, premium might happen but it's really not a top priority for the moment. I would hardly call it premium, more like "Donator/Sponsor" for people who would like to help, I would also like to explore new features through that like user generated blogs or user groups on forums, etc ... But really, I don't see it happening in 2010.

If I ever add a Premium feature to the site, it will be because it can bring something more without penalizing people who don't want to pay, it won't be just because I'm jealous of Ghostcrawler and want to buy a bigger yacht than his. If something is free today, it will stay free. It's that simple.

Doesn't sound attractive or well-thought? Good, that's because we have no immediate plan to do that. Exactly my point.

Secondly, what happens to World of Raids, now that two similarly positioned outlets are housed under the same roof? From World of Raids:
What this means for World of Raids, and when it will happen, is still being worked out. I'll make sure to announce any plans well in advance though.

We talked with Boubouille back in 2009, and the interview is definitely worth a read. Good luck to Boubouille at his new home and big grats to Curse for picking up a hot property.

Filed under: News items

Major League Gaming crowns Button Bashers in Anaheim

Major League Gaming wrapped up a tournament in Anaheim, California (we hear some Blizzard folks were headed over to watch), and a Korean team called Button Bashers came out on top, vanquishing SK Gaming's EU team and a team from Check Six. The Button Bashers team is made of a undead mage named Orangemarmalade (the same one that pulled off that wild 2 vs. 1 victory a while back), and Numberone and Hiren, an undead priest and rogue. So yes, an RMP team finished off the tourney at the top, continuing their domation of the arena. SK.EU's druid, warlock, and death knight couldn't stand up to the onslaught. MLG's GotFrag website has lots and lots of info about the teams and tourney, including wrapups from each day of the weekend, and a big gallery of pictures to look through.

MLG passed out $24,000 in cash and prizes to all of the winning teams -- congrats to all of them. Next up, MLG is headed off to Orlando, FL to run their fifth event of the season in January.

Filed under: Mage, Priest, Rogue, Virtual selves, Blizzard, Arena

The Daily Quest: Pets, podcasts and more

We here at WoW.com are on a Daily Quest to bring you interesting, informative and entertaining WoW-related links from around the blogosphere.

The Daily Quest: Could use a bell pepper right now

We here at WoW.com are on a Daily Quest to bring you interesting, informative and entertaining WoW-related links from around the blogosphere.

Filed under: The Daily Quest

SK Gaming wins MLG Columbus


The dominance of Rogue/Mage/Priest continues as SK Gaming defeated eMazing Gaming's faceroll Unholy/BM/Holy comp in the Major League Gaming Columbus Grand Finals 6-3 (best of 11 counting previous matchups). SK Gaming took home the $9,000 Grand Prize in the first leg of the MLG 2009 pro circuit, proving that the US still has a competitive RMP team. Europe's RMP contingent, Ensidia, barely missed the Finals after dropping to eMG in the prior round.

Some of the teams didn't do so well despite expectations, such as two-time MLG winners Fnatic, who were playing without their Warrior, Rhaegyn. Fnatic did rather poorly, playing a Rogue/Warlock/Shaman comp that simply couldn't match up against the dominant RMPs or even eMG's Death Knight/Hunter/Paladin. Evil Geniuses also played below par, but there really have to be teams that occupy the bottom of the standings. The good news is that teams collect points through all MLG legs to tally at the end of the season, so we might see some changes in the next MLG stops.

All the matches were streamed through three different sites via Octoshape, but the streams were choppy and often stalled more than it did in the first two days of the tournament. It came to the point where the matches were simply unwatchable, which is a shame because there were some pretty good games on the last day. The shoutcasters did an excellent job commentating on the matches but camerawork and the pace of the games were just too fast at times to appreciate. Arena Tournaments could benefit greatly from instant replays, slow motion, and camera angles beyond the third person view. Replays should be available on GotFrag soon.

Filed under: Events, News items, PvP, Arena

MLG Columbus Day Two concludes


The second day of competition at the Major League Gaming 2009 Pro Circuit has just wrapped up, with SK Gaming leading all teams with a 5-1 record followed closely by eMazing Gaming and Europe's Ensidia with identical 4-1 slates. The entire event was streamed live through MLG's site, as well as GotFrag and MMO Champion, and if you missed them there are short recaps of the matches over at GotFrag, as well as a brief match overview. The Arena Tournament uses a best-of-five format where no maps are played twice, which is a great concession to the fact that some team comps play better in particular maps.

Over $15,000 are at stake in the tournament, with the first place winner taking home $9,000. It's been an exciting two days so far, and even though the Rogue/Mage/Priest comp continues to exert its dominance in the format, the current environment has also opened up to relatively newer comps such as Rogue/Warlock/Shaman and Death Knight/Hunter/Paladin. Day three will see which team comes out on top and takes home the prize, with the rest of the matches in this roundrobin tournament streamed live tomorrow at 9am EST.

Filed under: Events, PvP, Arena

MLG 2009 opens in Ohio


All the action explodes in Ohio as the first leg of Major League Gaming's PC Circuit for 2009 kicks off at the Columbus Convention Center. The tournament is a by-invitation-only format that includes eight of the world's top World of Warcraft Arena teams such as SK Gaming, Pandemic, Fnatic, and the lone non-US contingent from Europe, some guys from a small-time guild called Ensidia.

Once again played on HP, the 3v3 tournament will be round robin format with the top four teams advancing to a double elimination Championship bracket. Players will have access to Deadly Gladiator and Tier 7.5 gear over three days of competitive gaming, with over $15,000 worth of prizes at stake. All games will be streamed live over at GotFrag TV as well as MMO Champion, with commentary by experienced shoutcasters Vansili, Vhell, and igoaf.

Participants will accumulate Pro Circuit ranking points and get a chance to advance to the 2009 MLG Championship at the end of the year. It promises to be another exciting tournament, although it looks like MLG will still be using the Ring of Valor so there'll probably be a few laughs, as well. MLG Columbus will run from June 5 through 7.

Filed under: Events, PvP, Arena

Fnatic Orz just about the best team in the world


Familiar faces from the former Duelists Going For Gladiator -- Celex, Emolol, and Ely with a sub, Kesher -- who now compete under the new banner of Gravitas Gaming, faced off against the defending champions Fnatic Orz trio of Glick, Rhaegyn, and Hafu in the Finals of MLG-Dallas earlier today. Gravitas Gaming came into the Finals with a 3-1 lead carried over from their earlier matchup during the elimination rounds, needing only three wins to dethrone the MLG-Orlando Champs.

Fnatic played their strongest comp of Warlock (Glick), Warrior (Rhaegyn), and Druid (Hafu) while Gravitas Gaming countered with a Warrior (Kesher), Mage (Celex), and Priest (Ely) instead of their usual RMP. Some viewers wrote Fnatic Orz off considering their uphill climb to win five games against Gravitas' three, but the defending Champions showed exactly what they were made of by winning three straight matches after falling behind 5-2, evening out the competition at 5-5. The Grand Finals all rested on a single, do-or-die match -- played in Nagrand Arena -- a nailbiter that exemplified the best of professional Arena play. In what was one of the best comebacks I've seen in an Arena tournament, Fnatic Orz pulled off four straight wins to win back-to-back MLG Championships and cement their place in pro circuit history.

It was the second time the two teams met in the Grand Finals, with Gravitas still under the Frag Dominant banner. The games were broadcast streaming through GotFrag TV, with excellent, spot-on commentating and incredible camera work that made it relatively easy to follow the extremely fast-paced matches, although the last match's stream was plagued with hiccups. The winners walked away with $12,000 and three HP Blackbird 002, while the runners-up won $6,000. Pro circuit mainstays Team Pandemic took third place with $3,000 after losing to Fnatic Orz in the Semi-Finals.

Fnatic Orz' storied rise from being dropped by MoB Gaming, winning MLG-Orlando without a sponsor, and being picked up by Fnatic and winning a spot at the World Championships at BlizzCon just before this fantastic win today makes them one of the most exciting and favored teams to watch in the pro Arena tournament scene. It will be a treat to see them compete against the world's best at the World Championships next weekend... except that you'll need a DirectTV subscription for that.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, News items, PvP, Arena

The Art of War(craft): How WoW as an eSport can actually work


If you're even moderately interested in Arenas, I hope you caught the live stream of MLG Orlando yesterday, hosted by GotFrag TV. The stream quality was much better than the one from the Worldwide Invitational, and it was truly entertaining, um... television. A lot of video entertainment is available through the web these days, and GotFrag TV has been providing topnotch coverage of the Major League Gaming World of Warcraft Arena tournament series. As a student of Arenas, I've found the coverage to be extremely fun and educational. This is competition at its highest level, where players actually get paid, or win money, for playing. And just like any sport, there are a few special elements that make it interesting to watch.

The stars

Every sport has its stars. You have athletes like Tiger Woods being the face of golf, or Kobe Bryant being the guy you either love or hate in basketball (for the record, I've been a Kobe fan since he got drafted by the Hornets in 1996), or even Maria Sharapova for tennis, who doesn't even necessarily have to win in order to be fun to watch (I mean, look at Anna Kournikova). Tournaments, when they're in a televised LAN format -- as opposed to online, such as the Blizzard-sponsored 2008 World of Warcraft Arena Tournament -- means that audiences will actually get a glimpse of the players behind the characters. Just like sports stars, these players need to have some special quality that holds the interest of fans. Let's go through a few examples.

Read more →

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard, PvP, The Art of War(craft) (PvP), Arena

Orz wins MLG Orlando tourney


The MLG Orlando tourney has come to an end, with Orz coming out on top. As I mentioned this morning, Orz has come back from a pretty severe choke last month that concluded with MoB Gaming dropping their sponsorship. They were put up against some of the best teams the MLG has to offer, and met the challenges every step of the way. The final round against the Frag Dominant Duelists was a matchup nobody ever expected Orz to win, with Orz running Warrior/Lock/Druid in the final round up against FDD's RMP. Orz walks away with $12,000 and three HP Blackbirds. Frag Dominant makes off with a mere $6,000.

Last month's winners, Evil Geniuses, placed third in this year's tournament, not doing quite as well as the last time around. That's almost to be expected, and they even said as much in an interview GotFrag held with them prior to the tournament. Being last year's winners, they had a great big target painted on their backs and a lot of teams probably spent a fair amount of time doing little more than scouting out EG and their moves. It's actually rather impressive they still walked out in third despite that, and it's a testament to their skill and ability to adapt. Evil Geniuses walks away with $3,000.

The next tournament will be next month in Dallas, Texas. Orz is looking for a new sponsor, but even if they don't find one I'm sure we'll see them there. That $12k has to go to some use, right?

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Events, Arena

MLG Orlando coverage continues with an epic showdown

If you haven't been following GotFrag's coverage of the MLG 3v3 Tourney going down in Orlando this weekend, you really are missing out. Coverage kicks in again this morning at 9am Eastern, 6am Pacific. After the warmups, I believe the opening matchup will be Evil Geniuses (formerly Frag Dominant) up against Orz, formerly sponsored by MoB Gaming.

Let me give you a little background on this matchup. Evil Geniuses came into the last tournament as Frag Dominant. While they were never a complete unknown, most of them had never experienced the LAN tournament setting before. They managed to wow us and their competition by proving themselves capable of running multiple compositions between the three of them, and running them very well. In the end, they came out as the victors after a long series against Nihilum.

Orz was formerly sponsored by MoB Gaming, and one of their members is the fan favorite Hafu. Last month, they were slammed with a pretty major upset. They didn't do very well at all, and it actually led to their team losing sponsorship. MoB Gaming replaced them for this month's tourney. Now in Orlando, Orz has made a fantastic comeback, beating out both the SK Gaming team and the team MoB replaced them with. I bet MoB isn't feeling so hot right now.

First thing this morning, these two will be going head to head (I think). Even if you're not a PvP fan, you have to admit that's a pretty cool showdown, no?

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Events, Arena

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