Heroes of the Dorm

Heroes of the Dorm: Epic 8 Recap

Day 4 of Heroes of the Dorm started off a little later in the day than the last few series. There were only four matches to be played while the field continued to narrow. Here’s what happened:

The first game for the day took place on Dragon Shire, as would all of the matches for the best of eight rounds. UCONN saw a double warrior comp with Leoric and Johanna while Kharazim healed and damage was provided by Falstad and Thrall. Cal Berkley responded with a double mage combination, snagging Li Ming and Jaina; they also picked up Muradin, Uther, and Zagara.

UC Berkley showed extremely aggressive game play in the early game, though the mobility of the UCONN team prevented any errant deaths.  Indeed, UC Berkley’s Zagara was successfully pincered by Thrall and Falstad for first blood after her attempts at being a lane bully pushed her just a little too far forward. Then she died again doing the same thing. Then a third time.

These kills allowed the first Dragon Knight to be picked up by UCONN once both teams gained level ten, though the damage it managed to inflict was minimal.

In the midgame, UC Berkley began to fight back, successfully catching several members of the enemy team out of position and preventing a second Dragon Knight. The dual mage comp became increasingly potent, and they were able to close the experience gap that UCONN made for themselves in the early game.  The UC Berkley Zagara had the opportunity to prevent UCONN from capturing a Dragon Knight, but her earlier deaths and the mobility of UCONN’s Falstad made her reluctant to take such a risk.

By the late game, UCONN continued to put pressure on Zagara and they gained their level 20 talents 2 levels ahead of UC Berkley. They capitalized on this talent advantage by getting several other kills on the out of position UC Berkley members and by capturing the final Dragon Knight which they used to end the game.

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Game two on Infernal Shrines had a nearly identical draft in from UC Berkley with Li Ming, Muradin, Zagara, Uther, and a single adjustment with Sonya instead of Jaina. UCONN also looked similar with Thrall, Falstad, and Johanna, but also picked up Zeratul and Lt. Morales.

The stronger front line from UC Berkley allowed them to stand against their opponent and they secured early kills on UCONN’s Lt. Morales and Zeratul during the first shrine fight which allowed them to secure the first Punisher. Despite this, UCONN was able to maintain a significant experience lead and get their heroics almost a whole level ahead of UC Berkley.

UC Berkley was able to get their own heroic talents before the shrine was over, but the execution of their abilities in the ensuing team fight was unfocused and lacked coordination. This allowed UCONN to keep their lead and secure the second Punisher.

In the mid game, Berkley seemed to hit their stride at the third shrine fight as they won the team fight with two kills to one. UCONN’s lead on the shrine meant that the Falstad poke easily let them finish the event, however, and the third Punisher push kept them in the lead.

As the match shifted to late game, Berkley successfully caught several members of UCONN out of position and were able to get the fourth Punisher while closing some of the structural and experience gap that UCONN had on them. As the fifth shrine started, UCONN and Berkley both hit level 20 and a furious team fight ensued. Berkley lost their Sonya and had to forfeit the Punisher. Pushing with the Punisher, UCONN successfully destroyed the middle keep.

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With such a staggering structural deficit, Berkley sought and found a successful engagement against UCONN just before the sixth shrine activated. Berkley got the final Punisher, but their core was extremely exposed, which allowed the UCONN team to load into the Medic’s Medevac to launch an assault on the Berkeley core before they could react. UCONN advanced to the final four 2-0.

First round on Dragon Shire saw Washington pick up Muradin, Raynor, Tassadar, Kharazim, and Xul while Tennessee went for a heavy damage comp with Thrall, Lunara, Rehgar, ETC, and Falstad. In the early game excellent rotations by Tennessee allowed them to catch the Washington players out of position several times which let them get the first DK and a quick level ten. In to the mid game, Tennessee continued to dictate the pace of the fight using sunder to pick up kills and gust to disengage whenever they did not want to give Washington the opportunity to have a fair fight. This let Tennessee pick up another Dragon Knight and maintain their talent tier advantage. They continued to play safely, taking two additional kills in a team fight while liberally using Mighty Gust to prevent Washington from being able to engage under even somewhat favorable circumstances. In the end, it was not so much that Tennessee beat Washington as they permitted Washington to lose.

Round two on Infernal Shrines saw Washington take Lt Morales, Raynor, Stitches, Xul, and Thrall against Tennessee’s Valla, Tassadar, Johanna, Muradin, and Rehgar. The professional player Roflcopter took Muradin, who normally plays assassins. Washington failed to properly protect their Medic on the first shrine and lost both the objective and the team fight. Roflcopter on Muradin kept flanking the exposed Washington team before punching their medic to death.

An over extension by Muradin in the mid game allowed Washington to win a team fight in order to regain momentum. Good Sunders and Posion Novas from Washington dealt significant damage to the Tennessee line for the remainder of the match, allowed Washington to ride to victory.

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Round three on Battlefield of Eternity saw Washington pick up Zagara, Thrall, Lunara, Kharazim, and Johanna against Tennessee’s Falstad, Muradin, Rehgar, Xul, and Valla. While they were unable to prevent Roflcopter from taking Falstad, Washington did take Lunara away from Frumgar while managing to secure their Zagara which was their own comfort pick. The wisp from Lunara and the creep tumors from Zagara gave Washington a strong vision advantage on a map where knowledge of your opponent’s movements can mean the difference between victory and defeat.

Tennessee used the mobility of their Falstad to force Washington to turtle around their Immortal which let Tennessee to slowly whittle away their Immortal’s life. On the second immortal phase, Washington went back for a full heal and to grab a mercenary camp before focusing objective. By the time they’d completed this though, their immortal was already under half health. This meant Tennessee could secure the next Immortal. On the third immortal, Tennessee won a team fight and secured a full-shielded Immortal. By the time that Immortal’s rampage ended, two members of Washington were dead, the bottom keep was in ruins, and Tennessee had a significant talent tier advantage.

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Roflcopter’s Falstad play continued to dictate the pace of the fight by taking incredibly risky gusts that disrupted Washington’s gameplay and led to easy kills at key times in the match. One final team fight allowed Tennessee to take out a couple members of the Washington team and advance to the Final Four.

A bit of advice for whoever goes up against Tennessee in the next rounds: do not let Roflcopter get Falstad.

Game one on Dragon Shire saw UTA pick up Zagara, Falstad, Muradin, Lt. Morales, and Leoric against BC’s Thrall, Li Ming, Rehgar, Lunara, and Johanna. The strong amount of control from UT Arlington is matched by the staggering damage and engage potential from BC’s Sunder/Blessed Shield combination.

This damage forced the UTA Medic to burn through their mana quickly, which meant that the team had to return to the Alter of Storms at a key moment, allowing to BC to capture the first Dragon Knight. Very little was accomplished with the DK, however, as UTA was able to react to such an early Dragon Knight appropriately.

UT Arlington began strongly rotating in the mid game to pick up a couple kills, but Boston College was able to turn bad situations into even trades demonstrating just how evenly matched these two teams were. Ultimately though, good zoning by the Boston College Thrall allowed BC to pick up the second DK, but once again UT Arlington managed to counter the DK with only the loss of a fort. A good follow up by Boston College in the team fight did allow them to gain an experience lead, which let them get to 20 first and led to the third DK going into the hands of BC.

Once again, while the DK was countered with minimal losses by UT Arlington, the follow up team fight allowed a sunder from BC’s Thrall to split UTA away from their healer and straight into Li Ming’s Disintegrate. Two deaths on the side of UTA allowed Boston College to end the game.

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Game two on Sky Temple saw both teams draft a double support comp, with UT Arlington taking Rehgar, Tassadar, Johanna, Falstad, and Thrall while Boston College went with Muradin, Zagara, Tyrande, Zeratul, and Brightwing.

In the early game, both sides played optimally with no major mistakes from either team, though the first major team fight on the second temple allowed Boston College to pick up two kills and secure the shrine. A surprise blood lust pick from UTA’s Rehgar synergized well with Tassadar’s Archon that caught several members of BC out of position.

This Blood Lust synergy continued to be useful on the tail end of engagements initiated by Thrall’s Sunder and allowed UT Arlington to continue to win a series of important team fights through the mid game. This forced Boston College to use their Devouring Maws and Void Prisons in a defensive and reactive manner; this itself was a victory. This momentum carried UT Arlington into level 20 ahead of Boston College where they double downed on both Archon and Blood Lust upgrades. Before long, Boston College was facing a boss push in the bottom lane and a potential double shrine before deciding to go for a team fight. UT Arlington answered and held their attention long enough for the boss to destroy the core giving the victory to UT Arlington.

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Game three on Infernal Shrines saw UT Arlington bet their run in the tournament (and what’s left of my bracket) on Cho’gall backing him up with Rehgar, Muradin, and Zagara. This forced a late Kharazim pick from Boston College for Seven Sided Strike with help from ETC, Tassadar, Valla, and Li Ming.

UT Arlington picked up the first Punisher in the match despite losing two team members during the shrine fight. Boston College was unable to put significant damage on to Cho’gall who was the driving force of damage on the objective. The second Punisher also went to UTA, since Cho’gall and Muradin were able to effectively control the shrine and zone out Boston College.

UTA’s Cho’gall continued to have remarkable control during the third shrine fight, saving defensive cooldowns for when they absolutely needed them, which gave UTA the third and fourth Punisher. By the late game it became obvious that Boston College was simply unable to land the damage needed to secure kills. UTA began to edge out an experience lead on Boston College giving them level 20 by the time the fifth shrine activated. With a late game Punisher and an inability to deal significant damage to Cho’gall, BC succumbed to elimination.

Game one on Dragon Shire saw an immediate respect ban from East Carolina on Falstad after Saturday’s demonstration of MichaelUdall’s skill on the character. They followed up this ban with picks of Zagara, Rehgar, Greymane, Sonya, and Diablo against Arizona State’s Li Ming, Muradin, Tassadar, Brightwing, and Illidan. East Carolina’s draft was a series of comfort picks against the favored ASU, while ASU pulled out a surprising Illidan for MichaelUdall with double supports to back him up.

Strong rotations and match ups in the early game allowed ASU to pick up an easy early kill and a Dragon Knight, followed up with incredible pressure against the tier one structures. This risk proved to pay off for ASU since they managed to escape back to friendly territory with low health after inflicting significant damage.

An easy second Dragon Knight for ASU, and a couple of aggressive kills on Zagara, gave them almost a complete level lead into the mid game, and once they had their heroics they continued to push their advantage. ASU did not go completely unscathed, however, as a full team fight near the bottom bruiser camp resulted in even trades between the two teams.

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The aggression of ASU continued to dictate the pace of the game, giving East Carolina no time to do anything other than react. This allowed ASU to inflict significant structural damage to their opponents and gain a talent tier advantage, though East Carolina did not allow them to leverage that advantage. Finally a team fight near the middle shrine gave East Carolina the opportunity they needed to confront ASU in a team fight on the same talent tier, and while they gave a good showing (a well-placed leap from Sonya onto Li Ming was especially memorable) their assault eventually ran out of gas in the face of the sustain of Illidan and Brightwing. ASU secured the Dragon Knight and marched into victory.

Game two on Battlefield of Eternity saw East Carolina prioritize Tyrande and Greymane for impressive damage against the Immortals before picking up Rehgar, Johanna, and Valla. EC’s comfort picks of Stitches and Diablo were banned by ASU. In response, East Carolina ensured Falstad stayed out of MichaelUdall’s hands but allowed them to pick up Muradin, Sonya, Brightwing, Li Ming, and Zagara.

Both teams attempted to trade forts in the early game before the first Immortal phase, though ASU was successful while EC only got about half of the fort’s HP burned away. ASU was able to be in position for the Immortal phase and managed to easily burn down the first Immortal. Both teams were avoiding team fights with one another and focused on burning down the other team’s objectives and structures.

By the second Immortal phase, ASU was leading by about half a level and their rotation was giving them a lead in damage on the Immortals despite EC’s comp being designed specifically to burn down the objectives. This Immortal push cost EC another fort and gave ASU what they needed to get level 10 before East Carolina.

Fortunately, for East Carolina, by the time the third Immortal phase started, they had caught up in experience and were on top of the Immortal quicker. EC actually leveraged their comp to deal damage to the Immortal faster than ASU did. ASU responded by engaging East Carolina directly in a team fight during the Half Time show, but were wiped allowing EC to get their first Immortal.

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The trend repeated during the next Immortal phase where the Greymane player managed to get two key kills on ASU’s team, giving them another victory. Perhaps a little overconfident, EC stayed in the fight after the immortal fell and ASU managed to secure three kills on EC and took one of their keeps as payment.

East Carolina took the fifth Immortal, but the shields were so low that ASU managed to kill it without taking any structural damage.

As the mid game turned into late game, East Carolina continued to have a slight exp lead before level 20 and ASU forced a team fight during the Immortal phase. East Carolina obliged them and killed three of their team members. East Carolina was unable to capitalize on their victory, and ASU returned to find a weakened East Carolina team. After securing a kills on East Carolina, they abandoned the Immortal fight and went straight for East Carolina’s core knocking them out of the tournament 2-0.

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Here’s what the bracket looks like going into the Semi Finals:

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