Welcome to the playoffs for RGL Season 4 Div-1. After eight weeks, we're finally here. This season has some controversies and (surprisingly) only one team casualty (press F for The Bradman Bunch). We've seen some roster changes, huge plays, and crazy upsets but now it all comes down to this. Four teams have a chance to follow in the footsteps of Mofu March and take home a Div-1 championship before this division turns to dust for Season 5. Let's meet our contenders.
#1: MILKIES (11-3)
- Scout: scarfs
- Scout: bigbankcampaign
- Roamer: gloperz
- Pocket: jetz
- Demoman: pandoo
- Medic: luddy
In an aesthetically pleasing transition, MILKIES have gone from 2nd seed* in Div-2 to 1st seed in Div-1. They are this generation's version of Street Hoops eSports: young players who have climbed the ranks quickly, practicing and studying hard along the way. The core of MILKIES mainly played in RGL Intermediate just two season ago. Now they're standing on the precipice of Invite. Of course, the veteran presence of their projectile classes has been a huge addition the growth of this team. Their season started with a nailbiter 4-2 loss to fellow Div-2 promote HRTeam on Gullywash, but since then it has been pretty smooth sailing for the #1 seed.
Team captain luddy had this to say about his team's season:
All my teammates have had stellar performances this season and I'm extremely proud of how much we've progressed and improved as a unit. Playoffs are an exciting time and we're looking forward to competing for the Div-1 title!
Disclaimer: They were 2nd seed before Plumpwench's disqualification
#2: Kronge Realm Off-White (10-4)
- Scout: Skele_Knight
- Scout: ambroon
- Roamer: Alley
- Pocket: bwelp
- Demoman: nomi
- Medic: Plaidinum
Stop me if you've heard this one before. bwelp and friends are a top 3 seed in Div-1 / Advanced playoffs. If that sounds like déjà vu, you'd be correct. This is the fourth straight occurence of such a feat in the RGL era. The twist this time around, is that Kronge Realm are flexing their offclassing might instead of the roles most know them for. Despite the bombardment of class restrictions, they have been doing swimmingly yet again. All of their regular season losses were to other playoff teams save for a 5-4 Gullywash loss to Football Team. The only other wrinkle for Kronge Realm was the midseason Medic swap to replace ales with Plaidinum, who will be looking for a back-to-back championship run.
We reached out to pick the thoughts of nomi as playoffs approach:
For most of us it's our first season playing these classes so there's still some adjustments we need to tweak to our coordination but we’re excited going into playoffs. It has also been a year since Alley’s last playoffs match so he might choke when he gets nervous.
#3: Alan Gaming (9-5)
- Scout: yerb
- Scout: Dyl4n
- Roamer: Bumbo
- Pocket: rowpieces
- Demoman: Hunter 2.0
- Medic: tony
Next up is Alan Gaming. Out of all the playoff teams, they have seen the most roster turmoil. Over the course of the season, Bumbo, Dyl4n, and tony have shifted classes around and have settled into the lineup pictured above. Perhaps in reflection of the ever-changing roles, their season went through different wavelengths. Early on, they went on a six game winning streak, including a 4-0 Clearcut thrashing of MILKIES along the way. That was followed by a four game losing streak, three of which were to the top three teams. But when it mattered the most, they pulled through at the very end with a 5-1 victory over HRTeam to seal their playoff spot.
Looking for a statement from the glorious CEO of Alan Gaming, we were met with this response instead:
He’s currently on vacation in Hawaii at the new Alan Gamer House that we will be moving into next season. The team collectively scheduled a 10 minute appointment a month in advance to see if there was any new info on the AG x Nike collaboration. Instead of answering our questions, he simply said “Hunter 3.0” and left to film his Hot Ones episode.
#4: HRTeam (7-7)
- Scout: Nygma
- Scout: mopsy
- Roamer: nimby
- Pocket: Pelt
- Demoman: cray
- Medic: MR SLIN
Last but not least is HRTeam. Due to...interesting recent developments, they have found themselves making the final dance. But don't be fooled by their record and the circumstances. Like MILKIES, this group promoted from Div-2 while maintaining the core of their roster together. The new recruits included Pelt and MR SLIN who have plenty of high-level experience under their belts. They went 1-3 in matches decided by one round, so they could've had a much stronger record. Maybe their last-minute inclusion will give them an energy boost moving forward. Worry not friends, for SLINVITE is back on the menu.
Now that they're in, HRTeam's Nygma speaks out:
Just happy to make playoffs. I'm really proud of my team for playing the whole season. We're gonna try and put on a show for the next few matches.
He then concluded with:
Oh also feno's the goat.
Disclaimer: There was news that HRTeam would be rolling with a slightly modified roster, but the details were not confirmed by time of publishing.
Upper Round 1: MILKIES vs. HRTeam
- Regular season matchups: W1A Gullywash | HRTeam W (4-2), W4B Sunshine | MILKIES W (3-2)
We might be staring at a new rivalry for seasons to come. There's a lot of similarities between these two teams that isn't just reflected in their regular season meetings. Both teams made the journey into Div-1 after playing in Div-2 the previous season. Both teams added a variety of veteran talent to their respective rosters. Both teams have a beloved Medic streamer. It will likely be a close and competitive series. I don't even know if HRTeam can be considered an underdog (if you ignore the W-L record). Honestly, neither result for this matchup would surprise me.
Upper Round 1: Kronge Realm Off-White vs. Alan Gaming
- Regular season matchups: W2B Process | Alan Gaming W (5-3), W6A Process | Kronge Realm W (5-2)
Across the bracket is another exciting battle. Kronge Realm and Alan Gaming also split the head-to-head and only one squad can move onto upper bracket finals. There's crazy talent up and down the rosters between the offclassers and late role shifts. If Process is played in the BO3, that could literally go either way based on how the regular season went. The Scout matchup will be the most intriguing of the bunch. The late removal of no name means there's a lot less beef and drama but that doesn't mean this won't be a fierce series.
Regardless of how things develop, one thing is for sure: Div-1 playoffs are gonna be spicy and you won't wanna miss 'em. Good luck and have fun out there.