We have now crossed the mid-point of League Play, and as we enter the latter half of the season, the pressure is truly beginning to pile on for teams to qualify for Playoffs. Each team played a cross-conference match last week, so we now also get a hint of how the conferences compare come Playoffs. There is unfortunately no coverage of the Alpha conference this week, but there is plenty to read for each other conference, and be sure to come back next week for that!
MU – MATTY
- The Neon Flamingo (-)
- RL Ireland (-)
- Primal Esports (-)
- Galamo Esports (+3)
- eNightmare (-1)
- Elated Esports (-1)
- Golden Age (+4)
- Overture (-2)
- Aardwolf Esports (+1)
- Built By Us (-2)
- Team Peculiarity (+2)
- Team Berserkers (+3)
- Insanely Mechanically (+3)
- Shaman Esports (-5)
- Puncture (-1)
- The Unseen (-4)
Galamo Esports (6-4)
This week could prove to be the turning point in Galamo’s season, with them taking the win in both of their series this week. Not only did they manage to beat Regulars 3-2 in their cross-conference series, but they also managed to sweep league leaders The Neon Flamingo to put them in an extremely favourable position heading into the final three weeks of league play.
The Neon Flamingo (9-1)
Despite being swept by Galamo this week, The Neon Flamingo are still in a very good position to take top spot in the Mu Conference at the end of the season. However, with only the third-highest win percentage in the conference, this could prove to be decisive when determining the final positions and the end of league play, due to them only winning 3-1 or 3-2, having only swept one team this season so far.
Insanely Mechanically (4-6)
After having one of the worst possible starts to the season, with six successive defeats, Insanely Mechanically made a couple of transfers and it is now paying off massively. Coming off their historic win against Primal last week, they have carried forward that momentum into this week, taking two further wins against Delta and Team Peculiarity to lift them from the bottom of the standings for the first time in a while.
Golden Age (5-5)
After having an up and down season up until this point, Golden Age managed to take the win in both of their series this week, beating Team Ascendant and Overture, putting them at an advantageous position heading into Week 6.
Game to watch: Primal Esports vs eNightmare
Sharing the same win-loss record of 7 wins and 3 losses, both of these teams will be coming into this series knowing that this could decide their placement at the end of the season and could prove to be crucial in determining if they receive a bye to Round 2 of the playoffs. After only picking up one win in their past four series, both teams will be looking to bounce back from their recent troubles by taking down one of their closest conference rivals.
Prediction: Primal Esports 3-2 eNightmare
OMEGA – OLI
- Reflux (-)
- Auto Celerity (-)
- Fort Templar (+5)
- Dormant Esports (-1)
- Hyve Central (-1)
- Tofu and Sons (+6)
- Prophecy (+1)
- Bad Karma Esports (-2)
- Donde Esports (-)
- Shadow Esports (-5)
- Competitive Open RL (CORL) (+2)
- Team Ascendant (-2)
- ZeroFox Gaming (-2)
- Regulars (-)
- Delta (-)
- Eidolon Esports (-)
The team that we have become accustomed to being at the top of the conference remains for another week. The internal issues they had, causing a shaky couple of weeks, have been ironed out and this is shown by their double sweep this week. A predicted sweep against Prophecy and then, more importantly, a sweep against Primal (7-3), who themselves are looking towards a spot in playoffs in the Mu conference, proves to everyone that they are the team to beat and nothing looks like it can stop them. They have almost guaranteed a Playoffs spot at this point and anything below first place in the Omega conference will be a disappointment for them.
Dormant Esports (7-3)
Dormant are in a strong position, as they have been all season, however, in the last couple of weeks they have seemed to drop off slightly, and losing 3-0 to 15th place Delta won’t have helped them in any way. Although this game was using a sub, you should expect any team with as good a record as roster as Dormant to easily brush aside a bottom team. This was clearly not the case and it has to be thought that this could be a downfall of some sort. We will see next week, with them facing Eidolon and Tofu and Sons, anything other than a 2-0 week will leave them at the mercy of Hyve and Fort Templar.
Fort Templar (6-4)
This entire season I have been challenging last season’s champions to break free of this ‘win one lose one’ curse and this is the week they have done so. This has seen them rocket up the table and they are now sitting in the automatic playoff places. This has to be the turning point in their season, we all know the quality they possess and if they do get into playoffs there cannot be any questions as to whether their experience will pull them through. I think if Fort Templar get into the playoffs they could go far.
Shadow Esports (5-5)
In juxtaposition to the previous team, Shadow Prospect have had one of the biggest falls in the history of the Prospect League. The first 5 games of their season they were flawless, 5-0 and top of the conference. They looked to be a sure contender for the title come the end of the season. However, the unpredictable nature of the Prospect League has kicked in as a winless last 5 games has tumbled them down the order and almost certainly put them out of contention for playoffs, given their current record. Hopefully for Shadow, they can get this early season momentum they once had, although it is looking more and more unlikely with the influx of losses.
Game to Watch: Reflux (8-2) vs Fort Templar (6-4)
This is the only game this week in the Omega conference that contains two of the teams that are battling for the Top 4 spots; this is what makes it the clear game to watch. This will be the game that will have all the fast-paced action and of course, has a rematch of last season’s final Neri, now on Reflux, vs Beefcayk and Sir Cheese on Fort Templar. Will it be Fort Templar to beat Neri again or can his Reflux team come out on top.
Prediction: Reflux 3-1 Fort Templar
ZETA – FREDDY
Records in power rankings signify predicted records at the end of the week
- Dormant Esports 11-1 (-)
- The Neon Flamingo 10-2 (-)
- Overture 9-3 (-)
- Hyve Central 9-3 (+2)
- Aardwolf Esports 8-4 (-1)
- Fort Templar 7-5 (-1)
- Bad Karma Esports 6-6 (-)
- Shadow Esports 5-7 (-)
- Tofu and Sons 5-7 (-)
- Regulars 5-7 (-)
- Zero Fox Gaming 5-7 (-)
- Team Peculiarity 4-8 (-)
- Prophecy 3-9 (+1)
- Galamo Esports 2-10 (-1)
- Delta 2-10 (-)
- Golden Age 1-11 (-)
The Neon Flamingo (8-2)
The Neon Flamingo currently sit second in the Delta conference with a solid 8-2 record. They’ve only lost two games this whole season, 1 to Aardwolf Esports and the other to Bad Karma Esports. They are yet to face the two other top teams, Dormant Esports and Overture. so it is not yet known who is actually the superior team in the Delta conference.
The Neon Flamingo are going into Week 6 facing Shadow Esports and Regulars, both of which being mediocre teams that Flamingo shouldn’t have a problem dealing with. If this week goes in their favour they will have already secured Playoffs with two weeks to go.
Hyve Central (7-3)
Hyve Central are also looking great after Week 5, winning both of their games to secure a solid record of 7-3. Hyve went into Week 5 with a roster change which proved to be the right move as they dealt with both their matches very nicely. OhLwdz was signed picked up after being released from Elated Esports, and Hyve have looked great since his arrival. Going into Week 6, they face Aardwolf Esports and Overture which looks to be their toughest week yet. Both Aardwolf and Overture are in the Top 4 so if Hyve wants to come out of this week with two wins they have to put a lot of work in.
Regulars are having a terribly average season in Challenger going 4-6 in the first six weeks. Next week isn’t looking the most promising either as they’re facing #2 seed The Neon Flamingo which will definitely be a tough matchup for them. If they lose to Flamingo their hopes of getting Playoffs will be battered as they will have seven losses, which essentially rules them out of Playoffs contention. This is Regulars’ last chance to show their worth, so they will have to give it their all.
Prophecy has had a horrible season so far, only getting two wins within five weeks which is simply not good enough. Their hopes of reaching playoffs are over already, so the rest of the season will see Prophecy playing with nothing to play for. Next week, Prophecy plays Bad Karma Esports and Golden Age. The Bad Karma match will be a tough one for them, but the Golden Age game could be Prophecy’s chance to win their 3rd game of the season.
Game to watch: Hyve Central vs Overture
This matchup will surely be the match of Week 6 in the Delta conference. These two teams go head to head to decide who makes stays in the Top 4. This will be a game to watch as both teams will give it their all to get even closer to getting that Playoffs spot that is so desired by most in the league. If this game is on stream it will most definitely be the game of the stream and I advise people to look out for if it is on stream.
Prediction: Overture 3-2 Hyve Central
ZETA – BRUN
- Reflux (-)
- eNightmare (-)
- Insanely Mechanically (+1)
- Competitive Open RL (+2)
- Shaman Esports (-2)
- Team Berserkers (+1)
- Elated Esports (+1)
- Auto Celerity (-3)
- Primal Esports (-)
- RL Ireland (-)
- Eidolon Esports (+2)
- The Unseen (-)
- Puncture (-2)
- Team Ascendant (-)
- Donde Esports (+1)
- Built By Us (-1)
A more or less expected week in the Zeta conference results as the top and bottom teams mostly stay in the same spot. However, in the middle of the pack, some of the major changes have occurred as teams scramble to attain a wildcard spot.
The arguably top team in all of Challenger has seemed relentless this week, dealing out a massive sweep to other conference top team Dormant Esports. Dormant were on a very dominant run until Reflux seemed to have stopped them in their tracks. This team will have to beat eNightmare to claim the top spot as they are hot on their tails. Although they do play Insanely Mechanically and Competitive Open RL this week and they could put a stop to this seemingly unbeatable team.
Insanely Mechanically (7-3)
Beating their cross-conference opponents Aardwolf Esports, this team is looking to dominate. This top 4 team is looking to beat top team Reflux this week and prove themselves worthy of the IEL crown. With a strong roster, this team is sure to be playoffs capable and can go the full distance. What is even more impressive is at the beginning of last week they made a surprising roster change, dropping RoseBlushes for Kebabs which has seemed to pay off after they have only dropped a single game last week.
Eidolon Esports (4-6)
After dropping two of their players and picking up ex-Golden Age player Wolfy and ex-Hyve Central player Zi0n, this team seems to be on the up and out and potentially could make Playoffs. Only losing one series this week to Regulars in their cross-conference match, but beating Shaman Esports this team could be an underdog team that makes a comeback to get a achieve Playoffs. On the other hand, this team has massive potential to crumble. They cannot drop a single series if they want to get playoffs, which may be a struggle as they play a strong-looking Insanely Mechanically team in the final week. Will they exceed expectations or will they make a surprise run?
Built By Us (2-8)
This team is in a similar spot to other conferences Golden Age. With a playoffs spot out of sight, Built By Us is likely to split up and find a roster capable of playoffs. They still have top teams Insanely Mechanically and Shaman Esports to play so getting a positive record is going to be next to impossible for these guys. With not many options, this team may split in the near future.
Game of the week: Reflux Vs Insanely Mechanically
With Insanely Mechanically hot on their tails, Reflux have a lot of pressure on them to continue their winning streak and take out a Top 4 team. All eyes will be on Reflux for this series and it is more than likely they will fail to take out this team. That being said, if Reflux keep their cool they should be able to assert their dominance onto Insanely Mechanically and ultimately get the better of them.
Prediction Reflux 3-2 Insanely Mechanically
GAMMA – NEXTFOX
- Dormant Esports (+1)
- Overture Esports (+1)
- Elated Esports (-2)
- Competitive Open RL (CORL) (+1)
- RL Ireland (+1)
- Fort Templar (+1)
- Prophecy (-3)
- Donde Esports (-)
- Team Ascendant (-)
- eNightmare (-)
- Galamo Esports (-)
- Eidolon Esports (+2)
- Built By Us (-1)
- Delta (+2)
- Team Berserkers (-2)
- Puncture (-1)
Week 5, the week in which we see which conference is the best! For this same week, we also deliver to you one more article with power rankings and write-ups. Let’s get into it!
In the top five, we had everyone changing a position, with Dormant and Overture in top two now, and Elated in third. CORL and RL Ireland both move up a place, RL Ireland entering the top.
Mid-table had some changes in the top mid, with Prophecy going down three positions, and Fort Templar moving up one, getting close to that top-five spot.
In the bottom, Delta and Eidolon go up two positions, while Built By Us and Puncture fall by one. Berserkers drop two positions and are now one place away from the bottom of the league.
Game of the week: Elated Esports vs Auto Celerity (2-3)
The match we’ve been waiting for! The top 2 teams went against each other, and, as expected, it went to Game 5… However, it was a win for Auto Celerity, going against the prediction of 3-2 to Elated! In terms of the match itself, most games ended with a one-goal difference, while Game 1 ended with two and Game 5 with three. Elated started with a 3-1 win, but lost two in a row by 1-0, winning again after this last three games 2-1, but losing game 5 3-0. Auto Celerity gets the win in probably the most anticipated match of this week! In terms of team MVPs. Zee9 gets four, the same as antmn7.
Game to watch: Team Ascendant vs Puncture
To change the pace a bit, let’s take a look at a game of lower placed teams! For this one, we are going to see Team Ascendant, a team that has a 3-7 record, and Puncture, with a 1-9 record. Puncture only has a single win against Donde Esports, so it’s going to be interesting to see if they can pull another win here. However, we give the favouritism to Team Ascendant on this one.
Prediction: Team Ascendant 3-1 Puncture
INTERVIEW – TBURGER
Please introduce yourself and your franchise
Hi, I’m Locks and I am the GM of Hyve Central
As a Challenger player moving into Master, how have you found the transition?
I was quite nervous moving up to the big boy leagues at first, however, after my first series I realised that it wasn’t as bad as I thought and that I could just about keep up. There is no denying it is a lot different than Challenger but it has been a pleasant surprise.
As a GM, what were your aims for this season?
My aims for this season was for everyone in my franchise to enjoy playing in IEL and for them to improve as people and as players (playoffs is just a bonus)
As a player, what were your aims for this season?
Although coming into the season as underdogs, we had high hopes that we could clinch playoffs and pull off a few upsets along the way, however, we knew we wouldn’t be the top team and that we would have to fight for wildcard places.
Do you think your aims are on track to be achieved?
I believe that we are all on track to reach our goals this season and I have faith in my franchise to exceed my expectations as always.
Which of your teams do you back the most to go the furthest?
All of Hyve’s rosters have the potential to go all the way on their days. But as I’m sat here with tburger holding a gun to my head, I would have to choose our Challengers as they have proven that they can hang with the best and have the experience that will take them far in playoffs.
Any further comments?
All I want to say is that I wish everyone the best of luck for the remainder of this season (yes even Dormant) and that Hyve are not a team that should be slept on, even if I’m on the Master main roster.