When we were told xPeke was leaving Fnatic to start his own team to compete in the EUCS everyone thought it was another case like Froggen’s where he would get into LCS and underperform every split. What we got was nothing short of a super powered team ran by one of the most iconic mid laners in Leagues history.
When Origen played in the Challenger Series most assumed they would walk over ever one they played, which they did, but what people didn’t guess is that it wouldn’t be xPeke carrying them in most games. It was their rookie ADC niels who took up the mantle and led them to win after win. Going 9-1 in the spring season, losing 1 insignificant game to LowLandLions White, they took the automatic promotion spot to replace MeetYourMakers.
Everyone, including Origen, thought they would place mid table in a lower playoff spot. After their first three weeks they were 5-1 and were looking to be a great team. Niels was playing extremely well with Mithy putting his experience to good use shepherding him into good situations and trades. Amazing was dominating nearly every single lane as well as the entire jungle. XPeke and sOAZ played a more laid back style in order to let Niels take charge. They focused on winning the first 10 minutes of the game, and then demolishing their opponents with a slow vice grip on the map. They didn’t use an over complicated strategy to win, but experience and patience.
Later in the season though they started to drop the occasional game. Most think this was due to them banking on the early lead in games, but when they didn’t get them they had no back up plan. They would be able to battle to the late game, but lose after too much became stacked against them. They only lost to a handful of teams, with both Fnatic and Roccat being the only two to beat them in both regular season meetings. They placed second going into playoffs, a win for them due to their moderate expectations.
Heading into playoffs they were handed a first round bye, but were then put against their closet competitor H2K. After winning their first two games in normal fashion H2K’s coach Pr0lly had them change up their style and threw Orgien off to win a game. They bounced back with from the defeat to win 3-1. This got them into the finals with undefeated Fnatic.
Fnatic were the toughest opponent in the west coming off a 18-0 regular season, and an easy 3-0 over UOL the week before. From MSG I got to watch the five games series of the EU season. After four games it was tied 2-2. The fifth game was a back and forth struggle for supremacy with the final win going to Fnatic, and making Origen play in the the gauntlet to make worlds.
Their regular season, as well as playoff, performances were very strong and put the thought in most analyst minds that they were a team that had better individual talent, and were able to play as one unit without pause. Every time Amazing would go into a lane for a gank his team was there to do their job. Niels knew when to move headstrong into a fight, and when to back off due to his teams communication. XPeke also told people that he was the main voice but shot calling was a team effort. This gave everyone the same responsibility to the team to be attentive and alert at all times. These are the factors that lead them to be such a cohesive unit.
At Worlds 2015 however things changed. XPeke showed up big time and helped Origen go 4-2 in the group stage to get into the next round as the lower seed. They beat TSM twice, while beating LGD, and KT Rolster once. This was surprising to many as no one guess LGD would have such a poor run.
Their quarterfinals opponent was arguably the weakest team to make it through, Flashwovles, who weren’t as happy as Origen to play each other. XPeke again led them to a comfortable 3-1 victory, and put his team into the semi finals. The next team they faced was SKT T1 who won 3-0, and ended up winning worlds for the second time. Origen had in one season gone from a Challenger team to in their first worlds semi finals only losing out to the Winners. No one could doubt that they were a very powerful team with multiple threats, and a very confident group.
In the current off season XPeke has stepped down as the starting mid laner with the recent acquisition of Power of Evil from UOL, and they won the IEM San Jose with out a single loss. Not only do they look stronger than when at worlds, but sharper too. They have a better coaching staff in place as well.
XPeke may have started Origen to get back to the roots of why he started pro gaming in the first place, but now they are the best team in the western world. They should get to worlds this season with relative ease. The only other strong established teams in EU this split will be Fnatic and H2K.
Louis “MajesticEra” DePonceau
Email [email protected]