The start of the next North American competitive season is on the horizon, but this season will be more shallow than seasons previous. After their most successful season in recent memory and much contemplation, the North American side of Ascent.NA has elected to not compete online next season in RGL Invite following the roster's two-season tenure in ESEA with back to back second place finishes.
Ascent is one of the oldest surviving names in competitive TF2, harkening back to the ESEA Season 19, as an ad-interim name in wake of the team parting ways with eLevate. Led by Ma3laa, the team later went on to attend Insomnia55, thanks in part to a fundraiser that also helped deliver fellow rivals froyotech across the pond to the international event.
The team was acquired later that year by RONIN, but the Ascent brand was revived in 2017, bringing in the EVL Gaming squad under the new organization. The team underwent multiple tumultuous seasons and roster shuffles, consistently coming in second place to the aforementioned froyotech. With this roster choosing to disband following Insomnia65, next season will mark the first time in seven seasons that Ascent Esports will not have a roster under its banner in a North American league.
Ascent will not have a North American roster following the end of Insomnia65 (photo by Ness "uberchain" Delacroix and Jasmine "Jasbutts" Ho)
In conversations with teamfortress.tv, Ascent.NA players were initially unsure on the future of the roster following Insomnia65, but eventually chose to disband primarily due to personal issues, dissatisfaction with the current league selection, and — as revealed by slemnish in a teamfortress.tv thread — froyotech refusing to play scrims with the team.
We spoke to the team's well-tenured Medic skeez shared his insight into the team's decision and his own personal feelings on the team's upcoming trip to the United Kingdom.
After almost three seasons of trying our butts off to improve as a team, we’ve come a long way from getting 5-1’d by Mentality in our very first match ever. Although we couldn’t bring it home in ESEA, I’m so proud of the boys for how much they’ve all improved.
With the upcoming fall semester, jobs, dissatisfaction of available NA leagues, and general burnt-ness of the game, we’re looking to make i65 our last hurrah. We hope to be a representative NA can be proud of.
In conversations with other Ascent.NA players, the possibility was raised that some of the players will continue playing together, but not under the Ascent.NA banner and with the prospect of playing casually with offclasses. Ascent Esports have yet to release a statement regarding their future in North American TF2.
Ascent.NA will still be featured as the lone North American contender at the upcoming Insomnia65 LAN in Birmingham, England. Donations are still being accepted on Matcherino until August the 16th, which will help recuperate costs for Ascent.NA's trip and help increase the event's prize pool.
Ascent.NA's final roster travelling to England will field:
- Scout: yight
- Scout: slemnish
- Roamer: laz
- Pocket: jayhyunpae
- Demoman: botmode
- Medic: skeez