The first of two groups at the TeamFight Tactics Reckoning World Championships fought for four spots in the finals during their five-game series on Day 2 of the tournament. After the dust settled, the picture of who can contend for the $250,000 TFT World Championship is much clearer.
While the European players looked flatter than the day before, Oceania’s Escha pulled together a thrilling, narrow string of successes to secure his advancement. And, of course, it wouldn’t be TFT without someone one-tricking a re-roll composition. Here’s how it all went down.
EU fails to live up to expectations
Heading into Day 2, Europe had successfully converted all four of their reps into the group stage thanks to Shircane making it out of the play-in stage. But when the two group stage pods were revealed, there was an uneven divide for the EU players. Group A had three of them and Group B only had one. It was, in some ways, the more the merrier, since all three players from the same region could technically qualify for the finals if they dominated the lobby. And with three chances, EU was poised for at least one representative to move on.
More than anything, the goal was to prove, once again, they were the region to beat. After Game 2, that maxim looked to be true, as the top four standings featured all three EU players. But unfortunately for them, their success was not long for this world.
With bottom four placements by the EU top seed, Gluteus Maximus, and ARMA ACKK, EU went into Game 4 with only one rep in the top four. Gluteus Maximus clawed his way to a two-way tie for fourth heading into the final game, but after his third bottom four finish in five games, EU’s top seed failed to make it to the finals. Not only that, but ARMA ACKK had sunk to the very bottom of the standings with only 15 points. Shircane did end up with the overall points lead finish, but with a one out of three conversion rate, EU did not have a good day and didn’t live up to expectations, especially since their fourth seed now looks like their top seed.
Escha puts on a show again
After a fantastic showing from the lone Oceania representative on Day 1, Escha was out to prove that his play-in performance was no fluke. But his momentum from earlier was immediately destroyed once Day 2 began due to an eighth-place finish to start the day. But after a loud wake-up call that stated this lobby would be harder than the play-ins, Escha turned his performance around quickly and played up to his competition.
The next two games showcased the Escha players saw during Day 1, but due to the deep hole he dug himself into, two back-to-back top-three finishes barely put Escha in contention for advancement. He was going to need three more top-four finishes to secure it. And as Game 3 progressed, Escha found himself in a bad position, sitting with only 22 HP and an un-optimized Draconic-Abomination composition. Even the casters were counting him out, as one of them pinned that Escha was most likely going to end up in a sixth or seventh place, at best. Khalif “Khroen” Hashim stated it would be a “miracle” to ask for more.
All the same, Escha’s prayers were answered.
After stabilizing with a pivot from Draconic into a Vel’Koz hyper carry, Escha slowly improved his standings. At the start of Stage 6, in a do or die situation, Escha found himself magically in second place. But with six players alive and everyone at essentially one life, every unit in every fight mattered. Yet Escha clutched out a close fight to secure his “miracle” top four placement, putting him in control of his own destiny going into the final two games.
Escha then pulled off another miracle in Game 4. In the top four, he went up against Gluteus Maximus’ three-star Vel’Koz, which is considered an unwinnable matchup for anyone facing it. Despite the observers missing the actual fight to show the other, players got to see Escha’s reaction, popping off in the top left corner. He had done the unthinkable, slaying Vel’Koz and locking up his second straight second-place finish.
— Teamfight Tactics (@TFT) October 2, 2021
Finally, with another top four in Game 5, Escha locked up his spot in the finals through clutch play, big-time reaction and big-time comebacks.
Milk shows that one-tricking is viable
Like SpencerTFT in Day 1, DeliciousMilkGG was very high on the newly discovered Kled Reroll comp. He had stated multiple times on social media that he intended to one-trick the comp throughout Worlds. SpencerTFT said the same thing but pivoted away from it before being eliminated in Day 1 due to others contesting the comp. Milk didn’t shy away from the competition during Day 2, though.
In all five games, Milk piloted the Kled Reroll comp despite not always being in the right circumstances for it. In the first two games of the five-game series, Milk showcased the raw power of the composition, picking up back-to-back top-two finishes. But things went wrong in Game 3. Milk was unable to get the comp online in time and was punished with an eighth-place. But even after only picking up the one point, Milk entered Game 4 still in the overall lead.
Hellion Highroll pic.twitter.com/6wq2UEGt5a
— Teamfight Tactics (@TFT) October 2, 2021
Things looked poor for Milk in Game 4, as the comp’s inconsistency exposed itself once again. After all, playing a reroll composition in TFT is risky since their power comes from getting it online quickly. Despite failing to do so, Milk was bailed out with a generous Radiant’s Blessing. The “stimmy” granted him the gold needed to spike the comp and Milk turned the bad game around into fourth place.
Milk, fearing no one, once again ran the comp in Game 5. Yet things started even worse for Milk than his previous two games and he lived close to the edge, sitting at only 3 HP by Stage 5-3. But after finally getting his upgrades, Milk went on a hero run. With 3 HP and a dream, Milk eliminated players left and right until only two remained. His run came to an end with a second-place finish, but that was enough to tie for the overall lead as he earned his spot in the Day 4 finals.
With the power of Kled Reroll, Milk showcased that one-tricking is completely viable. Not only that, but one-tricking could make Milk a World champion.