An eSports organisation with a rich heritage, Fnatic has played out its fair share of dramatic League of Legends matchups. Week two of the 2017 World Championship provided yet more memorable moments for the FNC scrapbook.
After starting the ending the opening week of the tournament winless, Fnatic completely turned it around in week two, miraculously making it to the quarterfinals.
It was far from a stress-free progression to the knockout rounds. In a must-win game against Immortals, it all came down to one call, made by Fnatic, in a frantic attempt to end the game.
With super minions powering into Fnatic’s base, Immortals attempted to initiate a team fight in the bot lane. Like most of the Orianna shockwaves from Eugene “Pobelter” Park on the day, IMT missed their chance to shut the door on the European hopefuls.
The Europeans seized their opportunity, chasing down kills in the lane before turning their attention to take the inhibitor.
As Immortals’ minions bombarded the nexus, Fnatic keeps pushing, taking the two Nexus towers before their eyes widening at the prospect of ending the game altogether.
Three members drop as the player-cam shows Martin “Rekkles” Larsson sitting with his hands on his head, Mads “Broxah” Brock-Pedersen covering his eyes.
Paul “sOAZ” Boyer and Jesse “Jesiz” Le pull it off and Fnatic once again live up to their reputation as the kings of the base race.
Fnatic’s dramatic victory over Immortals will live long in the memory of European eSports fans, but where does it rank in Fnatic’s history of dramatic nexus moments?
The Xpeke Backdoor
The most notable play from anyone in a Fnatic jersey and one of the most clutch moments in the history of competitive League of Legends.
Like the Immortals game, if Enrique “xPeke” Cedeño Martínez’s gamble backfires, Fnatic lose the game. The former Fnatic mid-laner utilises Kassadin’s ultimate, RiftWalk, to somehow dodge all incoming damage whilst being in the right spot to single-handedly destroy SK Gaming’s nexus.
The Closest Game in History
The 2014 World Championship, Fnatic vs OMG in a 70 minute game, a moment so infamous it continues to be referrence in pre-tournament promotional videos.
OMG’s nexus is exposed and Fnatic’s top laner, Paul “sOAZ” Boyer, teleport’s on Rumble to attempt what his fellow mid laner did to SK Gaming.
Only OMG’s jungler, Yin “LoveLing” Le, completed his recall in time to make it back and playing Kha’Zix jumped straight in to stop him.
Soaz uses everything in his kit to slow Loveling and damage the nexus at the same time, yet Loveling takes him down, leaving the nexus at 50 percent health.
The next two contenders, after watching the failure of their top laner trying it solo, came as a pair a few seconds later. Lauri “Cyanide” Happonen and Xpeke, playing Elise and Syndra respectively, desperately try to end, using everything and anything to live as long as they could, but it still isn’t enough. The Nexus stands at under 100 HP. A single auto from anyone would have ended it.
Once everyone is back alive, the chaos starts again. OMG push to Fnatic’s mid inhibitor, nearly getting a pick onto Bora “YellOwStaR” Kim with a Thresh Hook but Fnatic counter to save their support and kill OMG’s.
With the man advantage, Fnatic push to take one of the three inhibitors but get pounced on by Gao “Gogoing” Di-Ping using flash on Ryze to reach Rekkles and lock him down. OMG follow up, kill Rekkles and do the same to the rest of Fnatic, ending the game and triggering a moment of European despair.
Fnatic’s Defence and Febiven’s One-Shot
Week two of the 2015 World Championship Group Stage. Fnatic previously lost to AHQ, now it was time to show how an unbeaten Summer Split team can adapt.
The tense encounter stalls out to 50 minutes, with AHQ haven broken two of Fnatic’s inhibitors and set to take the third in the bot lane.
YellOwStaR gets demolished by Liu “Westdoor” Shu-Wei on Zed making it a 4v5, but Fnatic aren’t giving up that easily.
Knowing that losing all three inhibitors, combined with AHQ’s baron buff would spell defeat, Fnatic look to engage with Heo “Huni” Seung-hoon’s Ekko but the opposite top laner, Chen “Ziv” Yi, does the honours.
Ziv uses the Slicing Maelstorm, stunning only Kim “Reignover” Yeu-jin’s Elise, killing no-one and trading his life. The Jinx that AHQ spent so many resources to enlarge throws out enormous auto attacks criting Martin “Rekkles” Larsson twice, leaving him low enough to finish off.
All the while, Fabian “Febiven” Diepstraten is calculating; watching the chaos. On LeBlanc, he uses distortion into all four members, instantly reducing that number to 1 and simultaneously activating Westdoors Guardians Angel.
The team swarms to finish the Zed, rush down the mid lane and finish the game. Cue the wild celebrations.