Map 1: Busan
Titans opened their season on Mecha Base and came out with a standard 3/3 comp. Shanghai brought in Gamsu for his first experience with the team, but seemed unwilling to run their own 3/3 against Vancouver’s known skill. Instead they opted for an approach reminiscent of NYXL’s approach, using Dding on Sombra to counter the bunched-up Titans. It didn’t have much effect on Mecha Base, where Vancouver won convincingly, but on Sanctuary the effectiveness of the strategy was multiplied. Though the Titans tried approaching from all directions, every time they came near the point another EMP would come out and wipe them, giving Shanghai a 100-0 win and tying the control maps 1-1. City Center sort of meandered between teams without any convincing fights until Seominsoo hit a major grav to unlock the point. Once in control, Titans cycled ultimates masterfully and held strong for the win, highlighted by a Haksal 3k and Jjanu eating pulse bombs left and right.
Titans 1 : Dragons 0
Map 2: Hollywood
Despite Dding’s quality play on Sombra, Dragons subbed him out for Geguri going onto Hollywood, thus opting into a 3/3 mirror. Vancouver on first defense played super aggressively, giving Seominsoo huge amounts of charge, which he once again parlayed into a fight-winning grav. Jjanu followed that up with a completely unsupported self-destruct that somehow got 3 kills, and Bumper put on a charge and shatter clinic, which is exhibit A in his case to be considered a top-tier main tank. The microcosm of the map was when Gamsu, just walking to approach the point, dropped shield right as Seominsoo’s right click hit him in the face and sent him back to spawn. Titans had only given up 55% on their defense, and that dominance extended to their offensive round. One push was all it took to trade up and seal the cap, giving Vancouver a well-deserved 2-0 lead going into halftime.
Titans 2 : Dragons 0
Map 3: Anubis
Once again first to defend, Vancouver won the first scrappy fight but barely lost out on the second. Fortunately they forced Shanghai to commit ultimates to the point A cap, which meant ult advantage for the Titans. What ensued was more than 5 minutes of Shanghai getting wiped and Geguri trying desperately to die or remech in sync with her team. Shanghai finally took the advantage on a push with about 2 minutes to go, and while Vancouver couldn’t bring it all the way back, they did delay nearly to overtime. Shanghai’s defense put Diem on Widow and Youngjin on Brig, which was an interesting but ineffective strategy, and point A was capped, providing Titans with a 7 minute time-bank. The snowball rolled straight onto point B and easily finished the map.
That set up another round where Shanghai’s 1 minute timebank was pitted against nearly 7 for Vancouver. When the first defensive fight went the way of Titans, Dragons were forced to dive wildly onto point, which was never really going to work. Once again Vancouver had 7 minutes to take the point, and once again they needed almost none of it to take 33% and take a 3-0 lead.
Titans 3 : Dragons 0
Map 4: Dorado
Flush with victory, Titans brought in Stitch to give him some playtime, and Dragons brought Dding on so they could play a Pharah/Widow dive. After losing first point defense, Titans opted in to the dive battle, putting Haksal on Genji and Stitch on Widow. The fights here looked slightly more chaotic, probably reflecting a lack of practice for both teams, but Vancouver always seemed to get one more kill than Dragons. Bumper showcased his signature Winston style, building Primal Rages so he could jump onto the enemy Widow, and generally making Diem’s life hell. Stitch wasn’t very impressive on his own Widow, but Haksal’s Genji looked to be in good form as he cut through the opponents. Shanghai ran into a brick wall halfway through the second point, setting a very attainable target for the Vancouver attack.
Titans decided to try some interesting compositions, first opting for the same Widow/Genji dive as on defense, then a Genji/Tracer dive with Hammond, then when those had both failed finally swapping to modified 3/3 with Stitch on McCree. For the first time in the match, Stitch had a major impact on the match, clutching headshots to cap first point in overtime. Second point was nervy, until Stitch once again came up big, getting 2 kills on a flanking deadeye to seal the victory and propel Vancouver to the 4-0 match win.
Titans 4 : Dragons 0
Man of the Match
It’s hard to choose a single player who was most key to this victory. Bumper’s play on Rein was exemplary and his Winston careened between genius and feeding (as seems to always be the case with him). Jjanu was everywhere at once, eating pulse bombs, diving for kills, securing wipes with massive self-destructs.
But my choice today is Seominsoo.
Every single grav was on point, his bubbles were literal lifesavers, and he seemed to sit at a constant 100 energy. His presence on the side of Titans tilted the scales heavily in their favor whenever 3/3 compositions clashed. An example from Anubis is illustrative: with Shanghai on the attack, Diem’s Zarya sat at about 85% charge, while Seominsoo was only at 60%. Somehow, he closed the gap, and as soon as Diem’s grav came out, Seominsoo locked up the enemies with a grav of his own, which eventually resulted in a won fight for Vancouver.