Doublelift at Worlds: Royal Club vs Fnatic
Damn this had to be the most fun series so far in the World Championships to watch. Since both Royal and Fnatic are highly aggressive play making teams that want to constantly battle, these games quickly turned into bloodbaths. I love watching strong teams fight it out like this, just in terms of spectating I find it much more enjoyable.
Before reading this blog, I’m going to assume you watched this awesome series. Please do so if you haven’t already, because dear god the amount of action, clutch plays, split second initiates, and outplay is just so godd*mn entertaining.
Some things I want to quickly point out:
White played Vlad, Zed, Ori twice, Gragas, and Kayle in the span of 6 games.
Orianna is 6-0 in the 10 Semifinal games
Uzi played a different champion every game against Fnatic, while Lucky played Elise all 4 games.
Puszu lost Semis going 29/9/37, a KDA of 7.3. In contrast, Uzi went 23/17/28 with a KDA of 3.0. Imagine losing with a 16/5/16 score and being knocked out of Worlds.
Royal vs Fnatic Game 1
Jax + Elise a much stronger duo than Lee + Zac. Yellowstar died in the 2v1 lane which should never happen, and sOAZ died in the 1v2 lane getting greedy for CS.
Jax beats Zac, White sh*t on xPeke the entire game in CS and in map pressure, and Uzi out-farmed Puszu heavily. Royal controlled every dragon, forced every objective, and despite having several big misplays were able to snowball their massive advantage. Fnatic were simply out-picked and made too many mistakes too early into the game.
Royal vs Fnatic Game 2
Fnatic level 1 dives for Uzi and ends up trading 2 for 1. xPeke, the only player on Fnatic with first blood money, loses lane to White 1v1. Royals other lanes have massive advantages that they use to win every lane and take consecutive Dragons again. Fnatic and Royal constantly team fight in the mid game. The biggest issue Fnatic had is that even though they won team fights, they NEVER got more than one objective out of it. When Royal wins team fights, they are in the position to get Baron, Dragon, or multiple towers out of it.
This is why Royal strategically outplayed Fnatic and despite being down in kills, closed out the game. Fnatic never actually fought in the right position for it to convert into actual objectives.
Royal vs Fnatic Game 3
Absolute slaughter of Royal in both side lanes with Gragas simply free farming against Ori but not pressuring the map. Yellowstar and Puszu actually won lane and got multiple kills against Uzi and Tabe (mostly Tabe). However, Royal was still in the game until they did a seemingly random 3-man dive bottom lane and got sandwiched and killed. This essentially made it so Uzi could never snowball properly on Corki, and Orianna’s kills put her ahead of Gragas.
In the meantime, sOAZ is massively out-farming Renekton due to his poor roaming attempts. Once Renekton was picked off roaming mid, and the second time accomplished nothing. Fnatic steamrolled every fight and was able to close out the game but they did so VERY VERY SLOWLY. I have to emphasize the fact that they really did not seem to know what to do to actually end the game despite having a massive gold lead.
This shows weak play calling and indecisiveness, hesitance to make fully aggressive plays and trusting your teammates to follow up. Despite Fnatic winning this game, I knew that Game 4 would be Royal’s.
Royal vs Fnatic Game 4
sOAZ finally picks something other than Zac in this series, and chooses to go with Rumble against Shen. Clearly uncomfortable with this pick, Fnatic never uses Rumble’s amazing Dragon fight capabilities to actually force Dragons. Instead, they give Royal every one.
xPeke once again countered by White (who is this time on Kayle) and killed early. Caitlyn + Annie mid is a very potent combo and xPeke blatantly disrespected them by EQing in as Fizz as Annie showed up. I consistently expect Lucky to get super far behind due to the fact that he seems to never farm jungle and is always behind in levels/farm. However, he made a huge turn around play mid and got Royal back into the game in spite of their huge misplays.
Note that Royal always converts these kills into Dragons, enemy Blue, or towers. Royal was getting picked apart by the monstrous pick composition that Fnatic was running. Rumble/Jarvan/Fizz/Leona/Varus is an extremely faceroll and pick-oriented comp that Royal fell directly into. Fnatic had a huge exp advantage and Cyanide was playing extremely well in team fights, which cost Royal their lead and gave Fnatic all the game momentum.
However, the disparity in gold was only 5-6k when Tabe made a clutch vision play and hit a Flash Tibbers on sOAZ and Cyanide. This would mark the turnaround for Royal despite being behind for a significant portion of the game.
They convert into and Inhib, eventually Baron and 2 Inhibs, and end the game after some sloppy fights going for the 3rd Inhib.
Also huge shout outs to Tabe for being cool, nice, humble, analytical, and charismatic. This guy alone is why you should be a fan of Royal if you’re not already.