Saturday, 24 February 2018

London Spitfire: Stage Two, Week One - The Good, The Bad & The Ugly

Scheme scheme, plot plot. London Spitfire took that number one spot. Keep coming at them, it won't stop. London Spitfire took that number one spot. Yes stage one is done, finitio, over. It resulted in the Spitfire having to play 14 hours of games, to beat the two teams that beat them in week five, the Houston Outlaws and New York Excelsior, but the team came through to win stage one. Now after two weeks off, stage two begins in possibly the hardest way it could, once again playing rivals Houston and New York. 

If you're now hooked in, locked on and ready to go and have previously read LDSF:GBU, then thank you for returning and I hope your ready. If this is your first time, then here's the lowdown. Every weekend, I'll rate what I thought was good about the Spitfire's performance, what was bad and finally what was down right ugly. If you want an idea before we get going you can read week five here. There's a slight format change for stage two, I'll be including the vs team, our roster and the result. So if you're mad enough to read this before the game then I'd suggest you back out. Otherwise it's time to squad up and hit the sky's.

Thursday 22nd February - vs Houston Outlaw
Starting Line Up - Birdring, Closer, Gesture, HaGoPeun, Profit & Woohyal
Result: 2-3 Loss

The new map rotation has come in and back are some of our favourite original maps such as Gibraltar, Kings Row, Lijiang Tower and my personal favourite Volskaya Industries. There are changes in the meta as Mercy got nerffed, meaning heroes we haven't seen in stage one that much are coming back. One of those is Sombra and HaGoPeun came in and showed how dangerous he is with her. On Volskaya, HaGoPeun's pack hack rate was incredible, he locked off the room with the mega health pack and caused so much damage that he had EMP available for every fight and he timed it perfectly for them.

Pharah was a problem for the Spitfire in stage one, while Hooreg can play her it was hard to take out the Birdring/Profit combination that played so well. It looks like Profit may have started to hard grind Pharah as on the attack of Kings Row, Profit was a menace on her and caused all kinds of problems for the Outlaws. 

I think it's official to say that on Winston, Gesture turns on raid boss mode and makes life difficult for his opposition. His main tank play has been one of the many highlights from the Spitfire so far. However, I feel that there could be a bit too much heavy leaning on him because as soon as he's taken out of a fight, the team will either lose that fight or instantly back off. I know a main tank is meant to dish out as much damage as they take, but I want to see more attacking versatility from the team.

While the Spitfire are very good at surprising enemy teams with point take back fights they shouldn't engage in. The one on Volskaya was not one of these. On the first defence, point A was lost and it was the reengage that shouldn't of happened which caused point B to fall so quickly. I feel that they learnt that lesson on the second defence but this is very much high risk/high reward view on defence.

It's now at a point where I come in to watching Spitfire games knowing that due to control maps, we are likely to allow our opponents into the game more than we should and praying that we don't take it to 5 maps if we have a lead. Control maps came back to bite us again as Nepal was pretty bad, as there seemed to be a mixture of confusion and uncertainty in what the team were trying to do strategically as it was a mess. This improved over the course of the map, but control is hitting the team where it could potentially hurt in the map difference rate. 

Friday 23rd February - @ New York Excelsior
Starting Line Up - Birdring, Closer, Gesture, HaGoPeun, Profit & Woohyal
Result: 3-2 Win 

For me Birding was the stage one finals MVP as he took his level of play on Widow to another level. In the first match since that final, Birdring once again came out on fire, causing constant pressure on Solider 76 and getting the picks required on Widow to force NYXL back. 
Closer didn't get a lot of playing time in stage one due to being a Lucio main and NUS turning out to be the better Mercy. So with Lucio coming back into the meta now, allows Closer a chance to shine. After a sloppy first game against Houston, Closer came back with well timed Sound Barriers and healing against the NYXL.

Fury was known in stage one for his aggressive style and well timed self destruct ultimate's. Watchpoint Gibraltar was no different as he got timely kills on two of these ultimate's during point two and helping secure the defence on point three. 
2CP (Two Capture Point) maps are the Spitfire bread and butter. After going undefeated on Horizon Luna Colony, the Spitfire have grown accustomed to Volskaya Industries extremely quickly. The full hold defence proved that this indeed favoured map style of the team.

Lijiang Tower showed that there is the possibility of fixing the problems that Control maps brings for the Spitfire. It seemed that their overall game play and style was on point, but when it came to finishing off the round they struggled to grasp how they wanted to end it. Causing them to then lose control of the round and the overall map.

Get your eraser's and your white board pens ladies and gentleman, we have a board to update! The same C9 reared its head again against NYXL on Kings Row, when in all honesty, it should never of happened. Maybe it's the fact that it's in the back of their minds but the boys seem to have a way of finding their way towards it.

With week one of stage two finished for the Spitfire, it's time to sit back and watch the rest of this weeks games. Next week the Spitfire have two away games, at the Florida Mayhem at 12am GMT on Friday 2nd March and the Philadelphia at 21:00 GMT on Saturday 3rd March

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