OpTic Gaming proved once again why they’re called the “Green Wall,” taking home the trophy and the grand prize for the first Call off Duty World League tournament in the Black Ops 4 season. Their final series at CWL Las Vegas against eUnited had some nail-biting moments in front of a sold out crowd, but overall it was clear that OpTic was going to emerge from the matchup the victors. The truly exciting series was OpTic’s semi-finals against Splyce, an intense reverse sweep where OpTic swiped victory from the clutches of a sure defeat on more than one occasion.
Starting off the series, Splyce went up 2-0, and while OpTic took map three, Splyce’s early lead could have very easily been demoralizing. They didn’t let it get them down though, taking things all the way to a game five and winning. Map four’s Hardpoint competition was notably fierce. Splyce ran away with an early lead, up by more than 100 points before OpTic was able to flip the tables and hold down the zones. The final moments of this match are a crazy “will they, won’t they” of wondering who will take the win. Watching it back, I’m still not quite sure how OpTic managed to pass up Splyce in those final three points they needed. Even if you have no interest in esports, I challenge you to watch this match and not feel a twinge of nervous excitement as it all plays out.
This wasn’t the only time they had a comeback like this. At least two other maps in the tournament had OpTic facing a sure loss only to somehow clutch it back and take the win. I spoke with the team about their win and though they credit their incredible teamwork and having some of the absolute best players in the game right now, they admit that there were some maps that they just should not have won. OpTic had the best ratio of the entire tournament, winning 23 maps and only losing five. Still, many of those wins were very narrow victories, like the above Hardpoint. “We probably should have lost more,” Ian “Crimsix” Porter told me. “I’ll just have that moment where something clicks in my head and says ‘Yo, you gotta win this gunfight if you want to win the map.'”
I also spoke to Brandon “Dashy” Otell, one of OpTic’s fresh faces. CWL Las Vegas was Dashy’s first tournament, and not only did his team win, but he also came out as the MVP with some very impressive stats. Despite coming in and taking the highest honors he possibly could at this first tournament, Dashy remains humble in the face of his own skill. “The fanbase is absolutely insane, but I love it. They support me and my streams, and the whole experience has been really humbling.”
“When we picked [Dashy] up, it was a running joke between us that his first event was going to be championship. And we did it,” Crimsix said.
“Our team just clicks really well, both in and out of the game,” Team Captain Seth “Scump” Abner said. “When you have a team you like, you don’t just want to win for yourself. You want to win for buddies next to you as well.”
The Call of Duty World League will continue in January 2019 with additional qualifiers for the Pro League. Beginning in February 2019, the CWL Pro League will be an intense 12 week competition leading up the the CWL Championships later in the year. With this win, OpTic Gaming has secured their place in the Pro League bracket, along with Splyce, eUnited, and Luminosity. 12 additional teams will be decided at January’s qualifiers in Columbus, Ohio.