MLG StarCraft II Summer Arena Wrap-up

by Jack Gardner on Jul 23, 2012 at 10:16 AM

From Friday to Sunday, competitors from around the world participated in the Major League Gaming pro tournament in New York City.  

*Spoilers Ahead*

Thursday saw a countdown to the event with the top ten MLG StarCraft II matches of this year, a replay of the prizefight between two of the best StarCraft II players in the world, MVP and Nestea, and a short show determining the bracket for the first round of the tournament on Friday.

Friday saw some surprises with several well regarded being dropped into the losers bracket such as Puma, qxc, First, and Sheth. 

Though the matches on Friday were good, the games played on Saturday surpassed them in the quality. The losers bracket provided a fantastic game three in the third round between the self-proclaimed second best Zerg player in the world, Stephano, and the Terran-playing Ryung, while the winner’s bracket in round four had the marathon-like hour long third game between the Protoss players Alicia and Hero. 

On Sunday great comebacks were almost made by players First and Oz. First, knocked to the losers bracket in round one, fought his way through the entire bracket to make it to the finals before losing to Taeja's aggressive Terran drop and harassment play in a heart breaking 2-0. Oz lost to Alicia in round four to face off against Stephano for the second time in the tournament. He then moved to the finals for a rematch with Alicia only to lose 4-2. 

The grand final of the tournament featured Alicia's impeccable Protoss play versus the nearly flawless Terran master Taeja. Most of the games were relatively short and frantic pitched battles of micromanagement. Matches were characterized by early and mid game harassment and swift, careful play. After over seventy minutes of competition, Taeja came out on top with four wins to Alicia’s two. Honestly, StarCraft II doesn’t get much better than the play displayed by these two players.

Taeja walked away from the tournament with a sweet $10,000. Anyone know where you would even go to cash one of those huge checks?

The matches will be available and linked here sometime tomorrow.

(photos courtesy of MLG)