Here we take a look back at Groups A and B of the StarCraft II World Championship Series America, broadcast live from the ESL TV Studios in Cologne, Germany. An amazing day of action, stretching well into the early hours of the morning over here in Europe, showcased some amazing games. While the players who qualified were to be expected, there were also a few unexpected results along the way...
Group A saw the likes of HyuN, Oz, puCK and Heart battle it out for two spots in the Ro8. Hopes were high for the American Protoss player puCK, especially after he kicked Korean favorite HyuN into the lower bracket. However, it turns out he was no match for Oz, who looks desperate to improve on his third/fourth place WCS America Season 3 finish from last year. Picking up the first Ro8 qualification spot, Oz was later joined by HyuN, who defeated puCK in the lower bracket final in two quick games.
Click for full size Group A graphic
Our pick: puCK vs. Oz
We caught up with James "Kaelaris" Carrol to see what he had to say about the series:
"After puCK went down a game against Oz, I felt that perhaps puCK would fall 0-2. Needless to say: I was quite wrong. Game two was quite bizarre, but extremely entertaining. Usually Storm is used exclusively in PvP to defend against large numbers of Void Rays, but puCK had different uses in mind... As Oz began to build more Immortals than usual, puCK ripped away their hardened shields with the Storm, leaving them vulnerable to his smaller army which would have usually been at a disadvantage otherwise. A real treat to watch!"
A meme was born
Just in case you missed in on stream, you should definitely check out the following Photoshop masterpiece! Introducing Ryan "HuK" Gosling…
Don’t forget that throughout the show you can send in your own fanart (Photoshop, Paint, Play-Doh - it doesn’t matter) on Twitter using the hashtag “#WCS”. If you’re not artistic but still have a lot to say then live tweet along with us (again using the hashtag #WCS) and your tweet could find its way onto the live stream!
The second group of the day had Alicia, Neeb, HuK and Revival face off for Ro8 qualification. Alicia qualified after a brilliant series against Revival. the Korean Protoss player looked shaky in the first game against a dominant Zerg, but came back to win two games in a row. Meanwhile in the lower bracket of the competition, the 16 year old Terran player Neeb knocked out his American counterpart HuK in two quick games. An unconfident Neeb then faced off against Intel Extreme Masters Shanghai champion Revival, and despite the end result, it looked as though he might make it through to the Ro8 after evening out the series 1-1.
Click for full size Group B graphic
Our pick: Alicia vs. Revival
Why did we pick this game? We asked resident Protoss specialist Yoan "ToD" Merlo for his opinion, and he chose Alicia vs. Revival because:
“It was the winner’s match - they were the two best players in the group and it really showed during the games because it was very high level play and very entertaining.”
The WCS America Ro16 action continues tomorrow at 17:00 CET with Groups C and D. Join us on starcraft2.com/wcs for all the action. Meanwhile, all the day’s VODs can be found over on the ESL TV YouTube channel. See you tomorrow!