If you attended rAge this year you would have struggled to not be slapped with eSports in every direction. Being the lonely eSports writer at Lazygamer I tried my best to follow each and every tournament going on at rAge, which included downstairs at the annual Digital Gaming Championships. Upstairs the Call of Duty MAG Cup stole the show, in my opinion, offering a flawless tournament with very little hiccups ending on time almost every evening. On the other side of the expo the Digital Gaming Championship Masters tournament had their fair share of interruptions due to server failures, internet outages, and the usual issues that plague a tournament which invites hundreds of gamers to compete. Other than that the DGL put on a fantastic show of South African talent in both Dota 2 and CS:GO.
Call of Duty MAG Cup
Meeting Ben “Benson” Bowe was definitely a highlight of the MAG Cup, for me. Not knowing his fame and talent, we interacted as two eSports lovers and his humble approach to fans of his, and Call of Duty, made him a major asset to the tournament. The stage was always packed and definitely remained a highlight the entire weekend. Being a strictly and 18 and over tournament, the competition was up in the air with Energy eSports being the clear favourites throughout.
Energy eSports held their own throughout the tournament meeting Insane Gaming in the Winner Bracket final. This was perhaps one of the most exciting matches of the tournament as the two titan Call of Duty teams went head to head, with the loser facing the feared Hi5 eSports. Energy eSports took the Winner Bracket final where they would await the outcome of INSANE Gaming and Hi5. Hi5 took the series in the lower bracket where they would now face Energy eSports, who had an advanced after their victory in the Winner Bracket.
Energy eSports secured the series 2-1 against Hi5 making them the winner of South Africa’s largest Call of Duty Cup, ever. Huge props to the African Cyber Gaming League for pulling off a smooth tournament.
DGL Masters CS:GO
The CS:GO tournament was unfortunately plagued with server issues on day one which saw hopefuls Aperture Gaming receive the short end of the deal after losing a 5 hour best of three series against rivals Flipsid3 Tactics. Favourites Bravado hit a rough patch against CarboN eSports in the upper-bracket offering the usual CarboN vs. Bravado showdown that we had come to expect. This meant that CarboN would head downstairs, after losing to Bravado, to face Aperture Gaming where the tight series ended with CarboN progressing through the lower bracket.
Bravado would meet their age-old “frenemies” Damage Control, but their wake up call from CarboN in the game prior meant they were angry, and ready to shake down Damage Control in a 2-0 victory. Damage Control would then face CarboN in the loser-bracket final, similarly to how ESWC went down with the game ending 2-1 in CarboN’s favour. The tournament offered some fantastic CS:GO, but the final brought a ready Bravado Gaming team who made very quick work.
The final kicked off with the rAge expo doors still closed where Bravado would meet CarboN once again. We all sat and expected the usual bloodbath, but with all chat banned by the admins we were disappointed to see no banter between CarboN’s JT and Bravado’s Detrony. To our frustration the game was rather unexciting as Bravado took a 2-0 victory over CarboN earning their title as Masters Champions and R200 000 added to their already fat wallets. Bravado proved once again that they are the strongest CS:GO team, ending a successful year of victories ahead of their trip to ESWC in two weeks, and WESG China in December.
DGL Masters Dota 2
I left the Dota 2 scene in 2014, but this weekend made me wish I hadn’t as the Dota 2 delivered some of the best action we had seen in years. For the entirety of 2016 the Dota 2 teams in South Africa were chasing Bravado Gaming who held the top spot firmly tournament after tournament. At the DGL Masters, however, Bravado got a slight wakeup call as they found themselves in the lower bracket after losing to Aperture Gaming. It was at this point where all eyes fell on White Rabbit Gaming, a team who had been challenging Bravado Gaming at every competition throughout the year.
Needless to say everyone expected Bravado Gaming to bounce back, as this was not the first time they found themselves in the lower bracket, and went on to win it all. Bravado made it through and, for the conclusion of the DGL Masters, would meet White Rabbit Gaming in the Grand Final. The match was easily one of the most exciting we had seen in years, and White Rabbit Gaming, lead by Michael “Santo” Myburgh, took the first game in a nail-biting showcase. Game 2 Bravado bounced back and we saw the old team we loved bring it all together and take down White Rabbit Gaming. Game 3 is where it all fell apart for Bravado Gaming as they kept getting caught unaware as WRG figured out what was necessary to defeat the “Final Boss” of Dota 2. In a last ditch effort Bravado gave it everything, but were unable to grasp their 2nd consecutive DGL win (fourth as a squad) and White Rabbit Gaming upset the balance in South African Dota 2.
KWESE ACE FIFA Tournament
rAge was also home to the inaugural KWESE ACE FIFA Tournament which saw over 200 registrations for the the first leg of their R100 000 tournament. The XBOX stand, where it all took place, was probably the busiest (and nosiest) stand at rAge which made the competition near impossible to follow, for me. Nonetheless it was a huge hit with a number of new names popping up in the FIFA scene.
- 1st Place: Babalo Manqele – Winner of R10 000,00
- 2nd: Uwais Patel – Winner of R5000
- 3rd Place: Kevin Tembo – Winner of R3000
- 4th Place: Vin Mushwana – Winner of R2000
The tournament continues later this month with the Cape Town Qualifiers starting on the 28th of October.
The Digital Gaming Championships took place downstairs once again featuring all the teams who were not partaking in the Masters series. Since it was near impossible to follow every single game, I will offer the results for the tournaments which took place.
- Dota 2 – xD.Dota
- CS:GO – Energy eSports
- League of Legends – Ventus Gaming
- Battlefield 4 – puLse.Evolve
- Hearthstone – Alan “gas” Gaskon
- Call of Duty (PS4) – Energy eSports
It was a rather successful year for Energy eSports who got dealt a losing hand after not being included in the Masters. The biggest upset was by far the League of Legends where Energy eSports (reigning champions for four years) were defeated by Ventus Gaming in the Grand Final. Other than that the DGC ran on time downstairs, but did not receive as much coverage as the upstairs event.
It was a fantastic rAge in terms of eSports with the tournament stealing the showing and bringing in tons of spectators on the live stages. This was aided by the eSports Branding Summit which took place on Friday morning bringing much needed awareness to eSports in South Africa.
This is the conclusion of eSports for 2016, with a number of small tournament still taking place later on in the year.
Last Updated: October 11, 2016
October 11, 2016 at 14:13
October 11, 2016 at 14:21
Saw very little of the eSports on Saturday, but what I saw was fun.