StarCraft WCS Valencia is done! We’ve crowned a winner, packed up, and everyone has flown home. However, there are no spoilers in this recap. Instead, we are going to reflect on the Quarterfinals and Semifinals for anyone who may have missed some of these fantastic StarCraft games. Let’s get cracking!
(Z) Reynor vs Serral (Z)
Final Score: 3-0 Serral
Serral looked unstoppable in this matchup. The games each started fairly equally, with Zerglings and Banelings trading rather evenly. However, Serral always managed to get a small advantage and snowball with it. Serral opted for a surprise Nydus attack in the third game, doing massive economic damage to Reynor. Serral pushed that advantage through the rest of the match and sealed his victory.
Reynor played excellently in his WCS debut, but unfortunately, this was the end of the ride for him.
(T) HeRoMaRinE vs uThermal (T)
Final Score: 3-1 HeRoMaRinE
In a Terran mirror match, your path to victory is often paved with Siege Tanks and can be decided by one bad move. This matchup exemplified that. uThermal came out swinging in Game 1, securing a very convincing win early with great control of his Cyclones. Unfortunately, that was the last taste of victory uThermal would get in Valencia. HeRoMaRinE went on to win the next three games, displaying great Tank control and positioning along the way.
The blessing of the Shibu was not enough for uThermal, and HeRoMaRinE would go on to face Serral in the Semi-Finals.
(P) Neeb vs ShoWTimE (P)
Final Score: 3-2 ShoWTimE
Neeb and ShoWTimE both open up looking excellent in this series. Game 1 is an absolute slugfest and both players show that they are very evenly matched, with the game coming down to a handful of units on either side several times. Neeb eventually gains a slight advantage and secures a hard-earned victory.
The excellent, well-matched games continue all the way through the series. We go all the way to Game 5 before ShoWTimE puts the nail in the coffin, securing his spot in the Semi-Finals. Overall, this series was one of the most entertaining of the day. If you missed it, you should take some time to watch it below.
(P) Has vs Nerchio (Z)
Final Score: 3-2 Has
Another very close series, both Has and Nerchio showed respect to each other in their builds. Has opted for mid game aggression over early-game cheese builds, where Nerchio chose to play more conservatively than usual, never wanting to be caught out by the unexpected.
Even though the series was close, only one player could move on to the semi-finals. In game 5, Has used Warp Prism harassment to keep an eye on Nerchio and clean up some of the creep spread. This later allowed Has to push into Nerchio’s base with upgraded Zealots, Immortals, and Sentries. Nerchio neglected to scout this push in time to prepare his defenses, ultimately resulting in a loss.
In a big upset, Has shut the door on Nerchio’s tournament hopes in a surprisingly standard series, considering Has was involved.
(T) HeRoMaRinE vs Serral (Z)
Final Score: 3-0 Serral
In the final game of this series, HeRoMaRinE attempted to get a lead early using Cloak Banshee and Hellion aggression. However, Serral deflected both threats using a small army of Queens and excellent creep spread.
With his creep almost reaching HeRoMaRinE’s third base, Serral set up a siege position with Swarm Hosts to slowly wear down HeRoMaRinE’s force of Tanks and Hellbats. Softening up the army allowed Serral to end the game with a Roach and Ravager push, clinching the series and showing once again why he is the favorite to go home with a trophy from WCS Valencia.
(P) Has vs ShoWTimE (P)
Final Score: 3-2 Has
I think this series can be summed accurately with this tweet:
— Tobias Sieber (@ShoWTimESC2) July 14, 2018
The Protoss mirror matchup is, in my opinion, the most susceptible matchup in StarCraft to cheese builds. Cannon Rushes, Proxy Oracles, Void Rays, they’re all highly effective against your opponent if they’re not prepared. As a result, this is probably Has’ favorite environment.
The series opens up with ShoWTimE walking across the map with Void Rays, Immortals, and Gateway units, securing the first win of the match. The games following were wacky, unpredictable, and very entertaining. If you missed this series, I recommend going back to check it out.
What a weekend! Between Serral looking almost unstoppable and Has cheesing his way into the Grand Finals, who could ask for better StarCraft?
What was your favorite moment? Did you expect Has to get this far? Do you think he can break the infamous Artosis Curse in the Grand Finals? Comment below!
For coverage on the WCS Valencia Grand Final, check out this article by fellow Daily eSports writer Kuro.