Esports VaingloryLeague

[VGL NA] Round of 16 Preview

We’re down to only the 16 strongest teams in this first qualifier and it’s looking like we’re going to see some stellar matches this weekend. Let’s take a peek at what you can expect to see.

Note: In analyzing these teams, I created a new metric: K/D Ratio. This represents the total amount of hero kills a team has had divided by the total hero deaths. Generally, the higher this number, the better. Since most games were not streamed to the public, all data is credited to FameGlory.

Catherine Bracket

GankStars Sirius (1) vs. Nemesis Titan (4)

Sirius Overview

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Titan Overview

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This is going to be a tough matchup for Titan. Sirius is a world championship team who just got back from Korea, where they were practicing 8+ hours a day and playing scrims with other world champion teams. Since Sirius has such a deep hero pool, Titan’s best bet might be to focus on obtaining their best comfort picks and giving Sirius a good fight.

GankStars Vega (2) vs. HH Velocity (3)

Vega Overview

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Velocity Overview

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This will be the match to watch in the Catherine Bracket. These two teams are fairly balanced and it’s bound to be filled with adrenaline. I’m hoping these one goes to a full three-game series. As a side note, if GankStars Vega wins this round, they’ll be facing their brothers, GankStars Sirius, in the quarterfinals.

Adagio Bracket

Team Penetrate (4) vs. Vainguard (8)

Penetrate Overview

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Vainguard Overview

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Both of these teams interest me greatly. Penetrate is flexible with which of their team members plays a given role and their roam has consistently seen success with Phinn, who is almost never seen in the NA meta. Vainguard is the cause of one of the biggest upsets this season, beating the first seed, Liberation X, and a 2-0 sweep. I can’t wait to see how these games shake out – either one of these teams could end up being the dark horse of the Adagio Bracket – and possibly the qualifier.

Nemesis Hydra (2) vs. HH Force (3)

Hydra Overview

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Force Overview

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With Liberation X eliminated from the qualifier, Hydra is now the team to beat in the Adagio Bracket. Even with the slight roster change – adding in gibbs as their jungler – Hydra’s veteran’s, hardek and LostBoyToph, still remain as a strong foundation. However, Force comes with a lineup of their own top players, particularly their laner, XenoTek. I expect Hydra to take this one, but I don’t think Force is going to go down easily – get ready for some fireworks!

Reim Bracket

Alliance (1) vs. Nemesis Excrucio (4)

Alliance Overview

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Excrucio Overview

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After taking first place in the VIPL world championship, Alliance will be the most difficult challenger in the bracket – and possibly the whole tournament. However, they did have a roster change when they returned home, with iLoveJoseph replacing ShinKaigan as jungler. It’ll be interesting to see if they remain just as strong as they were in Korea. If not, I’m sure Nemesis Excrucio is ready and willing to go into the quarterfinals.

Vertigo Black (2) vs. GankStars Polaris (3)

Black Overview

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Polaris Overview

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Both of these teams are looking like strong candidates as champions for the Reim Bracket. In particular, Black had such a dominating performance in the round of 64, they had a K/D Ratio of 16.00, with 32 kills and two deaths – it was a slaughter. However, the teams in round of 16, such as Polaris, are going to hit a lot harder than the ones we have record of so far. Polaris just picked up Koedz (laner) just prior to the season’s beginning and it looks like they’re already putting him to good use.

Ringo Bracket

VON Menace (1) vs. The Sillys (4)

Menace Overview

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Sillys Overview

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Menace is looking so very good this season – which is a consistent theme for them. However, the Sillys have me intrigued by the success they’ve been seeing with less conventional hero picks. For example, MackDaddyB has been making a name for himself by playing a Sorrowblade Krul and maxing Deadman’s Rush first. Also, Lola420 tends to prefer Catherine over Ardan, even when both choices are available. We’ll have to see if these small innovations will be enough to topple the first seed, Menace.

Kinetic (6) vs. Team Vain Nation (7)

Kinetic Overview

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Vain Nation Overview

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It has been an interesting road for Vain Nation. They barely scraped by in the round of 64 in a three-game series, but then accomplished a 2-o sweep versus the second seed, TAS Frame Perfect. Throughout this process, they have also swapped junglers like I’ve never seen before, with their laner and roam remaining a consistent fixture in the lineup.  Kinetic similarly caused somewhat of an upset when they eliminated Liberation Y (third seed) from the qualifier. Both teams have certainly earned their right to be here in the round of 16, but we’ll have to find out which of them is worthy to be in the quarterfinals.

These games will take place Saturday, January 23rd at 1pm PST on the VaingloryLeague Twitch channel.

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