Five Great eSports Comebacks

LiquidMouz

I usually start preparing for an article a few days in advance. Normally my ideas come from either playing games or browsing the internet, but sometimes inspiration can come from anywhere. This weekend I watched the Disney movie Miracle, you know, the one about the famous 1980 USA vs. Russia Hockey game in which USA beat the unbeatable Russians in a 4-3 victory. Then, purely by coincidence, I also caught the HBO documentary about the same game called Do You Believe in Miracles?. A day later, I ended my competitive hockey weekend by watching The Mighty Ducks.

Yes, by the end of the weekend all I could think about were awesome sports comebacks. I took the next few days to look for similar comebacks and shockers in the E-sports scene, and although there aren’t nearly as many people watching, for me some of these are just as exciting. Below are a list of five pretty sick E-Sports comebacks, if you’ve got any to share add them to the comments below as I’m sure there are many more.

Team Liquid vs. Mousesports – The Defense 3 – Dota 2

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KpJFf4HRuXU

I don’t know if I would have written this article if this game didn’t happen this weekend. Some are calling it the best Dota 2 match in 2013 which seems silly considering there are ten whole months left in the year, but once you see it you might at least agree with the sentiment.

After a long and grueling match, Team Liquid had their backs against the wall. Mousesports were about to push into Liquid’s base, ending the game. Then, Team Liquid’s teal Gyrocopter purchased the game’s riskiest item, a Divine Rapier which gives its user vastly more physical damage but can be picked up by the enemy team if said user dies. They then successfully defended their turf, won two team fights, and ended up in a “base race,” winning the game in one of the closest endings I’ve ever seen in competitive play. Even the game’s caster, Tobiwon, can’t believe how the game ended, letting out a joyful squeal of surprise. MOBAs are hard to follow, but this one is worth watching even if you’re not a fan.  If you’re interested the entire game can be watch here.

Combofiend vs. Fanatiq – Evo 2011 – Marvel vs. Capcom 3

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gElci4l3O_k

I’m not really into fighting games, my last real fighting game experience was playing the original Mortal Kombat at my local bowling alley when I was a kid, but matches like this make me want to rethink my stance on them. However, I do know what a health bar looks like, and with barely any health left Combofiend decides that he’s going to beat all three of his opponent’s characters with just the one he has left, narrowly ending the game while remaining completely stone-faced and cool under pressure.

Even though I don’t really following fighting games, I have enough knowledge to be able to appreciate a clip like this, even if there are a lot of little things going on that I don’t understand. I know that these games often end with players juggling their opponents to death without taking any damage, but being able to do that under pressure, in front of a live audience, is a different thing all together.

SlayerS Boxer vs. Joyo – Starcraft: Brood War

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Chj52Y5qNr0

The top comment on this video is very accurate; it does look like this was filmed on a potato. My apologies, but it was the only clip of this incredible game I could find in English. It’s also a healthy reminder as to how far the steaming of competitive matches has come in only a few short years.

Anyway, the match features one of, if not the most, popular Starcraft: Broodwar players of all time, SlayerS Boxer, pulling out a nail biting  victory against Joyo using his incredible micro skills to destroy the rest of Joyo’s Protoss fleet with just a handful of Goliaths. SlayerS Boxer was the favorite going in, but ended up almost losing the match before securing victory. As you can see some of his female fans were brought to tears at the idea of their favorite player possibly losing the match. Thankfully for them that wasn’t the case, as hordes of his fans cheered as he pulled a victory out of thin air.

Side note: it’s amazing how different the culture is in South Korea compared to the U.S., as I know there are many professional gamers in America that would love to have droves of female fans cry for them as they lose games and cheer for them as they win. Insane.

SK Gaming Asia vs. HON – Intel Extreme Masters – World of Warcraft Arena.

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7duX4QpVaAQ

This is a long one, especially for a WoW PvP arena match, but it’s a reminder that no matter how bad things seem, the game isn’t over until it’s over. The comeback starts at about 3:45 and features the little Gnome Mage, Orange Marmalade, fighting tooth and nail to keep his team alive, with almost no life, in a 2v1 situation. You can even hear the casters wrapping it up almost to the point of putting their headsets down when Orange Marmalade, out of nowhere, kills off his first opponent, escapes, and begins what ends up as a 30 minute long stalemate against an enemy Priest.

With the two locked in an epic stalemate and no end in sight, those running the tournament decided that the winner would be the team which dealt the most damage during the match, giving Orange Marmalade and his team, HON, a victory and showing everyone that you don’t stop playing, or casting, until you hear that fat lady start to sing. The video above is only part one, if you’re inclined you can watch the entire match, but unless you played WoW PvP it is rather hard to follow.

CLG.EU vs. Moscow 5 – Dreamhack 2012 – League of Legends 

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mHJP1uhjeW0 

Some who watched this game or at least those who know about it might argue that it isn’t a comeback as much as a failure by Moscow 5 to secure an easy victory. At one point they were ahead by over 25K gold, a staggering lead by any standard of play. Almost from the start, CLG.EU was on the defensive, with no lead whatsoever for about 90% of the game, but they successfully defended their base for over 30 minutes with Moscow 5 failing to destroy even one of their all important base structures. Finally, after picking-off a few cocky heroes, CLG.EU managed to invade the base of Moscow 5, destroying their base structures and squeaking out a victory against impossible odds.

This may be something that happens among lower levels players, but these guys were pros; at this level we almost never see a comeback like this. It may have been a blunder, but it was a damn exciting one at least.