xOpt1c5n1p3rzx: the underdogs

By Riot Sephyre

Over the next few weeks we will be profiling the teams that qualify for the Oceanic Regional Tournament. The seventh team to qualify is xOpt1c5n1p3rzx, with the team earning their spot by winning the Challenger Qualifier.

Nobody has ever heard of Optic Snipers, otherwise known as the slightly harder to pronounce xOpt1c5n1p3rzx. A couple of months ago they didn't exist and most members of the team have never played on a professional team before. The Snipers don't have a fan-base like the other teams in the Autumn Regional and going into the Challenger Qualifier they were expected to lose in the opening rounds. The only problem was nobody told them that.

It was assumed that Avant Garde: Redemption were going to crush all comers for the last remaining spot in the regional. It even looked that way in the finals, where they won the first game in 21 minutes and had the Snipers on the ropes in the second. With four members alive and the game all but won, Redemption only had two remaining Snipers to deal with and a wave of minions pushing on an open inhibitor to help them out.

Then something magical happened. Fourg33k playing Ziggs combined with Ness on Ezreal for a final stand. With incredible precision, Ness was able to poke Redemption down as they closed in on the victory and a beautifully timed Mega Inferno Bomb from FourGeek bled them even further.

Redemption's marksman then overextended and Fourg33k pounced, pulling off a perfectly-timed combination for a triple-kill. Long death timers meant Optic Snipers could push in for the win. The remaining two members of Redemption were not able to pull off any magical tricks of their own and the series was leveled.

Game three saw a renewed vigor from the Snipers, with a confident laning phase leading to a strong lead that would never be relinquished. Redemption played like they were still stunned from the miracle hold in the previous game and the Snipers closed out the series for the upset.

FantasyStar

The architect of Optic Snipers' cinderella story is their manager FantasyStar. He used to manage Avant Garde: Redemption, the very same team the Snipers would knock off to qualify. Fantasy decided to leave Redemption when he felt his role was becoming less useful.

"I felt like having the gaming house made my job at Avant very obselete," he recalls. "I wanted to gather 5 random solo queue players who didn't have eSport experience. To prove that you don't have to be a veteran at the game to make a successful team."

He was the one who discovered Fourg33k and proceeded to build a team around him.

"I was spectating games within the League of Legends client and it happened to be a game full of challenger players," he recalls. "The first thing I noticed was Fourgeek destroying a well-known mid-lane player who played for a professional team."

After getting in contact with Fourg33k, the two teamed up to start scouting solo queue players and playing on the 5v5 Ranked Teams ladder to earn a spot in the Challenger Qualifier.

 Jaykey

The jungle player they chose, Jaykey, ended up being one of the loudest members of the team. His shouts during the Challenger Qualifier, especially after they won, did not go down well with his mother.

"My mum was getting angry when I was playing in the qualifiers because I was yelling too much," explains Jaykey. "As soon as I mentioned the money after I won she was a little more accepting, especially once she heard there could be trips to other states and cities."

He was also recruited from a hospital bed, having been recovering from surgery to his jaw when Fourg33k messaged him with an offer to become a Sniper.

Cool Mog

One of the stars for Optic Snipers has been their top-lane player Cool Mog. He was picked up by Fantasy after making it to number 2 on the solo queue ladder. This is his first time playing for a competitive team.

“I haven’t played in any big tournaments yet except for qualifying for the Autumn Round of 8,” he says.

He’s also found it helpful to have a manager that puts time into preparation and planning for events.

“Fantasy talks with us before the game about what we should be focusing on and our priorities in pick and ban phase,” he adds.

Something every member of Optic Snipers agrees on is that Team Immunity and Frenetic Array will be the teams to beat in the Autumn Round of 8. They might not have competed on this level before, but if they play like they did in the Challenger Qualifier there is a very real chance of more upsets. Something they have shown already though, is that it doesn’t matter how heavily their opposition is favoured as the Snipers are willing to back themselves against anyone.

 

Check out the other teams that have qualified: 

1 - Team Immunity 
2 - Frenetic Array 
3 - Team NV 
4 - Little Wraith
5 - Eviscerate 
6 - YSSC 


4 years ago