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Week 4 Predictions!
Hello there. The preds are even later than last week, sorry about that. In other news I've got 2 exams tomorrow, so I'm a little busy right now. The preds are written in a little hasty way, so feel free to point out any mess ups and I'll ninjaedit them away :).
Take Over vs Professors
take over started off lazy against Newstyled last week, their game was oddly unorganized and only driven by the top 3 players s4druid Fana franky. While I originally thought that the new members this season would bring some "leading" to the game, it did not happen and cause of that they lost to a SG rush even though they caught it early. Also the marine play on veil was a bit sluggish and felt a bit slow start for a team of this caliber but never were they at disadvantage. Also one thing to note is that king_yo has managed to find a good balance between Almaty's suicide lerking and passive vent spore bitch and his lerking is really strengthening take over's alien play. Huhuh was also playing disoriently and few mistakes he did, made the game look much more even than it really was however like I said no real harm done.
Professors started this season well and this game will probably decide whether if they will be fighting at div1 or div2. So far no obsticules but they have yet to face anyone of decent skill and even small mistakes are going to be severe. They have 2 capable fades Aleksi and NecRos but against take over I doubt they will be effective. Professors best chance is to gain consirable lead at the very begining utilizing either fast mcs, DCs or fast 2 lerks.
take over's happy-go-lucky attitude may cost them points but they are clearly the dominator here without big mistakes its hard for them to lose rounds.
4-0 for take over.
NewStyleD Return vs New Team
NewStyleD won a point from the take over but it was by all means not well executed. Alien play was very disorganized on veil (TTS Class) and it was hard to tell difference from public / pcw, we did not see much of a marine play against take over but its safe to say that it wasnt working properly either. Yet they have managed to win (PNH) mostly due Multivac's skillful play with the rest of the members doing so-so. New team being slightly better than their first opponent no mistakes can be made especially on marine rounds as this match is important if NewStyleD plans on challenging div1.
New Team has pretty much secured the second spot to div2 and has very little to prove but the small chance they have to gain rounds could boost their moral for div2 semi-finals. New team should concentrade on alien play as it will be their best chance to gain rounds although chances are small one exceptional lerk / fade could really make the difference.
NewStyled needs this 4-0 and will be striving for it more than New team. Shotgun rush aint gonna be enough this time and New team will try their best to gain aliens rounds. NewStyleD wants this more thus 4-0 but 3-1 is more likely.
4-0 for NewStyleD
RAMBOS vs 2RAM
RAMBOS have done their job in this group and all what is left now is to bully the weak teams into submission. Their first prey seems to be 2RAM and this will end swift n clean. Almatys lerking is too much for 2RAMS marines to handle thus making alien rounds only thing RAMBOS have to "worry" about. Despite the harsh comments too much **** in the head could prove fatal.
2RAM once again should improve their alien coordination earlier games proofed that they are indeed capable and high ping games are so much fun bringing something unexpected. 2RAM did really deserve their alien round on orbital against SD as they picked off marines with silence well and this caused disorganization on marine play and the flow was on their side to the end of the game. Baserushes, DCS, mass rts even SCs are enough to confuse sonder but the situation requires quick decisions like whether to defend or attack/baserush in order to win rounds.
I'm not too confident on 2RAMS chances therefore 4-0 to RAMBOS
4-0 to RAMBOS
2BALLS vs Russian Standard
2BALLS are now much like in the same situation as RAMBOS atm they have to gain rounds from the weaker teams in order to decide whether they will enter div1 as first or the second. They are behind 1 point due losing one round to the SD's but SD - RAMBOS yet to be played everything is still open. Their lineup surely consists more potential than it has shown us so far mostly depending on Tane's dugi's activity but the rest are surely to contribute in their own way.
Russian Standard certainly showed that they can hold alien rounds but against 2BALLS it just might not be enough. Again something out of the box could work or maybe not but since chances to marine wins are even slimmer I would recommend concentrading on aliens.
Theres a small off chance that Russian Standard gains the advantage in the early game making a game even but since skill, experience and even maps are against this I highly doubt it.
4-0 to 2BALLS
Take Over - Professors
This one is interesting due to Take Over dropping one round to NewstyleD last week. As a result, Professors need to either scratch themselves at least a round from tO or beat NewstyleD next week to secure their spot in the final four. This week is the scratching attempt.
The Professors definitely want a round, but I doubt their standard play is good enough to guarantee it. That leaves them with some possibilities of cheesy play to make sure they are not going against NewstyleD in point disadvantage. The maps being Orbital and Tanith, I could see a lot of stuff going on if they want to cheese. Orbital isn't yet completely figured out as a map, so I anything off the wall has got some chances of working, as long as you don't SG rush the wrong hive or something equally disastrous. Tanith isn't that bad for surprises either. It has got history of both SCs and DCs for the alien team and the 5 nodes of fus/sat hive areas make it difficult to play against a 2-hive alien team.
Even if it's standard play, it should be good. Take Over definitely has the advantage there, but they are in no way invulnerable there either. Last week newstyled had a clear early game lead on Orbital marines and only the excellent and mid-late game saved Take Over from being forced into a 2-2 tie. This is the one match you should watch this week.
My prediction is 3-1 for Take Over, so that we can have the nailbiter for the second qualifier next week.
NewstyleD Return - New Team
Despite the 3-1 win over PNH, I felt a little disappointed on New Team's performance. They were extremely close to slip it into 2-2 on orbital aliens after they got sieged down to 1 hive from a comfortable looking 2 hives vs 1/1 upgrade marines. Then again on orbital marines they seemed to come back to the game only to waste their opportunity and slip the last round away. Only half an hour earlier their play on Veil looked far more controlled and relaxed, giving them an easy 2-0 there. Veil was more what I'd expect to see from an experienced team they are. Without that kind of calm and organised game they'll fall short on individual skill and we'll see play that took place in Orbital.
Newstyled Return definitely want a 4-0 from this match to get optimal position for their last week's match against Professors. The last week match against Take Over was a controversial one. Newstyled played some excellent alien early game on Orbital and were in excellent position to take the round there, only to slowly lose their grip of that round over the next 15 minutes of excellent play by tO. The Newstyled marine rounds on the other hand left a lot of questions floating in the air. They scored their round by surprising tO with a SG rush and lost their Orbital marines by doing a similar rush to a wrong hive location. I doubt they'll surprise anyone with a 3rd consecutive rush, so they had better find some alternative strategies for the remaining matches.
If Newteam manages to get their A-game back, they are definitely able to contest Newstyled. If not, Newstyled gets the 4-0 they want. I guess I'll stick to my grand plan for the nail biter last week match and call this a 4-0 for Newstyled.
Russian Standard - 2Balls
Last week 2Balls shugged off rust from their marine game and pulled off 2 aggressive rounds, with a win in Orbital. Their marine game didn't look all that flawless, but wrestling a marine win against Rambos is definitely a convincing result. On aliens they looked good on Veil, but the Orbital round early game lacked teamwork and scouting, giving Rambos more than enough advantage to seal the 2-2 tie. All in all, the ballers were dominant on one moment only to fall apart a little later.
The Russian Standard had their week off on last weekend. They still lack the impact players to lift them above the lower half of the div, not much else to say until I'll get to see some fresh matches from them.
2Balls should be able to take this one with a clear margin. However, the inconsistent nature of 2Balls might leave an opening for any aware team to abuse.
Even with the inconsistency, The Balls should have this 4-0.
RAMBOS - 2ram
Rambos managed a 2-2 tie with their top contender, 2 Balls. I expected a bit more, especially from the Rambo marine round on Veil, but you have to give credit for 2 Balls for stepping up their game also. Not much now on the Rambo game in any way. Almaty's lerk still sometimes destroys and sometimes gets destroyed in most unexpected circumstances. The biggest change was that Sonder's med rain wasn't as heavy as it was against the easier teams.
2ram plays just like they've been playing the whole season. Their marine rounds seem to be off-balance and lack the economy and map control almost completely. The alien game relies on keeping the enemy busy with constant alien recapping. If you've seen them play, you know what to expect.
I've been expecting 2ram to fix the flaws in their game and become a formiddable contender for qualifying, but so far nothing has signaled a different gameplay plan. Thus, I'll have to give the 4-0 to Rambos.