While NSD has certainly showed some muscle this Summer Leg, it wasn't quite enough to beat Bravado on Sunday, giving Bravado this Summer Leg in the Battlefield 3 (BF3) Telkom Do Gaming League (DGL) – unless something incredibly dramatic happens in the next two weeks of play. However, NSD's tenacity led it to be a three-map match-up.
Those three maps were Epicentre, Sharqi and Damavand Peak. NSD started off the match on the front-foot after taking out Bravado on Epi 79 – 0 (US) and then 123 – 0 (RU).
Nicholas 'Shizznazz' Hayes from NSD says they weren't as nervous going into this match as they were in their previous match against SSG (which they had won):
“That's because we had nothing to lose. Our confidence was made even stronger when I managed to win the knife fight against Scoper. We eliminated Seine Crossing which was great for us because it is our weakest map and also one of BvD's strongest maps. We were left with Epicenter, Sharqi and Damavand to play. We felt confident because we are quite good at these maps,” he says.
So what happened on Epi that gave NSD the victory?
“We were able to outshoot most of their players. Our team seems to have changed focus from last year, with a strong emphasis on both armour and infantry gameplay. We were winning the majority of our one-on-ones which gave us the upper hand,” says Hayes. “BvD also felt too static and used C flag too much which made them weak because it's an easy flag to assault.”
The win to NSD didn't put Bravado on a downer, says Barry 'Anthrax' Louzada, BvD captain.
“We went into Sharqi [the second map] very confident. Our strats for that map are really solid and the guys know what to do,” he says. NSD were feeling good as well, says Hayes, after having learned and improved from their SSG game. The first round went to NSD with a ticket count of 19 – 0.
The loss didn't mean a loss of confidence for BvD, says Louzada. He says the loss was due to their defensive strategy (they were playing defense first).
“On Sharqi, the U.S. don't have a 'base spawn', so the chance of getting capped out is quite high and then you could end up losing quite badly. So we played rather defensively to ensure that didn't happen.”
The second round went to BvD at 127 – 0. Hayes says his team had a player disconnect around the same time that Bravado made a big push and flank on NSD's C-flag.
“It all went downhill from there. We lost the second round by more tickets than we won in the first round but we hoped we could shut the game out in Damavand,” he says.
But Bravado were the ones to take Damavand, a map that Louzada says, “seems to be [BvD's] map.” Overall, Louzada says that it was great team work and BMT from his team.
“Scoper did really well in the chopper for us on Damavand and as usual Hackem was great in the tank - still yet to see anyone come close to taking him on,” he says.
The ticket count saw BvD win the first round 89 – 0 and the second 146 – 0, giving them more tickets on hand than NSD.
“BvD had air dominance in the first round of Damavand and, combined with good pushes onto the middle B flag, they were able to keep flag majority and bleed our tickets away. They were less dominant in the air but were able to cap the middle flag and hold it out. We were too slow to use our air power to make back-flag pushes and, while we were able to shut down BvD in the air, we didn't have flag majority,” says Hayes.
NSD secures themselves a second placing for the log while Bravado, Do Gaming 2012 Champions, secure the leg. SSG looks like they'll be coming in third. Hayes says it's been an interesting competitive leg.
“The current top three or four teams look much the same as last year but there have been other interesting developments – ASF basically falling apart, SSG being the pre-Champs team they always are, RFH looking strong, BFC basically don't exist anymore, BzK looking so strong. Interesting times.”
The big games are basically played out. NSD still has to face ASF Aquila in the pick and play (which they will probably win) and their match against [TE]Infamous in week 8 may prove to be an interesting one, as TE will probably pull out all the stops. But unless some upset happens in the next two weeks, it's safe to say that NSD will keep second place and SSG third, with the chips falling after that as it may.