Crack Clan TF2 Battle Report #2

Last week’s inaugural battle report was full of grand imagery, flowery language and blatant electioneering; a crude attempt to win you over, but I know you are all far too perspicacious to be sweet-talked by a silver-tongued Irishman two weeks in a row. Instead in the second edition you will be treated to a deeper insight to our week of training and competition, as I take you day-by-day through our games and best laid plans. Not to mention the usual tabulated feast of logs, demos, comms and videos.

If the theme of last week was getting routinely smashed by Epsilon in practise, then the theme of this week was to try and emulate what they do. The first hour of our Sunday session was devoted to a discussion on changing our style of play. Having watched a few STV demos between us and ipz- even talking at length with Epsilon’s numlocked and Mike, we felt we had deciphered at least part of their recipe for victory.

That evening we tested out our strategic adjustments against Quarantine to produce some fairly one-sided games. Whilst beating on one of the Premiership’s punching bags might be good for morale, it was perhaps not an accurate indicator as to whether or not we were moving in the right direction.

On Monday we faced stiffer competition with fellow playoff hopefuls, BFF and Broder. Unfortunately BFF didn’t seem to be offering much resistance, but Broder were more than up to the task of putting us through our paces in a 60 minute slugfest. Looking back at the games, our play was good but I can see I died far too frequently with Broder’s part-time roamer Jukebox accounting for nearly 50% of my deaths.

But this is good. This is how you improve. I can recognise that I am dying too often on middles to the bombing soldier I can adjust my position accordingly and communicate to my team mates to deal with the threat.  And yet in the midst of battle I can’t always count on my team to protect me or react to my cries for help in time, but I can always just run away. Fuck those guys! Seriously, battling against your desire to support your team and your own self-preservation is one of the hardest aspects of playing Medic, but the more favourable option is almost always staying alive… even if that means death for the rest of your team.

PCW Quarantine Badlands 9 – 2 Log Demo Mumble Log Demo Mumble Twitch
Process 5 – 0 Log Demo Mumble Twitch
PCW BFF Badlands 7 – 2 Log Demo Mumble
Process 6 – 2 Log Demo Mumble
PCW Broder Badlands 2 – 5 Log Demo Mumble
Process 3 – 7 Log Demo Mumble
PCW Epsilon eSports Badlands 1 – 6 Log Demo Mumble Twitch
Snakewater 0 – 5 Log Demo Mumble Twitch
ETF2L Team Doctrinal Badlands 5 – 2 Log Demo Mumble Twitch YouTube YouTube
Snakewater 6 – 3 Log Demo Mumble Twitch YouTube YouTube
PCW SOLAR Process 6 – 1 Log Demo Twitch
Gullywash 4 – 2 Log Demo Mumble Twitch

Tuesday was to be the real acid test as we had an opportunity to try and out-Epsilon Epsilon in our warm-up game before our ETF2L Week 2 fixture. Needless to say we got smashed again, but we actually managed to win a few middles against them on Badlands, which was something we had really targeted on Sunday. Honestly, that’s a big deal for us and it was a crystallizing moment for me personally where I really began to grasp how we can beat the champions.

The main event against Team Doctrinal was one of the funniest games I’ve played in a long time. It was a fairly reckless performance from us, and we took a few rounds to figure them out. In particular, how deal with Harbleu’s North American swagger (ignore him!) and how best to wind-up our former teammate, Retsh0ck. Badlands started off with a dispute about who got to play BLU which was settled by a brutal pre-game Medic duel. Do you even need to ask who won that?! On Snakewater, banter levels eventually escalated to see an overenthusiastic Harbleu accidently taunt kill himself with the Escape Plan when he was attempting to engage in a battle of words with our own ipz-. Cue raucous laughter on Mumble and a general descent in to madness. Classic stuff.

ETF2L Premier Division Table

Epsilon flaked out on our arranged Wednesday practise (happy birthday Stefan!) and we were all much too handsome and desirable to be playing on St. Valentine’s Day. We did, however, play current Division 1 frontrunner’s SOLAR on Wednesday in a game which will linger long in my memory for some explosive rage. Who was I mad at? Mostly myself…

In Premiership news baguette upstarts, PyRo|GEN, imploded after losing to Pokeman. The silver lining being that we picked up their sensational soldier and Ultiduo champion, T-Mac, as a backup. Hopefully we can teach him a thing or two, but either way he is gonna be the next big thing in European TF2.

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