The ESOC WarChiefs Classic II // No Rush November NR20 Tournament
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Open tournaments are back in season, baby! To round out the end of the 2019 tournament year, ESOC will be hosting two minor tournaments, with the return of the native-civ player's favourite WarChiefs Classic and the first-of-its-kind NR20 Tournament. The previous iteration of the WarChiefs Classic back in 2017 had The People's Champion @Aizamk coronated TWC King, after a pretty handy victory over @[Armag] diarouga in the finals. Other heavy hitters from last season included @Mitoe, @Kaiserklein, @princeofkabul, and @somppukunkku, but after several new editions of the ESOC Patch and over two years for the metagame to develop, it is truly anyone's guess who today's tournament victor will be. The ESOC WarChiefs Classic II will run concurrent to the No Rush November NR20 Tournament, the first-of-its-kind tournament for NR20. Seasoned upper-class NR20 players like @dicktator_, @mongobillione, and @masterchif are expected to be the top performers, but treaty veterans like @Lukas_L99 and @FloKo83 Aoe3 and players with mixed backgrounds like @Hazza54321 might also give the title a shot. Even for those unfamiliar with the format, a glimpse of some NR20 action should be fun for anyone.
Both the WarChiefs Classic II and NR20 Tour will run on the same schedule from late October to the end of November. Anything but minor, both tournaments will have starting prize pools of $500. A huge thank you is in order to iwillspankyou and [TLDT]Amsterda for laying down the cash in order to host these events — it's much appreciated by players, viewers, and tournament admins alike! Likewise, further contribution is always appreciated. Half of all donations to ESOC during the month of November will contribute towards the prize pool of the ESOC WarChiefs Classic II. Additionally, all donations to ESOC that specify they would like to contribute towards No Rush November will be added towards NR20 Tournament's prize pool.
Sign-ups are open now and will close on October 18th, 2019 at 23:59 GMT. Both tournaments will be capped at 64 players on a first-come-first-serve basis. If you would like to participate it's better to get your sign-up in sooner rather than later, or you risk not being allowed to compete at all!
Finally, a new regulation has been added to the tournament ruleset. Rule 3.2 stipulates that if a player is more than 15 minutes late to a casted match, the defaulted player will be forced to lock his civilization first in Game 1. Please, players, make an effort to arrive on-time, for the sake of casters, viewers, and patient opponents!
The Finale of the Grand Tour - Season 2 Playoffs
That's right, it's finally time for the long-awaited conclusion to this year's Grand Tour. After a short hiatus to make room for the ESOC Premier League, we'll be bringing it back to basics with a simple 8 man knockout tournament for this year's Playoffs. The Season 2 Playoffs will be a true tour of the New World, with map pools inspired by certain regions of the Americas and beyond. The Top 8 attendees feature some familiar faces from last year's event, but some new ones as well, so without further ado, let's introduce this year's Playoffs lineup:
Hudson Bay / Colorado / Alaska / Mendocino / Manchuria / Cascade Range / Klondike
Spawning in the northwest of the map in the colour Kaiserklein, we have our first and eighth seeds, blue and his opponent, Lukas_L99! (Wait... )
Kaiserklein is no stranger to the late stages of these events, and it's no surprise that he's our first seed given his performance in some of these weekend tournaments. Kaiser was able to take home both the Tri-Civ Cup and this season's standard Supremacy Cup with comfortable 3-1 victories over both Tabben and New World Champion diarouga respectively. Kaiserklein may not have been able to show us everything he's made of at AoE3's highest-stakes tournament ever this year, but he's certainly proved that he's no joke and will likely be the clear favourite to win Playoffs.
However, his opponent Lukas_L99 should not go unnoticed, either. Lukas is a bit of a newbie to the later stages of supremacy tournaments himself--and in fact did not win any of the tournaments in the Grand Tour--but he's by no means a weak player. Quite the contrary, much like his friend Tabben, Lukas has been creeping his way up into the upper ranks of top players and although he doesn't have the results to show for it yet, he's a frightening opponent who took numerous practice games off of the top 8 players at the NWC LAN, and even had a solid performance in the recent EPL against his current opponent, Kaiserklein, bringing the series all the way to the last game before barely losing the series 2-3. If there's a dark horse to cheer for, its name is Lukas.
Adirondacks / Iowa / Thar Desert / New England / Tibet / Kamchatka / Hudson Bay
In the Northeast of the map we have our silent warrior Knuschelbär and his opponent, the king of ladder, iamturk!
Knuschelbär's a player with a unique mix of styles; strong in both team games and 1v1. Although he is perhaps best known for his tendency to forget to communicate with his teammates, one should be careful not to turn a blind eye on Knuschelbär, lest you find yourself down 100 score and facing overwhelming force. Indeed, one of his greatest strengths is booming and playing for the late-game — always striving for some sort of economic or technological advantage over his opponent.
Opposite him we have iamturk--a man who once had the the entire year of 2019 named after him, and climbed to the very top of the ladder a few times earlier this year with impressive victories over numerous other top players, but has since fallen off the radar a bit. Although iamturk did not win any tournaments in the grand tour, he did make it to the semi-finals in both the Tri-Civ Cup and Supremacy Cup and just barely losing out on making it to finals. Known for aggressive Ashigaru rushes, skirm-goon lameage, and title "iambestmechanics," this may finally be time for iamturk to prove to us all that he's the real deal.
Arkansas / Pampas Sierras / Bonnie Springs / Baja California / Great Basin / Indonesia / Arizona
Migrating south to warmer climates, we have our number two seed, Tabben, and his challenger Conquerer999.
Tabben should be a pretty well-known face to everyone at this point, despite his fairly recent appearance to the competitive scene of AoE3. He's participated in almost all events in the last year, and performed quite well in the vast majority of them, managing to go all the way to 3rd place at the New World Championship, where he defeated current-playoff-first-seed Kaiserklein for the Bronze Medal. And let's not forget just how close he was to taking out diarouga in that 9th game of the semi-finals and advancing to the finals against LordRaphael. Tabben's jacked man, and let's not forget it.
King-of-treaty Conquerer999 (AKA dicktator_) has something to say about it, however. While Conquerer may not the most accomplished supremacy player, he's certainly no stranger to tournaments. He's played against many strong players in high-stakes matches, and is very capable of taking games off of the top players. And as I've already alluded to, he's got strengths you cannot ignore. Conquerer has won every single treaty tournament in recent memory. You let the game go to late and this guy goes from Lieutenant Colonel to Field Marshal in an instant. And let's not forget that Conquerer is one of the only hopes for us lowly NA players.
Lord may you grant Conquerer the strength to make it through the earlygame all the way to lategame,
where he may smiteth the mighty Tabias.
Florida / High Plains / Malaysia / Manchac / Gran Chaco / Wadmalaw / Arkansas
And our final match of the quarterfinals: Mitoe vs SomppuKunkku
SomppuKunkku. Is there anyone on ESOC who's been memed more than this man? Somppu is practically synonymous with Sepoy at this point--and indeed I think if Somppu could marry a Sepoy he would. So what is there really to say about SomppuKunkku? Well, he may not have the best mechanics, the best builds, or the best unit compositions, but Somppu is a creative player and a tactical genius. He's always applying pressure in some form, whether it's constantly raiding your villagers, relentless harassment underneath your Town Center, or threatening to outboom you with 3 Town Centers whilst assembling an unkillable army of Sepoy/Urumi/Mahout--Somppu is never content with allowing the status quo to go unchallenged. If you don't know what he's up to, then beware: those Somali tactics will get you everytime.
It's unfortunate, then, that Somppu's opponent is me--Mitoe. I've not been the most consistent player this year, it's true. But when I do play well, I play well. And let me tell you, SomppuKunkku is not an opponent I feel I need fear. I'm setting aside my tilt for this event, and I'm going to prove once again that I am deserving of a spot among the top players in AoE3.
The first streams of the event are slated to begin around next Friday, October 11th. Half of all donations to ESOCTV during the month of October will contribute to the tournament prize pool, so if you have a favorite player competing, be sure to support them in this year's Grand Tour Playoffs!
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