The final two 3v3 arena teams that will be competing for the 2015 World of Warcraft Arena World Championships have been decided, and it looks like we have a fantastic showdown between SK Gaming and returning semi-finalists, Skill Capped EU to look forward to. Six teams faced off in a flurry of Ice Blocks and Mind Blasts until only the top two teams remained, both dominating the brackets with 3 to 1 victories. Both teams are members of the same guild, Solari Gaming, and find themselves once again competing against one another for the first time since the European Regional, this time for the ultimate title of Champion and the $120,000 first prize. Here is a brief re-cap of the matches:
Skill Capped EU vs. Tempo Storm
We saw some amazing skills today right off the bat as (US)Tempo Storm was defeated by Skill Capped EU’s (formerly Solari Gaming Red), moving Skill Capped into the finals for the second year running. Skill Capped proved themselves to be a very versatile team, changing out comps with every round, while Tempo Storm maintained the same build until the final round. Both teams performed exceptionally, showing strong adaptability and team dynamics.
In the first round, we saw a very cautious start in the Nagrand Arena from both teams, slowly gaining the middle ground before exploding in a strong flurry of well-timed spell steals and bubbles. Tempo Storm’s unusual Holy Pally-Subtlety-Arcane comp proved effective against Skill Capped EU’s Resto-Combat-Frost, ending the first round quickly.
In the second round, Skill Capped EU scored their first victory on the Ruins of Lordaeon with a surprising double Holy (Priest/Pally)-Frost build. Skill Capped hung back in their room, forcing Tempo Storm give them the advantage as they unleashed a strong defense. There were many close calls for Tempo Storm’s Djpikaboo who seemed to be Skill capped’s primary target. After a crowd control heavy round, Skill Capped made a surprise target switch to Jahmilli, bursting him down and taking the match.
Round 3 was the Tol’viron Arena and went to Skill Capped-EU with a Holy Pally-Frost-Shadow build. This match progressed faster as the teams seemed to be able to better predict other’s moves. Both aggressively bursting, causing most players to use their cool downs and trinkets early. The match ended quickly after that when Jahmilli was caught off guard securing a second victory for Skill Capped.
In the final round, Tempo Storm was defeated in a rarely seen mirror match; both teams using a Holy Paly-Frost-Shadow comp in the Tiger’s Peak map. Shedding the last of their hesitation, Skill Capped EU burst quickly on Jahmilli, forcing him to use every cooldown and trinket in his arsenal. Dispels were flying as both teams countered the others attacks causing Skill Capped to fall back and draw Tempo Storm in as both teams burst on the other’s Mage repeatedly. Skill Capped’s fantastic use of crowd control helped separate the Tempo Storm members enough that their surprise burst on DJPikaboo won them their third victory and secured their spot in the finals.
SK Gaming vs. Cloud9
The highly anticipated second match between (EU)SK Gaming’s (Formerly Solari Gaming Blue)Enhancement-Arms-Resto build proved to be too much for (US)Cloud9’s (formerly Juveniles) Combat-Frost-Resto combo. Both teams placed first in their regions, each containing players whose skill with their class is rarely rivaled. Cloud9 was the only team in this competition that did not take advantage of a fourth man, sticking to their Druid-Mage-Rogue comp. SK Gaming’s self-proclaimed stricter training schedule may be the reason they took their place in the finals after four action packed rounds. Although this was a semi-final match, I think most will agree that this was hands down one of the best match ups to hit the Blizzcon stage.
The first round saw SK Gaming going up against Cloud9’s Resto-Frost-Combat comp with their Arms-Enhancement-Resto build in the Nagrand Arena in a satisfyingly intense battle, laying the framework for one of the most intense showdowns of the tournament. After hanging back behind a pillar, SK Gaming converged on Cloud9, forcing their healer Kubzy to pop cooldowns and trinkets early. SK Gaming spread their attacks evenly across all of the enemy players throughout the match, while Cloud9’s heavy bursts focused mainly on Swapsy. Both teams stuck with their strategies, causing the healers to burn through mana quickly, running on fumes until SK Gaming’s assault on Roasty narrowly gave them the first of three wins.
The second round took place in the Tol’viron arena with both teams sticking to their same comps. SK Gaming again sticking to the column as the two teams clashed and began to slowly dole out the damage, neither team focusing any player in particular. SK’s first burst on Cloud9’s Roasty almost ended the match, causing healer Kubzy to pop his cooldowns. It seemed as if Cloud9 had recovered when a sudden burst on the now defenseless Kubzy won SK Gaming the match.
Cloud9 scored a victory in round 3 in the Tiger’s Peak map. Once again both teams keeping their same comps as a seemingly cautious start very quickly lead into a sudden burst on Cloud9’s Kubzy, who narrowly escaped and survived with %7 health and using all his personals. A second, weaker burst on Cloud9 kept Kubsy from efficiently casting as they counter burst Swapsy. Some creative crowd control from SK allowed them to free heal before countering a burst on Swapsy and continuing their constant assault on Cloud9’s Roasty. With both teams healers running low on mana, both teams focused on staying alive until bursts are up. SK Gaming bursts heavily on Kubsy and he once again survives with a minuscule 4%, healing himself in time for Cloud9’s counter burst on Swapsy who manages to survive by the skin of his teeth as well. Wealthyman suffers a close call as well as SK Gaming switches focus on him. A quick recovery from Cloud9 allowed them to take down Swapsy and win the round.
Ruins of Lordaeron was the map for round 4 where once again, both teams relied on their same comps as they start out cautiously trading blows. SK Gaming focused Wealthyman, causing him to Ice Block. Cloud9’s quick crowd control allowed them to burst on Swapsy who barley survived the attack. SK quickly switched the heat, doling out insanely high damage on all of Cloud9’s team members until all three are down to %30. Kubzy attempts to top off his team, but is unable to recover as SK burns down Roasty winning the round and moving into the Final round.
The Grand finals will take place Saturday, November 7th at 3:30 PM PST and can be viewed live and for free. Check out the BlizzCon Esports landing page for more information. Tomorrow’s match is expected to be amazing. Be sure to look for our recap of the match, as well as all your BlizzCon news here at the PDQ. Who are you pulling for?