BlizzCon eSports Round-up–Hearthstone, Heroes of The Storm and Starcraft II

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While your news feed has been flooded with World of Warcraft, Warcraft movie, Overwatch and other Blizzard hype, BlizzCon also included an array of competitive eSports tournaments this weekend. BlizzCon, for the past several years, has grown to become one of the largest eSports events of the year. It has acted as the ending point to each competitive year in Hearthstone, Starcraft II and WoW Arena. Blizzard have now included Heroes of the Storm and the list continues to grow with Overwatch set for release Spring next year. So what went down this weekend at BlizzCon?

Natus Vincere’s Sebastian “Otsaka” Engwall becomes the new Hearthstone World Champion

While my money was on European Champion Thijs “ ThijsNL” Moldendijk, Na’Vi’s Sebastian “Otsaka” Engwall stunned the crowd with a flawless victory in the Grand Final. In fact Moldendijk did not even feature in the final, instead Engwall took on former ROOT Gaming teammate Dylan “Hotform” Mullins in the best-of-five Grand Final only to sweep the floor and secure a 3-0 victory. Let’s not forget he also walked away with $100,000 and the prestigious title of World Champion. Both Rogue players set out for what was suppose to be a relatively even matchup, but Engwall stepped ahead as his months of practice on the ladder and other tournaments paid off.

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Engwall has long been considered one of the most talented players in Hearthstone, and the fact that he played rogue (considered to be weak in the current meta) is testament to his abilities. In fact, Engwall other than his victory at BlizzCon, his only other achievement this year was taking second place at the SeatStory Cup. Natus Vincere signed Engwall in September alongside Frederik “Hoej” Nelsen and Sebastian “Xixo” Bentert. Now with Engwall having his name etched on the big trophy, this is only the start for the young player.

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Cloud9 become the first ever Heroes of The Storm World Champions

American champions Cloud9 completed their victorious run in true MOBA fashion to be  the first ever Heroes of the Storm World Champions at BlizzCon this past weekend. Cloud9 led an unstoppable campaign throughout the weekend dropping just one map to fellow Champions of Europe, Team Dignitas. All eyes were on Natus Vincere as favourites for the tournament, but were upset when Dignitas bested the Europeans. Natus Vincere seemed set for glory as they topped their Group B, but were not match for Dignitas who got their revenge in a rematch of the European Championship finals.

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Cloud9 proved themselves after being in the shadow of Tempo Storm leading up to the tournament as they once again met Dignitas in the Grand Final only to deliver a 3-0 final blow to the hybrid European team. They now grab the prestigious title of the first ever World Champions, as well $200,000. Cloud9 seemed unstoppable, and continued their run all the way to the end and are definitely a force to be reckoned with for the upcoming season starting in 2016.

Kim “sOs” Yoo Jin becomes the last Starcraft II: Heart of The Swarm WCS Champion

Starcraft II’s second expansion, Heart of the Swarm, came to an end this past weekend with the final WCS Championships help at BlizzCon. In an eSport which has since fallen shy of the spotlight in the past few years, Blizzard spared no expense in sending off their second expansion with a bang. With Legacy of The Void around the corner, the last tournament for HoTS was nothing short of spectacular. The stage transitions are what had my jaw two inches short of the floor.

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Kim “sOs” Yoo Jin met Lee “Life” Seung Hyun in one of the most exciting Grand Finals in a while. The two South Korean players went head to head in a best-of-seven series which saw each and every map played out to its full, unlike the other Grand Finals at BlizzCon this year. The maps went back and forth as with Life drawing first blood, and then sOs retaliating with winners switching each consecutive match. sOs, on Protoss, managed to grab the last map against Life, on Zerg, to be crowned the WCS Champion at Blizzcon for the second time. He also grabbed up his third $100,000 prize. With a final score of 4-3 sOs wraps up Heart of the Swarm and looks forward to Blizzard’s next Starcraft II expansion – Legacy of The Void.

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Last Updated: November 9, 2015

Kyle Wolmarans

Critical Hit’s esports guy. I talk about esports and drink whiskey. I also write and cast for elsewhere – but my work here is independent of that.

  • Lardus-For the Emperor!

    Cloud9 played extremely well, even pulling out Murky in the semi-finals against pre-tournament favourites Team DK! I think Na’Vi might have played better against Cloud9, but Dignitas were well prepared to get their revenge against them. Well done to them for getting revenge, but very well done to Cloud9 for showing skill with their play and courage with some of their picks! And bans…banned Tyrael constantly lol

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