Epsilon eSports made a highly-anticipated return to ETF2L Premiership for Season 22, mixing previous veterans from i49 and nerdRage pocket and scout, tek and flippy. The team was primarily formed as an Overwatch team, but were participating in Premiership with the expectation of taking home a victory due to the high calibre of players. They started off excellently in the Challengers Cup, taking home the 1st place prize and only dropping a single map in the semi-final to TLR on cpprocess. However in Season 22, despite some stellar roaming play from Mike and the previous i49 LAN champion experience from numlocked, schocky, and KnOxXx, the team did not look like the dominant Epsilon of old. They dropped a point after being taken to a Golden Cap on cpgullywash by LEGO, and lost cp_process outright to the increasingly inconsistent * TLR*. Perhaps this could be expected from an Epsilon that was only playing scrims twice a week, but with * Reason Gaming* and * Full Tilt* left to play there was very real risk of them ending as low as third in the regular season. This wasn't a particular worry for the team, though * KnOxXx* in particular is a player known for wearing his heart on his sleeve and being very emotionally invested in the game, who had already been feeling frustrated with TF2 in scrims and games.
On Thursday night the team took on Reason Gaming on cpprocess & cpsunshine, two shaky maps for the distinguished Epsilon team. This was the match of the season being played out in Week 5, with both teams going into the fixture hoping to take full points and cement their place in the playoffs. The games were intensely close with both teams leading for large amounts of time, but Reason managed to come out on top on cpprocess. Epsilon were hard pressed to recover on the second map cpsunshine, where they had previously lost to TLR in the Challengers Cup, but came out on top in a somewhat surprising victory making the overall score 3-3. Whilst that would seem to be a mild success for Epsilon, setting them up nicely for a playoff position, those paying close attention to the team comms and morale would realise that for KnOxXx the frustration levels were rising.
KnOxXx, medic for Epsilon at i46, i49 & i52 has left his team midway through Season 22
Perhaps due to an overestimation of his teams ability without scrimming, or simply a personal dislike with the unlocks this season, KnOxXx has decided not to play TF2 with Epsilon eSports for the rest of Season 22, nor at DreamHack Winter 2015. He will be carrying on playing Overwatch with the rest of his team, but feels that TF2 is simply a source of exasperation. The Epsilon TF2 roster will continue playing in Season 22 and at DreamHack Winter 2015 with Bulle as the substitute for both events.
Seb "numlocked" Barton, the team's demoman and an old veteran, offered the following thoughts on the team and the medic situation:
Our main aim this season was to play less seriously and get some synergy for Overwatch, whilst still contesting the top teams and hopefully winning. Nobody is really bothered about how we're performing, and we're not playing to completely try-hard. We are going to finish the season with Bulle, and of course aim to win, but KnOxXx was getting too mad with the game itself to continue playing.
KnOxXx was getting angry in the scrim before our game on Thursday, and then raged in french in our official. He was definitely angry, but not with our performance. It's just tf2, it makes him too mad. He just gets mad at stuff happening in game.
The team is one game away from a guaranteed playoff spot, with their next fixture being against Animate. This should be an easy win for Epsilon, but without the previous leadership and stability from their medic an upset could be possible. In addition there now exists a very real potential for Epsilon to finish 3rd in the regular season behind Reason & Full Tilt, and require them to fight their way to an overall victory.
The roster for Epsilon eSports is now:
- Scout: Flippy
- Scout: schocky
- Roamer: Mike
- Pocket: tek
- Demoman: numlocked
- Medic: Bulle