The Semifinals of the OGN Apex S3 were two disappointing matches to watch. With both the semifinals ending in a 4-0 sweep ,the matches were not exciting for the average viewer. While Lunatic Hai was widely believed to win against Afreeca Blue, EnVyUs losing 0-4 to Kongdoo Panthera was a big surprise.
Analysts, casters and even the Lunatic Hai Coach believed that EnVyUs should be able to win the semifinals. EnVyUs however were taken aback by the level of preparation by KongDoo Panthera.
EnVyUs: Static Playstyle
EnVyUs have been very strong in the latest season of OGN Apex. Breezing through the Group Stage one, losing only maps to Meta Athena; EnVyUs were definitely strong contenders for this season. While EnVyUs have always been one of the strongest teams in NA Overwatch, they have lacked good Tracer and Genji players. The meta in Overwatch has been shifting a lot over the course of months, and the lack of versatility in their DPS players meant that EnVyus were easily countered by their opponents.
On April 17, they added Lui and Effect into their Overwatch roster. This brought two very skilled into their roster but also added the much needed versatility for the current batch of players. Working in tandem with their new recruits, the revamped EnVyUs roster looked extremely strong.
Move onto the semifinals of the tournament and we see a disheartened EnVyUs as they talk during their tactical break. The players look grim, with no smile on anyone´s face. EnVyUs did try a variety of hero combinations ranging from Soldier 76 to Pharah to Widowmaker. However nothing worked for them as they were being countered by the style of play portrayed by Kongdoo Panthera.
Kongdoo Panthera : Quick Learners
Kongdoo Panthera had done their homework against EnVyUs. Birdring was much more impactful than Effect on his tracer. The difference in their plays had a cascading effect on the total score. This was the first time that these two teams faced off against each other. Kongdoo Panthera is most well known for their DPS players. Birdring and Rascal were easily the better DPS Duo from amongst the two teams.
The biggest difference for the two teams was the way they played around their supports. The entire Kongdoo team was entirely focussed on helping their DPS and denying the enemy DPS. Rascal and Birdring were extremely strong in their roles. Taimou on the other hand was thoroughly denied on his soldier time and again. Void, who is normally known for his aggressive DVa plays changed his playstyle specifically for this match. He was on guard duty for Taimou and denied a lot of damage from the EnVyUs Soldier 76.
The finals of the tournament will be between the fan favorites Lunatic Hai and Kongdoo Panthera. While Lunatic Hai is clearly the fan favorite, it is not as strong as it was in Season 2 of Apex. The team has faltered and many doubted it’s prowess early in the tournament. A few lucky match-ups and a definite improvement in gameplay over the course of the tournament meant that the team sees itself in the finals.
The last time these two teams met each other was on the 28th of April 2017. The Group Stage match saw Lunatic Hai win 3-2 against Kongdoo Panthera. It’s been quite sometime since that match and each team has ironed out their flaws. Kongdoo Panthera have been steadily improving their payload maps, while Lunatic Hai are still rusty on their KOTH maps.
The finals will be held on July 29th between Kongdoo Panthera and Lunatic Hai. The two teams have diverse styles of play. Just like last season, Season 3 will witness a finals between Two Korean teams.