Third month of the fall HellRaisers met in Paris, performing at huge championship on CS:GO, where participated 24 teams from all over the planet – Electronic Sports World Cup 2014. Getting the first place in the difficult group C, our team lost in the first round of play-offs, nevertheless proving the right to be considered as one of the strongest team of the world.
All the information about this event: in the report on our website.
Our team flew to the French capital on Wednesday morning. The aircraft brought our guys to Paris by noon. Ahead – one and a half days in Paris, because the start of the first group matches for our team was planned only for Friday, October, 31. HellRaisers visited main sights of the main town of Gauls, photoproofs can be found in Markelov's Instagtam and in the public blog in VK.com of Kostyliev.
Day 1. Group stage
HellRaisers [16:12] Platinium @dust2
Our team played the first match on tournament against the French team which received the invitation there only because of the Algerian E4US team’s refusal. The Platinium forced our team to get nervous; HR chose a defense side after won knife round on de_dust2. This match clearly showed that defense there is not a strong side.
The strategy of the French allowed them to take 10 rounds in attack. In the beginning, leading with 3:0 score, team-host of the championship played five rounds quite similarly: after playing at default positions they clamped the point "B" from both sides. To resist such fierce attacks HR managed only from the third time and after that French efforts to come on this point became vain: our guys woke up and became to play clearly at their positions. But too many rounds were lost already, and as it seemed, the first half ended with a big advantage of the French team. In the second part w after entry-frags of s1mple or Dosia. In final ten rounds, our guys won two rounds in a row 3 in 5 at gun rounds, which decided the destiny of the whole match – 16:12, HellRaisers obtain the first three points.
HellRaisers [07:16] Copenhagen Wolves @dust2
Match video you may watch here.
The second fight within first gaming day our guys played on the same map. This time the opponent was much stronger, but from the other side, there was enough time to prepare before the tournament.
But Danes surprised. First six rounds of the game, which they began for terrorists were done incredibly. Our guys were overplayed tactically and positionally. But later, their rounds’ stock ended, HR stopped to guess and began to give entry-frags. That allowed to break the course of the fight, forced “wolves” to count every coin and even to play an eco-round once. It is worth noting that the first win for our CT team celebrated with almost zero purchasing, when only in s1mple’s hands was an expensive device – AWP. This round allowed to break the course of the first half of the match – our guys won 7 rounds.
After the side exchange, beginning with pistol rounds everything went wrong. Danes played the first ten-minute in “anti-HR” style, aggressively occupying lower tunnels, thereby closing the oxygen for the action progress of our guys by locking for them the exit to the Middle. Nothing left to do, except to go to the B point, but Scandinavians were ready for such turn of events. All, tactics that our guys tried to show for terrorists, Cph Wolves easily ate, not showing any holes in their defense. The final result was quite annoying – 7:16. Such a defeat worsened our perspectives, because such powerful teams like Titan and NiP were waiting ahead for fight…
HellRaisers [16:06] Titan @mirage
Match video you may watch here.
This match was not the best in performance of the French team. Our guys managed to use at maximum all mistakes of Titan, and guaranteed the victory in the first half of the match already.
Everything began not the right way: kennyS&Co won pistol round, then our guys fully lost for economy and after that made needed purchases for saved $3.000. And it was enough, the plan worked. This round in particular became the key one. The economy of French suffered, the defense immediately realized that the game is far from the perfect and the terrorists felt that they are capable to win rounds. HellRaisers caught their wave: showed a wide arsenal of tactics: different variations of positions shifts at A point, several nice rounds under B; French were losing one round after another. At score 8:3 in our team’s favor it was clear that the game under full control of HR and it will be hard to lose in such a game. But for that relaxation Titan punished immediately and the first half ended with 9:6 score.
Switching to counter-terrorists, HellRaisers showed a classical game. Just from the pistol round, which came into the hands of our team (but in reality it was seriously laggy), began a victorious series for our guys, who did not lose any round in defense. Sometimes it was due to some luck, but such a confident game is a result of hard work, because de_mirage – one of the most popular maps among HR’s opponents and the actions of our guys, especially for CT, were reworked and perfected and French could not show anything new or even to surprise. This win allowed HellRaises to come back to the number of applicants to withdraw from the group; this win was especially pleasant because of NiP defeat from the Platinium team in the parallel match.
HellRaisers [16:10] Ninjas in Pyjamas @overpass
Match video you may watch here.
De_overpass – incredibly interesting, fresh and original map, which has found a place in hearts of not only regular players, but also in professionals’. Most of gamers positively commented and supported the longtime promotion of this map at various tournaments. Games on de_overpass still has a large share of accidents, every team plays it the own way and has a different result. For instance, inside the community there is an opinion that CTs have a big advantage there, but watching the attacking games of fnatic or Virtus.pro on this map, a completely different opinion can be made.
Anyway, the match for withdrawing the group was played by two principal opponents – NiP and HellRaisers on de_overpass. The destiny of the match was predetermined the successful start in performance of our guys. They won pistol round for terrorists and blocked NiP’s economy, gaining by winning one round after another. At the end of the first half, Swedes managed to get a good handicap, but fantastic round 1 vs 4 in performance of s1mple shocked “Ninjas”. This clutch greatly affected the outcome of the match. It gave not only an enjoyable score in the first half, but influenced emotionally on NiP, as well as on HellRaisers.
On this lift-up our team won a pistol round, and that allowed to level the score; the confident play in defense plus non-standard sniper actions confused the Scandinavians. The HR’s opponents managed pnly to have one attack during the whole game and it is a great merit of our guys. This fight almost at 100% guaranteed our team the withdrawal from the group, but in order to get the highest line in the grid, it was necessary to overcome the not easy Brazilians.
HellRaisers [16:05] KaBuM @mirage
The first gaming day ended with a transatlantic confrontation. The Brazilians, who came to European LAN for the first time (we do not consider old times of CS 1.6) did not show anything supernatural. They fought each team, but were able to get the points only from Platinium. The play of this team was still buggy, their shooting not shined and there was no authentic prepared tactics. Such trips will teach even more than months playing through the Internet. Particularly for the experience South Americans came to the capital of France.
Meeting HellRaisers meant nothing to them. This match at 100% closed their performance at ESWC. In some certain and hard to imagine circumstances these guys could make this fight the last for our team also. But from the very beginning HellRaisers showed, who is the master in this house. The most confident first half, played by our guys for CT side on de_mirage, did not make any fans of HR worrying. The Brazilians were losing the rounds at the upshots, HR played clutches as by schoolbook, that’s why KaBuM celebrated their triumph only at the score of 8:0.
In such a pace the game continued till the end. The exchange of the sides did not add any chances to the most exotic team of the championship, and the big point in this match was put by our guys delicately: they won eco-round in own match-point. Thus, HellRaisers (together with Titan) got into the play-offs, leaving overboard Ninjas in Pyjamas and Copenhagen Wolves. Results of the first gaming day in the video below.
Day 2. Play–off
In the last day’s evening we found out that sortition made our team play in quarterfinals against the most unpleasant opponents. Before visiting Paris, Fnatic won LAN-finals of FACEIT League in Milano, and a bit earlier won SLTV StarSeries in Kiev, therefore they are considered by many as a strongest team in the world at current second. Playing style of fnatic allows players to act freely and in the same time it is thought over to trifles. These seemingly contradictory characteristics form the playing style of today’s fnatic.
In the match against HellRaisers, who are even more unpredictable and unstable, the adventure started already at the stage of map selecting. Fnatic decided not to refuse playing on de_nuke, and that allowed our guys to choose this map as an own peak.
The mappool of quarterfinal looked as follows: de_nuke, de_inferno, de_cache.
HellRaisers [11:16] fnatic @nuke
You may watch the map here.
For HellRaisers everything was good at the beginning. Winning the pistol round for CT, our guys confidently won five rounds in a row. Such reserve was gained due to competent actions, good teamplay and individual skill. And after that, one round was silly lost. Flusha, who received in the head on the first seconds, had to die from s1mple, but damage of single bullet was enough only to decrease the HP to three. The main Sweden clutcher competently has hidden over the shoulders of his teammates and then won the round 1 vs 1. It is his feature.
At this point everything turned over. Perfectly working defense scheme of our team started to change and that encouraged “fanatics”. They showed several tactics and setups, but generally all rounds were played as default, which held on the street. In the first half, our guys made lots of mistakes and gave to the opponent 7 rounds. Even the won pistol round in the second half did not softened a bitter pill. The Scandinavians played two eco-rounds, purchased all needed ammunition and fully subdued the course of the game. A training for the terrorists’ play was only enough for a single buy-round, which was won already at a hopeless lag.
HellRaisers [10:16] fnatic @inferno
Match video you may watch here.
On the second map, chosen by Swedes, all rounds were hard to win for terrorists’ side. Inferno – location, where spent hours for work over own strategies would always give sense. In our case, HellRaisers had a deal against one of the strongest defenses on this map in the world. There are no weak places there as game showed.
From those three rounds, that were successful for our team in the first half, two – the result of right decisions, lucky timings and beautiful headshots. Only once, in the third round, the setup was of most importance, which allowed to block inside the point A of serious enemy forces, where it became a good target. The other 12 two-minutes rounds were Swedish and after those number at the score table the only hope remained was a comeback in the second half.
The situation normalized: that was due to won pistol round and some armed rounds in a row. Our guys began the game for defense with encouraging 6:0, but later started to make more mistaked and lost all the advantage. The score still remained quite impressive, several rounds in 1 vs 1 were won by s1mple, but it was not enough. Being two rounds away from victory, the Scandinavians showed the preparation: they completed a round on B point, and that was too hard for our guys. There were needed not so much of fnatic's efforts in order to complete what they began in the first half of the game. They won the second map together with the entire match.
HellRaisers at this point finished their participation in Paris. 5-8th place is the result, which does not satisfy our guys’ ambitions, but it is also not a complete failure. Anyway, HR conceded only to champions!
We can make many beneficial conclusions out of ESWC 2014, which will be useful at bigger and more important tournament, that approaches us very fast – Dreamhack Winter 2014. Our guys for now have a little less than a month for trainings and preparations. We hope that this work will lead our team to be a world champion in the nearest future!