Day 3 wrapped up the Group Stage play at the TeamFight Tactics Reckoning World Championships with the conclusion of Group B. Many heavy hitters were present in Group B but the major stories came from the underdog players and regions. With the finals now set, here are the lessons learned from Day 3.
China bounces back
Your 8 TFT Reckoning Championship Finalists!
— Teamfight Tactics (@TFT) October 3, 2021
China entered the TFT Reckoning World Championship with something to prove. After receiving the most Worlds spots last season, they failed to bring any of their six players into the final. This year they received fewer invites but were still tied for the most with Europe. All eyes were on China once again as many did not think they deserved to bring four players to Worlds this season. After Day 3, the critics have been silenced.
After Zixingche became the first Chinese representative to qualify for the finals, since Juanzi and Alphago did it back in TFT: Galaxies two seasons ago, China came into Day 3 to show they had more than one player capable of winning the championship.
But after a thrilling five-game series, the two Chinese players in Group B managed to grab the final qualifier spots. China’s first seed, qituX, qualified for the finals fairly easily. He managed to hit a Karma three-star to win the first game and followed it up by winning Game 3 with a Vel’Koz carry where he defeated a Lucian three-star in the final round. Even though he only managed top four in two of the five games, those wins qualified him in third place.
Huanmie had the reverse results as qituX. In the two rounds qituX won, Huanmie placed bottom four. But in the other three games, Haunmie placed in the top four, including a first place finish in Game 5 which secured the fourth and final spot. China now has three players in the top eight, the most of any region.
Major regions disappoint
The three most talked about regions at the World championships were South Korea, Europe, and North America. All three of them were among the favorites to win Worlds. Korea especially came into Worlds trying to defend their world title. After Day 3, a new World championship region should be crowned.
After a poor performance by Ddudu in Group B, Korea will not have a player in the top eight finals. But Korea isn’t the only major region to disappoint. Scipaeus, the EU rep in Group B, had a terrible Day 3. He managed to only grab a total of 19 points. Heading into Game 5, he was already mathematically eliminated from top-four contention.
The hope for NA rested on Robinsongz. After a poor start in the first two games, Robinsongz came roaring back with back-to-back top-three finishes in the third and fourth games. With Robinsongz in control of his destiny, the game had other plans. After unfortunate matchmaking and low-rolls, Robinsongz bowed out in sixth place, missing out on top four.
These three regions had a combined 10 spots out of the 20 available at Worlds. Combined they only have two spots in the top eight finals as EU and NA claimed both.
Wildcard regions impress
The lesser-known regions have been a major reason why all the other regions are underperforming outside of China. After Escha became the first player at the TFT Reckoning World Championships to qualify for the finals, Nukomaru followed shortly after marking the first time both of the super minor regions have made the top eight finals. Japan and Oceania were the only two regions to send a single player to Worlds. Now both of them have qualified for the finals. Both Nukomaru and Escha even had to play in the Play-In Stage where both of them finished first and second place showing that they belonged.
But, Nukomaru wasn’t the only wildcard region player to impress on Day 3. Latin America’s SMbappe put on a show during Group B. After garnering fame from his “first or eighth” playstyle in the Play-In Stage, Smbappe didn’t play that drastically in Group B. Instead, he managed to play better than anyone else. In a tightly contested lobby, with a single point separating first and fourth, Smbappe came out on top giving LATAM their first-ever competitor in the top eight finals at TFT Worlds.
With SMbappe’s qualification, all four players that qualified for the main event through the Play-In Stage are now in the top eight finals. This may be the first season where the TFT championship is brought back to a Wildcard region.