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Soundblaster ProAm Final Wrap Up

By 'DefianT-CKI'
Jul 29, 2012 10:00


ImageThe final of the ProAm tournament was contested by the two most convincing teams in the tournament. Both apeX.Collapse and TCM looked incredibly strong in their run through the cup, taking out some of the best teams from around the world hoping to get their hands on $2000.

The opening map of the final saw the teams duke it out on Bootleg CTF. TCM initially flew out of the blocks however apeX were able to come back into the map, consistently dropping TCM members when needed whilst also capping themselves a flag to take a 1-0 lead into the second half. Once again TCM came out fast, putting apeX on the back foot however this pressure seemed to be for nothing as the flag could not be pulled away. With less than a minute remaining TCM managed to get all four players down and equalise sending the map into stopwatch.

Both teams were a little more tentative moving into the first half of stopwatch descending into a stalemate situation. It wasn't long before this was broken though as TCM captured the flag within two minutes. Motivated by the fact that they needed to capture fast, apeX pushed out fast and dropped enough TCM members to make the flag pull safe, capturing the flag in 45 seconds and giving themselves a 1-0 lead in maps.

Following on from the first map, the teams moved onto SnD Arkaden. If the first was a tense and tight affair, this map was anything but. apeX collapse showed the Search and Destroy prowess that is expected of US teams and whitewashed the TCM line up 4-0 in a very routine map. At this point the best thing TCM could do was rally themselves together and get ready for the next map, a capture the flag round on Lockdown, and hope for the best.

The map started just as TCM would have hoped, following a chain of kills they pulled the flag away and managed to get an early capture on what is considered the harder side. Keen to press on rather than defend they pulled the flag away for a second time only this time apeX had done so themselves, forcing a stalemate situation which lasted for the rest of the half. Moving onto the perceived better side TCM once again got an early capture and also managed to grab complete control of the spawns, capturing two flags in quick succession before the apeX line up left the game, citing time saving as the reason.

apeX were looking to reassert themselves in the next map, Search and Destroy on Seatown however the game started with the two teams trading rounds. It is worth noting at this point that Seatown is not in the American rule set so the lack of practice may have hampered the team. At 2-1 to apeX, TCM Jake managed to win a 1v2 situation to tie the map up and this seemed to provide TCM with more momentum as they went on to close out the next two rounds to win the map 4-2 overall.

Dome sometimes offers some of the best game play that you will see in re-spawn game types as the close quarters feel of the map means that players are immediately thrown back into the game upon spawning. ApeX moved into the Capture the Flag and quickly captured a flag to give themselves a 1-0 lead within a minute. Following this kills were starting to be exchanged and TCM were starting to come out the better, getting the flag away from the tricky dome spawn area. The Collapse line up managed to not only return but get important kills to give themselves a chance of a counter, a chance they took to lead 2-0 going into the half way point. The second half was a little more one sided then the first, with apeX.Collapse pressuring their opponents for the whole half, managing to get a third and fourth flag in the process to take a rather convincing 4-0 map victory and put themselves 3-2 in the lead.

Moving into the 6th map of the series was Search and Destroy on Carbon and TCM got their usual fast start. Rich, who played consistently throughout the entire final, got 3 fast kills on the first round to give TCM the 1-0 lead. Fortunes took a turn for the worse for TCM as apeX powered their way to a 3-1 lead only to see this slip through their fingers, losing the map 4-3 following 3 straight rounds by the TCM foursome.

Returning to Arkaden, this time for Capture the Flag, apeX would be looking to emulate the form they showed in the second map of the series and take it comfortably. In contrast to other maps apeX were the team to come out of the blocks the fastest and capitalised to get themselves a flag within the first minute of play. TCM were not going to take this lightly however and bounced back with a capture of their own also managing to get the relay and capture a 3rd flag before the half making the score 3-1. The second half started fairly even with both teams getting a capture each however apeX were able to take advantage of slightly more defensive play from TCM to capture flags and tie up the map.

It was apeX once again who came out a little faster moving into the stop watch situation, managing to get a few kills but struggling to take the flag. The opportunity came when TCM made a push of their own, with players slightly out of position, apeX made a few kills and managed to counter capture just inside 2 minutes. Knowing their target apeX decided to go for a more defensive look however TCM roared into action, getting 3 players down very early and capturing the flag within 50 seconds to take the map and put themselves in the lead in the series for the first time, 4-3.

Winning 3 maps in a row as well as winning the last 2 Search and Destroy round was sure to put TCM in a great frame of mind, apeX needed to stop the momentum that their opponents had been able to generate to give themselves a chance of winning the tournament. The match started very evenly, with teams trading rounds however in the 4th round apeX player Parasite managed to get an ace to give his team a 3-1 lead. With their opponents needing only 1 more round to win the map, TCM needed to pull their finger out and they did just this, coming back from 3-1 down to win 4-3 for the second time in the series. Winning this map made the map score 5-3 in favour of TCM, putting themselves one map away from winning the $2000 prize.

The final was slipping away from apeX.Collapse after what had been such a strong run through to this point. Moving into Capture the Flag on Bootleg (the same map and game type as map 1 of the final), they knew they needed to win the map if they stood any chance of winning. The tension was obvious as both teams started very cautiously however it was apeX who struck first, capturing a flag just before the halfway point. In the second half kills were being exchanged all over the map and both teams managed to get the flag away resulting in a stalemate situation however TCM were able to make the kills to not only capture that flag, but also capture a second to take the lead. In doing so however apeX managed to get all of TCM down apart from Hammers. Left with the unenviable task of pulling off an amazing play for the tournament, Hammers makes a defensive 4 piece to deny any chance of apeX pulling a flag and to win the tournament for the TCM line up.

In summary the final was fitting of what has been an excellent tournament. apeX probably feel that they under performed in the second half of the final, losing 4 straight maps after a very strong start. Whether the game was won or lost by an under performance by apeX or just outstanding play from TCM is up for debate. All players from both teams were exceptional, consistently pulling off amazing plays under intense pressure and I personally couldn't pick out a stand out player. TCM will be looking to continue this form heading into EGL7 next weekend and apeX.Collapse will be looking to build upon this in hope of attending their first European event. As always keep an eye out here for all the coverage from the upcoming events.


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