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Fnatic/History

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Overview   History    

Acquisition of myRevenge

Fnatic’s first venture into the League of Legends scene began on March 14th, 2011, when they acquired the roster from myRevenge consisting of WetDreaM, xPeke, LaMiaZeaLoT, Shushei, CyanideFI, Mellisan, and MagicFingers.

Season 1

In May of 2011, WetDreaM left Fnatic to form AbsoluteLegends. Fnatic were one of the eight teams to qualify for the Riot Season 1 Championship, which was held from June 18th to June 20th of 2011. Fnatic placed third in the Group Stage by going 1-2, narrowly escaping elimination by defeating Team Pacific. Their losses came from against All authority and Epik Gamer. Fnatic would see more success in the playoffs largely due to xPeke, who had finally arrived after missing the first day due to a delayed flight. They would power through and defeat Counter Logic Gaming 2-0 in the relegation round, Epik Gamer 2-0 in the semi-finals, and won versus against All authority in the finals of the winner’s bracket, propelling Fnatic to the grand finals. Fnatic faced aAa again in an all-European final, pulling out a 2-1 victory to be crowned the League of Legends Season 1 champions. Riot later created and released Fnatic-themed skins, a custom for World Championship winners, and chose each player's most-played champions during the Season 1 Worlds:  Jarvan IV (Cyanide),  Karthus (xPeke),  Gragas (Shushei),  Corki (LamiaZealot) and  Janna (Mellisan).

Pre-Season 2

Two months later, Fnatic would place third at the IEM Season VI - Global Challenge Cologne. Seeded into Group B, Fnatic would place second with a 2-1 record, defeating SK Gaming and Frag Executors, while falling to Counter Logic Gaming. However, Fnatic would fall to Team Solomid 2-1 in the semifinals, relegating Fnatic to play against Millenium for third place, where Fnatic was able to come out on top with a 2-1 victory.

The next event that Fnatic would participate in would be the IEM Season VI - Global Challenge New York. Here, Fnatic would show a dominant performance, going 3-0 and taking first in the group stage by defeating Counter Logic Gaming, Dignitas, and Team Solomid. In the playoffs, Fnatic would sweep team Sypher 2-0 in the semi finals and SK Gaming 2-0 in the grand finals, taking home first from the event.

Season 2

On January 19th, 2012, MagicFinger left Fnatic due to the dissatisfaction with only being a substitute player.[1]

The next major event Fnatic competed in would be the IEM Season VI - World Championship in March. Unfortunately, Fnatic couldn't emulate their success at previous IEM events, and placed fifth, being eliminated in the group stage. Fnatic took wins against Millenium and Dignitas, while falling to Team ALTERNATE, against All authority, and Counter Logic Gaming Prime.

Two weeks later, Fnatic placed second at the SK Trophy March. They started strong by defeating LowLandLions 1-0 in the round of 16, TCM Gaming 2-0 in the quarterfinals, and Millenium 2-0, advancing them to the finals. Fnatic lost to Natus Vincere 2-0 in the grand finals, taking second place.

From March 21st to May 19th, Fnatic was invited to compete in Korea at Azubu The Champions Spring 2012. They were placed in the so-called "Group of Death," Group D. Fnatic's first game was against StarTale where the Korean play-style caught Fnatic completely off-guard. They were dominated after a relatively calm first 25 minutes of the game. Two days later, Fnatic saw themselves competing to stay in the tournament. Fnatic took a match and lost a match to make it 1-1, and they needed a win to advance. StarTale, who had lost to MiG Blaze, would be in their way. Lauri "Cyanide" Happonen secured Fnatic an early game advantage, helping them to prevail over the Korean powerhouse. This earned them a spot in the quarter finals, where they played against Team OP. Despite their motivation, Fnatic was not able to win a single game against them and got knocked out of the tournament after losing 0 - 2.

Fnatic then participated in the RaidCall PLAY Cup 1 on April 3rd, 2012. They took second at the event, falling to Counter Logic Gaming EU in the grand finals. Fnatic most notably defeated SK Gaming and Absolute Legends in the tournament.

On May 23rd, 2012, Pheilox joined Fnatic as their sixth player, replacing Mellisan at offline and online events while Mellisan finished his studies.[2]

With Pheilox, Fnatic placed second at the RaidCall PLAY Cup 2. Fnatic defeated TCM Gaming in the semifinals to advance to the finals, where they fell to Team Acer.PL.

On June 4th and 5th Fnatic's roster would undergo some notable changes, with long time top laner Shushei being evicted from the team due to his inability to perform up to standards.[3] A day after the announcement of Shushei's departure, Fnatic announced Shushei's replacement, former aAa top laner sOAZ.[4] A month after the the roster change, long time support player Mellisan departed Fnatic due to his educational commitments.[5]

Having Pheilox and sOAZ as their new support and top laner, Fnatic would head to 2012 MLG Pro Circuit/Spring from June 8th to the 10th. Fnatic advanced to Round 2 after a BYE in the first round, where they easily stomped 4Not 2-0. In the next round they faced Epik Gamer (known at the time as TSM EVO) and won 2-1. Fnatic then squared off against Team SoloMid. They could not withstand TSM's aggressive play-style, dropping 0-2 and falling to the loser's bracket. They then played against Team Dynamic (now Good Game University). Despite taking game 1 very easily, Fnatic dropped the next 2 games, losing 1 - 2 and getting knocked out of the tournament. Fnatic placed 5th - 6th.

With MLG Spring over, Fnatic turned their focus to DreamHack Summer 2012, which took place between June 16th and the 19th. Assigned to Group A, Fnatic defeated PAH and Millenium while losing to Curse Gaming EU, achieving the second spot of the group with a 2-1 overall score. Moving to the semi-finals, Fnatic battled against the famous Counter Logic Gaming EU. They were forced to settle for a 3rd place match after falling 0-2. Fnatic once again played against Curse Gaming EU, but ended up taking 4th place after going 1-2.

Fnatic's next big event was the Season Two European Regional Finals, the goal being to get a spot in the top 3 to qualify for the Season 2 World Championship. The top 8 teams of Europe in the competition, Fnatic would first go against Curse Gaming EU in the quarter finals. Though recent events predicted a win for Curse Gaming EU, Fnatic proved to be a strong team by winning the match 2-0. They faced Moscow 5 in the semi-finals for the first time in an offline event. Moscow 5 won game 1 after some intense play. Fnatic battled back and won game 2 very convincingly to become one of the few teams to take a game from Moscow 5 in the tournament. Unfortunately, Fnatic couldn't replicate their game 2 success and were sent to the 3rd place match. With their trip to the World Championship at stake, Fnatic gave it their all against Counter Logic Gaming EU. The team commanded by Henrik "Froggen" Hansen would prove to be too much. With their AD Carry Peter "Yellowpete" Wüppen carrying them, Fnatic was defeated 0-2 and failed to qualify for the Season 2 World Championship.

Fnatic would continue to train and attend events. Campus Gaming Party: Berlin would be their next stop, spanning August 21st through 25th. With no big teams on the tournament, Fnatic went 3-0 (6-0 overall) in their group by defeating Eclypsia.Luna, SK Gaming (who were attending with some subs), and Tt Dragons, taking all matches with 2-0 scores. In the semi-finals, they played against mousesports, winning 2 - 0. Meet Your Makers was no match for Fnatic in the finals, as they took the BO5 with a 3-0 score and achieved 1st place.

It was after this that AD Carry Manuel "LaMiaZeaLoT" Mildenberger would announce his retirement from eSports to pursue his studies and life in Taiwan. [6]

Pre-Season 3

From November 1st until the 4th, Fnatic attended ASUS Republic of Gamers - Paris Games Week 2012. One of the requirements to participate was to have 3 French players. Fnatic sent a team consisting of sOAZ, hyrqBot, xPeke, YellOwStaR and nRated after LaMiaZeaLoT retired and CyanideFI left to deal with his highschool studies. Fnatic went 2-1 in the group stages, losing to Eclypsia by forfeit for arriving late. However, they went undefeated by beating GSU Gaming 2-0 in the winner's bracket semi-final, 2-0 against Eclypsia in the winner bracket's final, and 2-0 against GSU Gaming in the tournament's grand final.

On November 22nd, Fnatic participated in DreamHack Winter 2012. They progressed quickly through the group stage, going 3-0 over Copenhagen Wolves, Curse Gaming EU, and The Mighty Midgets. After taking a decisive 2-0 against Sju Sjösjuka Sjömän in the semifinals, Fnatic advanced to face CLG EU in the finals. Despite dropping the first game, the team was able to pull out the match two games to one and take home first place.

On November 25th, Fnatic announced that they would be participating IGN ProLeague Season 5 because Team Alternate and Eclypsia would be unable to attend the event.

On November 30th to December 2nd, Fnatic participated in IGN ProLeague Season 5. They placed second in their group, defeating Team Dynamic and Azubu Blaze, dropping a game only to Team WE. This would ensure that they advanced to the winners bracket, where they would face Season 2 World Champions Taipei Assassins and emerge victorious with a 2-0 victory. Fnatic went on to face CLG Prime in the winner bracket semifinals in a 2-1 comeback series. They then lost 1-2 to Team WE, dropping them into the loser bracket finals against their previous opponents, the Taipei Assassins. History would repeat itself as Fnatic beat the Taipei Assassins 2-0 to advance to the Grand Finals one game down, coming from the losers bracket. They lost the best of five series 1-3 to Team WE, taking home second place.

Starting December 8th and ending the next day, Fnatic participated in THOR Open 2012 in Stockholm, Sweden. A single group with 5 teams was formed (given that 3 teams cancelled their participation) and Fnatic would sweep the group stage 4 - 0. Going to the semi-finals, they would prevail over mousesports 2 - 0. Moving on to the final, they would go 2-0 against Copenhagen Wolves and take 1st place, going completely undefeated.

From December 14th to December 16th, Fnatic took a shot at qualifying for IEM World Championship during IEM Season VII - Global Challenge Cologne. Facing the newly formed Korean team SK Telecom T1, Millenium and mousesports in Group A, Fnatic went 3-0 in group stage. They faced CJ Entus in the semi-finals, losing the first game but winning the next two to move on. In the finals, Fnatic once again faced SK Telecom T1 in a group stage rematch. Their series would be decided by a third match after both teams took a win. In the end, SK Telecom T1 won the third game, with Fnatic placing second overall.

Throughout late 2012, the Swedish player Martin "Rekkles" Larsson played for Fnatic as their AD Carry. However, on December 24th it was announced that he would not be able to play with Fnatic during Riot's Season 3 Qualifiers and Championship Series due to being underage. Fnatic stated that he would start a second Fnatic team, Fnatic Academy.[7]

On January 14th, Fnatic announced that their AD Carry would now be ex-SK Gaming Yellowstar. This would also be a reunion for sOAZ and nRated with their former Against All Authority teammate.

On January 18th, IEM Season VII - Global Challenge Katowice kicked off where Fnatic was placed in group B along with Azubu Frost, SK Gaming and Absolute Legends. Fnatic advanced through the group, going 2-1 with victories over both SK Gaming and Absolute Legends, but losing their match against Azubu Frost. In the semifinals Fnatic took on the other Korean team in attendance, Azubu Blaze. Although Blaze won the first game, Fnatic was able to take the best of three series to a third game, with a win in game two. Despite their best efforts though, Fnatic was unable to win the third game and finished in a shared 3rd-4th place for the event.

Season 3

On January 25th, Fnatic played in the Season 3 Offline Qualifiers. In Group A, they would have to face off against Anexis eSports, GIANTS! Gaming, and Team ALTERNATE. After winning their first match against Anexis, Fnatic advanced to the group's Winners Match where they would lose against GIANTS! Gaming. With a 1-1 score, Fnatic faced elimination and would play in the final game of the group against Team ALTERNATE. After a victory over ALTERNATE, Fnatic advanced to the bracket stage of the offline qualifiers where they played against Meet Your Makers. Fnatic took a 2-0 victory over the Polish team and qualified for the Season 3 Championship Series.

Spring EU LCS

On February 9th, the Championship Series kicked off with Fnatic playing matches against both SK Gaming and GIANTS! Gaming. Fnatic won both of their day one matches, putting them in first place with a 2-0 record. Fnatic would be a dominant team throughout the rest of the season, eventually taking first place in the Spring Split of the European LCS, with a record of 22-6. They would then take first place in the Season 3 EU LCS Spring Playoffs, going 3-2 against Gambit Gaming. The team would automatically regain their LCS spot to play in the summer split of the season.

The team qualified to play in the IEM Season VII - World Championship, however did not make it past the group stage, winning only one game going 1-4 and placing 9th in the tournament.

In April, Fnatic top laner Paul "sOAZ" Boyer was publicly voted onto the Europe LCS All Star team to compete at All-Star Shanghai 2013 to play against the world's best All Star teams chosen in the same fashion. The EU LCS first faced off against heavy favorites Korean OGN Champions. Despite good early game-play from Europe, the Korean team overtook them in a 2-0 set. Their next opponent was their sibling league, the North America LCS. Both teams played an explosive two games of up and down fighting however, NA LCS ended up being the victor, knocking the EU LCS out of the tournament. sOAZ was able to win the individual skill exhibition for the tournament as well.

Summer EU LCS

On August 17th, Fnatic managed to take 2nd place on the Summer Split after winning the tie breaker against Evil Geniuses, Gambit Gaming and Ninjas in Pyjamas, granting Fnatic a place in the Semifinals, for the Summer Playoffs.

On August 24th, Fnatic secured a spot at the Season 3 World Championship after beating Evil Geniuses 2-0 in the Season 3 Summer Playoffs. On the following day Fnatic would beat Lemondogs 3-1 and finish first at the LCS Europe Season 3 Summer Playoffs.

Season 3 World Championship

The Fnatic team would be placed into Group B at the Championships in Los Angeles, and play against European rivals Gambit Gaming, Korean OGN intimidating team Samsung Galaxy Ozone, NA 3rd place seed Team Vulcun and Filipino champions Mineski. They would lose their first game against Vulcun but would bounce back in a strong way, with that being the only game they would lose, coming out on top of their group with a record of 7-1 and advancing to the quarterfinals.

In quarters, they would face the much hyped top NA team Cloud 9 and despite some close back and forth games, Fnatic would eliminate the last NA team in a 2-1 set to reach the semifinals. They next went up against the top Chinese seed, Royal Club Huang Zu who had eliminated their strong Chinese counterpart and who swept their groups, OMG. The match proved to be an exciting best of 5, showcasing intense team-fighting, however, in the end Fnatic would be the last European team eliminated from the tournament, losing 3-1 and taking home a respectable 3rd place.

2014 Season

Fnatic started off their season at the IEM Season VIII - World Championship. The team came in 2nd, losing to KT Rolster Bullets in the Grand Final.

The Spring Split went relatively well for the team. A tight split saw Fnatic finish in 2nd place behind SK Gaming, securing themselves a place in the Spring Playoffs. The whole team raised their game for the playoffs, which saw them emerge victorious after a win against Alliance in their semifinal match-up, and another against SK Gaming in the Grand Final.

Due to Fnatic's performance in the Spring Playoffs, they had qualified to compete at All-Star Paris 2014, along with other regional winners from around the world. The team made it to the semifinals of the tournament, only losing to the world champions at the time, SK Telecom T1 K.

The start of the Summer Split was shaky for the team. Fnatic could not break in to the top 2 until Week 7 of the split, at which point their main rivals Alliance were already a considerable distance ahead of them in the race for 1st place. YellOwStaR managed to pick up the MVP award for the entire split, but Fnatic could only manage a 2nd place finish. The team aimed to put the split behind them and focus on the Summer Playoffs. A close fought win over ROCCAT in the semifinal meant that the team would face Froggen and Alliance in the final. The match ended in defeat for Fnatic, but the playoffs saw the team seal their qualification for the 2014 Season World Championship.

The World Championship saw Fnatic placed in Group C with Samsung Blue, OMG, and LMQ. The team were only able to win 2 matches out of 6 in their group, meaning that they would go no further in the tournament.

2015 Season

After being invited to the tournament, the departures of Rekkles, xPeke and Cyanide meant that Fnatic would not be able compete at IEM Cologne.

Fnatic's new roster, including Korean imports Huni and Reignover alongside Steeelback, Febiven, and YellOwStaR, [[ had a successful Spring Split, finishing 2nd in the regular season with a 13-5 record. This secured them a bye to the semifinals of the Spring Playoffs. Fnatic beat H2k-Gaming in their semifinal matchup, and went on to secure 1st place after taking a 3-2 win over Unicorns Of Love in the playoff final. This meant that the team would pick up 90 Championship Points towards qualification for the 2015 Season World Championship.

This also meant that Fnatic would represent Europe at the 2015 Mid-Season Invitational. The team had a relatively successful tournament, which they opened with a decisive win over Team SoloMid. They also had a notably close group stage game with SK Telecom T1, but went on to lose the game. Fnatic finished the group stage in 4th place, meaning they would advance to the bracket stage. They faced SK Telecom T1 in the semifinals, this time playing out a close series, but ultimately losing 3-2.

Now with Rekkles on the roster instead of Steeelback, the team went into the Summer Season with confidence running high after their performance on the international stage. Fnatic managed to finish the regular season with a perfect, unbeaten 18-0 record - and became the first team to achieve this in League Championship Series history. This meant a 1st place regular season finish for the team and a bye to the semifinals of the Summer Playoffs. Fnatic went on to win the playoffs, beating Origen 3-2 in a tight final. This qualified the team for the 2015 World Championship, where they would compete as Europe's #1 seed.

At the 2015 World Championship, Fnatic were seeded into Group B along with ahq e-Sports Club, Invictus Gaming, and Cloud9. They picked up 4 wins in the group, going unbeaten in the 2nd week of group stage games, meaning they would advance to the knockout stage of the tournament. In the quarterfinals, Fnatic beat EDward Gaming 3-0 before suffering a 3-0 loss to KOO Tigers in the semifinals, putting an end to their campaign.

2016 Season

In the preseason, Fnatic had sustained multiple roster changes, with YellOwStaR, Huni, and Reignover all leaving the team for North American teams. They were replaced by Noxiak, Spirit, and Gamsu, though after an unsuccessful IEM Cologne and four weeks of the EU LCS split, Noxiak was replaced by rookie Klaj. Despite being only in fifth place in the EU LCS at the time of the tournament, Fnatic were invited to IEM Katowice due to their previous season's success. There, they had a surprisingly strong run, finishing in second place behind SK Telecom T1 after finding success with Rekkles on Jhin. Back home, Fnatic qualified for the EU LCS playoffs in 6th place, with a 9-9 record on the season.

In the playoffs, Fnatic upset Team Vitality 3-1 before losing to eventual champions G2 Esports 3-1 in the semifinals. They rebounded to finish on a high note after defeating H2K Gaming in the third place match 3-2. The following month, Klaj moved to Fnatic Academy as Fnatic reformed their Challenger squad, and on May 11th, YellOwStaR rejoined Fnatic from TSM.[8]

Going into the summer split which now features best of two format, there was some anticipation for the team to perform better than they did in spring split, now that the YellOwStaR is back to the roster to provide some much needed in game leadership. For awhile, the team was doing fairly well in the first few weeks, but eventually the team's performance began to deteroriate. This led to a roster change towards the second half of the season when Kikis is brought in to replace Gamsu. Although Kikis's predilection to play carry champion gave the team a much needed jolt to win some games, the team barely made it to the 2016 EULCS Summer Playoff, ranking fifth in the regular season. The situation was made all the worse when Deilor was left go right before the playoffs. With sub-optimal team synergy and mood, the team bowed out early in the first round of playoffs against H2K.

Based on their performance in the spring and summer split, the team has enough circuit points to secure a bye into the second round of the 2016 EULCS Regionals and try make it to the 2016 World Championship one last time. Unfortunately against Unicorns of Love, the team failed to secure a single win, thus ending their disappointing 2016 season run.

This marks the first time that the organization has failed to qualify for Worlds.

Immediately after the summer season, YellOwStar announced his retirement. Kikis, Febiven, and Spirit also left the team shortly after.

2017 Season

During the offseason, Fnatic decided to rebuild a new team from the ground up around Rekkles. Right before the opening 2017 EULCS Spring Season, the team announced that sOAZ, Amazing, Jesiz, and a relatively unknown player Caps picked up from soloque would join the new line up with the goal of returning to Worlds.

In the first few weeks of the season, the team's performance was inconsistent as they were working to develop better team synergy. However, analysts saw some glimmers of hope of a great team returning to form. In particular, Caps's debut against G2 in the opening match of the season where he solokilled Perkz for first blood earned him the nickname "Baby Faker" from the shoutcaster Deficio. After the first half of the season, the team made a bold move to promote Broxah from Fnatic Academy to replace Amazing. The result was immediately apparent where for the first time the team seem to be playing on the same page. With all the pieces in place, Fnatic finished third in their group to head to 2017 EULCS Spring Playoffs.

In the first round against H2K, the team dominated the 5 game series with unusual meta picks such as Kennen without losing a single match. In the next round against G2, the team was only able to take one game off of G2 and failed to make it to the finals. That said, the team end on a fairly good note by winning against Misfits 3-0 to take third place for the spring season.

Prior to the start of the summer season, Fnatic brought onboard Dylan Falco as their new headcoach.

With a new coaching staff and a team that's developed a better team synergy, Fnatic dominated the first half of the summer season within their group by playing around Rekkles's pocket pick Kennen with a hyper-tempo aggressive play style, losing only once to Roccat in the process. Going into the first ever Rift Rivals/Blue Rift, Fnatic came in with high expectations to represent Europe in the finals. However, scoring only 2 wins, the team failed to make it out of the group stage. Main reason for their failure is largely attributed to their failure to adapt to NA's meta pick and ban.

After the Rift Rivals, the team adjusted their play style more to the standard meta and continued to dominate their group with an impressive 11-2 win-loss record to secure a bye into the semifinals for the 2017 EULCS Summer Playoffs. Here, much to the surprise of everyone, the team lost to Misfits 1-3, meaning that they must play the regional gauntlet to secure that last spot to represent EULCS in the 2017 Worlds. Though the third place match against H2K wouldn't change either team's standing in the upcoming regional gauntlet, the team still did played their best in order to end the regular season on a high note. Fnatic got third place for the playoffs and Rekkles was voted as the MVP of the Summer Split.

Due to the circuit points they earned, the team was automatically locked into the Regional Finals where they eventually faced H2K. Without disappointing anyone, Fnatic completely dominated the 5 game series to secure the third seed spot for 2017 Worlds.

References