Friendship Proves to be the Winning Strategy in Dominating StarCraft II’s Archon Mode, Teammates “Huk” and “MC” Take the Title of 2015 Red Bull Battle Grounds Champions
Legendary StarCraft II Champ “MC” Returns from Retirement to Win Championship with Close Friend and Pro Player “HuK”
Santa Monica, CA – September 21, 2015 – Red Bull Battle Grounds kicked off the 2015 StarCraft II eSports tournament series with ‘Archon Mode’, the first to require two players to control one army. Battles waged on and Chris “HuK” Loranger and Jang “MC” Min Chul Park emerged as an unstoppable force, taking down team after team with ease. Long-time friends HuK and MC stood on the stage raising their well-deserved trophies and together earning the title of ‘Red Bull Battle Grounds StarCraft II Champions’ and the $15,000 purse.
The skillful roster of contenders and the new format formed unlikely pairings, and every team had an equal chance at the title – each with their own story and motivation to win. 2014’s champion Choi “Bomber” Ji Sung, faced his final battle before his government sanctioned his enlistment in the Korean Army. His selection of Mun “MMA” Seong Won, who eliminated him from the BlizzCon 2014 finals, made the pair a powerhouse team.
Kim “viOLet” Dong Hwan and Maru “MaSa” Kim returned after winning the Red Bull Battle Grounds Toronto qualifier, seeking the title won by Bomber in 2014’s Battle Grounds after he defeated them both. Park “DongRaeGu (DRG)” Soo Ho and Yoo “True” Ki Sung also looked for redemption, both having lost to “Bomber”. The teammates came on confident after an epic performance at the playoffs.
MC, one of the most successful StarCraft II players of all time, came out of retirement upon the request of HuK who desired to take a title with his long-standing friend.
Fans were welcomed through massive doors with StarCraft II-inspired comic book portraits depicting both teammates as one unit. As the countdown clock ticked closer to the commencement of the Grand Finals, fans followed the players’ journeys in a comic book created in collaboration with Dark Horse Comics, The Fateful Eight Part: II. Bomber’s chosen teammate, MMA, was revealed live during the Pro/Am in digital format.
In the All-Star exhibition winners of the Pro/Am took to the stage to select their teammate. Hosts took on the familiar role of competitors as Tien Comlekoglu selected Nathan “Nathanias” Fabrikant, with Tong “AZAZ” Shen selecting Kevin “RotterdaM” van der Kooi. The “best of one” match ended with Nathanias and Tien taking a loss within 7 minutes, with John “TotalBiscuit” Bain and Yoan “ToD” Merlo taking jabs at Nathanias throughout.
Other light moments were presented in interviews with the players scoring each other on maintaining their calm under pressure as well as their fashion sense. The interviews also continued to draw laughs with responses like, “Because we all know I fill the things he lacks in life,” from MMA, when asked why Bomber chose him as a partner.
With Bomber and MMA playing as Archon teammates for the first time, their performance at the finals was unclear, but their fusion of creativity, high risk and speed persevered and the two took the first win from HuK and MC. Their performance was short-lived as HuK and MC won match one in a punishing three wins in five rounds.
ViOLet and MaSa struggled going into Match 2 against DRG and True, who dominated at the Playoffs. Ultimately, ViOLet and MaSa moved on the winner’s final in five games.
Immediately after crushing DRG and True, viOLet and MaSa faced off against HuK and MC in Match 3. HuK and MC quickly took the first and second win. Even with the brave attempt from viOLet and MaSa in an epic final match, it wasn’t enough with HuK and MC taking all three wins.
As Bomber and MMA entered the losers’ final and the crowds cheered on, fans finally saw the team living up to their notorious reputation as the two eliminated DRG and True and then quickly eliminated ViOLet and MaSa in a sweep.
In what would be the deciding final match, HuK and MC once again faced off against Bomber and MMA. Still going strong from the loser’s round, Bomber and MMA took the first win with a flawless performance. Then the tide turned with HuK and MC taking the second win. Indecision caused Bomber and MMA to quickly tap out giving up the third round. Bomber and MMA started out strong again but could not find a strategy to slow the damage to their economy. HuK and MC were named the 2015 Red Bull Battle Grounds StarCraft II Champions!
The steady beat of their mantra “We’re the only players that are friends, all the other teammates hate each other” through each round kept HuK and MC’s communication aligned and strategies in sync. HuK and MC celebrated their first victory together. But will it be their last? Or was the thrill of competition enough to woo MC back to the circuit?
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