Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Complexity.HoN: The Road to Vegas begins to Fade

Could this really be the downfall of Summers unbeatable juggernauts?

Since Dreamhack Winter 2012, Complexity has continued to face increasing competition with current #1 team Trademark eSports dominating them from Dreamhack Winter 2012 Grand Finals through Cycle 3 of HoN Tour, including the 1st and 2nd Cycles as well as the HoN Tour Qualifier. For the first time since anyone can really remember, Complexity found themselves legitimately knocked out of the Winners Bracket prior to the WB Finals by the Stay Green. The sG vs coL match itself garnered its fair share of raised eyebrows as well as drama due to an early "GG" taunt by Moonmeander. Once the match ended with sG coming out on top and Swindle typing "Yo Moon, GG" the meme took off on the forums as well as the Honcast chat. Then, January 12 at 3:21 PM Eastern Standard Time, Q Squad reminded people that they were still around with a 2-0 Victory over Complexity Gaming, knocking them into a 5/6th place finish. To my knowledge, this was the first time Complexity did not finish in the Top 3 of ANY tournament in the last 8 months. This lead to more than a couple raised eyebrows from competitive HoN spectators and players alike.

When Cycle 4 began, hopes weren't much higher for Complexity as sG announced the acquisition of arguably Complexity's best player, Chessie. This placed coL in a tight spot and brought in the last minute addition of LezzQQ, formerly of Blackfade who was away serving in the military until recently. Upon starting the cycle, Complexity struggled to win a Best of Three series against the rag tag Domain of Pain team who had just lost Fittske to Trademark eSports. In Winners Bracket Round 2, coL once again found themselves in a scramble to keep up with a impressive LION squad who inevitably took coL out 2 games to 1. This is the earliest coL had ever been knocked out of the Winner's Bracket of any tournament since their creation (not counting the FF loss they took in the HoN Tour Qualifiers). Things were looking bleak already in Cycle 4, but they were able to rally back hard in the losers bracket with 2-0 victories over DoberonDamp, Pencils and Q sQuad. In Losers Bracket Round 6 however, they found themselves once again up against LION's looking for a bit of redemption. It wasn't to happen however, as LION's eliminated Complexity from Cycle 4 in just two games, forcing coL into a 4th place finish.

Once again, the time between Cycle 4 and 5 saw an adjustment to the roster of Complexity. LezzQQ was out and Riser from Tt eSPORTS was in as the new jungler, allowing coL to return to many of their normal roles. Hopes were high for Complexity as Riser is one of the top players in North American HoN and even Beefpotpie had them taking it all the way. As Cycle 5 started, coL looked very strong with a 2-0 victory over DmSn. Round 2 of the Winners Bracket was like deja vu all over again for coL however, as they faced off against the seemingly unbreakable LION's squad once more; and once more in a three game series LION's came out on top, knocking coL down to the Losers bracket where they would face off against The Fire Rises, who were able to take Trademark eSports to three games earlier in the Cycle. A lot of speculation about the possibility of coL being knocked into a 9-12 place finish was being had in HoN twitch chats. Ultimately, coL was able to dispatch TFR with relative ease, finishing them off in two games. coL then came up against sG for the first time since their loss in Cycle 3. sG showed their abilities to not only think outside the box in picking but also outplayed Complexity in games 1 and 3 of the Best of Three series, leading to another sG win and Complexity to a 7/8th place finish; their lowest of all time.

Surely Complexity must still be a favorite in competitive HoN as we approach the final cycles of HoN Tour, but with Trademark and Stay Green all but securing themselves a slot at the Grand Finals in Vegas in April, that guaranteed 3rd slot is starting to look mighty tempting to a few other teams, notably Q sQuad and LION eSportsklub who are both still competing in Cycle 5 and have the opportunity to catch up on some much needed points. In fact, if QsQ can upset sG and take a 4th place finish they will be at 8,250 points, compared to coL's 8,475 points. If QsQ can finish top 3, they will surpass them. LION's can only make that kind of headway with a total cycle win, but a 2nd place finish would put them at 7,150 points, and within striking distance over the last three cycles.

With the game changing around Complexity, they seem to be struggling to find what roles they are best at. Moon was attempting to transition from suicide into the jungle and now to some other role. Bkid has been playing suicide and it seems that really only 2 members of coL know exactly what is going on with their roles. Franzzii will always be support and Haxxeren will always be the farming carry. I feel like Complexity is going to have to start practicing much more than they have been and their are going to have to look at their drafts as well. I also have concerns around Franzzii as the meta switches into something more aggressive and fast paced. When the game was slow and farm heavy he was able to constantly keep vision up in the right spots and set up calculated ganks. Honestly, I don't know if Franzzii can keep up with an aggressive meta and react to ganks of opportunity rather than preplanned action. He has really only played the dedicated support role for the last 8 months or so, all with Complexity. When he played with his own team, Ayy Man, and prior to that Infused, he played a myriad of other roles, all at a level that was sub par to what he has accomplished with Complexity. If he can't keep up with this meta, he very well may be on the chopping block.

Moonmeander also needs to be looked at under the microscope, as his abilities and technical precision have come into question due largely to his involvement with his girlfriend. Personally, I don't blame the guy, but if you want to be a part of the best team in any sport or esport, you have to have time set aside to hone your craft.

In the end, only time will tell whether Complexity.HoN can get their act together and return to being the top team we all saw over the summer and fall. But for now, there seem to be plenty of teams willing to not only take their place, but give us spectators the exciting lineups and games we've been waiting for.


  1. who better testie moon

  2. Holy fuck fat ass just stop

  3. LOL, this is the best HoN blog on the web, don't stop!!! <3

  4. Well written, good job.

  5. Agree... great job and good no bullshit insights to be found here. Keep up the good work.