OpTic Gaming storm to ALGS Pro League victory cover image

OpTic Gaming storm to ALGS Pro League victory

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OpTic Gaming comfortably took a victory in the ALGS Pro League. Elsewhere, TSM’s woes continued, they face a fight to qualify for LAN.

OpTic Gaming took a much needed victory in the fourth day of the NA ALGS Pro League. The Green Wall roster performed incredibly across the six games, and were great value for their win.

Elsewhere, TSM failed to fully bounce back from their poor Pro League start once again struggling to rack up the level of results that they would expect. They sit 18th overall, and will need to quickly improve their form.

OpTic Gaming find their form

Since the arrival of Dropped, OpTic Gaming haven't pulled up any trees in scrims and their opening two ALGS Pro League weeks. They posted a 6th then a 12th placed finish, but failed to win any matches and did not pick up the high kill totals that were associated with OpTic Gaming's prime.

Truthfully, OpTic Gaming have been in a pretty significant slump since the end of the Gibraltar Caustic meta. They finished 12th in the last split of the Pro League, failing to qualify for LAN. It was not a surprise to see them make roster changes to try and freshen things up.

OpTic made roster changes ahead of this Pro League split, dropping Dooplex (centre) (Photo EA)
OpTic made roster changes ahead of this Pro League split, dropping Dooplex (centre) (Photo EA)

Their slow start has been in part down to their weakened standing in the region. OpTic Gaming were famed for their ability to hold down Big Maude and Lava City simultaneously on Worlds Edge. However, ahead of this split they have faced a challenge from Luminosity at this drop spot. They also adjusted their Storm Point drop from The Mill, having struggled in contests at that drop in the last split too.

OpTic Gaming dominate

On paper, this OpTic Gaming roster should be a serious LAN contender. Skittlecakes and Knoqd have pushed for LAN titles before. Their new addition Dropped is one of the most experienced Apex pro's and is a top three support player in the world. He is also a strong IGL and has been given the reigns at OpTic.

Changing their IGL to Dropped might have caused some teething issues, but it has helped OpTic Gaming make a totally fresh start and move away from trying to execute a plan that worked in meta that has long passed. They don't have a hard IGL style like a TSM or an NRG, but Dropped has been leading on OpTics macro calls and has really helped rework OpTics gameplans.

Dropped is now the IGL for OpTic (Photo: EA/Joe Brady)
Dropped is now the IGL for OpTic (Photo: EA/Joe Brady)

As a result, OpTic Gaming seem to have found a macro strategy that works. They dropped into game five with almost double the points of second place. They found consistent KP, utilising snipers in particular to pick off additional kills. They still played a style familiar to OpTic Gaming fans in most zones. Staying on the edge, looting up then working their way in. However, having a player much more comfortable calling in the current meta has really helped OpTic out of their slump it seems.

In particular, they approach end games with great calmness. Clear communication and a slow playstyle in final rings helped OpTic stay out of focus and pick up extra kills and placement on several occasions.

Consistency across both maps

OpTic Gaming really found consistency today. They found at least a top seven placement in every game. Additionally to those placement points, they also racked up significant kills too. OpTic averaged over 8 kills per match across the six games. Compare that to their average of 2.2 kills per game in their first two ALGS Pro League apperances.

Knoqd (Photo: EA/Joe Brady)
Knoqd (Photo: EA/Joe Brady)

Clearly, this was a huge improvement and helped them make their way to so many endgames. OpTic Gaming didn't manage to win a game but they won't be concerned with that. Match Point format should be an irrelevance if OpTic can lock down a LAN spot before the regional finals. They have shot up to third overall.

Now OpTic need to carry this consistency through to the rest of the ALGS Pro League. Of course, an 85 point total and 27 points clear victory is unrealistic to expect week in week out. Although the ambition and mentality of Knoqd, Skittlecakes and Dropped will no doubt see them stride to reach this standard of gameplay every week.

TSM in danger

There was significant pressure on TSM ahead of the days games. They sat outside the top 20 overall, and had two below standard weeks to open their campaign.

TSM win LAN (Photo: EA/Joe Brady)
TSM win LAN (Photo: EA/Joe Brady)

Cleaning out Thermal Station in game one resulted in the dream start for TSM. They opened their account with a win, and seemed set to silence the haters. However, that was the last time we would see TSM anywhere near a final circle. They went on a horrid run in games three, four and five dying before 15th in all three of those games.

TSM slowly slipped down the leaderboard throughout the day, and found themselves in tenth once again at the days conclusion.

ImperialHal faces one of his biggest challenges yet as an IGL (Photo: EA/Joe Brady)
ImperialHal faces one of his biggest challenges yet as an IGL (Photo: EA/Joe Brady)

Alarm bells will now be ringing at TSM. The reigning LAN champions seemed clear favourites at the start of the split but now face a fight to even qualify for the regional finals. While their space at the Champs LAN is secured, if they cannot place top ten or win the regional finals they will not get to play in the Split 2 Playoffs.

TSM sit 18th right now overall. This would see them into the regional finals, but even for a team like TSM relying on match point format events is not ideal. Teams like OpTic Gaming have shown that you can turn around your season quickly, but with every week time ticks on.

It is clear that TSM's issue is placement. They have far more kills than all the teams around them in the overall standings, but they simply have not found themselves in any endgames. TSM need to turn their season around, and fast.

Even more ALGS Pro League crashes

Just like in EMEA, and in previous weeks of the ALGS Pro League, pros once again faced mid game lobby crashes. Weirdly, it was in game 4 that the crash occurred in both regions today.

Restarting games is not unusual. If players don't connect or experience packet loss, games are sometimes restarted. However, this is always done very early on in the game and therefore does not really impact teams. No one has really looted, no one has claimed a spot or picked up kills yet.

These crashes that have been plaguing the ALGS Pro League have all been happening mid game. That is incredibly frustrating for players. With the large amount of RNG in a Battle Royale, losing a game midway can be really detrimental to a teams chances.

Frustration is growing among players in all regions. This split of ALGS does not use the custom build of the game that was used in split one. While what is causing the crashes is not yet clear, players are wondering if these issues would be happening if the ALGS build was in use.

This weekend was the final 'double header' of the ALGS Pro League, and North American games will now only be on Sundays.

There has been some talk of players boycotting ALGS on social media. This is not likely to happen. However, it does show the strength of feeling and just how detrimental these crashes are.

For full ALGS results, check out our ALGS Score hub here.

Stay tuned to esports.gg for more ALGS coverage and esports news.

Tom Bull
Tom Bull
Editor | Twitter @TAG_tom_apex
From the UK, Tom is an experienced semi-professional Apex Legends player having competed in the ALGS Challenger Circuit over multiple seasons. He is a specialist in the competitive scene, with deep knowledge of ALGS. He has worked on several notable tournament broadcasts, as both an observer and caster.