It is a moment that haunts Team SoloMid fans to this very day, indeed, for half of 2017, it was the moment that flashed before Yiliang “Doublelift” Peng every time he closed his eyes.
The agony of Team SoloMid’s 2016 League of Legends World Championship continues to serve as a source of mockery for rival fans and has etched a chip onto the shoulder of those donning black and white jerseys.
Doublelift’s sacrificial death at the hands of Samsung Galaxy’s Lee “Crown” Min-ho’s infamous Viktor went down in history as one of competitive League of Legends’ most symbolic moments, directly resulting in Doublelift’s half-year hiatus from professional play:
After putting himself in a position to secure an invaluable group stage victory against Korean opposition, Doublelift’s inexplicable error brought Team SoloMid’s dream crashing down.
Racked with guilt, the veteran AD carry would make the difficult decision to step-down from his position on the roster following the tournament, announcing that he would spend time away from the game to assess his future.
“I am not so talented as many believe – the quality that has kept me domestically dominant for five straight seasons isn’t nature, it’s determination.
“When I do something, I put my heart and soul into it, striving to achieve greatness.
“That’s why it’s time for a small break. After our convincing performance in Summer, NA LCS Spring is considerably less appetising.
“Streaming and creating content is something I’ve always wanted to focus on, and it’s the perfect time to do it. I’ll come back if the team needs me – better than before, and better than ever.”
Yiliang “Doublelift” Peng
Yet the life of a live-streamer created a void in Doublelift’s lifestyle; his desire to compete was not fulfilled by simple solo-queue games.
Standing on the sidelines as his team dominated North America once again in the Spring Split, before falling short of the mark at the Mid-Season Invitational, Doublelift felt the itch to redeem himself and would soon announce his Summer Split return.
Team SoloMid’s lineup for the 2017 World Championship is unchanged from their previous tournament campaign, though fans are expecting a more resilient performance from the NA hopefuls this time around.
For Doublelift, the tournament will provide a platform upon which to banish the demons that have dictated his life in 2017.
The ‘SSG Crown Viktor play’ will never be forgotten, but it can be overwritten.