With the X Games in the rear view mirror and another event of OpTic Gaming domination in the books, Major League Gaming (MLG) is doing the only thing it can to stop the rote of OpTic domination: host a throwback tourney to an era where OpTic wasn’t dominant.
Tonight the league will host the Throw Back Black Ops 2 tournament with $5,000 on the line for 8 teams competing with classic rosters.
It’s happening! Throw Back Black Ops 2 tournament starts tomorrow featuring Legendary Rosters!!! pic.twitter.com/AzCi2Vu8sS
— Chris Puckett (@MLGPuckett) June 8, 2015
The game is Call of Duty: Black Ops 2, the title that really kicked off the modern era of the game. Released at the end of 2012, Black Ops 2 featured the first ever Call of Duty Championship in Mar. 2013, won by Fariko Impact.
That championship-winning lineup will don the Impact colors once again for tonight’s throw back event, and they’ll be challenged by a group of other similar throwback rosters.
Their biggest competition should be the Complexity lineup that began Call of Duty’s biggest dynasty at the MLG Spring Championship in June 2013, Patrick “ACHES” Price, Ian “Crimsix” Porter, Tyler “Teepee” Polchow: and Clay “Clayster” Eubanks. But only two of the old band are back together for tonight’s affair. Price and Eubanks will wear Complexity tags tonight flanked by John Perez and Raymond “Rambo” Lussier, two veteran Black Ops 2 stars, but two who never played for Complexity.
Other teams are bringing lineups with a few historic edits. Black Ops 2 featured the return of Matt “Nadeshot” Haag to the OpTic Gaming roster, but he isn’t coming back from his recent retirement for this tournament. One old OpTic hand is, though; Seth “Scump” Abner, Jordan “JKap” Kaplan, and Joe “MerK” Deluca will be flanked by Will “BigTymer” Johnson, one of the original stalwarts of OpTic and first superstars in Call of Duty. That’s the same lineup OpTic used for much of Black Ops 2, including Champs, save for Kaplan in Haag’s spot.
Other classic lineups reborn include UNiTE Gaming, though not exactly their most successful lineup. They’ve got three of the four members who took the MLG PAX Prime Invitational title in September 2013 with Marcus “MBoZe” Blanks, Anthony “NameLeSs” Wheeler, and Richard “Ricky” Stacy. Added to that is Renato “Saints” Forza, their fourth man at the end of the Black Ops 2 era and the release of Call of Duty: Ghosts.
Other lineups in the Throw Back include FaZe Clan, Team Kaliber, and ConqueR.
Team Kaliber will bring their traditional lineup of Brandon “Sharp” Rodgers, Jevon “Goonjar” Gooljar-Lim, Dylan “Theory” McGee, and Daniel “Loony” Loza. Those four managed a top three finish behind UNiTE and compLexity at the MLG Pax Prime Invitational in 2013, as well as multiple finals appearances at UMG events in Black Ops 2.
The FaZe throwback lineup features three staples from their Black Ops 2 days: Nicholas “Classic” DiCostanzo, Michael “Spacely” Schmale, and Chris “Replays” Chowder. Replacing Joshua “Huhdle” Piha, who no longer competes in Call of Duty, is Nicholas “Classic” DiCostanzo, a pro who never competed as a pro in Black Ops 2 but joined FaZe at the release of Ghosts.
The last lineup, ConqueR, is quite a bit more obscure. They feature one of the game’s longtime veterans, Paul “eGo” Megna, and two players who took seventh with him at the MLG Spring Championship in 2013, Hadi “Gucci” Chreidi and Jeremy “StuDyy” Astacio.
The favorites have to be the 2013 Call of Duty Championships champs Fariko Impact, but they’ve got some stiff competition in what should be a fun event.
The event kicks off tonight at 7pm ET with matches broadcast on MLG.tv. So if you want to check out some of Call of Duty’s legendary lineups, and see what the game was like before jetpacks and uplink, tune in tonight.