This is an account of our League of Legends team at the largest UK lan, i46. What a fantastic weekend, and I wanted to take the opportunity to write up the teams experience as well as to thank everyone who supported us.
So, we arrived at LAN and fairly quickly met up as a four as Wilz0 (our support) wouldn't be arriving until the next day; the plan was to play ranked 5s and prepare for the matches the next day. After a BBQ, with some heavy drinking from our midlane, that plan quickly dissolved into shouting and screaming while 'trolling' ranked 5s; not quite what we had planned. Anyway, I decided to roam and see if i could see anyone else playing LoL, perhaps catch a glimpse of any potential teams but, it just seemed to be people messing around so I felt a little better about not playing much.
So today was the day we were supposed to be receiving our group fixtures. Unknown to us at the time, we were going to be playing later that evening. We didn't really play much during the day as we spent most of it walking around, checking out the exhibit, standard lan things. Willz0 arrived around 3pm and we helped him check in and get ready so we could play. We didn't, we started practicing at 7pm as our first tournament games was due to start at 10pm; this late start meant that we were tired but still as eager as ever to play. We weren't sure what to expect as we didn't know what the competition was like. Little did we know, the initial group stage would be a complete stomp.
We started the first game, nervous and went for a pretty strong CC team. We ended up going 45 - 2 on kills; game one down. The next game had a pretty similar ending with us scoring 50 - 4 on kills. This was a massive confidence boost.
It was much the same in the first group with one team decided to forfeit because the top lane player 'had a bad wrist'. Overall, the first group was pretty easy and we went to bed that night happy with the results, confidence definitely boosted.
Matches today began at 11am, so the team had to be up and out of tents pretty early.. not to our delight. With a cup of tea and some food down us we eagerly refreshed the tournament page waiting for our single elimination games. When they finally came up, we noticed that we were going to be facing 'Team Sloth' whom everyone had told us we would surely lose against. Not feeling great about this, we decided to play our best and see what happens.
The initial games were pretty much a repeat of our first group, with easy wins across the matches and teams declining second games, again this was a good boost for our confidence and the idea of making top 4 was starting to become a serious thought.
After wining fairly easily we realised that we had hit the quarters, with some conformation from the admin we were in disbelief we had actually come that far. This would be a game for money, but still we wanted to go further.
Our game was against a team called 'Will support for ice cream'. We were unsure on their skill level and we went into this game fairly blind. We all told each other to stay calm and play well, but I think we were all secretly confident. After playing the best in three, each game being very one sided, we celebrated yes again another success. 'Team Sloth' were our next opponents. We were all proud that we had made it this far, and that any other victories would come as a bonus. Once we had been informed that the game was going to be streamed, we were determined to put on a good show!
We were further spurred on when we learnt that the caster was backing the Sloth, predicting that they would beat us 2-0 so we went in with a steady plan and solid mechanics. Game one was close, obviously it had us all nervous and worried that we were going to slip up any second. With a crowd behind each player, it made the pressure worse but we played a solid first game and won; needless to say we were very, very excited with this lead.
Game two came around and it did not look good, we were down early, not just down, 8k gold down within 17 minutes of the game starting. We were pretty downhearted but despite this lead probably played the best games of LoL we have ever played and pulled it back to win, placing us into the final.
The cheers from the crowd and feeling it gave was pretty surreal. To think we went just to play for fun and perhaps place and here we were, being told to take our keyboards and mice to the main stage. This was it, with me pretty excited and feeling elated i hurried over to see the stage i would be competing on, it was pretty impressive.
I think everyone in ATK was pretty excited for us, grabbing front row seats and looking equally as excited as us. The games were against VYE Visualise Your Enemy, we saw their elo and we didn't have much hope for the match, but we didn't care. There was a great support for us, the underdogs, which made us feel appreciated and lucky to be in that position.
Game one was hideous, we lost 2 towers in the first 5 minutes and as we sat there it dawned on us that the difference in skill level was huge! But still we didn't care, we were on a stage playing LoL. Even though we were getting our arses handed to us, we still had the biggest smiles on our faces (apart from Wilz0 of course)!
Game two wasn't much better but we put on a good show that got the crowd cheering. With 5 man ganks at level 1 and a baron at level 9 we had the crowd on our side and the commentators casting a fun game to watch, scumbag me ulting everywhere to last hit as many kills as possible, making the plays!
We took the baron, all died mid then surrendered so we could watch the crowd watch our baron plays, the cheers when we got it made it all worth it. The overall feeling of being here was amazing. We shook hands with VYE and got ready to receive our novelty check for £625. Fantastic.
After receiving the cheque we got up on stage as an entire community and had one last photo, the team buzzing and the rest of ATK equally as happy with our performance, overall one of the best experiences i've had so far at lan. A great end to a great weekend.
-written by Luke "Marshy" Stewart, edited by Amy Hubbard