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Luci Kelemen
Written By: Luci Kelemen

Writes about way too many things. Has way too many opinions. Wants to tell all the interesting stories in the world.

Sep 14, 2019

The BLAST events were always intended to stand apart from other CS:GO tournaments. On a good day, they’re a crisp two-day funfest for the local viewers with true competition treated as an afterthought – otherwise, they end up like a monstrosity straight out of the Twilight Zone. The Moscow kerfuffle clearly belongs to the latter category, with multiple production failures and virtual cameos by both Astralis and… Edward Snowden of all people.

Zeus gets knifed, retires immediately after

Though the casters did their best to vax lyrical about Zeus’ farewell tour in Moscow, highlighting his decent performance against AVANGAR on Inferno, the retiring IGL actually ended up as the worst-performing player of the team which failed to win a single map at the event. In fact, s1mple was the only one to have a positive K/D at all. As a cherry on top, Zeus bowed out with a death by knife to end his career in the shootout as both him and GeT_RiGhT ran out of ammo with the CZ-75 during the shootout showmatch.

I did get a chuckle out of the casters saying that the loser has to retire. Guess they got their wish!

What was that “talent show” in the breaks?

Confetti, water guns, juggling, bubbles, sunglasses and other nonsense in slow-motion. This is also known in the business as “filler content for the ad space we couldn’t sell”, but I don’t think I’ve ever seen a more pointless and out-of-place media content. Even FACEIT’s little skits have more charm to them.

(Did you know you can't put WTF in the title of a Twitch clip? I just tried.)

The whole Bardolph-Snowden thing

Speaking of which, Bardolph always brings his special kind of weirdness and odd tangents to the casting booth, and it’s something I enjoy more often than not. However, trying to engineer a visit by a polarizing political figure to an ongoing CS:GO event in Moscow was extremely out of place – especially if you imagine the optics of a game like Counter-Strike featured in the mainstream media without context in the current political climate. Also, what if he leaks Nyholm’s business documents? We can’t have that!

The stupid format strikes again

The semi-finals introduced in Los Angeles were scrapped again, which paved the way for an absolute meltdown for the final calculations: with three draws scrambling the brackets, NiP ended up missing out on the final to two teams they managed to beat, leaving the rest of us with a best-of-three between the two least well-known sides at the event. Good on AVANGAR for reaching back-to-back LAN finals, it just would have been nice to have less confusion about the matter.

Fun fact: the official format description misspelled name of the tiebreaker rule they’ve set in place – it’s called Neustadtl, with an extra T they forgot to add – one that’s actually used on a fairly regular basis in Dota events for round robin group stages, though those tend to set up a deep and comprehensive playoff bracket instead of the event’s only best-of-three in the final.

It’s OK though, at least we have a comprehensive ruling on the ban of graffitis! Good to see that they’ve got their priorities right.

Read more: How to fix the BLAST Pro Series format

Hanging Frankie out to dry

So did you win the major with or against your former teammate, AdreN? Never mind, my bad, let’s start this over, I had a brain freeze. That’s all perfectly normal, little misspeaks like these happen to all of us, and they’re easily waved away in the background when you have the time to re-record your interview.

Which is what normally is the case with these interviews at BLAST, but this one was pushed live immediately for whatever reason. Time crunch or not, maybe you should let your interviewer know that the little red light is blinking?

The silence of the LANs

Sometimes, there’s a minute of silence observed before the beginning of a sporting event to commemorate the passing of a great talent. BLAST clearly had a different take on the whole RIP thing: the casters were completely cut on all the streams at one point, well and truly sapped for quite a while as the matches went on without commentary.

While it did coincide with a break on the main broadcast, the match on the C stream went on with MIC MUTED spam in the chat for twelve minutes straight. Every TO wants to engineer never-before-seen (or in this case, -heard) moments at their events, but it’s usually not done in this manner.

The Astralis cameo in the final

I mean how to you screw this up in the middle of the match?

+1) A distinct lack of a furniture store

Seriously, where was our intimate front row experience? What is this arena thing you decided to hold your event in, BLAST? Actual crowd noise? A proper stage? Thankfully, you gave us so much else to meme about.

What a complete mess this was. If this is what the BLAST PREMIER will look like, we’re in for a treat. Pro CS was sorely lacking an MST3K-style experience so far!

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