Upvote Upvoted 86 Downvote Downvoted
1 2
Starkie - The Rise To Sublimity
1
#1
0 Frags +

There are few players in the history of TF2 to have garnered the reputation of Starkie. He is not like b4nny or KnOxXx, leaders and veteran winners who have been getting prolific results throughout the game’s history, yet he will still go down as one of the best players – certainly in the history of Europe – thanks to his dominance of the continental scene for over a year now. This may be known as the ‘worst and most lacking’ period TF2 has ever had, but Starkie plays like a superstar of any era, often head and shoulders above his competition, pulling out spy and sniper plays to compliment his status as the best scout in the world, a title surely uncontested since the quitting of Clockwork. Although his reputation as a champion only really began with [R]eason Gaming (now called Se7en), he has been around the top of the scene for around 4 or 5 years now, and this article will detail his time in TF2, from the lower circles of Premiership right up until his final LAN, Rewind 2017.

http://i.imgur.com/z63qCmt.jpg

Starkie’s first foray into Premiership was Season 13 of ETF2L with the team Damage Control, and after an unsuccessful season garnering only one win, Stark immediately went down a couple divisions to div 2 (now mid/high), with a squad that was to make it to Premiership with Stark only three seasons later in season 16 – REVERTO. This lineup was stronger, with Stark making up the soldier duo alongside Rising, and this team managed to gain an upset win over Team CoolerMaster (who would go on to make playoffs) and also besting a fairly strong Frenchie team, and Lowpander. Stark actually started playing scout midway through that season, and put in some very solid numbers on both roles. Clearly, even at this early stage, Starkie was already showing his prestige at playing multiple classes.

However, just before that season, he had attended i49 with the team d-d-did I stutter? in the invite bracket, and had put in a decent performance on roamer. That was his first LAN on an invite level team, and although they came 7th in that invite bracket, they were only eliminated thanks to a very good Immunity team.

From here, Stark spent a season on the beloved aidsbrit lineup of AYOGURL SUGADADDY HOOD PUSSY CREEPERS before joining his first top tier roster, coming runner up in season 18 with Awsomniac, featuring such talent as Zebbosai, Kaidus and Mirelin. It had been a long time coming for his first prem playoffs, and it was to be immediately followed by insomnia 52, where Awsomniac were left unable to compete with the world’s best, being beaten in the upper bracket by Classic Mixup before losing a 2-1 series to Immunity, Stark’s second LAN outing in a row by the Australians.

Another year went by, without any notable results for Starkie (except for another 2nd place with ze knutsson rollerbladers, but then came Tony’s Tigers, led by a transformed Stark who seemed to have developed some interest in cereal box characters. They came a disappointing third in ETF2L, disappointing considering their utterly stacked roster, which would prove to be an all-time historic EU lineup: Starkie, Flippy, Zebbosai, Tek, Ryb and Bulle.

https://cdn.ampproject.org/i/s/crewcacbanger.files.wordpress.com/2016/11/starkie.jpeg

Everything after season 21 is what I see as the meat of this piece: the glory days of Starkie. It began at i55, where the very same roster, having picked up sponsor nerdRage, stormed through the tournament and into the upper bracket final against froyotech without much trouble. froyotech still had 5 of the 6 who had attended and dominated i52 to such a degree they were seen as the best lineup of all time, and at this LAN, b4nny put in one of the all time great tournament performances from the pocket role, doing over 300 dpm average, having the best k/d and most airshots at the LAN also. He was being backed by some other superstars in their own rights, most notably clockwork, Stark’s scout rival on the flank and historically god-tier fragger. But nR looked unfazed, winning the upper bracket final 2-1, featuring some insanely high-level TF2 and what I believe to be the most re-watchable game of all time. Everyone stepped up and had their time to shine, from Flippy’s incredible sniper highlights, blaze and clockwork’s coordinated attacks onto Bulle, Zebbosai’s unreal solo bombs that dropped shade multiple times, and probably most memorable of all, the Starkie spy play on snakewater. nR didn’t seem to have any concept of pressure or choke factor, they appeared to have set up an incredible grand final. However, they failed to deliver in the final, losing 3-1 on maps including a 5-0 routing on snakewater, a map they’d looked so strong on previously. Although the team was ultimately unable to deliver, Stark again displayed versatility, switching off to roamer on sunshine in the grand final, and giving an all around star performance and impressing everyone from rivals to spectators. He looked ready to join a top team, and join a top team he did.

[R]eason Gaming, led by the veteran demoman Kaidus, recruited Starkie on scout for season 22 of ETF2L, where they looked to best a reform of Epsilon eSports, featuring all the biggest names of the EU scene at the time, including Stark’s ex-teammates Flippy and Tek, with Bulle also playing for them later in the season. However, Kaidus’ much younger yet more disciplined side bested them, with Stark as their playmaker, looking for openings and getting the majority of the key picks that rewarded [R]eason’s efficient, controlling playstyle which stifled opponents and let Stark get to work on the flank. He duly received both player of the season and scout of the season awards, and then stomped all opposition at DreamHack Winter 2015, swapping out scout for roamer with Zebbosai at their lesuire, such was their lack of equal opponents.

2016 was Starkie’s year, and it was the most dominant individual year from a player we’ve ever seen. Three prem titles, each time winning player of the season and the scout of the season awards, even playing pocket for a while on the team after Kaidus’ retirement left them without a maincaller, such was how integral he was to the team’s structure. He was a part of the ‘LAN that never ended’ at DreamHack Summer, tying 2-2 on maps in the final with long-time rivals Full Tilt before running out of time for the game before the fifth and final map (FailFish).

However, his biggest victory with the team (at the time under the sponsor Crowns eSports Club) came at insomnia 58, where he claimed his only international title, beating Full Tilt in the final. He was named by analyst CommanderX as the second best player at the event (behind the god that is Michael “Mike” Adams), and finally had accrued the reward a talent of his calibre deserved; to be world champion.

His final LAN (split from i58 by yet another ETF2L victory) was Rewind, finishing second with a fairly new roster behind a strong, well-assembled froyotech lineup. It may not have been the finish he’d been expecting, but it left Stark with five LAN grand finals in just over a year, unmatched by any player in that time period.

In summary, I believe Starkie’s rise to the top shows that hard work over a long period can get results, but also what a mercurial talent he has for the game, as well as the ability to spot openings most other players simply can’t. He is in my opinion a top 5 EU player of all time (ranked 4th in the ETF2L medal tables), and can stand next to the god tier players from any era. He will be greatly missed.

There are few players in the history of TF2 to have garnered the reputation of Starkie. He is not like b4nny or KnOxXx, leaders and veteran winners who have been getting prolific results throughout the game’s history, yet he will still go down as one of the best players – certainly in the history of Europe – thanks to his dominance of the continental scene for over a year now. This may be known as the ‘worst and most lacking’ period TF2 has ever had, but Starkie plays like a superstar of any era, often head and shoulders above his competition, pulling out spy and sniper plays to compliment his status as the best scout in the world, a title surely uncontested since the quitting of Clockwork. Although his reputation as a champion only really began with [b][R]eason Gaming[/b] (now called [b]Se7en[/b]), he has been around the top of the scene for around 4 or 5 years now, and this article will detail his time in TF2, from the lower circles of Premiership right up until his final LAN, Rewind 2017.

[img]http://i.imgur.com/z63qCmt.jpg[/img]

Starkie’s first foray into Premiership was Season 13 of ETF2L with the team [b]Damage Control[/b], and after an unsuccessful season garnering only one win, Stark immediately went down a couple divisions to div 2 (now mid/high), with a squad that was to make it to Premiership with Stark only three seasons later in season 16 – [b]REVERTO[/b]. This lineup was stronger, with Stark making up the soldier duo alongside Rising, and this team managed to gain an upset win over [b]Team CoolerMaster[/b] (who would go on to make playoffs) and also besting a fairly strong Frenchie team, and [b]Lowpander.[/b] Stark actually started playing scout midway through that season, and put in some very solid numbers on both roles. Clearly, even at this early stage, Starkie was already showing his prestige at playing multiple classes.

However, just before that season, he had attended i49 with the team [b]d-d-did I stutter?[/b] in the invite bracket, and had put in a decent performance on roamer. That was his first LAN on an invite level team, and although they came 7th in that invite bracket, they were only eliminated thanks to a very good [b]Immunity[/b] team.

From here, Stark spent a season on the beloved aidsbrit lineup of [b]AYOGURL SUGADADDY HOOD PUSSY CREEPERS[/b] before joining his first top tier roster, coming runner up in season 18 with [b]Awsomniac[/b], featuring such talent as Zebbosai, Kaidus and Mirelin. It had been a long time coming for his first prem playoffs, and it was to be immediately followed by insomnia 52, where [b]Awsomniac[/b] were left unable to compete with the world’s best, being beaten in the upper bracket by [b]Classic Mixup[/b] before losing a 2-1 series to [b]Immunity[/b], Stark’s second LAN outing in a row by the Australians.

Another year went by, without any notable results for Starkie (except for another 2nd place with [b]ze knutsson rollerbladers[/b], but then came [b]Tony’s Tigers[/b], led by a transformed Stark who seemed to have developed some interest in cereal box characters. They came a disappointing third in ETF2L, disappointing considering their utterly stacked roster, which would prove to be an all-time historic EU lineup: Starkie, Flippy, Zebbosai, Tek, Ryb and Bulle.

[img]https://cdn.ampproject.org/i/s/crewcacbanger.files.wordpress.com/2016/11/starkie.jpeg[/img]

Everything after season 21 is what I see as the meat of this piece: the glory days of Starkie. It began at i55, where the very same roster, having picked up sponsor [b]nerdRage[/b], stormed through the tournament and into the upper bracket final against [b]froyotech[/b] without much trouble. [b]froyotech[/b] still had 5 of the 6 who had attended and dominated i52 to such a degree they were seen as the best lineup of all time, and at this LAN, b4nny put in one of the all time great tournament performances from the pocket role, doing over 300 dpm average, having the best k/d and most airshots at the LAN also. He was being backed by some other superstars in their own rights, most notably clockwork, Stark’s scout rival on the flank and historically god-tier fragger. But [b]nR[/b] looked unfazed, winning the upper bracket final 2-1, featuring some insanely high-level TF2 and what I believe to be the most re-watchable game of all time. Everyone stepped up and had their time to shine, from Flippy’s incredible sniper highlights, blaze and clockwork’s coordinated attacks onto Bulle, Zebbosai’s unreal solo bombs that dropped shade multiple times, and probably most memorable of all, the Starkie spy play on snakewater. [b]nR[/b] didn’t seem to have any concept of pressure or choke factor, they appeared to have set up an incredible grand final. However, they failed to deliver in the final, losing 3-1 on maps including a 5-0 routing on snakewater, a map they’d looked so strong on previously. Although the team was ultimately unable to deliver, Stark again displayed versatility, switching off to roamer on sunshine in the grand final, and giving an all around star performance and impressing everyone from rivals to spectators. He looked ready to join a top team, and join a top team he did.

[b][R]eason Gaming[/b], led by the veteran demoman Kaidus, recruited Starkie on scout for season 22 of ETF2L, where they looked to best a reform of [b]Epsilon eSports[/b], featuring all the biggest names of the EU scene at the time, including Stark’s ex-teammates Flippy and Tek, with Bulle also playing for them later in the season. However, Kaidus’ much younger yet more disciplined side bested them, with Stark as their playmaker, looking for openings and getting the majority of the key picks that rewarded [R]eason’s efficient, controlling playstyle which stifled opponents and let Stark get to work on the flank. He duly received both player of the season and scout of the season awards, and then stomped all opposition at DreamHack Winter 2015, swapping out scout for roamer with Zebbosai at their lesuire, such was their lack of equal opponents.

2016 was Starkie’s year, and it was the most dominant individual year from a player we’ve ever seen. Three prem titles, each time winning player of the season and the scout of the season awards, even playing pocket for a while on the team after Kaidus’ retirement left them without a maincaller, such was how integral he was to the team’s structure. He was a part of the ‘LAN that never ended’ at DreamHack Summer, tying 2-2 on maps in the final with long-time rivals [b]Full Tilt[/b] before running out of time for the game before the fifth and final map (FailFish).

However, his biggest victory with the team (at the time under the sponsor [b]Crowns eSports Club[/b]) came at insomnia 58, where he claimed his only international title, beating [b]Full Tilt[/b] in the final. He was named by analyst CommanderX as the second best player at the event (behind the god that is Michael “Mike” Adams), and finally had accrued the reward a talent of his calibre deserved; to be world champion.

His final LAN (split from i58 by yet another ETF2L victory) was Rewind, finishing second with a fairly new roster behind a strong, well-assembled [b]froyotech[/b] lineup. It may not have been the finish he’d been expecting, but it left Stark with five LAN grand finals in just over a year, unmatched by any player in that time period.

In summary, I believe Starkie’s rise to the top shows that hard work over a long period can get results, but also what a mercurial talent he has for the game, as well as the ability to spot openings most other players simply can’t. He is in my opinion a top 5 EU player of all time (ranked 4th in the ETF2L medal tables), and can stand next to the god tier players from any era. He will be greatly missed.
2
#2
66 Frags +

holy shit dude

holy shit dude
3
#3
11 Frags +

long live stark

long live stark
4
#4
34 Frags +

tl;dr stark loves boypussy

tl;dr stark loves boypussy
5
#5
18 Frags +
MKYtl;dr stark loves boypussy

and is twink

[quote=MKY]tl;dr stark loves boypussy[/quote]
and is twink
6
#6
15 Frags +

1 Starkie

2 Clockwork

3 B4nny

4 and sideshow ofc :)

1 Starkie

2 Clockwork

3 B4nny

4 and sideshow ofc :)
7
#7
-18 Frags +

TL:DR the lad played a lot of tf2.

TL:DR the lad played a lot of tf2.
8
#8
44 Frags +
caiz1 Starkie

2 Clockwork

3 B4nny

4 and sideshow ofc :)

#thirdplaceb4nny

[quote=caiz]1 Starkie

2 Clockwork

3 B4nny

4 and sideshow ofc :)[/quote]
#thirdplaceb4nny
9
#9
66 Frags +

http://i2.kym-cdn.com/photos/images/newsfeed/000/263/866/403.gif

[img]http://i2.kym-cdn.com/photos/images/newsfeed/000/263/866/403.gif[/img]
10
#10
-13 Frags +
Vipercaiz1 Starkie

2 Clockwork

3 B4nny

4 and sideshow ofc :)
#thirdplaceb4nny

well tbh clockwork carried b4nny in my opinion

[quote=Viper][quote=caiz]1 Starkie

2 Clockwork

3 B4nny

4 and sideshow ofc :)[/quote]
#thirdplaceb4nny[/quote]
well tbh clockwork carried b4nny in my opinion
11
#11
23 Frags +

i cant read so i just looked at the pictures but good job 10/10 :)

i cant read so i just looked at the pictures but good job 10/10 :)
12
#12
52 Frags +

https://puu.sh/tGyHo/7d558d7cdb.jpg

Never forget his greatest contribution to the scene

God speed in your post-TF2 endeavors my friend

[img]https://puu.sh/tGyHo/7d558d7cdb.jpg[/img]

[url=http://www.teamfortress.tv/post/704536/esa-rewind-lan-day-2]Never forget his greatest contribution to the scene[/url]

God speed in your post-TF2 endeavors my friend
13
#13
1 Frags +

I Luv Stark

I Luv Stark
14
#14
-53 Frags +

Starkie's a marvelous scout that makes unbelievable offclassing plays consistently but how can you declare starkie is superior to b4nny and every scout in the world when Grant Vincent himself out damages starkie and pretty much every other scout in the game nowadays in every map of the rewind and essentially every tournament ever by typically plausible margins? Downfrag me all you want but it's true.

Starkie's a marvelous scout that makes unbelievable offclassing plays consistently but how can you declare starkie is superior to b4nny and every scout in the world when Grant Vincent himself out damages starkie and pretty much every other scout in the game nowadays in every map of the rewind and essentially every tournament ever by typically plausible margins? Downfrag me all you want but it's true.
15
#15
58 Frags +
s1keStarkie's a marvelous scout that makes unbelievable offclassing plays consistently but how can you declare starkie is superior to b4nny when Grant Vincent himself out damages starkie and pretty much every other scout in the game nowadays in every map of the rewind and essentially every tournament ever by typically plausible margins?

b4nny does it by taking more heals than the pocket

[quote=s1ke]Starkie's a marvelous scout that makes unbelievable offclassing plays consistently but how can you declare starkie is superior to b4nny when Grant Vincent himself out damages starkie and pretty much every other scout in the game nowadays in every map of the rewind and essentially every tournament ever by typically plausible margins?[/quote]

b4nny does it by taking more heals than the pocket
16
#16
23 Frags +

i´ll never forgive him for exposing realtalk.tf , the biggest source of entertainment this game has seen
on a serious note, one of the few ppl i truly enjoyed watching play this cartoon game
gg

i´ll never forgive him for exposing realtalk.tf , the biggest source of entertainment this game has seen
on a serious note, one of the few ppl i truly enjoyed watching play this cartoon game
gg
17
#17
11 Frags +

Nyk going big. This was based from the original draft for the Starkie retirement article, so glad he developed the idea even further.

Edit: damn autocorrect.

Nyk going big. This was based from the original draft for the Starkie retirement article, so glad he developed the idea even further.

Edit: damn autocorrect.
18
#18
6 Frags +

Nice article, loved it!
Just one oversight: ze knutsson rollerbladers arrived 2nd (both in S19 and S20)

Nice article, loved it!
Just one oversight: ze knutsson rollerbladers arrived 2nd (both in S19 and S20)
19
#19
33 Frags +
s1ke Downfrag me all you want but it's true.

thanks, I will.

[quote=s1ke] Downfrag me all you want but it's true.[/quote]
thanks, I will.
20
#20
-36 Frags +
T0ms1keStarkie's a marvelous scout that makes unbelievable offclassing plays consistently but how can you declare starkie is superior to b4nny when Grant Vincent himself out damages starkie and pretty much every other scout in the game nowadays in every map of the rewind and essentially every tournament ever by typically plausible margins?
b4nny does it by taking more heals than the pocket

Interesting argument to make especially since b4nny didn't take more heals than paddie once during the rewind grand finals and outdamaged every scout every time. All respect to starkie and to him as a player, but please face reality (europeans).

[quote=T0m][quote=s1ke]Starkie's a marvelous scout that makes unbelievable offclassing plays consistently but how can you declare starkie is superior to b4nny when Grant Vincent himself out damages starkie and pretty much every other scout in the game nowadays in every map of the rewind and essentially every tournament ever by typically plausible margins?[/quote]

b4nny does it by taking more heals than the pocket[/quote]
Interesting argument to make especially since b4nny didn't take more heals than paddie once during the rewind grand finals and outdamaged every scout every time. All respect to starkie and to him as a player, but please face reality (europeans).
21
#21
10 Frags +

Ty cirlo and concor etc :)

s1ke, what statement do you especially disagree with? I definitely think Stark had a better 2016 than b4nny, if you look at the context of LAN placings, individual frags, and especially impact kills, nobody came really that close at all.

Ty cirlo and concor etc :)

s1ke, what statement do you especially disagree with? I definitely think Stark had a better 2016 than b4nny, if you look at the context of LAN placings, individual frags, and especially impact kills, nobody came really that close at all.
22
#22
9 Frags +

Half my memory of watching Starkie consists of amazing TF2, the other half is this gem. The only time I laughed harder watching TF2 is when Skeej shouted KANKERZOOI.

Half my memory of watching Starkie consists of amazing TF2, the other half is [url=https://youtu.be/1eDaBwmQQOI?t=1251]this gem[/url]. The only time I laughed harder watching TF2 is when Skeej shouted KANKERZOOI.
23
#23
11 Frags +

was such an enjoyment to watch him play, seemed to make the impossible possible sometimes, was a star player in all aspects

was such an enjoyment to watch him play, seemed to make the impossible possible sometimes, was a star player in all aspects
24
#24
15 Frags +

Was probably better than a lot of the greatest players on their mains, pocket scout, flank scout, roamer, pocket - he can do it all.

Was probably better than a lot of the greatest players on their mains, pocket scout, flank scout, roamer, pocket - he can do it all.
25
#25
-1 Frags +
nykdiv 2 (now mid/high)

:thinking:

but overall great article, his roaming was inspiring to me for quite a while, will miss him for sure [*]

[quote=nyk][b]div 2[/b] (now [b]mid/high[/b])[/quote]
:thinking:

but overall great article, his roaming was inspiring to me for quite a while, will miss him for sure [*]
26
#26
0 Frags +
concorNyk going big. This was based from the original draft for the Starkie retirement article, so glad he developed the idea even further.

Edit: damn autocorrect.

Not true, the original draft was deleted completly and this was rewritten from scratch.

[quote=concor]Nyk going big. This was based from the original draft for the Starkie retirement article, so glad he developed the idea even further.

Edit: damn autocorrect.[/quote]

Not true, the original draft was deleted completly and this was rewritten from scratch.
27
#27
0 Frags +
CoYoTeconcorNyk going big. This was based from the original draft for the Starkie retirement article, so glad he developed the idea even further.

Edit: damn autocorrect.

Not true, the original draft was deleted completly and this was rewritten from scratch.

No I know that, still it's similar in a way to his original draft.

[quote=CoYoTe][quote=concor]Nyk going big. This was based from the original draft for the Starkie retirement article, so glad he developed the idea even further.

Edit: damn autocorrect.[/quote]

Not true, the original draft was deleted completly and this was rewritten from scratch.[/quote]
No I know that, still it's similar in a way to his original draft.
28
#28
-10 Frags +

Starkie; Like b4nny but with 100% more off-class picks and 100% more maturity.

What a god.

You'll be missed. [*]

Starkie; Like b4nny but with 100% more off-class picks and 100% more maturity.

What a god.

You'll be missed. [*]
29
#29
-9 Frags +
Jw321123100% more maturity.

u do realize a lot of people hate starkie for the same reason people hate b4nny?

[quote=Jw321123]100% more maturity. [/quote]
u do realize a lot of people hate starkie for the same reason people hate b4nny?
30
#30
34 Frags +
Jw321123Starkie; Like b4nny but with 100% more off-class picks and 100% more maturity.

That feel when you need to compare everything to b4nny because you're clueless of who people actually are.

[quote=Jw321123]Starkie; Like b4nny but with 100% more off-class picks and 100% more maturity.[/quote]

That feel when you need to compare everything to b4nny because you're clueless of who people actually are.
1 2
Please sign in through STEAM to post a comment.