An unexpected ‘Call of Duty’ champion dominates Gfinity 3

Few would have predicted the final results of the $55,000 Call of Duty: Ghosts tournament at Gfinity 3 this weekend

Screengrab via

Few would have predicted the final results of the $55,000 Call of Duty: Ghosts tournament at Gfinity 3 this weekend. But with the way EnVyUs played on the way to winning their first major Ghosts final, it’s clear they deserved it.

The American squad obliterated all comers, winning five series while dropping only a single map through the source of the tournament. EnVyUs put together a 15-1 map record, all told.

Matthew “FormaL” Piper was the unlikely MVP of the tournament. The former Halo professional succeeded where many of his peers have failed: switching to Call of Duty. And he’s not just succeeded, but excelled.

Piper was impressive in every series at the event, posting a 1.35 KDA overall, the best in the tournament. His 26.73 kills in Respawn also lead the tournament, while his 1.86 KDA in Search and Destroy ranked second overall.

The man @FormaLnV is now the first console FPS player to win a major LAN championship in both Halo and Call of Duty. Impressive. #G3

— Rod Breslau (@Slasher) August 3, 2014

EnVyUs was unstoppable, thanks to their insane slaying power, out-slaying the other team in 82 percent of their games. Team captain Joey “MerK” Deluca, a Call of Duty veteran who has competed since 2010, earned his first tournament win since he was dropped from OpTic Gaming in September of last year. Deluca carried the objective load for EnVyUs while putting up a 1.16 KDA, good for sixth in the tournament, outstanding play from the leader of the squad.

It was the first major title in Ghosts for EnVyUs, and it’s been a long time coming–one fan said it was “seven years in the making.”

A previous version of the team, featuring current core Deluca and Anthony “NameLeSs” Wheeler, earned $200,000 by placing second at the Call of Duty Championship in March. But that lineup’s results quickly deteriorated after showing so much promise. Last month, the team brought on Piper and Jordan “Jkap” Kaplan to gear up for season 3 of the Major League Gaming Call of Duty: Ghosts League. Apparently, it was the right move.

In the finals, EnVyUs faced hometown favorites Epsilon, the third time a team from the United Kingdom has reached the final of a Gfinity event. It was also the third time the home crowd watched their heroes fall at the hands of an American squad.

Epsilon’s run through the bracket was perhaps more impressive than EnVyUs’, but they just couldn’t perform in the final. The Brits bested heavy favorite OpTic Gaming in the quarterfinals in a close 3-2 series before taking out FaZe, the team that eliminated American superstar squad Evil Geniuses. But in the finals, EnVyUs was simply superb, leaving the Brits on the outside once again.

The Americans took home $30,000 for the championship, with Epsilon pulling in $15,000. Top four finishers FaZe and OpTic Nation each earned $5,000.

Gfinity 3 was a shaky tournament, plagued by stream issues and a nasty Search and Destroy bug that even caused restarts in the grand final. But the results were exciting and leave the Call of Duty scene wide open. Perennial favorites Evil Geniuses and OpTic Gaming no longer look like the unstoppable juggernauts they were at Major League Gaming Anaheim last month. Teams like FaZe are looking extremely dangerous.

EnVyUs has never won the big one until now. And now they’ll be in the conversation as a contender at every tournament.