With the Pro League and other competitions underway in APAC, it certainly is an exciting time to be part of the competitive Rainbow Six scene in the region. Read on to find out what happened in the past week and what is in store for the region this week from the 2nd of July.
Kicking things off in ANZ were Mindfreak and Oddity Esports, and as had been expected by a fair few, both teams seemed to have their strengths and weaknesses, winning a map each. Fnatic, on the other hand, continued to be the team to beat, as Power Plays was unable to do more than secure three rounds on each map.
As great the first day was, though, much of the excitement happened on the second day with two truly excellent games. Across two 12-round thrillers, Zealous first tied FURY 6-6, but then won 7-5, before 0RGL3SS was pushed harder than many would have expected by Team SiNister, who lost the first map 4-7 before engineering a comeback on the second to secure a draw -- and the team’s first point of the season -- on the second.
This week, 0RGL3SS and FURY go head-to-head on the first day, followed by Power Plays and Zealous, but most eyes will likely be on day two, when Fnatic and Oddity go head-to-head, followed by what is the match to watch in Mindfreak vs Team SiNister.
In the Raleigh Major Qualifiers, Oddity had a strong outing, beating PowerPlays (who had themselves beaten ACME Association) in the Lower Bracket Final to set up one of possible two Best-of-Threes against 0RGL3SS in pursuit of the lone ANZ spot at the Raleigh Major APAC Qualifier LAN. A stunning 7-4 win on the first map put Oddity on the front foot, and while 0RGL3SS fought back on the second with a 7-2 win, Oddity were refusing to give up.
Pushing the match to overtime, and a possible second grand final (owing to a bracket reset as happens in a proper double-elimination format), Oddity eventually fell 7-8, and 0RGL3SS secured their fifth APAC LAN appearance in a row.
Over in the Six Masters 2019, PowerPlays pulled off a surprising 2-0 upset over Oddity, and ACME also stunned Zealous with a 2-0 win of their own. Next, 0RGL3SS beat SiNister 2-0, and on the next day Fnatic started off strong with a comfortable 2-0 over Rhythm, but saw a near-repeat of their Extricity game that almost saw them lose when FURY pushed them to the brink on map one (8-7).
However, the Pro League leaders recovered well to crush their opponents on the second map. Rounding things out was Mindfreak, who beat Sleeper 2-0, albeit after being dragged to overtime on the second map.
In Japan, NORA-Rengo’s season continued to get worse, with the team seemingly still struggling to recover from the aftershocks of Yudai “Wokka” Ichise’s departure in February. The match against Lamy Wonderland -- a team that had themselves not known they were competing in the Pro League until a day prior to their first game and had only been promoted when a Pro League team had disbanded -- should have been an easy 2-0 win. However, despite starting off well enough, NR slipped up once again to drop two valuable points on the second map.
Prior to their game, this weekend’s DreamHack Valencia participants Father’s Back are still searching for the first point of the season after losing 2-0 to FAV Gaming, while GUTS Gaming came out swinging, beating DetonatioN Gaming (DNG) 2-0, and Cyclops Athlete Gaming (CAG) did the same against UnsoldStuffGaming (USG), creating a three-way tie at the top between these three winners.
This week, two of the league leaders -- GUTS Gaming and CAG -- go head-to-head, with Lamy and DNG set to follow after. However, all eyes will certainly be on the NORA-Rengo game against FAV Gaming in what is certainly to be the Japanese champions’ toughest test of the season given their current form. Should they lose, it is likely the team will fail to make it to the APAC Finals, and hence the global Season 10 Finals to be held on home turf in Tokoname.
Rounding off the week will be Father’s Back and USG, with the former desperately looking for their first points of the season before they jet off to play at DreamHack Valencia just two days after.
With the Raleigh Major Qualifiers finally underway for Japan, the bracket took a few games to get interesting, with results such as CAG’s 7-5 win over GUTS, FAV’s 7-2 loss to Father’s Back, and subsequent 7-2 elimination to no-names LBX just a few on the list. Moving onto the Upper Bracket Finals, CAG had little trouble in dispatching Father’s Back 2-0, with their opponents then falling to GUTS in the Lower Bracket Finals. What then followed in the Grand Final, though, was one of the best Japanese matches in recent times.
Already on the backfoot when it came to support and experience, GUTS did not make it easier on themselves by losing the first map heavily, but a strong overtime reply on Kafe meant that they still stood a good chance. CAG, though, had no interest in entertaining their opponents, crushing them 7-0 in one of the most fearsome Border games in the region, and punching their ticket to the Raleigh Qualifier LAN to join 0RGL3SS, Aerowolf, and Cloud9.
Catch all the Pro League action from 7 PM JST (GMT+9) on Wednesdays and Thursdays on the Rainbow6JP Twitch channel (in Japanese), with other games also streamed to the same channel.
Over in Korea, SCARZ got their first point of the season in a first-map draw against Team uR, and were able to use that as a springboard to win the second map by a big margin. Cloud9, though, continued to be unstoppable, winning both maps against TRIPPY.
This week, Cloud9 will see Team uR try to challenge them, before uR plays once more on the second day against TRIPPY.
The action continued in the Korea Cup in its US$4,300 Monthly Finals, with the first semi-final seeing SCARZ fall immediately in a 0-2 loss to TRIPPY, although it was as tight as it could have been on the first map with the 8-7. Cloud9 then cleaned up HyperSpace in the second semi-final and then moved on to the Grand Final against TRIPPY.
There was not much resistance to be found there either, and while TRIPPY got closer than HyperSpace had, it was not even enough for overtime, and Cloud9 secured yet another Monthly Finals win under their belts.
Catch all the Pro League action from 6 PM KST (GMT+9) on Tuesdays and Wednesdays on the Rainbow6KR Twitch channel (in Korean), with other games also streamed to the same channel.
Rounding things off, Southeast Asia had things go largely according to script in the Pro League, with Scrypt E-Sports and Xavier Esports clearing the hurdles of Venberg Esports and NEX Esports, respectively, on the first day. However, there was somewhat of a surprise when Lese Esports beat Team Void on the first map on the second day, though Void fired back with a map win of their own immediately after. Aerowolf then rounded out the action with a dominating win over MBT Impetus Gaming.
This week, the two Singaporean teams of Aerowolf and Team Void face off, while NEX takes on Lese. The matches will then continue on the second day, where Xavier will face another Thai opponent in Venberg, and Scrypt will play MBT Impetus Gaming.
As humdrum as the Pro League may have seemed, the fireworks seemed to have been reserved for the Raleigh Major Qualifiers. In the Lower Bracket Final, with Scrypt-Esports having beaten NEX Esports in a turnaround from their Upper Bracket match, Xavier Esports were heavy favourites. Picking Coastline seemed to be a foolish choice from Scrypt, but an 8-7 win put them in the driver’s seat to face Aerowolf in the Grand Final, and it came down to a last-round heartbreak on the third map where they lost 7-8 by virtue of time.
The stage was then set for a rematch between Xavier and Aerowolf, and it seemed that Aerowolf were well and truly back as they first clobbered their opponents 7-2 on Border before securing a tense 8-7 win on the second map to defeat Xavier Esports twice in five days after they had not even beaten the Thai for over a year. As such, Aerowolf will continue their uninterrupted APAC LAN attendance, and will face either one or two of Cyclops Athlete Gaming, Cloud9, and 0RGL3SS.
Catch all the action on Wednesdays and Thursdays from 7 PM SGT (GMT+8) onwards on the community-run R6_SEA Twitch channel.
For more coverage on APAC’s competitions including and beyond the Pro League, check back here at SiegeGG regularly as we bring you what’s in store for the week ahead.