ATXIII Team Summaries Part IIApothne
This is part two of the AT Team Summaries, you can read part one here.
First match: System 1 17:40 vs. Warlords of the Deep
Black Legion, known to some as the Cult of Elo, are infamous for being one of the scary nomadic PvP organisations of EVE who will drop on unsuspecting capitals or third-party brawls with more force than either side had put together. If you can’t afford to hire PL, BL is probably the next best thing. Founded by Origin upon their leaving Nulli Secunda back in 2012, BL have gone from terrorising the CFC in Venal to holding sov next to them in fountain. Responsible for the the first ever Revenant kill, they have certainly made their mark on New Eden in their three year history.
Coming into the tournament with a good seed at 13, BL have unfortunately gotten one of what promises to be the strongest new alliances to the tournament in Warlords of the Deep. BL are returning to the AT scene after a three year hiatus, but back in AT IX they had one hell of a run, winning four matches to be knocked out by second place finishers Outbreak. Their ATX results were mixed, but for an alliance with such a PvP focus, Warlords certainly can’t take this match lightly.
First match: System 2 15:00 vs. Easily Excited
Oh Brave, please have a good showing. After all the shit that’s happened to you since Catch I really want something you can be proud of. I’m not asking you to win the tournament, or even get too far, just please don’t be awful. The few guys you have that actually work hard at the game and have a good attitude deserve some reward for their effort, and last year’s fiasco of Mathias forgetting to redeem your entry PLEX has earnt you some AT karma as far as I’m concerned.
Brave chose to be very open about their practices this year, which is something of an unpopular move among AT teams. That said, I kind of like that decision from them where I wouldn’t from many other alliances. Brave is already filled to the brim with spies, so any hope of what they were planning to do being kept confidential would be entirely pointless. Instead, they get to have some practice with other willing teams, as well as giving their newer players an easy way of getting involved with tournament play. Hopefully, this helps foster an interest in tournaments in the newest generation of EVE players. It has long been said that the AT is one of the least accessible things to newer players, and having just a few teams with the approach of Brave I believe is good for the tournament, EVE Online and Brave themselves in the long run.
Brothers In Arms Alliance
First match: System 2 16:20 vs. Circle-Of-Two
One of the youngest alliances competing this year, weirdly formed of primarily members of their first match opponents, C02. Currently living in NPC Geminate, there’s not much to say about these guys other than to wonder if they contain much of CO2s historic AT players, which took them to the finals back in AT VII.
The Camel Empire
Flagship: Scorpion Navy Issue
First match: System 1 14:00 vs. SpaceMonkey’s Alliance
The reigning champions. It was no secret last year that these guys were going to be good, though the win was not for sure. If you want a masterclass in how to fly AT teams with excellent execution, go watch any of Camel’s matches from last year. With amazing ads, Camel quickly cemented themselves as a fan favourite and having had the opportunity to interact with some of them over the past year I can vouch for the fact that they are a great group of guys with a great attitude to the game.
Last year Camel showed an exceptional ability to fly a wide variety of ship comps, execute beautifully and dodge bans with an obvious depth of knowledge and insight that can only come from hundreds of man hours of practice and debate. Stylistically, it is easy to compare them to another top team, HYDRA, in their ability and willingness to field and execute very intricate damp-control setups and fly them near flawlessly.
Looking at the brackets, I really don’t see any teams of sufficient caliber to give Camel much of a challenge until the final weekend. I’m not saying there aren’t some strong and dangerous teams in there, but Camel showed themselves to be such a cut above the rest last year. It can be considered a significant upset if they drop a single game before the final weekend in my opinion.
First match: System 1 14:40 vs Chaos Collective
I have something of a soft spot for CAStabouts. One of the groups hailing from Syndicate, which tends to be a prime region for AT hopefuls, CAStabouts spend a good portion of their time with characters in the Centre for Advanced Studies (hence the name), helping new players and offering to introduce them to PvP in NPC null. Spending the past two years competing in both the AT and the NEO under the name 8CAS, we’ve seen them slowly get further and further in each tournament they enter. All their mains are in CAS itself, meaning they have been training fresh accounts for the AT, giving them a pretty extreme SP disadvantage.
Last year, we saw CAS get knocked into the lower bracket at the very start by The Initiative, but then take down Cynosural Field Theory and their neighbours Clockwork Pineapple before finally being knocked out by The Devil’s Warrior Alliance, now -affliction-. In each successive match they had their previously-brought comp banned, going from a shield-tinker to a Gila-Rattlesnake team to finally a unique modified AF-BS comp with a Vindi and flag-Geddon. CAS followed the meta in their team comps to some extent, but had not really refined their theorycrafting nearly as much as some of the other teams.
CAS are yet to have a really strong run but hopefully have been gaining the practice, experience (and SP!) to put on a good showing this year. That said, with what everyone is predicting to be a hard meta switch this year with the new rules, CAS are going to need to really get on top of their theorycrafting this year if they want to improve upon last year’s run.
First match: System 1 14:40 vs CAStabouts
Chaos Collective are a tiny little 24-man alliance. That means if all of them are online they can field exactly two AT teams to play against each other. They seem to be quite into solo/microgang work in Syndicate and the surrounding lowsec pockets. I have a feeling this group are either going to be super tight-knit hardcore tryhards and incredible, or a complete flop due to lack of people.
First match: System 2 16:20 vs. Brothers in Arms Alliance
C02 have a very up and down tournament history, not quite Agony length, but certainly deserving of a list:
ATVII: 2nd place to PL, beating The Important Internet Spaceship League, THE R0NIN, The Wrong Alliance and Beyond Virginity.
ATVIII: Lost to We Form Voltron in Ro16.
ATIX: Knocked out by Outbreak. and Lost to wild Boars after defeating RAZOR
ATXI: Beat SCUM and Outbreak., lost to WAFFLES and CVA.
ATXII: Lost to Agony Empire, received a bye against CODE and then lost to Outbreak.
It’s somewhat sad that Outbreak. are not in this year’s tournament, not only because they’re a solid team, but to continue the rivalry between them and CO2 who just keep hitting each other in the brackets, with Outbreak. up 2-1.
CO2 had a great performance all the way back in AT VII, but have never been able to give a repeat performance, always getting knocked out in the first few rounds. Members of the CFC, CO2 is a 3000-man alliance currently holding half of Tribute and a little of Vale. Not exactly a byword of PvP prowess on TQ. I like the fact that CO2 consistently put the effort into running an AT team, a great place for an alliance who perhaps struggle to make their name in the chaos of TQ another way into the limelight.
Last year CO2 showed us two interesting setups, which actually look like they may be reasonable for this year’s meta if refined correctly. Versus Agony, they brought a cool Typhoon comp with Heretics and Algos, followed up by an interesting Machariel/AF team against Outbreak. Though not the most common of archetypes, these teams make sense to me and hopefully with a little more refinement and practice of piloting ability, these are exactly the types of team that could do well in the new meta of ATXIII.
CO2 get a relatively easy first round against the untested Brothers in Arms Alliance, then having to face the winner of TNT and Waffles. As bracket placing go, this is probably about as good as CO2 could have hoped, giving them a chance to make a deep run and finally show that their ATVII performance wasn’t some fluke.
First match: System 2 14:40 vs Phoebe Freeport Republic
Groons! Pulling membership from Something Awful a la Goonswarm, Clockwork Pineapple decided they didn’t want to go in the direction of Goonswarm and thus settled down in Syndicate for gatecamping and smaller-gang fights. This is the third entry for Clockwork Pineapple to the AT, and they’re doing alright. Not crazy good, but certainly not bad either.
In ATXI CP lost to Late Night Alliance in the Ro32 after beating Rainbow Dash Friends and were knocked out by the solid VOC team, eliminating Surely You’re Joking and Choke Point along the way. Last year, in ATXII, CP didn’t do quite as well, beating RAZOR before falling to Exodus. and then CAS.
Clockwork stand as a reasonable mid-tier team. They are capable of grabbing a few wins but as soon as they hit a team that really know what they’re doing they tend to falter. I’d say they have a good chance versus their first round opponents; PFR making their AT debut, and assuming they win there also don’t hit anyone particularly strong in their potential second match: the winners of Brave Collective vs. Easily Excited. I can see Easily giving them a run for their money, but I think Clockwork have a solid opportunity for a good run this year.