Halo: World Championship Tour [UK]
18th January 2016
On Friday the 15th of January, exceL.Halo travelled down to the Gfinity Arena in Fulham, London with hopes of qualifying for the EMEA Regionals to be hosted next month by ESL. The team, consisting of (from left to right) Lunny, Godshot, Coach Prsma, Snakey and Havoc, went into the tournament with an expected placing of 4th and were widely regarded as being the dark horses to take the whole event.
Our first group match of the tournament saw us take on the team Reformed, with map 1 consisting of Strongholds on The Rig. We came out with a massive statement, winning the map 100-31, swiftly going 1-0 up in the best of 3 series. The dominance continued moving into Map 2 with a 50-22 victory on Slayer Coliseum, safely securing our first win. Saturday began with exceL taking on Exertus eSports for a spot in the QF’s. The boys dropped map 1 after a 5-3 loss on Breakout Altitude. However, the team remained composed and rediscovered thier momentum by coming out strong in map 2 with a 50-30 win on Slayer on The Rig, bringing the series score to a tied 1-1. Using the momentum from the previous map, exceL show they are a force to be reckoned with by dominating on Strongholds Eden with an incredible 100-9 score. The team also combined for an impressive 44-18 K/D last map. The 2-1 win over Exertus eSports meant exceL.Halo advanced out of groups to the QF’s on Sunday.
After drawing Riot Gaming as our first match on Sunday, the team went in to map 1 with a positive mindset after the previous day's victory. exceL took a 1-0 lead in the series after narrowly capturing the winning flag in the dying seconds of CTF Coliseum. Map 2 saw us take the series 2-0 with a 50-35 score on Slayer Plaza, with an impressive display from Liam 'Havoc' Peck, ending the game with a 2.00 K/D.
Next up, we took on Team Dignitas, a well known team in the Halo and wider eSports community. In addition to a spot in the tournament's Grand Final, this game carried extra pressure as the winner would qualify for the EMEA Regionals tournament, with the loser falling in to a final deciding play-off match. Unfortunately, Team Dignitas came out strong with a 100-23 victory over us on Strongholds Plaza. Map 2 began fairly even with a 14-14 scoreline after 2 minutes. However Dignitas proved to strong by pulling away and taking a 3-0 series win, after a final score of 50-33 and a 5-0 Breakout clean sweep.
exceL.Halo’s chance of qualifying was not over as they could still place 3rd by beating Team Infused. We went straight to Strongholds Eden for map 1, taking a very convincing 100-37 win over Infused which was perceived by many in the Arena as an upset. Map 2 saw us compete on Slayer Coliseum. Team Infused took an initial lead which grew as the map progressed, allowing them to win 50-39, therefore leaving the series tied up 1-1. Infused continued their impressive performance, taking a swift 5-2 win on map 3, Altitude Breakout and a 3-0 win on Empire CTF, despite plenty of pressue and slaying prowess shown by the exceL squad.
Overall, we finished 4th in the tournament. However this does not mean the chance to compete in the EMEA Regional qualifier for the Halo World Championships is over, with one more spot available to UK teams through an online qualifier being hosted by GfinityOnline this Sunday evening. Commiserations to the team on their 4th place finish and congratulations to Epsilon, Dignitas and Infused for qualifying.
You can watch our video recap of the event by clicking HERE.