After a long, gruelling 42 days of non stop Heroes of Newerth action, the DreamHoN Online Summer Championships have finally come to a close. With almost 500 teams originally taking part in the tournament, only two final teams remained, and no one can argue that they were not deserving. Cruising through the entirety of the tournament, Complexity Gaming stood strong as the heavy favourite, having only lost a single game throughout the entire month in an impeccable performance. But to snag that $20,000 prizepool and the accompanying trip (and subsequent qualification) to the upcoming Dreamhack, they’d have to get past the new powerhouse side of Trademark eSports, the one team responsible for tarnishing CoL’s perfect record.
In order to get to this stage of the tournament, each team had to fight their way through some incredibly strong teams, each game with their own fantastic highlights. After an impressive group standing, Clan MILK simply couldn’t hold their own against the in form Trademark. After that, tdM advanced on to take out another easy win over the ever looming team of It’s Gosu, before coming up against the brick wall of Complexity. On the other side of the bracket, Complexity proved to be a class above both the last remaining Qsquad team (357) and the power of Tt eSports, smashing out quick 2-0 wins in both series.
In the semi finals, we saw a highly entertaining series between CoL and tdM, in what became a superbly close 3 game series. After an impressive Tempest display in the first game, Mynuts seemed to struggle on his Emerald Warden in the third game, allowing Bkid’s warriors to eventually take the first spot in the final. Dropping into the loser’s bracket, Trademark again defeated Team It’s Gosu, setting up a much desired rematch against Complexity in the grand finals of this Summer of HoN. In this series, Complexity would only have to win a single Best of Three series in order to take out the win (due to their earlier victory), while Trademark would have to win an extra Best of Three series for the prize money.
In the first game of this highly anticipated series, we saw a relatively safe draft from both Mynuts and Bkid, who are both considered absolute masterminds of the game. What did standout however, was the decision to run Draconis as a hard carry on Haxxeren. It wasn’t until the later stages of the DreamHoN tournament that the power of Draconis was displayed (shoutout to [CM]Kookiez), and the hero’s unmatched farming potential. If you combine that with Haxxeren’s innate ability to acquire massive amounts of gold, this player-hero combination is one that can easily spiral out of control. Mynuts and the tdM side did their best to counter this idea, with an incredibly aggressive lineup, including Pebbles, Aluna and Tempest, hoping to curb any farm the powerful Dragon sought to attempt.
(Match ID: 99440056)
It was evident from the get go that the game was going to be a unique one, as the players moved into their positions in the laning phase. Although the ever aware Tralfamadore knew exactly where each player would begin, i don’t think many others could have predicted such a lineup. Steering away from the jungle, we saw Tempest head to the solo shortlane against the dangerous Moraxus Plague Rider combination, considering that gave the legion side the best chance to control the lane against the frustrating Plague Extinguish. Moving to the midlane, NoobG on Silhouette braced himself to duke it out against Bkid’s Witch Slayer, in good old one on one fashion, while a solo Draconis would attempt his best against the killer trilane of Pebbles, Torturer and Aluna. This left Andromeda free to roam the map and set up any possible ganks that she could, giving Complexity a pseudo jungler, as they particularly like to run.
Early on, Franzzii continually moved to set up a first blood gank on the Silhouette mid, but the Legion side sensed something was amiss when Andromeda failed to appear in lane for the first couple of minutes. Instinctively, FajN` moved to place a defensive ward for his mid teammate, and do some roaming on his own. However, while this was particularly smart initially, it really hurt the destructive power of the Legion trilane. Failing to acquire any kills or even apply any sort of harrass, Aluna leaving the lane made life that much easier for the dragon. As a result, the Pebbles Torturer combination actually failed their tower dive for firstblood, allowing Haxxeren to turn around with a quick dragonflame for the extra gold for the first kill of the game, and series. After that, it always looked somewhat grim for Trademark, as Draconis was able to acquire enough levels to move on to jungle stacks and even the ancients, which is the real power behind the new hero.
The saving grace for tdM was Limmp on pebbles, who managed to acquire his Portal Key in just under 10 minutes, instantly showing it off for an instant kill on Witch Slayer. However, Moonmeander on Moraxus acquired his only seconds later, and showing it off in equally devastating fashion. A key factor in the game occurred when Limmp jumped on an oppurtunity to again take out Witch Slayer, Portal Keying in and comboing the relatively squishy hero, although Bkid just managed to throw out a stun before he fell to the final auto attack from Aluna. This set the scene for Moonmeander to jump in on the Legion side, Quake stunning and throwing axes as more team support arrived. In the end, Witch Slayer’s death resulted in three heroes falling for the Legion side, including Pebbles, Silhouette and Torturer.
Even after all the pressure applied to Draconis in the early game, the jungle stacks proved to be too much for tdM, as he easily farmed up his nullstone in 19 minutes, his Shrunken Head following only 5 minutes later as he raced to nearly 500gpm. In the end, even the five man tempest ultimate from NoobG couldn’t even turn around the game for the Legion side, as Complexity Gaming rolled their way to a 33 minute victory.
In the following game, Chessie must have been as happy as a dog with two tails after seeing Mynuts (bizarrely) leave his beloved Ophelia open for picking. As a result, Complexity wasted no time in acquiring the aggressive jungler, and slipping it into the hands of probably the strongest Ophelia player the Forests of Caldavar has ever seen. With bubbles in the lockpool, CoL leapt on the opportunity to run their highly successful lineup once again, with the suicide Bubbles, a solo mid Fayde along with the dual short lane with the accompanying jungler. On the dark side of Caldavar, Trademark opted for an incredibly early aggressive team, with lots of stuns and high burst damage. Opting to send a Pyromancer to the safe lane to solo, this left Moraxus to take the mid lane, with an absolute killer trilane to take on what they expected to be the Legion trilane. Boy were they mistaken.
(Match ID: 99445737)
Whether you have to credit Chessie’s intuitive nature, or Bkid’s captaincy, the end result was still the same. The decision to offensive jungle Ophelia and leave Forsaken Archer and Empath to fend for themselves in the safe lane proved to be a game breaking decision, as the Hellbourne side pulled out all the stops to block the starting jungle camps. Not only did this leave the powerful jungle hero free reign throughout the whole jungle, but also a completely open Pyromancer to gank. Grabbing a minotaur at only level two, Chessie was able to micro the creep beautifully to block NoobG’s path to pick up the bloodlust. From that brilliant start, he moved down the river, snagged a double damage rune, and successfully picked up another kill on Moraxus in the middle lane.
This was simply the beginning of the end for the fairy-tale story of Trademark eSports, as they proceeded to completely tilt and fall apart. Losing all game sense, they played far from the standard that they had displayed throughout the entire tournament, getting completely stomped in the second game. While tdM had the stronger early game lineup, suited for supremely aggressive play, it was Complexity that did all the attacking, acquiring a 10-0 hero kill lead in only 9 minutes. Early on, some amazing defensive ward positioning from Franzzii saw that both Forsaken Archer was protected from the killer trilane, and that Bkid was safe from any ganks in the mid lane. Even after the Hellbourne side brought counter wards so they could gank effectively, they simply couldn’t pinpoint the spectacular positioning from Franzzii on Empath, solidifying himself as your go to support in competitive Newerth.
The game took a definite high 12 minutes into the game, as the Hellbourne moved to push the tier one tower in the mid lane. With three minotaurs, Chessie failed to deny the tower as magmus snared the last hit. However, as BreakyCPK exclaimed, ‘But at what cost,’ as the minotaurs chain stunned Mynuts for the kill. With team support flooding in, Ophelia and her army moved forward to secure the kill on both Nymphora and Aluna as well, before Magmus surged in again after his buyback. It wasn’t long before Magmus fell again, a Quad Kill coming out for Chessie. But he wasn’t done there, oh no. Accompanied by some excellent blocking and team support, the annihilation was secured, while the Honcast team erupted in excitement. A 12 minute annihilation is definitely no easy feat, and he followed it up only minutes later to acquire the fabled 10-0 bloodbath, prompting the concede vote from Trademark in just 15 minutes.
After a pretty easy final series from Complexity, the now International team walked away with the $20,000 prize pool and qualification to the upcoming DreamHack. Although, as many people will comment, this is not much of a surprise. The CoL Gaming team have easily been playing some of the best competitive HoN the scene has ever seen, going as far as comparing them to the FnaticMSI team of old.
A huge Congratulations to Complexity and Trademark for making the Grand Final, and the six other teams that managed to make their way to the third stage of the tournament. Another shoutout to every team that participated, regardless of skill level. Without you the scene is no where near as healthy, so keep up the hard work and don’t stop trying!
Stay Milky – Yumstix
Source: Clan Milk