IEM Katowice 2021: Narratives To Watch At This Major Event

IEM Katowice 2021 is finally here, with the Play-in event kicking off and the Main Event just days away. IEM Katowice 2021 is the first major event in the CS:GO calendar with so many teams involved for several months. Naturally, the best squads in the ESL Pro Tour are awaiting Play-in results to compete on Thursday. However, there are many lineups looking for a shot to make it into the big leagues. Here are the stories to watch:

Main Event Narratives

The Main Event of Katowice has brought many good stories over the years. Natus Vincere won 2020’s event, and previously, in 2019, ENCE had their incredible underdog babyface run to the final. Similarly, this year has no shortage of stories. Here are the best:

FaZe Clan’s First Real Test

FaZe Clan has rebuilt their roster once again. Only this time, the roster has Russel “Twistzz” Van Dulken and Finn “karrigan” Andersen. The team recently looked solid with nothing to lose at the BLAST Premier Spring Groups 2021, and that was without karrigan. IEM Katowice is their first real showing, and it is going to be a great gauge to see how they’re performing.

Heroic’s Enigma

Heroic is a team that really grew into their own throughout 2020. The roster eventually peaked at the second half of the year, contending for finals in several events. And in the process, building an actual rivalry with Astralis. The roster did partially fall off in some events, coming 5th-8th at events like the Global Showdown and CS_Summit 7. Katowice is an event that will define Heroic as either a team falling off or still hanging one of the best in the world.

Vitality down to Five

Vitality is a team that has prided itself with its six-man roster, tactical substitutions, and winning events with their gameplay. However, the start of 2021 has not been great. A fine resulting from an accidental restream of an event noticed on broadcast, Mathieu “ZywOo” Herbaut getting his lowest ADR game on record at BLAST Premier Spring 2021, and now the temporary leave of Dan “apEX” Madesclair has got the roster shaken up. Vitality has plenty of prep time, so the opening game for them is one to watch.

Vitality down a player at time their six-man roster was working effectively

Play-In Narratives

The Play-ins is the first leg of the tournament, looking to advance eight teams to the quarter-finals. There are plenty of teams in that pool scrapping it out to make it to the one of CS:GO’s most prestigious events. While there are many decent teams, there are a few high profile stories to watch.

How Will mousesports Fare?

Mousesports has gone from one of the best teams in the world several times to falling off the face of the earth. The roster is currently experiencing the latter. Both the aged veteran Chris “Chris J”de Jong is benched and on loan to FPX and karrigan has returned to FaZe Clan. With the veterans out, there are plenty of young talent fending for themselves. Add in the new IGL and the roster is interesting. The question is has Robin “ropz” Kool graduated from young star to the star player and now veteran of the mousesports roster in time?

Karrigan returns to FaZe after several years of absence

The CIS Beast Awakens

Team Spirit,, and Gambit are three teams on the rise in recent months. The tier 2 Russian squads have made it out of their region and began stomping teams like BIG, mousesports, and others in international online events. Both teams now arrive at their biggest challenge yet: IEM Katowice. Both teams have a darkhorse atmosphere to them, and it will be interesting to follow the growth of new CIS threats in the global scene. There is definitely potential for all these teams to break through the Play-Ins into the Main Event of IEM Katowice 2021.

Can Complexity Keep Up Appearances?

Complexity is a mixed-result team that has been in a weird spot since Owen “oBo” Schlatter left the team. The roster has rebuilt and recently won its group in the BLAST Premier Spring 2021. But now there are many more teams to face off against at of CS:GO’s biggest events. The question does the team have what it takes to keep up its appearances? the Play-Ins will be a perfect benchmark.

Stay tuned to Dartfrog for all the latest news and analysis on CS:GO and follow us on our Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Twitch.  Image via ESL Gaming


IEM Katowice 2021 talent line-up announced, GeT RiGhT on Analyst Desk

ESL Gaming has announced the IEM Katowice 2021 talent line-up for its CS:GO event. The tournament is getting plenty of CS:GO’s biggest talent to cast, analyse and host the event, alongside a few notable figures added into the fray.

IEM Katowice 2021 talent line-up

The usual CS:GO talent pool is back for the IEM Katowice 2021 event. The talent list features the big names we see across several ESL Gaming CS:GO events. Furthermore, a few rising star talent members are part of the main line-up, with a few faces we know and love acting as analysts.

  • Tres “stunna” Saranthus – Desk Host
  • Janko “YNk” Paunović – Analyst
  • Aleksandar “kassad” Trifunović – Analyst
  • Christopher “GeT_RiGhT” Alesund – Analyst
  • Alex “Machine” Richardson  – Caster
  • Chad “SPUNJ” Burchill  – Caster
  • Harry “JustHarry” Russell – Caster
  • Hugo “Hugo” Bryon – Caster
  • Frankie “Frankie” Ward – Interviewer

Most of the names on the list are the usual CS:GO talent we see during events. However, the interesting part is the promotion of caster duo, Harry and Hugo, alongside the masterminds of CS:GO, YNK, Kassad, and GeT Right.

The other talent taking part for the alternate streams are

  • Mike “DarfMike” Winnick – Caster
  • Joshua “Dweg” Nathan – Caster
  • Jamie “TheEternalJay” Martin – Caster
  • Dean “Dean” Brown
The full talent list across every stream of the event.

The return of the old guard

Some of the old guard of CS:GO is back at Katowice 2021, only this time they are the three broadcast analysts. GeT Right, YNK, and Kassad feature on the analyst’s desk, with all three very recently announcing changes to their careers. GeT Right announced he was stepping down from competitive play in January 2021. YNK and Kassad, on the other hand, both left their recent projects as coaches on FaZe Clan and Cloud 9 respectively.

The trio on the analyst desk is something that is going to want fans to tune into and listen to their post-game commentary. IEM Katowice 2021 kicks off on February 16th- through to the 28th with the most well rounded CS:GO teams throughout 2020 in attendance. This year is going to be big, even with the event taking place online yet again.

Stay tuned to Dartfrog for all the latest news and analysis on CS:GO and follow us on our Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Twitch.  Image via ESL Gaming.


Na’Vi crowned BLAST Premier Global Final 2020 Champions

Natus Vincere has become the 2020 BLAST Premier Global Finals 2020 Champions after taking down Astralis in the Grand Final. Na’Vi has won its first tournament in a while, ending the 2020 event calendar and starting their 2021 with a bang.

Natus Vincere’s run to the Final

Everyone thought that Natus Vincere was going to pull a typical Na’Vi result in the online era. The team hasn’t been particularly great recently and that was the form they started the event with. In their opening series, they played against Team Liquid, and lost 0-2. From there, the CIS roster had to play in the Lower Bracket to survive.

But their journey to the Finals was remarkable. With nothing to lose and everything to gain, the roster pulled it back again and again.

The first Lower Bracket opponent was against Complexity, and that was a close call. The Complexity series started off on a back burner. Complexity won the first map on Mirage 19-17, continuing Na’Vi’s loss streak. With elimination point set, NaVi came back on Nuke to win 16-8 breathing life into the roster. Moving on Na’Vi won Inferno 16-11, surviving for another series.

A familiar foe was next in line as Na’Vi faced off against the newly refreshed G2 Esports. Even with G2 Esports star carry Nikola “NiKo” Kovač, Na’Vi still managed a 16-6 win on Train and 16-8 on Mirage. The momentum was in full swing for the CIS roster as Na’Vi was ramping up and starting to catch fire as the event went on.

The IGL’s brain was firing on all cylinders in his team’s approach and mechanical play.

After that, it was rematch time vs Team Liquid. It was clear Na’Vi was back in form when they faced Team Liquid again. This time, Na’Vi won the series 2-0, with the scores 16-13 for Inferno and 16-14 Nuke for the win.

After that, it was the 3rd and 4th place matchup between Natus Vincere and Team Vitality. This match was an absolute banger, with the series breaking the viewership record for an online CSGO event – excluding majors. Na’Vi and Vitality pulled in a 687k viewers peak. It was easy to see why; two best players in the world facing off against each other in what the community has described as a tough year to pick a world number one player.

As for the series itself, it was an incredible Lower Bracket Final. The first map went the full distance of a 19-17 Nuke, with Overpass heading to 16-12 for Vitality. The final map was Dust II, which is Vitality’s favoured map. but Na’Vi managed a 16-10 win. The Lower Bracket Final was a story of tremendous comeback, and the quality of their final LB opponent made it so much more special.

Na’Vi dominating the esports viewership for CS:GO

Na’Vi’s BLAST Premier Global Finale

With the Lower Bracket wrapped, Natus Vincere found themselves against Astralis, a team that has finally returned to form and keep making Finals. It was another 2-0 battle for Na’Vi as they had hit their peak form at this point. Nuke was once again on the cards as the most popular map in the current era of CS:GO. Astralis pulled their usual trick of substituting in Lucas “Bubzkji” Andersen specifically for the map. Unfortunately for the Danes, Oleksandr “s1mple” Kostyliev and Egor “flamie” Vasilev were on point for the map, ending in a 16-12 victory for the CIS team.

The next map was Inferno, where the Danes never had a chance. Na’Vi destroyed Astralis making the number one team in the world look like an am-pro team. Na’Vi won 16-5, on a map where the design tends to create fairly even showings. Nonetheless, Na’Vi managed a 1.0 or more rating on four players, whereas everyone on bar one on Astralis earned less than a 0.9 rating. It was telling to how much everyone on Na’Vi was on fire. With that set, it became really easy for the BLAST Premier Global Final 2020 to award s1mple the MVP of the event.

A well-deserved MVP after a really long and challenging event

With the event over, CS:GO is back in action. The CS:GO offseason is done and teams are back, with the next event being the DreamHack Open January event. Stay tuned to Dartfrog for all the latest news and analysis on CS:GO and follow us on our Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Twitch.  Image via BLAST.


MiBR unveils its male and female CS:GO rosters

MiBR has announced two brand-new CS:GO rosters, with one male lineup and a separate all-female team. The Brazilian organization looks to further show the world they’re committed to building and developing talent in the South American region.

The team announced that the primary roster is gaining four members of the former BOOM Esports lineup: Gustavo “yel” Knittel, Ricardo “boltz” Prass, Marcelo “chelo” Cespedes, and Bruno “shz” Martinelliare. The final member of the team is the young star that only recently featured on the Bravos roster back in July to November, Daniel “danoco” Morgado. This MiBR CS:GO roster is all-new – There are no core members of the previous MiBR lineups, completely reshaping the team.

As a whole, MiBR has been in a state of flux since Summer 2020. The roster got rid of the old lineup that had earned fame and fortune since 2016. However, the team fell off in 2020, and the results proved not worth the investment. Just before the old guard was dropped, the team was involved with several dramas, including involvement in the CS:GO coach cheating scandal, while the squad accused members of other teams of cheating as well.

With this in mind, MiBR chose to completely rebuild their CS:GO roster. In final months of 2020, the team unveiled a new roster, containing some of the prodigies of Brazilian CS:GO. The team had some success and was something to be proud of at the time. Built on loans, this roster unable to continue heading into 2021.

In the new year it was expected that Alencar “trk” Rossato and Vito “kNgV” Giuseppe would play in a new iteration of the roster. Ultimately, this wasn’t meant to be, with the pair finding themselves on the bench. The two players opted to bench themselves after communications broke down over new lineup for 2021. The duo were insistent on continuing to play with the temporary roster they played with at the end of 2020.

Female squad

MiBR’s female roster. Image via MiBR

MiBR’s second, roster was quickly announced following the reveal of their other 2021 lineup. The team would consists of Bruna “Bizinha” Marvila, Jessica “flyzinhaa” Pellegrini, Julia “julih” Gomes, Ana “annaEX” Carolina, and Gabriela “Bokor” Bokor. Several of these players are familiar faces in Brazilian CS:GO. A few have played on pug teams, as well as being a part of FURIA’s female roster in the past.

MiBR states their female roster are set to compete in the WESG Latin America, as part of that event’s separate female CS:GO division. While players will have the opportunity to compete for their own prize pool in that event through January, it is unclear whether other female-only Brazilian events exist. It is speculated that they will compete against teams like XSET, who also signed an all-female CS:GO roster.

Regardless, it’s great to see a brand which is know for developing Brazilian talent acquire a female team. The MiBR brand has a bright future ahead of itself if it can prove it’s capable of applying its brand philosophy to multiple rosters.

Stay tuned to Dartfrog for all the latest news and analysis on CS:GO and follow us on our Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Twitch.  Images via MiBR.


PGL to host CS:GO Major set for October

The esports event organizer, PGL has announced it is set to host a CS:GO Major in October 2021. The event is going to be the biggest CS:GO event ever, with a $2,000,000 USD prize pool and an online 4k 60fps viewing experience. Fans around the world can expect the event to occur between the 23rd October to 7th November.

PGL is back with the next Major scheduled for October to November 2020

PGL is set to bring CS:GO back home for 2021, with the Major heading back to where it all began in Sweden. Fans can expect to head to Stockholm to watch live CS:GO, presuming it is safe to do so by the time of the event. This is the first time that a CS:GO Major heads to the Swedish capital, despite being the third Major set for the nation. If things go ahead, fans can descend onto the Ericsson Globe, a 16,000 capacity crowd.

With the announcement, PGL gets its first Major in over four years. PGL has hosted the Cluj-Napoca in 2015, and Kraków in 2017. Back then Team EnVyUs and Gambit claimed those Major titles respectively, creating some crazy moments in CS:GO history.

At those events, PGL innovated the streaming experience of CS:GO, the 2017 event had the first 1080p 60 fps stream for CS:GO. The 4K stream is just another example of how PGL wants to keep modernising the CS:GO experience. The recent wave of the online era of CS:GO has most events feeling the same, so any enhanced viewing experience is a sign organisers are working on improving the current era.

But the most exciting part about this Major is that there is going to be a new Major to look forward to. The last Major event to go ahead was the StarLadder Berlin Major through August and September 2019. ESL had the rights to the next Major, scheduled for Rio back in the Spring of 2020. However, the COVID-19 pandemic forced the event online, with its format changed to an RMR event. Unfortunately, ESL eventually outright cancelled the event, opting for the IEM Global Challenge as a mini Major through December 2020.

Stay tuned to Dartfrog for all the latest news and analysis on CS:GO and follow us on our Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Twitch.  Image via PGL.


Heroic topple Vitality at DreamHack Open Fall 2020

Heroic continue their rise to the top of European CS:GO as the Danish roster took down Vitality in a full best-of-five series to win DreamHack Open Fall 2020. This is the second time that Heroic has taken down Vitality in a Grand Final, as they did so at ESL One Cologne. With the victory, Heroic earn themselves $33,000 USD and a trip to the IEM Global Challenge in December. Let’s take a look at how they won DreamHack Open Fall 2020 and all the big storylines to come out of the event.

The Road to the Championship

Heroic had no right to win the tournament the way they started. The side started off the event poorly, leaving the group with a 1-2 scoreline, only beating out Endpoint to survive the Group Stage, with G2 and Astralis coming out ahead above them.

With that Group Stage result, they began their journey through the Lower Bracket playoffs where they would be forged through the flames of war.

The start of the journey began with eliminating North from the event in a 2-0 series. The first map was too close with Nuke heading to Heroic 22-20. The series closed on Vertigo with a 16-10 win. Heroic then moved on to face Sprout, which ended 2-1. The results of that series was 16-11 on Mirage, 10-16 on Train, and 16-12 on Nuke.

Although the Danes picked themselves up there and really began elevating their game. With the weaker teams eliminated, they were onto the big guns of BIG. Big and Heroic are no strangers to each other, with both teams rising up the World rankings in 2020. The series was a banger as expected, with the result going 2-1 to Heroic. Vertigo was won 16-5, with Big returning to stomp in a 16-8 Mirage win. The decider followed the stomping ground of a 16-5 victory for Heroic.

The following series was a sign of the improvement the team made as they took down NiP and then Astralis. Both series had close maps, losses and big wins. But these themes were not enough to stop Heroic. Both series went 2-1 to Heroic, which is a sign of that Heroic’s run has been one of continuous improvement with their backs against the wall. Not to mention that different player’s coming in clutch at the right time.

The Danish derby is one of the best narratives in CS:GO right now

The Finals

With the victory against Astralis in the final round of the Lower Bracket, they took on Vitality, who had a perfect run through the event. Despite a perfect run through DreamHack Open Fall 2020, Heroic managed to clinch the series 3-2. The thing about this series is that both teams put in the work to claim the trophy, however, fatigue seems to have got to Vitality since their game slipped at the very end.

Vitality started off the series with an overpass victory. Vitality earned the win after beating Heroic 19-17. The disappointing part of about this is that vitality was 14-7 at one point. But clutches from all members on the Heroic side was key to cementing overtime comebacks.

Niko with a great clutch to get them back in the game

Nuke too was an overtime battle, with both teams battling with intense plays and set pieces. The battle came to an end when Heroic won yet another 22-20 on Nuke, proving they can keep it cool on one of CS:GO’s hottest maps.

Things started cooling off come the third map, as Heroic managed to claim a win on Inferno 16-11. With the fatigue and clear map wins moving in, Vitality responded with a 16-10 Vertigo win of their own. However, it seemed like the fatigue had finally got to the teams. After an intense series, Vitality appeared to capitulate, as Heroic won the final map of Mirage 16-7 and took home the trophy.

Vitality has amazing moments of their own this series.

The Narratives

Through DreamHack Open Fall 2020, we have seen strong narratives play out. One of the biggest storylines is this is Vitality’s fourth Grand Final, yet they have failed to pick up a trophy. The roster is now heading into its six-man roster transition. Perhaps this is exactly what the roster needs to get a trophy. The French side has everything it needs to win, yet it isn’t picking the vital wins when it matters. Hopefully, the side gets their act together, otherwise, it will be awkward cliff note for one of the best teams in the world.

One the other hand, Astralis and Heroic are becoming the hottest rivalry in CS:GO. Both teams are trading series wins, and the results are pretty close with each team taking a series off each other every event. Both teams went 1-1 this event, which is a sign of how competitive both teams are. Also, Casper “cadiaN” Møller is achieving a 1.3 rating against teams in the top 5. It is a sign that the Danish scene is improving and Astralis has some serious competition ahead of itself as the Danish scene grows stronger.

Stay tuned to Dartfrog for all the latest news and analysis on CS:GO and follow us on our Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Twitch.  Image via Heroic.


100 Thieves make shock departure from competitive CS:GO

After a rough year of competing, 100 Thieves have decided to pull out of CS:GO due to the “ambiguity, vagueness and uncertainty” in the scene.

The organisation, founded by former CoD pro Matthew “Nadeshot” Haag, entered competitive CS:GO in 2017 but it was only a brief stay.

They then acquired the Renegades roster in 2019 as they burst back onto the scene. Since the COVID-19 pandemic hit, the roster saw a downturn in performance and results began to worsen.

100 Thieves’ roster remained outside the top 10 ranking since May 2020 and it never seemed to look up for the Aussies.

Rumours began to crop up regarding the organisation’s departure after star player Justin “jks” Savage was linked with a move to Complexity.

Nadeshot later confirmed the rumours in a social media post where he outlined all the reasons for their CS:GO exit.

In the heartfelt announcement, Nadeshot said: “What’s happening right now in CS:GO is that everything is transitioning over to Europe. We talked to our players about what solutions we could find because they’ve been competing their butts off.

“They’ve done the best job that they could to bring the results that we strive for. Unfortunately, we have fallen short quite a bit.”

Nadeshot emphasised the organisation’s efforts to keep all teams and players based in their Los Angeles headquarters. Due to the majority of CS:GO events moving to Europe, this placed a big obstacle in the way of their vision and goals.

He then added: “Even if we wanted to make roster changes, there were still hurdles in our way. Right now, with the qualifications and the points system for Majors, any roster movement that we would have made could have jeopardised our position or our opportunity to even compete at a Major. And that was a gigantic roadblock.”

The 100 Thieves organisation has made clear that they put their players first. With many CS:GO players moving to Europe, it was only right for the roster to be dropped to allow the players to further their own careers.

Nadeshot did touch on the possibility of a return to CS:GO in the future. However, at this moment in time it is not the right move financially and from a competitive standpoint.

What are your thoughts on this news?

Let us know!

Follow Dartfrog for all the latest news and analysis on CS:GO and follow our Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Twitch.


ESIC bans 37 CS:GO coaches after spectator bug investigation

After a thorough investigation into the use of a CS:GO spectator bug, 37 coaches have been given bans by ESIC ranging from under four months to three years.

The Esports Integrity Commission (ESIC) released their findings on September 28 which revealed the outcomes of the investigation.

There were 99,650 demos available to be examined however only 20% of these were investigated.

Despite this, ESIC details that these demos “likely comprise the most substantial cases of abuse.”

In the report, ESIC reveals that the bug had been flagged to admins in tournaments as far back as 2017. However, ESIC has chosen not to comment on these prior reports due to the fact that these were non-ESIC member tournaments.

With regards to further investigation, ESIC stated the following: “ESIC anticipates that it will only need to issue one further report at the end of October which will conclude the investigation into Spectator Bug abuse.”

Which coaches were banned and what does this mean?

Here is a full list of all 37 coaches who received bans, courtesy of HLTV:

Slaava “⁠Twista⁠” Räsänen (2 cases) – 15.75 months (12.50% concessions)

Peter “⁠casle⁠” Sørensen (2) – 10 months (0%)

Rodrigo “⁠dinamo⁠” Haro (2) – 10 months (0%)

Arno “⁠ArnoZ1K4⁠” Junior (1) – 10 months (0%)

Allan “⁠Rejin⁠” Petersen (7) – 19.8 months (45%)

Eliomar “glou” Hernandez (2) – 10 months (0%)

Arthur “⁠prd⁠” Resende (5) – 10 months (0%)

Alexey “⁠NooK⁠” Kozlovskiy (1) – 7.5 months (25%)

Henrique “⁠rikz⁠” Waku (1) – 10 months (0%)

Alessandro “⁠Apoka⁠” Marcucci (6) – 5.4 months (85%)

Aleksandr “⁠zoneR⁠” Bogatiryev (16) – 36 months (0%)

Germán “hellpa” Morath (2) – 10 months (0%)

Egor “fuRy^” Morin (1) – 7.5 months (25%)

Aset “⁠Solaar⁠” Sembiyev (2) – 10 months (0%)

Nicolai “⁠HUNDEN⁠” Petersen (2) – 8 months (20%)

Ricardo “⁠dead⁠” Sinigaglia (5) – 6.5 months (35%)

Nicholas “⁠guerri⁠” Nogueira (2) – 4 months (60%)

Faruk “⁠pita⁠” Pita (2) – 10 months (0%)

Erik “⁠AKIMOV⁠” Akimov (1) – 7.5 months (25%)

Ivan “⁠F_1N⁠” Kochugov (6) – 8.75 months (12.50%)

Bruno “⁠ellllll⁠” Ono (3) – 10 months (0%)

Pedro “⁠peu⁠” Lopes (2) – 5 months (0%)

Robert “⁠RobbaN⁠” Dahlström (1) – 5.5 months (45%)

Mariusz “⁠Loord⁠” Cybulski (2) – 6 months (40%)

Anton “⁠ToH1o⁠” Georgiev (2) – 10 months (0%)

Andrey “⁠Andi⁠” Prokhorov (1) – 10 months (0%)

Milan “⁠pepik⁠” Gellebra (1) – 10 months (0%)

Morgan “⁠B1GGY⁠” Madour (3) – 7.5 months (25%)

Christian “⁠chrille⁠” Lindberg (2) – 10 months (0%)

starix⁠ (1) – 10 months (0%)

Alexander “⁠ave⁠” Holdt (1) – 6 months (40%)

Jasmeet “⁠RoSeY⁠” Gill (1) – 10 months (0%)

Sergey “⁠lmbt⁠” Bezhanov (3) – 7.5 months (25%)

Henrik “⁠FeTiSh⁠” Christensen (1) – 3.75 months (25%)

Mikołaj “⁠miNirox⁠” Michałków (1) – 3.75 months (25%)

Nikolay “⁠pNshr⁠” Paunin (1) – 3.75 months (25%)

Casper “⁠ruggah⁠” Due (1) – 3.75 months (25%)

So what exactly does this mean for these coaches? ESIC detailed each sanction that will directly affect the coaches.

The coaches must not be physically present or communicate with the team 15 minutes prior to the official match start until the end of the match.

They must not be in the game server during the match or be on the official match channel.

Finally, they must not be a part of the official map veto process before each match.

Many players were disappointed with the severity of some of the bans. Complexity CS:GO player “blameF” was surprised that some were issued just “a few months ban for cheating.”

Do you think the bans were fair?

Let us know!

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CS:GO League of Legends

Origen rebrands as Astralis ahead of 2021

Storied EU LCS and LEC organisation Origen has revealed a dramatic name change as it rebrands as Astralis. The team, originally founded by legendary mid laner Enrique “xPeke” Cedeño Martínez, revealed the rebranding on Twitter on the morning of September 15.

With the change in name, the squad takes on the branding of its sister team within parent company RFRSH Entertainment. In 2019, Origen was acquired by RFRSH to become part of the Astralis Group. Astralis’ most notable contributions to esports have been in the form of its CS:GO roster.

As part of the announcement, it was also revealed that general manager Martin “Deficio” Lynge and founder xPeke would be stepping away from the organisation. Both veterans of the European League of Legends Scene, Deficio has since seen multiple roles from broadcaster to manager. Meanwhile, xPeke has primarily been known for his ownership of Origen. Both will now move on to new opportunities.

New Name, New Opportunities?

However, the name change isn’t all good. As Origen rebrands as Astralis, the team leaves behind a plethora of hashtags, nicknames, and memes which have energised their player base. But as some are quick to point out, Origen’s brand is one that has drastically fallen in stock during its six years of existence.

Astralis, on the other hand, is one of the biggest names in CS:GO. They’re also a rising star within the esports scene as a whole. Since their rise to prominence, the team has had its fair share of controversies and scandals. But overall remains a strong brand. The revitalised team will enter the next scene with a new identity and perhaps a chance for a fresh start. 

Keep your eyes peeled on Dart Frog on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook for all the latest League of Legends news and analysis


ESL Pro League Season 12 Week 2 Europe – Complexity undefeated

The second week of ESL Pro League 12 is over and Complexity is on top of the world. The masters of Group B gained another two series victories in ESL Pro League Europe Week 2. Furthermore, Group A sees ENCE and Na’Vi at the top, but three key victories from Heroic has seen them get into a strong position heading into Week 3 of the Groups.

Group A

In Group A, ENCE and Na’Vi remain in as the top two teams in the group, each with a 4-1 scoreline. ENCE lost their first match this week against last-place GODSENT, bringing them back in line with Natus Vincere. On the other hand, Na’Vi earned two victories in Week 2, one against AGO and the other against OG. Although, Na’Vi had to earn their victory against OG, as the series went to the third map and they only won the decider on Nuke 16-14.

The more interesting narrative in Group A comes from the middle of the pack. Heroic, BIG, G2 Esports, and OG are 3-2 or 2-3, showing how competitive the third week is likely to be. Heroic’s 3-0 score in Week two comes after they had a great three-game series against G2 Esports, a close three-game series against BIG, and another close series against GODSENT. Two of these three victories are clutch results for Heroic as they took down two teams they are in direct contest with. The best thing is this makes them third in the group standings as they hold the head-to-head against BIG. Out of the mid-table, the ESL One Cologne Champions, Heroic, seem the likeliest candidate for advancing into the quarter-finals.

Looking ahead to Week 3, G2 and OG have some difficult games as they both have to take on ENCE and Natus Vincere – the top two of the group. G2 and OG need to put on a stellar show because their chances at advancing into the top four of the groups are slimming based on current results in this group.

Plays like this are what got Heroic a juicy 3-0 score.

Group B

On the other side of the European event, Complexity is dominating their opponents in Group B. Complexity had yet another fantastic week, taking down the likes of Team Spirit and Fnatic. However, Complexity went from two 2-0 victories in Week 1 to two 2-1 victories in Week two. Complexity’s grasp may be slipping after their star performance against Astralis and NiP in the ESL Pro League Europe Week 2. In Week 3, Complexity has three series to play against teams like mousesports, Vitality, and FaZe. The likes of mousesports and Vitality may give Complexity a proper good go since both teams are performing in ESL Pro League Season 12.

Complexity had to put in the work to take the series victory against Fnatic.

Another important aspect of Group B is the ability for any team to miss the quarters. As it stands, mousesports and Fnatic are the two mid-table teams in position to escape Group B. Although, almost every team outside the top two are 2-2, with the exceptions of NiP’s 1-3 score and FaZe’s 0-4 score. Also, every team has to play three games in Week 3, so whoever escapes Group B is the better team.

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