The Last Pride [EvIL] vs. No Clue [emt] – June 15, 2006
After twenty minutes of being at a disadvantage, EvIL makes a comeback to win three minutes later.
By Joby Campbell
Not many teams are strong enough to keep The Last Pride (EvIL, ranked #5 on the ladder as of this match) on the defensive, but No Clue (emt, ranked #6) is one of the few. No Clue's aggressive early game kept the former World Champions on their toes and holed up in their base for the majority of the match, but a good split strategy and some well-timed pushes let EvIL turn the game into a stunning victory at the last minute.
|The Last Pride [EvIL]
||No Clue [emt]
|Me/E – Domination (Energy Surge, Gale)
||W/Me – Axe (Eviscerate, Power Leak)
|W/E – Axe (Eviscerate, Shock)
||W/Rt – Hammer (Devastating Hammer, Irresistible Blow)
|W/N – Axe (Eviscerate, Plague Touch)
||Me/Mo – Domination (Energy Surge, Energy Burn)
|W/E – Sword ("Charge!", Shock)
||E/Mo – Support (Ether Prodigy, Ice Spikes)
|E/Mo – Support (Ether Prodigy, Ice Spikes)
||Mo/A – Smiting (Air of Enchantment, Zealot's Fire)
|Me/Mo – Domination (Expel Hexes, Energy Burn)
||Mo/Me - "Boon Prot" (Energy Drain, Divine Boon)
|Mo/Me – "Boon Prot" (Mantra of Recall, Divine Boon)
||Mo/Me - "Boon Prot" (Energy Drain, Divine Boon)
|Mo/Me – "Divine Prot" (Blessed Light, Gift of Health)
||E/Mo – Flag Runner (Ether Prodigy, Armor of Mist)
|Morale Boosts: N/A
||Morale Boosts: 7:05, 9:05, 11:05, 15:00
Air of Enchantment
Air of Enchantment [Elite]
Monk - Protection Prayers - Enchantment Spell
Enchantment Spell. For 4..10 seconds, Enchantments cast on target other ally cost 5 less Energy (minimum 1 Energy).
The Burning Isle set the stage for this epic match-up. Both guilds opted for a well-balanced build rather than one specifically tailored for the map. Neither build was entirely bog standard, but both had well-rounded offense and defense, and the largest difference lay in their choice of support NPCs. The Last Pride elected to bring an extra Warrior to enhance damage and split-team capabilities as well as a second Mesmer for extra control and Hex removal. Flag running was left to the Warriors. Conversely, No Clue went with a dedicated Elementalist flag runner and a Smiting Monk for support damage. Burning Isle discourages early use of the back path with Flame Cursed Sentinels, so both guilds went directly for the flag stand.
The initial confrontation at the stand heated up and EvIL's Mesmer/Elementalist was the first to fall, shortly before the clock hit 2:00. EvIL hit back, killing one of emt's Boon Prot Monks and its Smiter in the next minute. Away from the main battle, an EvIL Warrior attempted to interfere with emt's flag runner and paid dearly. The fight continued for another two minutes with no casualties until emt took the upper hand at 5:00 and forced EvIL to retreat to its base, inflicting several deaths and heavy damage.
Armor of Mist
Armor of Mist
Elementalist - Water Magic - Enchantment Spell
Enchantment Spell. For 8..20 seconds, you gain +10..40 armor and move 33% faster.
EvIL was given a minute of respite once it reached its base, because emt was gun-shy about immediately charging in to attack. At 6:45, most of EvIL left their base via the rear, attacking the nearest Flame Cursed Sentinel in order to begin opening a second route to emt's base. After waiting for a morale boost at 7:05, emt ran into the undefended base, intent on killing some of the NPCs before EvIL could double back. Things didn't work out quite as emt had hoped, as EvIL came rushing back to defend its NPCs and drive out the usurpers. EvIL continued pushing back, hoping to force the invaders out of EvIL's base to the nearby bridge. Unfortunately, EvIL couldn't keep momentum and again were forced to a stalemate, hiding in its base. No Clue [emt] received another morale boost at 9:05.
At this point in the match, No Clue clearly had the advantage in a head-to-head fight, and with the significant difference in morale between the teams, logic dictated it unlikely that matters would change. No fools and no strangers to the game, The Last Pride [EvIL] split its team into groups of four—one to stay behind and defend the base while the other headed across the back path toward No Clue's base to kill the NPCs inside. EvIL's bluff succeeded, and No Clue was forced into a retreat to flush the invaders out of its base.
By 13:00, both guilds were back at the flag stand, but it didn't take long for emt to get the upper hand, forcing EvIL back into its base yet again. Trying to gain an advantage, EvIL employed a different tactic—one of its Warriors was sent to emt's side of the map to draw the attention of one of emt's Warriors and one of its Elementalists. This left EvIL with seven players at its base, while emt commanded only six, making up for the higher morale boost. This plan worked briefly, and EvIL managed to push to the flag stand again at 17:00, only to be forced back one minute later.
To any casual observer, emt had the match in the bag. The morale advantage was significant, and EvIL was repeatedly whittled down and forced back into its base on the defensive. No Clue [emt] approached the base to attack, and EvIL attempted to split and send four players out the back as before. This gambit came too late, and emt was able to chase the four to the lava, damaging them heavily and forcing the rest of EvIL to assist. By 20:00, EvIL was down one Monk and one Warrior, and backed up onto the platform in its base. An attempt to push out of this position only resulted in the death of another of EvIL's Monks. Luckily for EvIL, it was able to slip two players out the back in the confusion.
Warrior - Axe Mastery - Attack
Attack. If Eviscerate hits, you strike for +1..31 damage and inflict a Deep Wound, lowering your target's maximum Health by 20% for 5..20 seconds.
The EvIL Warrior inside of emt's base intended to harass emt's defense and keep both of its Elementalists busy inside the base, which had no Bodyguards, before hightailing it out the front door at 22:00. The Elementalists were a larger part of emt's head-to-head power than had previously been realized, for from 22:00 to 23:00, EvIL was able not only to push out of its base, but to rush its way past the flag stand, killing off both of emt's healers, and every other team member except a Warrior/Ritualist and Elementalist/Monk in a blazing swath of destruction that would do Balthazar proud. At 23:30, EvIL was able to approach a Guild Lord that had no Bodyguards or player healers nearby for backup. At 23:57, the Guild Lord was killed, giving EvIL the victory.
This match proves that being able to outplay and win against another team in a straight, head-to-head fight is not enough to ultimately bring home victory. Recognizing and responding properly to split teams attacking your base is of the utmost importance. A small lapse in judgment or a few seconds of inattentiveness can lead to a loss, even against a team you've beaten back into absolute submission.