Month: February 2017

Exclusive: Captains PoV video

The Charlatans team Captain Jose Zampano let us share this internal recording of the very entertaining Major League match Charlatans Vs. Clevergirls.  A close fought match and The Charlatans managed an awesome feat of giant slaying and stopped the Clevergirls 6 game winning streak.

Watch as he burns out his grapple and nearly costs them the match. You can watch the “Spectator” version of the match here:

 

 

60 seconds with – Exodunks

Currently sitting second in the Championship Spring 2017 Minor League, Exodunks only have 3 more games to play this season. We sat down with Team Captain, Deyze and line member Wasa Qc for a few quick fire questions:

As a new team to the EVE_NT Championship, how do you feel about the format used, compared to Alliance Tournament?

This tournament is heavily favored on 1 side. Your match is dictated by the ref who flips a coin in the background. This tournament could have been better if it was run by anyone from the USTZ. The tournament should already be over and the prizes given to us

Exodunks have some pretty impressive results, including one domination victory in the EVE_NT Cup and now in the Minor league. Will you be aiming for more dominations in your final 3 matches?

The fact that we are the only team to win on red side shows our dominance in the meta. I find it odd that we keep getting red side every time though and have talked to the tournament organizers multiple times about it. We also have horrible ping AND we have to wake up early in the morning. Park that server in Chicago and we win every tournament in this game. The tick system has no place in actual EVE #Esports.

The minor league has some strong teams this season, some you have already played in the EVE_NT Cup. Would you say any stand out as a clear rival to your team?

The only opponent we have is ourselves. Internal practices are by far the hardest matches we will ever have in our illustrious time as a team. Since we have no rival to push us, we Deyze and Wasa Qc, are announcing this today. “The Alliance known as Exodus will put forward multiple teams next season to provide us with some semblance of a challenge.”

On that note, just how high are your expectations of success? Where do you see your team finishing in the league table?

Is there higher than first? We expect to win so hard we will be crowned winners of the major leagues as well. As we speak every major league team is trying to contact us to figure out what they should run this weekend.

You have so far used about 75% of your teams roster. Will every single player get to play, or do you pick the best pilots for the job at the time?

Whoever wakes up at 5 am in the morning for this god forsaken EUTZ tournament gets to fly. Here in America, the greatest country in the world, we value our time on Sundays. People who show up for the matches are risking damming their soul to hell for all eternity for missing church. Also unless you are a Sudden Death member, you are not flying.

You are a well respected and accomplished Alliance Tournament team and doubtless will take another shot at top 4, if you were CCP, what one thing would change about the tournament compared to last year?

CCP Rise(formally known as Kil2) would run the entire thing. When commentating he will wear a top with a plunging neckline and will not be allowed to shave at least 6 days in advance. The studio will be keep at a moderate 102° to make him sweat. High-Grade Snakes will be allowed only to pilots who fit 5 speed mods to their ship. Exodus will then be allowed to have offgrid links the entire tournament.

Anyone you would like to give a shout-out to for any reason?

Kil2, #blamewasa, Potter’s Mom, Jalep’s Mom, our Afterlife spies and everyone in Black Rise and Placid for being the best PvPers this euro trash game has to offer.

 

 

Exodunks out!

60 Seconds with – The Charlatans

Former Minor League team, The Charlatans earned promotion to this season’s Major league. They are an ever improving team currently on a 4 game winning streak, and next weeks games are against the best in the Major league. Team Captain Jose Zampano took some time out from his busy schedule to answer some quick fire questions for us.

Let’s start with that 4 game streak. I already understand you guys practice a LOT! That is quite impressive. How have you been preparing your team for matches?

Hello! For this season, we tried to get as many new people into our roster as possible, which also meant that we needed to practice a lot. Started doing internal practices once a week after the Christmas Holidays, and switched to more serious practices twice a week after we submitted the official team roster. Mix of internal and external practices with other Major and Minor league teams, with most practices lasting around 3-4h.

The stats show your team varies its roster often. Do you think that this will be beneficial in the overall outcome of the league?

Not only do I think it will be beneficial in the league, but we also use the Championship as pilot preparation for the Alliance Tournament later this year, trying to get as many people as possible motivated for eveSports. But apart from that, I like to give everybody in my team roster the chance to fly in a match – the most important thing for me is that all of us have fun flying in the Championship. That way, we are always motivated for both practices and the matches. And it is this motivation and fun we have at flying which helps us prepare for and win the matches.

Your team are currently sitting 3rd in the Major league, next week your 2 matches are against both teams above you. Can you really become giant slayers and stop the Clevergirls rampaging win streak?

Of course we can! Both matches will be hard to win, but I think we can do it. We’ll sure as hell try our best.

IGC Prize SKIN on Raven

(The following question might, or might not be included to justify more SKINS pictures) CCP have shown some of the new IGC SKIN prizes and other hulls that will be on offer for this seasons EVE_NT Championship. How many are you guys after?

As many as we can get! The new skins look really amazing again and it always feels good to see the effort you put into the tournament being rewarded with such great prizes.

As a prize winner in last season’s EVE_NT Championship Minor leagues, how were the prizes distributed amongst the team? Do you have a spreadsheet to calculate shares?

It was easy to calculate last time: We won 20 Skins and had 10 active players on the roster. This time, we will win more skins, and have more active people playing. But we’ll split the skins equally again, each pilot receiving the same amount. As I said above, the main motivations behind our participation aren’t the prizes, it’s the fun that we have playing in those skirmishes! The skins are a really nice bonus on top of that.

What do you consider your favorite ship so far in the Championship?

That one is hard to answer. Personally, I love flying the Armageddon, I just wish it had more neuts fitted. From a strategic point of view, the Ferox is a lovely ship to have in your team. And from an FC perspective, there is nothing as satisfying as having a great Slasher pilot lock down the enemy Hyperion or Rokh, taking it out of the battle completely.

Is there anyone you would like to give a shout out for anything?

Yeah, I want to give a quick shout-out to my team and alliance members, you are all awesome! Big thank you especially to those who are helping with practices but aren’t actually on the official roster! Additionally, I want to thank Team Pretty (and the PFR AT Team) for all the help with practices and stuff, it has been a blast working and fighting with you! Sorry for beating you last Sunday, but you had that one coming after kicking us out of the AT!

Stats Blog Major League Week One – Aleksi Aksan

Aleksi Aksan – one of the newer EVE_NT Commentators, hits the keyboard to take a little look at the developing season two meta.

__________________

We start this week with a short quiz. The following unannotated graph represents what:

  1. The Minor League Red vs Blue record
  2. The Major League Red vs Blue record
  3. The overall Championship Red vs Blue record
  4. Fuel for fears of imbalance in the draft
  5. All of the above


Answers on a jetcan.(1)

Getting down to the meat of this week’s statistics we do see Red vs Blue go the way of nuclear half life and by some bizarre and ill-understood method give us consistent results. At 5-Blue, 2-Red we are seeing continued strength on that side of the draft, however we have seen a meta turned on its head between the first weeks of the Minor and Major Leagues. The overall meta is beginning to take a clearer shape with two weeks worth of matches behind it, though we are likely to see shake-ups still.


So we are seeing that teams most often pick armour, least often pick no logi (bolstered here even by the inclusion of Sudden Otters’ victory with a mere Burst to support them), but win most with shields. The body of this differentiation however has come with our first week of the Majors. Where last week in the Minors showed little to divide the meta types the top tier teams of the Major League have cut a clear divide between the styles. Armour remains most popular, and No Logi gets firmly relegated to third place. However the biggest shift comes from Shield, 2-2 in the Minors it’s been taken to 5-1 in the Majors by teams like Clevergirls and The Other Team, both claiming 2-0s for the week with shield teams over armour compositions.

Another key shift is the near exclusion of No Logi comps, the only one being taken unsuccessfully by Provi-Shotz after a Logi targeted draft by Team Johnny. Bar this every match of the week was a shield vs armour match, the better of which shield easily claimed. The only victory armour scraped back being in The Charlatans vs Phalanx.

So we’re seeing more of a priority placed on logistics. All four logistics ships falling into the top 10 most contested picks in drafting so far, with the Exequror being one of only two ships to achieve 100% pick/ban rate. Proving itself the prefered armour logistics pick across both leagues while only averaging a 50% win rate, certainly nothing to fault it for and far stronger than the 25% of its Amarrian cousin.

On the shield side of things however the logistics are feeling worlds apart. With similar pick/ban numbers, 10 matches for the Osprey to 9 for the Scythe, they’ve had radically different effects on the matches. The Osprey holds a 100% win rate across its 6 picks so far in the season, crushing the 1 win in 4 games of the scythe. Survivablity stats start to speak to the reason why.

The Scythe has not yet survived a match. Though a naturally fast ship, the speed granted by the MWD has rarely given it the tools needed to protect its buffer tank and outlast. The sig bloom of the MWD combined with a shield extender make it a good target compared to the other AB capable logistics and without recovery mechanics this damage often stacks up until it falls. As evidenced in The Charlatans vs Team Pretty where even without their support ships or ever achieving tackle Team Pretty were able to chew through the Scythe’s buffer in the final moments to score 3 more points despite losing the match.

The Osprey on the other hand is AB and XLASB fit, keeping minimal sig radius. However this no buffer fit leaves it exposed, as we saw in the NT cup, to being volleyed through if it can be pinned down. Surviving 50% of its matches and falling very often to the charge based nature of that XLASB the Osprey shows that unless countered hard it can do exactly what a logi is meant to do in this format and buy its team time. In the Major Leagues no Osprey has so far allowed any of its fleet to die while it remains on the field.

Moving on to look at why this has been such a drastic shake up and what we can expect because of it. Shield picks and strong shield teams from the blue side of the draft have been absent from the Minor League with only Offline taking blue shields in a well drafted match against Exodunks. A win however.

Fast forward to the Major Leagues and it is almost every game, achieving an 80% win record in the process. Part of what has allowed this is how open shield has been to pick into from the blue side, with the key logistics ship of the Osprey never being banned by the red side. What we’ve seen instead is a huge focus on banning armour battleships from the red side of the draft. With 5 matches seeing a full triple armour battleship ban from the red side including twice into shield comps. Though less extreme in the Major League, with closer to 60% than 80% of bans falling on armour, this still leaves blue side able to draft close to what they want with valuable 1st picks on the logistics and the battlecruisers slot.

And so comes the question, “what do they want to pick?” Well the answer, the dream team, is something like this. Merlin, Thrasher, Osprey, Ferox and Rohk, not just theoretical it can been seen in action in The Other Team vs Team Johnny. All ships battle proven and consistently performing with win rates over at least 5 matches. The core however is the Osprey and Ferox. With these ships lending each other survivability and the new weapons on the Ferox letting it provide a large sphere of influence with which to protect its logistics.

However like any good recipe this one can work with many alterations outside its vital core. Slashers are often brought in, with the AB based frigate a potent tackler in the right situation. The destroyer slot is also open, with the ever popular Talwar offering a pure damage option and the relatively unproven Corax being brought out to great effect by Liquid Ninja of Clevergirls, winning and surviving both of its matches.

At the top end the unstoppable[citation needed] Rokh provides a tanky damage powerhouse being edged out most often in favour of the more versatile Tempest that brings far more to the table in terms of speed, damage and utility, at the cost of significantly reduced tank.

Though looking strong so far the Major League teams have 2 weeks between clashes and you can be sure their scrims and theory crafting sessions put due time on breaking down such a composition fielded against them. With the second week of the Minor Leagues this weekend however we will have to see if this style of composition makes it down and if creative answers are to be found.

Returning to the competitive statistics we look at the top end of contested picks where, though we find most of the “dream team,” we rarely see them banned. Instead we see the big three armour battleships and the armour logi topping the table. The Ferox coming in a joint 4th draws far less bans than anything else in the top 10.

The biggest ban targets remain the Apocalypse and Abaddon. Both exceptional laser gun boats with solid tank their role in the pre-season qualifying cup was a strong one. However, with tweaks to the Abaddon since the cup and the Apocalypse showing only reasonable performances when allowed through, these may no longer be the powerhouse fire platforms they were, only time and more play can truly tell.

Unsurprisingly perhaps the armour logistics are hotly contested, with it being the core for the most popular compositions they will be contested until these fall out of favour. The Prophecy and also Algos make it up there, the armour drone boats being a strong element of the armour meta we saw develop through the Cup and into the Minor League.

Further down the list we begin to see the shield ships creep in, the Ferox as said drawing few bans for its efficacy and surprisingly the Scythe drawing more bans than the Osprey despite its poorer form. All in all there are no surprises at the top, but with a shield meta beginning to come out on top we may see more ban priority moving towards the key shield ships of the Osprey and Ferox.

The question remains however of the efficacy of these drafting strategies, with the most effective ships at the moment rarely being the most contested we should be seeing a shift in priority in the next few weeks towards those that are.

This final and incredibly data rich graphic points to that very fact. With win rates being strongest somewhat away from that top end of pick priority. This can however be distorted by contextually strong picks, teams letting strong picks through only to counter them and large meta shifts such as we’ve seen this week. What we are likely to see is a shift of pick/ban priority towards these strong picks. This will either end up focusing there or allow through enough of the ships that are currently being locked away to show their strength and allow a more diverse balanced meta.

Whatever comes to pass it’s clear shield is no longer going to be playing second fiddle to armour, logistics is here to stay, ECM hasn’t yet worked in the Major Leagues and anddor Hita has competition for greatest boundary violation by range.

(1) 5. All of the above.

60 Seconds with – Nasty Boyz

The logoless winners of the recent EVE_NT Cup, using only a third of their entire roster, are a new team on the Championship circuit. We sat down with Nasty Boyz Team Captain Elden Rin for some quick fire questions.

Was winning the EVE_NT Cup something that you expected, was there much practice involved?

The deadline for the Cup snuck up on us, so we formed our team at the very last minute. As a result, we managed only about a week’s worth of practices before the tournament began. From the outset, I thought that we had a chance to win the Cup, but I didn’t expect it. We knew a lot of good teams had entered the tournament. Moreover, the single-elimination format is very unforgiving. So, even a good team can get derailed by one mistake. With such a small margin for error, you have to temper your expectations. The only expectation I had was that we would place well enough to earn a bid to the EVE_NT Minor League.

You won the EVE_NT Cup without a logo, is there a story behind your new Championship logo?

It is a bit of an inside joke. We have always thought that a monkey or ape would make a good mascot for a team named “Nasty Boyz”. So, our designer, Laz Orti, created a hilarious logo with a big, nasty gorilla in it. During our third match in the Cup, we were the benefactors of a hurricane boundary by Unintended Consequences (apt name, eh?), which ultimately allowed us to win the match. It was as if our spirit animal was looking out for us. After we won the Cup, it seemed appropriate to immortalize the most ridiculous moment of our tournament run. So, Laz altered the logo to have the Nasty Boyz gorilla swatting at a hurricane. That seemed like something a nasty gorilla would do.

What are your ambitions for Nasty Boyz in the Spring 2017 Minor league, can you emulate your cup victory?

We are obviously aiming for a first-place finish and a promotion to the Majors. But achieving those goals is another matter. There are some great teams in the Minors this season; the competition is fierce. We have a lot of work in front of us.

You have played in every match for your team – will this always be the case or are there others on the Nasty Boyz roster who can step up?

We are going to field the best team that we can every match. We are fortunate to have a roster full of players who have a team-first attitude. Everyone works really hard in practice and are able to step up at any moment if need be.

On that note, just how difficult or important do you find the pick/ban phase?

The pick/ban phase is critical. Whole matches can be effectively decided on how the picks/bans go. Consequently, we have spent a lot of time working on our pick/ban strategies.

The prizes for the Spring 2017 Championships have just been announced – how many would you be happy taking away?

As many skins as we can get! My fingers are crossed that CCP will give us raven skins.

Do you watch the other teams match replays in preparation for upcoming matches?

Yes, it is a necessity. As I mentioned earlier, there are many quality teams in the League this year. There is a lot to be learned from how they pick/ban and how they pilot in their matches.

How do you find the use of the community Thunderdome server, as an EVESports platform?

I think it is fantastic. It is a great environment that allows you to focus on what’s most important (e.g., piloting and testing comps) rather than annoying things (e.g., skill points and opsec). Gone are the days on SISI when team captains wept silently at their keyboards because someone could not fly a particular ship or use a particular module or Elise Randolph scanned your ship on a station undock.