Welcome to Breitbart Tech’s coverage of the SMITE World Championship semifinal round. The sharp tang of adrenaline permeated the atmosphere of the semifinals. Already, we’ve seen crowd and analyst favorites eliminated from competition, but these final five bouts would decide who remained to contest the ultimate prize.
Paradigm was by far the sweetheart pick in their battle versus the controversial crew from Enemy. Enemy has established themselves as the “underdogs who aren’t” here at the Cobb center, defying expectations in every single battle. Thus far, they had relied on the element of surprise: regardless of the preliminary character picks and bans, Enemy’s signature seems to wait for the first sign of weakness and then pounce. The tactic has served them well thus far, but in a series of multiple matches against the same opponent, Enemy would need to focus on core mechanical skills to hold their own.
And that’s precisely what they did. With only a single loss to Paradigm, SWC’s maverick’s ensured that the grand finals would have an element of wickedness. I couldn’t find a single person who had predicted they would make it to the semifinals, much less contend for half a million dollars… Except team captain PainDeViande himself. Their strut from the stage told the whole story.
The final bout was the sort of thing that has set e-sports afire around the world. Epsilon had already used the competition to assert their dominance, and Cloud9 has been the favorite to win since last year’s nearly uncontested vitory at the 2015 World Championships. To observers, it was obvious that Epsilon would serve as no more than a speed bump on Cloud9’s ride to the grand finale.
They were wrong.
Palpable tension aside, the matches themselves were never anything less than decisive. At one point the teams spent no less than twenty full minutes just taking one another’s measure, but when the fights began the match was decided almost before the casters could catch up in their description of the action. It was the only match to make it a full five rounds, with Epsilon claiming their place in the finals in the closing moments of the very last round.
And here we are. Epsilon and Enemy, two of the least publicized teams with the lowest public expectation, fighting over a cool half million dollars in a grand final that is nearly impossible to call. No one expected that Cloud9 would miss its chance to continue their international dominance. But drama has been the hallmark of Hi-Rez’s second hosted championship, and both Enemy and Epsilon have guaranteed that the end will be every bit as dramatic as the beginning.
Editor’s note: Hi-Rez Studios paid for travel and lodging accommodations in attending the SMITE World Championship 2016.
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