With how wide the esports world is, it’s tough to pin down every marquee matchup and bit of esports news each week. Sometimes, those moments go beyond the competitive sphere and dip into streaming, general gaming and the business world, too. Esports is bigger than just the games we watch every day and the big thing you should take away from each week could pass you by if you’re not careful.
That’s where we come in. Every week, Upcomer’s staff comes together to select the five biggest W’s of the last week, whether they be a player’s performance, a new game release or something else. The goal: to get you caught up on esports news this week and get you ready for everything that comes next.
Here are our Five W’s for the week of Sept. 13-19.
Gambit Esports are VCT Masters Berlin champs
VALORANT Champions Tour Stage 3 Masters saw the Europe, Middle East and Africa region finally rise to the top as Gambit Esports took home the crown. They fought hard through their group but stumbled once against 100 Thieves; the team that handed Gambit their only loss of the tournament. After placing second seed, Gambit cruised through Vision Strikers in the playoffs to face against G2 Esports in the semifinals.
During the semifinals, the unthinkable happened — Gambit, on Icebox, during map two, 13-0’d G2 Esports in spectacular fashion. It was that flawless map, the first of the tournament, that earned Gambit their place in the finals. They then had to play the third seed from North America in Envy to take home the trophy. In a best-of-five, Gambit looked on fire as they took round after round. It wasn’t long before the score totaled 3-0 in favor of Gambit. And now that two regions have won big at LANs, Champions should be much more interesting.
— Danny Appleford
The RLCS goes worldwide
After ten seasons, the Rocket League Championship Series is finally going global. Rocket League players and fans in Asia, the Middle East and Africa have waited five years to be included and, after this week’s huge announcement, they will get to participate in the top league of the esport.
The RLCS is also going back to LAN, too. The first Rocket League LAN will be in December of 2021 in Stockholm, Sweden. This will mark the first return to offline tournaments in two years.
Finally, there are a host of changes to the format and World Championship, as well as a prize pool increase to $6,000,000. After a long offseason and an increasing number of disgruntled fans, the 2021-22 season of RLCS is bringing almost everything fans have been asking for.
— Michael Kloos
Call of Duty: Vanguard beta succeeds in first open weekend
The Call of Duty: Vanguard open beta continued this weekend, with PC and Xbox players joining in on the fun for the first time. While opinions on any video game are going to be subjective, the general consensus seems positive for Vanguard.
Sledgehammer Games is seemingly doing all they can to ensure that players’ voices are heard, which is leading to a more enjoyable experience all around. For example, after feedback from the first weekend, the developers removed the respawn delay on Saturday of this weekend. This now allows players to get back into the action quicker after dying. This was a popular fan request and it’s an encouraging sign to see Sledgehammer act on it so quickly.
Vanguard still needs work before its launch on Nov. 5, though. There are a plethora of bugs in the beta, but the early going has been positive from the majority of fans.
— Joey Carr
Glutonny steamrolls Europe at SWT Ultimate Regional Finals
Since the release of Super Smash Bros. Ultimate in December of 2018, William “Glutonny” Belaid has had dominant control over the European Smash scene. He has never been eliminated from an offline tournament by a fellow European while playing as his main, Wario. The SWT Europe Ultimate Regional Finals marked yet another chapter in Glutonny’s reign.
Throughout the tournament, Glutonny played seven best-of-five sets, losing only two games in the process (and only one game while playing as Wario). In addition, he opted to mostly play his secondary, Wolf, after reaching the top six and qualifying for the global finals. With Wolf, Glutonny beat runner-up Pau “sisqui” Caire 3-0 in both winners finals and grand finals.
Since the roster for this tournament was determined by an online qualifier, it did not feature the strongest line-up that Europe had to offer. Still, Glutonny’s control of Europe remains strong. He has won almost every tournament he’s entered post-quarantine, only falling short while playing secondaries or when facing visiting opponents from outside of Europe. As a top 10 player worldwide, he’ll be a key competitor to watch at the global finals later this year.
— Dylan Tate
Legends of Runeterra streamer gets a Baron Buff for her wedding cake
In the past week, Legends of Runeterra streamer SereneaGraceTV showed off her elaborate wedding cake on social media. The pastry created by Las Vegas-based bakery CakeLava featured a large Baron design with intricate details, making the creature seem as realistic as possible.
— Grace (@SereneGraceTV) September 12, 2021
The cake garnered enough attention from SereneGraceTV’s Twitter followers that the official Riot Games, LCS and League of Legends accounts all congratulated her and complimented the grand cake. Alongside the cake, SereneGraceTV also showed off her smite napkins, featuring a blown-up image of the smite icon found in League of Legends. Guests were also given a chance to submit any wedding cards in a real-life version of a Hextech Chest, which put the icing on the cake.
Yet, after the wedding, it seems that even all its attendees could not defeat the Baron. SereneGraceTV revealed there was plenty of cake left over.
— Carolynn Soba