Articles:Season 3 North American Offline Qualifier Team Preview
Season 3 North American Offline Qualifier Team Preview
The Ranked 5v5 Online Qualifier wound down on January fifth, ending the three preliminary brackets leading up to the Season 3 North American Offline Qualifier. Fans from seasons one and two will undoubtedly recognize a smattering of the sixteen teams that made it to this stage. Curse and Team FeaR both earned their slots in the Season 2 North American Regional Finals. Meat Playground fought their way through IGN ProLeague Season 5. Dirt Nap Gaming and Good Game University (members of the defunct Team Dynamic) took their spots during the IPL Online Qualifier. The MLG Online Qualifier and the Ranked 5v5 Online Qualifier each contributed a top tier team to the bracket: MLG offered Cloud 9 (the third iteration of Orbit Gaming) and 5v5 brought Epik Gamer, a staple in the League of Legends world since season one.
As with any good batch of online qualifiers, fans were also shown a host of teams new to the competitive circuit. Some were crafted for professional gaming while others are here to challenge themselves and to improve their game. You've been shown the teams. This is your introduction to them.
1 Trick Ponies (Ranked 5v5 Online Qualifier)
Adrian "PawnGypsy" Mandee – Top
Christopher "ScubaChris" Lee – Jungle
Kevin "lilkvn" Nguyen – Mid
Kenny "RagingKenny" Mac – ADC
Linh "Reduron" Pham – Support
Tyson "Innox" Kapler – Sub
Unlike most League of Legends teams, the formation of 1 Trick Ponies can be attributed to Angel “theAngelVigil” Vigil, their manager. He met PawnGypsy, ScubaChris, and RagingKenny near the beginning of season two (spring of 2012) while working for Dirt Nap Gaming, the company sponsoring all three players. The four of them developed a friendship which led to theAngelVigil becoming their manager. The team competed under the Dirt Nap Gaming title, and they were able to upset mTw.na in the GESL tournament during the summer. The rest of the tournament didn't go as well as anticipated, and the team decided to disband. TheAngelVigil met Reduron shortly after and formed another team which had a promising start but ultimately disbanded, as well. Upon hearing about Riot's plans for season three, theAngelVigil proposed a plan to Reduron to reunite the team. PawnGypsy was brought in, and lilkvn, who had previously taken a hiatus from competitive League to focus on school, showed interest in playing again. TheAngelVigil contacted ScubaChris and RagingKenny. Excited by the news that lilkvn wanted to return to the competitive scene, they both agreed to join the team. Coming out of the Ranked 5v5 Online Qualifier, it's safe to say reuniting the players was a good decision.
compLexity Academy (Ranked 5v5 Online Qualifier)
Dustin "Grim Samurai" Serafin – Top
Kevin "Niero" Behnaz – Jungle
James "Raiynz" Lee – Mid
Chase "chaseonfireeeee" Cunningham – ADC
Solomon "Cheezycookie" Davidsohn – Support
Austin "Diesel White" – Sub
Niero co-founded the team that would become compLexity Academy with Evan “The Cpt America” Seale, a top laner at the time, in October of 2012. Cam "Syykez" Merrill, who knew The Cpt America, showed interest in becoming their manager soon after the two announced their plans for a competitive League team. The three of them worked together to find the final players for the roster. They scrimmed with chaseonfireeeee. He had great synergy with them and was asked to join the team. Cheezycookie and Raiynz followed shortly after. With a fleshed out roster, the team competed in a few Go4LoL tournaments in the same month it was founded and throughout November. Their ambition paid off with late finishes in each showing. Assured of their potential, they decided to fight their way up the ranked ladder, quickly earning a spot in the Ranked 5v5 Online Qualifier. The team was picked up by compLexity Gaming on December sixth as part of their Academy project to give aspiring League teams the resources necessary to grow. Just a few weeks later, however, The Cpt America decided it was time to part ways with compLexity Academy for undisclosed reasons. Grim Samurai was brought on to take over their top lane. With the qualifier a few weeks away, compLexity Academy had just a short time to adapt to their new roster. Instead of forcing Grim Samurai to learn an aggressive early game, as they were used to with The Cpt America, compLexity Academy took a more diplomatic approach. Working together tirelessly to find a style that accentuated the strengths of their lineup, the team scrapped their early game snowballing strategy to one that favored late game control and holistic team presence. The shift in play style hasn't slowed them down at all.
Team MRN (Ranked 5v5 Online Qualifier)
Patrick "MegaZero" Glinsman – Top
Clark "ClakeyD" Douglas Smith – Jungle
Tyler "ecco" Spesick – Mid
Peter "Heartbeattt" Lim – ADC
Dylan "AtomicN" Newton – Support
Martin "Marn" Phan – Sub
Scott "BananaOoyoo" Kang – Sub
Marn is known throughout the competitive fighting world for both his personality and ability to dominate a tournament. He decided he wanted to try his hand at competitive League, so in June of 2012 he started Team MRN with TooPro, me emo, Nickwu, and ClakeyD and entered MLG Anaheim. After a disappointing defeat, the team decided to go their separate ways. In true fighting game fashion Marn and ClakeyD wanted to give it another shot. They picked up MegaZero, ecko, and AtonicN that November, intent on making a name for themselves. Not long after creating their team, MegaZero's dedication to school, a point of contention for any teenage professional gamer, forced him to take a temporary leave of absence from competitive play. With just two weeks before the qualification period for the Ranked 5v5 Online Qualifier, MegaZero was able to return. Time was running out, and the roster took another unfortunate blow: ecko decided to move to Dirt Nap Gaming. With a last minute addition of Heartbeattt, Team MRN stormed the ladder to land themselves in the top thirty-two teams on the North American server. Marn, looking out for the team's best interest, took the risk of stepping down from the team roster and grasped the reins as manager. He brought in ecco with a referral from Heartbeattt, completing the roster Team MRN currently competes with. Despite numerous abrupt upheavals, Team MRN have managed to fight their way through to the live qualifiers in Santa Monica.
Team TowerDiveTV (Ranked 5v5 Online Qualifier)
Daniel "Urek Mazin0" – Top
Steven "Xzevz" – Jungle
Dan "Cybolic" – Mid
"zxkeisukexz" – ADC
Mark "Cosommak" Jreige – Support
Simon "zhanos" Leblanc – Sub
Team TowerDiveTV is the first, and so far the only, team established specifically to represent a casting organization. TowerDiveTV wanted a way to expand into the scene at a competitive level as well as give aspiring professional gamers a chance to reach the highest levels of play, so they asked Curse for help in creating a team. Curse pointed them toward Cosommak who signed on as the captain and branched out looking for four other players. Team TowerDiveTV had a full roster by November, and they took no time in asserting themselves on the North American ladder. Whereas other teams have natural synergy because of friendships or experience prior to a team's creation, Team TowerDiveTV have overcome time constraints and language boundaries to place themselves as serious contenders in season three. Not bad for a team finalized two months ago.
The Salad Bar (Ranked 5v5 Online Qualifier)
Kevin "Hirishin" Duong – Top
Alex "Ghoztzero" Dubois – Jungle
Edmund "EHomda" Hom – Mid
Joshua "Impactful" Mabrey – ADC
Cameron "NinjaSalad" Cox – Support
The history of The Salad Bar will be familiar to summoners from season one: a group of friends (with high elo's) make a team to queue normal games, and one day they decide to go competitive. With all of the teams tailored for competitive success cropping up in the past season and continuing into season three, it's refreshing to find a few that are in it, well, just because. The Salad Bar are a close-knit group of players that have been working as a team since July of 2012. Their humble beginnings could work out in their favor—they've been around, with a stable roster, far longer than most other teams on this list.
Pulse eSports (Ranked 5v5 Online Qualifier)
Brent "Halfers" Tsuji – Top
Leon "Onionbagel" Chen – Jungle
Nam "Kenikth" Truong – Mid
Zachary "SnEaKyCaStRoO" Scuderi – ADC
Evan "Evaniskus" Stevens – Support
Kevin "Kevîn" Nguyen – Sub
Pulse eSports broke into the League competitive scene by picking up a team consisting of Fat, Otter, Supporting Only, and WildTurtle. The team disbanded not long after. WildTurtle went to Orbit (now called Cloud 9) while Fat, otter, and Supporting Only transitioned between teams. In the meantime, Evaniskus and SnEaKyCaStRoO set out to establish their own team. They convinced Kenikth to join with them after his previous team, Ordinance Gaming, disbanded. With Kenikth's influence, they convinced Onionbagel and Kevîn to fill in the roles of jungle and top laner. Pulse eSports saw potential in the newly formed team and decided to give them a chance. What began as an interesting business move worked out in both Pulse's and the team's favor. They got a spot in a SoloMid Series through a substitute invitation and ended up placing second against CLG. As the end of the season drew closer, the players took time to analyze their goals in competitive gaming. Kevîn came to the conclusion that he couldn't participate if the team qualified for the Season 3 Championship Series. He resigned soon after, leaving Pulse with a month to find a replacement and qualify in the round of thirty-two. They decided on Halfers, known for playing mid lane at the time, as their new top lane player. Halfers agreed, and in one month Pulse had made it into the Ranked 5v5 Online Qualifier.
Azure Gaming (MLG Online Qualifier)
Gabriel "Nothinghere" Charbonneau – Top
David "DJ LAMBO" Jeong – Jungle
Shao "Shaosters" Kang Li – Mid
David "Diamond" Bérubé – ADC
Lyubomir "BloodWater" Spasov – Support
Jon "Demunlul" McCulloch – Temp Sub
DJ LAMBO and Kevin "AriesLL" Gao decided to start a team in November of 2012 with AriesLL taking managerial responsibility. Soon after inception, AriesLL brought his friend Shaosters into the mix as their mid player and found Veetine who joined on as their ADC. Still missing a top laner and a support, AriesLL turned to the newly defunct CLG Black. As it happens, BloodWater and Sycho Sid were looking to join a team together, and with their inclusion Azure Gaming had its first complete roster. They spent a short time scrimming against top teams in the North American server and winning a comfortable margin of those games. The end of December saw the end of the first roster of Azure Gaming. Sycho Sid transferred to Team FeaR, and Veetine left due to irreconcilable differences with the team. Recent upheavals in the top lane meta left AriesLL searching fruitlessly for a new player until he convinced Nothinghere to join the team. Nothinghere went on to ask his friend Diamond to come on as Azure's ADC. Diamond encountered problems obtaining his passport earlier this week, so Demunlul will be substituting for him in the qualifier this weekend.
The Brunch Club (MLG Online Qualifier)
Nicholas "Nickwu" Wu Smith – Top
Tyler "Lautemortis" Nicholls – Jungle
Samuel "Chuuper" Chu – Mid
Josh "brunch Ü" Abrantes – ADC
Abe "Ellie Beee" Nguyen – Support
The Brunch Club is a conglomeration of friends who are exceptionally comfortable speaking their mind to the fans (their reddit AMA thread from January seventh is a prime example) and in game. Formed late in season two, The Brunch Club is three parts Chuuper's Troopers (Nickwu, Ellie Beee, and, of course, Chuuper), one part Lautemortis, and equal parts brunch Ü. They formed under the name She Said She Was Level 18 until, on January seventh, they fulfilled a name change request submitted by Riot—they settled on The Brunch Club, a name begun by Lautemortis as a joke that managed to stick. Brunch, ever affable, says that his love of video games and the community, as well as a disdain for a traditional job, led him to a life of professional gaming. Though few explicit details are known about the team's history, they're certainly one of the liveliest groups to make it out of the round of thirty-two.
Falafel Gaming (Ranked 5v5 Online Qualifier)
Trevor "DrTrevor" Hunter – Top
Andrew "Azingy" Zamarripa – Jungle
Richard "Valkrin" Royer – Mid
Lohit "MrWish" Vankineni – ADC
Nikhil "NiksBrotha" Malhotra – Support
A representative for Falafel Gaming could not be reached for comment.
- Written by Matthew "SynysterSaint" Madore, @protomatadore on Twitter
- For full information about the Season 3 North American Offline Qualifiers, Click Here