Over the weekend of the 8th to the 10th of September, the Vainglory Unified Championships took place at the Globe Theatre in Los Angeles, where Cloud 9 once again were crowned champions after defeating Immortals 3-1 in the finals. Thus, reaffirming their status as one of the best teams in the world. The already legendary trio of Gabevizzle, Oldskool and ILoveJoseph performed fantastically during the tournament and showcased their skills before the Worlds to be held in Singapore in December, where they will try to challenge the Koreans Rox Armada and Ace Gaming.
But leaving all this aside, on Sunday the 10th, the Regional Finals of the Challenger Cup between the champions of the European Vaingloryleague and the North American Vis League took place. That’s right, Team Queso, who had qualified after being crowned champions of the Europe Challengers after a final sprint with 7 consecutive victories, were there representing Europe. Opposing them was nothing less than Echo Fox, a former VG8 from North America who just a month before had breezed through the NA challengers without losing a single game in the whole tournament. Moreover, a mere week before, they blasted through another NA tournament getting rid of Gankstars 2-0 and causing troubles to Immortals, finalists of the Live Finals.
Our players started the Sunday morning taking the seats reserved for the players. The first time for DarkGhost, surprisingly. The second for PRZ, who had already participated in a face-to-face tournament in Cologne last year. The umpteenth for MrKcool. Our players did not disappoint and showed that the EU teams are not to be trifled with, as previous occasions may have suggested otherwise. After a very good first game, Team Queso got the first point after a dicey final push with kraken, a risky and aggressive action applauded by casters and spectators. The second game also started going well for our players with a 4-point advantage and two towers demolished by our players, things turned sour as they reached the late game. A couple of bad team fights allowed Echo Fox to turn the tide and tie up the score.
With everything on stake and a tiebreaker game to be played, Team Queso chose Samuel as a last pick to face a Glaive-Celeste. A draft that casted some doubts, but whose perfect execution dissipated them in a heartbeat. After a long wait between the end of the draft and the start of the game due to technical problems, our players jumped to the Halcyon Fold and devastated Echo Fox, who briefly tried to initiate a comeback at the end that was suffocated with a spectacular 3 v 2 team fight that ended with a triple kill of MrKcool. That was undoubtedly one of the most remarkable plays of the whole weekend. With this play and a devoted audience cheering Team Queso, the Spanish team managed to bring down the vain, score the final 2-1 and thus become the first European team in history that managed to defeat an NA team in a live final. An unrepeatable experience, without a doubt, as much for the result as for the opportunity to share the same space, words and games with all the players of all the teams that participated in the finals. We will try to go back next year!