Who is Origen?
The short version of this question is that Origen is Xpeke, the same way that Alliance was, at least in the beginning, Froggen. I don’t think it’s wrong to look at Origen as the new European “superteam”. The official roster includes xPeke, Amazing, mithy and Zvenillan (Níels). The first three we all know very well from the EU LCS and the World Championship, and the latter from the EU CS where he played as the ad carry for SK Gaming Prime. The only unknown remains the top lane position. Of course there has been a lot of speculation about the identity of TouchMyTagada, the current top laner of Origen, specifically that he is in fact sOAZ, xPeke’s former teammate from Fnatic. If that were true (and I have my doubts since he still appears as the official top laner for Fnatic, and TouchMyTagada never played as Yorick for Origen), the roster of Origen would be even more impressive than it already is.
xPeke is undoubtedly one of the most famous European players, playing for one of the most famous teams in the world. With all the problems that afflicted Fnatic, during both the spring and the summer LCS splits, they did make it to worlds and had a performance similar to the other two European teams. It’s true that Cyanide wanted to retire, but getting a new jungler is much easier than forming a whole team from scratch. For me, Origen is a very interesting creature. Firstly, as stated before, it’s a “superteam” but one that doesn’t have the good fortune of taking part in the spring EU LCS like Alliance did, it’s a team that is currently dominating the challenger scene, in the same way LMQ did in NA last year, and, depending on xPeke’s management, has a real chance of becoming a trademark name in Europe the same way TSM is in North America, since even as a concept has managed to attract other LCS/worlds level players.
The Origen style
Let’s take a look at how they fare in the challenger scene. At the moment I’m writing this article they have 66 wins, 6 losses and are ranked 9 on the challenger ladder. For this analysis though, I looked at only 20 of their latest games, all using the same roster from above.
The stats themselves are pretty impressive: out of these 20 games they won 19 and lost 1, took 14 first bloods, had an average of 27.3 kills/game, 45.8 assists/game, they took 17 first towers, with an average of 7.2 towers/game while losing only 2.55 towers/game, 12 first dragons, with an average of 1.65 dragons/game, and got 6 out of the 8 barons. Even though on average they never warded more than the enemy team, they almost always have deeper wards, or wards positioned in such a manner to let them know what the enemy team is doing or planning to. They are an objective oriented team, one that in the process of losing 2 players to a four man gank can take 2 towers on the other side of the map. They always put pressure on the map and make the other team react to it, and seem to predict exactly where the other team will strike next. Watching them play is indeed a pleasure.
Still, as impressive as these stats are we must not forget they are against challenger level teams.
No analysis of a team is complete without taking a look at its players. I’ll start from the bottom to the top.
In these 20 games he had 1.15 kills/game, 3.1 deaths/game, 14.6 assists/game, and played Tresh 11 times, Janna 5 times, 2 times Nami and one time with Morgana and Soraka. His favourite player being MadLife it’s no wonder he plays so much Tresh, but the thing I was most impressed is that he plays Nami and does is at a high level. His warding is not the most impressive, but he does favor deep wards and it seemed to me he is sharing warding duty with Amazing. On the plus side his roams are always on point and his mechanical skill, especially in team fights, is impressive. He has an aggressive yet calculated style of playing that fits very well with the rest of the team.
(unfortunatelly no good pictures of him are available)
People keep comparing Zvenillan (Níels) to Rekkless, and from a mechanics standpoint I think it’s true. Zvenillan is a player with very strong mechanics, almost as good as Rekkles. But he has something I rarely saw in Rekkles: going into fights even if that could lead to him dying. He doesn’t just farm and show up for a team fight to deal his damage. If he gets the upper hand in lane he uses his advantage to put pressure on the map. Over the course of the 20 games he had 8.65 kills/game, 2.15 deaths/game and 7.2 assists/game, but he did play an obscene amount of Corki (14 times) with just a sprinkle of Graves and Tristana (3 times each). I would have loved to see him play a short range, engage champion like Sivir, where positioning is a lot more important, especially in team fights.
At 17 years old, he has a lot of room to grow, and being in a team with so many veterans can only help him grow into one of the best ad carry in Europe.
We all know xPeke. Whether you like him or not it’s hard not to be impressed when he plays his assassins on a good day. And no wonder that’s what he plays most in Origen. He’s back playing his signature champions, Kassadin and Ahri, which he played 6 and respectively 5 times during the matches I reviewed, along with Zed (3 times) LeBlanc(1 time), and some regular mages like Syndra (3 times), Xerath (1 time) and Lissandra (1 time). His stats are very close to those of Zvenillan with 8.6 kills/game, 3.55 deaths/game and 7.4 assists/game, and on top he got 9 first bloods. I was very curious to see how xPeke will perform having a more aggressive and mechanical jungler (Cyanide is a good jungler but is more of the support type), and I have to say that I’m impressed at how comfortable and confident he looks. They have a lot of synergy, acquired also from the many duo queues they played together. Sometimes he overextends, but nevertheless he puts pressure on the map either by taking towers, roaming or invading the enemy jungle alongside Amazing.
He is the player that impressed me the most in this Origen roster. He is literally all over the map in almost every game, trying to make plays, deep warding, invading the enemy jungle. He can be a little predictable in that he tries to gank mid lane early, but not that much. His synergy with xPeke looks better than the one he had with Bjergsen in TSM. As I said earlier he shares warding duty with mithy, not only in the early game but also in the later stages. In terms of champions played, as expected his most played was Lee Sin (9 times), but also played Jarvan IV (4 times), Rek’Sai (3 times – he also spammed him in his duo queue with xPeke), Rengar (2 times), Vi(1 time) and Elise (1 time). His impact in the early game is revealed with his 2 first bloods and more important his 5 first blood assists and participation in the first tower kill, either by participating in it or by creating the scenario that leads to that. He had an average of 5.95 kills/game, 2.75 deaths/game and 9.55 assists/game.
And we arrived at the mystery top laner of Origen. I am still uncertain if he is sOAZ or not: on one hand he mostly plays tanks (his most played champion throughout his games with Origen is Sion, with Maokai a close second), and it’s a known fact sOAZ hates the tank top meta, but on the other hand he did play champions like Ezreal, Morgana or Blitzcrank, that fit his style. Regardless of whether he is sOAZ or not, his play is very good. His style is not flashy, as you would expect from a tanky top laner, but he has a good lane presence, make great teleport plays and generally is good at distracting the enemy team away from his carries. In the 20 games I reviewed he played Maokai 5 times, Sion 4 times and then Lissandra, Irelia, Kassadin, Malphite, Nidalee, Rumble and Vladimir, 1 time each. As we can see, his champion pool is really exhaustive. He boasts a 2.8 kills/game, 3.5 deaths/game and 7.25 assists/game record – not that high numbers but it is something you would expect from a tank. Overall he is a very good and reliable addition to the Origen roster.
The future of Origen
Even just from the 20 games that I reviewed for this article, you can get the sense of a team that is hungry for victory. They know they are better than the opposition and they show it. In many games I watched, after getting a comfortable lead they start to play for fun, a sort of mouse and cat game, in which they lull the enemy team into a false sense of being able to come back in the game, only to get their hopes crushed in a perfect team fight that Origen sets up. They demoralized some challenger teams to such an extent that they do not queue up when Origen is playing.
It’s a very young team, with the oldest member being xPeke, at 22 years old, and the youngest being Zvenillan, at 17 years old. They have a lot of room to grow as a team, because for all the accolades I gave them, at the end of the day they are still playing against challenger teams. Everything depends on xPeke and the style of organization he is trying to create. I do not know the extent of the support staff surrounding the players, but for their sake I hope they have or will soon get a coach and/or an analyst to help them stay ahead. It’s also very important for them to make it to the LCS for the summer split, otherwise I don’t see them staying together until the qualifiers for the spring split of 2016.
All in all, for the moment, the future of Origen seems to be a bright one. They are ahead of the curve and it’s only up to them to stay that way. There can be no excuses for failing, seeing as all of them have some stake in this team performing good. I for one believe they can make it, and I hope that history won’t prove me wrong.