The European LCS was shaken up for the 2015 summer split. With multiple roster changes between the teams, a new caster joining the desk, as well as new team Origen being thrown into the mix, the first two days promised to be a League of Legends bloodbath. Every team wanted to go 2-0 to start off this split. Some achieved that goal, and others fell short or flat on their face. Starting out the summer split, Europe and its teams have provided some impressive stats.
For those who aren’t familiar with how professional League of Legends is set up, or with the technical terms involving parts of the game (the adc, mid lane, top lane, etc. etc.) all of it is explained – and more – in the NA LCS Week 1 recap. Reading the first few paragraphs will clarify any questions about the more complicated parts of the professional scene. With that, let’s dive into the first week of the EU LCS!
The 2015 Spring Split champions and the European representatives at this years Mid-Season Invitational, it’s no surprise that they had a strong showing, even though they claimed not to play their best against SK Gaming. They took down both Unicorns of Love and SK Gaming. The star-studded team has only improved since last split with the new edition of Rekkles. Replacing Steelback, Rekkles previously played with Elements last split but after a poor performance, returned to his old organization and his old laning partner YellowStaR. The championship team is well set to do what they usually do: start strong, slump in the middle, and then rally and win. Every time.
Sitting alongside Fnatic as the only team to go 2-0 during the first week, Origen are the hyped newcomers who exploded from the Challenger scene. Started by ex-Fnatic mid-laner and one time world champion xPeke, the new team had big expectations and seemed to deliver, taking a game off of both Giants and H2K. After leaving Fnatic at the end of Season 4, both xPeke and sOAZ spent the first half of Season 5 climbing the Challenger scene and re-entering the LCS. Both veterans of the professional League of Legends scene and widely considered some of the best players Europe has ever produced, the two and their team have their sights set on the split championship. This will put them in the cross hairs of Fnatic.
Elements is returning to the EU LCS with three new players and a team built around star mid-laner, Froggen. Since coming into the LCS last year as Alliance, Froggen and his team have typically been described as a “super-team,” despite failing to put up super numbers aside from the tail end of the 2014 Summer Split. Falling to the ever unpredictable Unicorns of Love, Elements did manage to take a win from Gambit Gaming. The team has had shaky starts to seasons before, and a 1-1 record isn’t horrible. However, beating the floundering Gambit Gaming isn’t as much to brag about as it used to be. Froggen and his super squad will have to play many more matches before they can prove that this time is different.
Coming back for a second year, team Roccat is looking to regain the former glory of their Season 4 performance. Starting their LCS career strong, the team was seen as one of the best new teams to come into the European scene. However, with a weak showing the spring split of 2015, people have started to doubt their abilities. Beating Gambit Gaming and then losing a game to H2K, Roccat is sitting in the same boat as Elements. They want to regain their past glory and sail past their competitors. But it’s up to them to sink or swim.
Beating Copenhagen Wolves and then losing to Origen, Giants are positioned comfortably in the EU LCS. A long standing, but somewhat ambiguous European team, Giants have only had one non-Spaniard in the history of their organization. Having continuously shaky splits, the organization was once even relegated to the Challenger scene before fighting their way back into the LCS.
Unicorns of Love: 1-1
One of the newest teams in the European LCS, as well as one of the most entertaining to watch, Unicorns of Love are returning for their second split. Placing 2nd right under Fnatic for the 2015 Spring Split, the Unicorns have become an increasingly popular and energetic team, shaking up the competition by picking off meta champions and playing with an aggressive, chaotic style. Beating Elements, Unicorns of Love only lost a game to Fnatic. With a goofy name and relaxed team atmosphere, they’re looking to repeat the previous splits success and continue to confuse every team they run across.
Copenhagen Wolves: 1-1
Howling after their win, Copenhagen Wolves snatch a game up from SK Gaming but get stomped down by Giants. Placing third in the 2015 Spring Split, the organization had an impressive showing and a relatively unchanged roster coming into the second half of the season. Wanting to replicate the success of spring, the Wolves will have to keep biting at the ankles of every team around them.
Beating out Roccat and then losing to the undefeated Origen, H2k has come out even these two days. While relatively new to the LCS, the team has no shortage of talent. Long time member loulex as well as ex-KT Rolster Bullets mid laner Ryu bring a wide range of talent and high-skill. Placing third in the last split, right behind their fellow newcomers Unicorns of Love, H2k has a lot to prove and live up to that they’re a top European team.
SK Gaming: 0-2
One of the two teams to lose both of their games, SK staggers after losses from both Fnatic and Copenhagen Wolves. One of the oldest teams in the European LCS, SK Gaming has had it’s fair share of ups and downs. One of the ups was their 15-3 regular season last split, led by the Spring Split MVP FORG1VEN. However, when the MVP was taken by Gambit Gaming, they moved CandyPanda into the role of adc. Like many teams, they want to regain star status, though 0-2 is a very unsettling start.
Gambit Gaming: 0-2
Perhaps the best example of a team wanting to regain their star status is Gambit Gaming. Previously the legendary Moscow 5, a western team that knocked out team after team regardless of region, it seemed to all go downhill with the departure of star mid laner Alex Ich and temporary leave of support EDward (Now GoSu Peppers). However, despite losing to both Roccat and Elements they are armed with FORG1VEN in the bot lane and are wanting to prove they are one of the best teams in Europe, if not the entire world.
Even though Europe was considered boring and uninteresting last split, the first two days have promised the exact opposite. The League of Legends scene has never been so competitive, with many teams hungering for their old status and records. Every team will be interesting to look at, and the inevitable crash of Origen and Fnatic will be one to wait for.