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12-18-2015 , 05:12 PM
As an example, IEM Katowice was announced as the WCS Winter Championship, whose champion will be seeded directly into the WCS Global Playoffs (aka, one of the 8 Circuit players that makes Blizzcon). It has a $150k prize pool, which I think is much higher than previous years (usually $100k). And it is ****ing region locked for foreigners!!!

This comment on Reddit (on Katowice) sums it up and absolutely slayed me:

Congratz to the frst foreigner IEM Katowice Champion! What an upset!
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12-18-2015 , 05:55 PM
It's actually driving me insane right now reading **** like Apollo defending the new system. He's not making arguments, he's just posting platitudes:

A few things which the new WCS gives us back again:

1. Multiple opportunities for players, 11 events with travel support to players from all around the world. including the recent Dreamhack/HSC, there were 11 non-WCS premier tournaments in 2015 also, plus foreigner WCS, so this is worse than last year

2. StarCraft is going back to having multiple hyped up large events like we had in 2011/2012. no idea what this even means

3. Opportunities to create magic moments (WCS 2012 EU Finals, WCS 2015 Krakow Finals - two of the closely memories to my heart. again, what the **** is he even talking about? not sure it helps him when his second example of a "magic moment" is from last year's tournament system that they killed for this year

4. Blizzard will support multiple organisations now, they can join WCS events, gaining $$$ and player support to their events. why is this better than Blizzard running WCS alongside independent circuit events?

5. A real reason for lesser skilled/known players to play. A reason for good players to keep playing. Ladder incentive, regional reasons, regional qualifiers for all events. finally, an actual point! even though a lot of it just describes how foreigner WCS worked last year
And then this ****:

Over the last few years, there has only ever been 3 Seasons of WCS and if you did not qualify, why continue to play StarCraft, might as well stop playing and then start up again before the next season. With the new changes, there is almost 4x the opportunity, with events looking to rise up to 11 before Blizzcon. Last year, we saw Showtime rise up to the top of the scene in Season 1 only to lose to Elazer (Season 3 star of WCS) and that terribly hurt his career because he had to wait for so long for another chance. Same happened with Bunny in Season 3, we lost him early.
What? It's like this paragraph takes place in an alternate universe where there weren't any DreamHack/IEM/etc tournaments in between WCS seasons.

Korea, however is not neglected in this system which makes this so perfect. They still hold Blizzards full support with increased prize pool all over, there will still be daily Proleague/GSL/Starleague/Kespa Cups/Hotsix cups and whatever else is run out there, so there will be no drought of high level SC2 action for us all, pretty much on demand. As well as the newly created GSL vs SSL champion battle.
Blatant misrepresentation of the fact that there are fewer opportunities for Koreans this year compared to last (net, they removed 1 season each of GSL and SSL and added one four-player tournament between the GSL/SSL champions) - he's basically just trying to say "but they have enough SC2 already", even though it seems like Korean SC2 is going to get even more silly-top-heavy than it was before, with more money going to fewer events.

And of course the discussion about all these things happens on Reddit where people's opinions are formed entirely based on whether or not they like to slurp foreigners. I can't read this **** anymore.
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12-18-2015 , 08:58 PM
you seem incredibly made about blizzard wanting to promote the game outside half of a tiny peninsula that has a disproportionate amount of prize money anyway
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12-18-2015 , 09:01 PM
The #2 you quote in your last post. This was peak SC2. I went to a bar in town to watch IPL3 live then. That bar is now closed. We had so many relevant foreign tournies at that time until WCS ruined everything
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12-18-2015 , 11:43 PM
You're kidding that WCS ruined it, right? As much as I love to pile on Blizzard, SC2 was in decline anyway because other games were becoming more popular, not because Blizzard saying "hey let's make a tournament series" is what murdered their game.

eta: and when you sort by talent rather than geography, it's absurd how much money is allocated outside of that small peninsula

Last edited by goofyballer; 12-18-2015 at 11:49 PM.
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12-18-2015 , 11:55 PM
Balance test map time! Surprise, they want to nerf Zerg.

- Disruptor: remove bonus damage to shields so that PvP doesn't hinge on 1 disruptor shot destroying your whole army
- Adrenal glands: drop attack speed bonus from 40% to 30%
- Viper parasitic bomb: reduce damage from 90 to 60
- Ravager morph time increase (12 -> 20)
- "Thor AA damage to flat 12" - I'm not clear what this is changing, I think it's changing it from, like, "6 damage +6-vs-light" to "12 vs everyone"? Basically Terrans are QQing about mech so they want to buff it. Maybe they shouldn't have designed a game where turtling on 3 bases doesn't cut it anymore if they want to see mech tho
- Pylon overcharge: double cost (25 -> 50), increase duration by 33% (15 -> 20), increase damage by 50% (30 -> 45)
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12-19-2015 , 03:04 PM
Originally Posted by goofyballer
You're kidding that WCS ruined it, right?

WCS arrives, IPL disappears, NASL disappears, MLG is cut back immensely and later disappears, Dreamhack holds on for a couple of years but has dramatically slashed the number of tourneys it held this year, WCG lasted one more year before going under. We've not had a TSL for over three years. More or less the only thing that's survived at all outside of WCS events is IEM, the only thing of note that's been added is SSL, another top heavy donkament which does nothing for the scene worldwide and next to nothing for most Korean pros either, unless you happen to bink it and take over half the entire prize pool.
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12-19-2015 , 04:20 PM
Here's the best historical data I can find for Twitch, though...

December 2012: LoL #1, SC2 #2, Dota 2 #4
January 2013: LoL #1, Dota 2 #2, SC2 #3

Except for April (when SC2 was back to #2 over Dota), every other month in 2013 had the same top 3 ranking. I think the ded-game-ing of SC2 was already beginning by the end of 2012 (WCS started in April 2013) independently of anything Blizzard was doing; if anything, Blizz may have been trying to preempt it by introducing WCS.

I only got into SC2 in mid-2012, when I think the transition to LoL being the most popular was happening, and I remember people telling me that when SC2 was at its peak, it was by far #1 at all times on Twitch. If that's true, then obviously SC2 was well into decline before Blizzard started meddling.
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12-19-2015 , 04:26 PM
Hell, maybe all the ZvZ finals (DH Bucharest, GSL S5, MLG Dallas, Iron Squid II, IPL5, HSC6, and 2013 GSL S1 all had ZvZ finals between Oct 2012-Mar 2013 - half of all premier tournaments in that timeframe) killed it and we can just blame David Kim.
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12-19-2015 , 05:56 PM
No liberator change? Hmm..

Everything else seems fine, Z is pretty out of control right now.
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12-20-2015 , 11:55 AM
I'm slightly furious that they decided to have Homestory Cup on the weekend where half the world is at their absolute busiest.
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12-20-2015 , 03:00 PM
Destiny Huk cast too good.
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12-20-2015 , 03:56 PM
TL with a good article about the downsides of the new system

The system doesn’t address one of the main reasons it was initially created: to foster local growth. This is directly connected to the ladder system. Here is the exact quote:
"Participants are required to play all tournament and ladder games required of them from the country listed on the account during the tournament season."

This affects NA/CN/SEA the most. NA server is bad, mostly because NA players on the West Coast can play a decent amount on the KR server to raise their skill and then play on the NA server to get some practice at ladder conditions. Players on the East Coast can do the same thing, but play on EU instead of KR. At the same time CN/SEA players can play on KR to help their practice. That clause directly forces those players to play on their own ladder, which is worse than Korea. The fastest way to improve as a player is to constantly play against better players over and over and Korea has by far the most depth of any server—that’s inarguable. It’s a great tool for anyone to practice on and one of the reasons as to why Koreans are always so sharp. With the lock down, players that had access to such a tool will naturally devolve.
Finally there doesn’t seem to be any plans to help low to mid-tier Korean players, so we should probably be getting another wave of retirements again as GSL and SSL continue to be top heavy.
The foreigner narrative in SC2 can never be as strong as it was in the past because of the region-lock. It seems counter-intuitive as there will be more events with foreigner-only events, however in the case of the best foreigners, the book has been closed. The reason is simple. While some people are trying to equate the region locked 2016 tournament circuit to the 2011/2012 circuit, that is simply disingenuous as it ignores one simple facet. Almost all of the LANs from 2011-2015 weren’t region-locked so foreigners could play against the best and prove they could beat the best.

The reason these rivalries had so much depth and meaning was not just because they met time and time again; not only were they playing at the top of their game, but at the top of SC2. Jinro vs Idra is legendary because they met in the Ro8 in a GSL. MaNa vs Nerchio was incredible because both were dark horse EU players that could (and had) won tournaments with Koreans in them. Stephano vs Korea is still talked about in reverence in his one man campaign to take tournaments from Koreans time after time after time.

Going into the future, no foreigner will ever get the chance to match the achievements of the past because those chances will not exist. Make no mistake, winning a WCS Championship is a feat, but that will never match NaNiwa’s run at Providence in 2011. It can never shock you like when Jim beat both Life and Taeja at IEM. It won't ever be as incredible as Sen saving 2014, won't be as heart pumping as Scarlett playing Bomber at Red Bull or IEM, will never resound in your soul in the same way as Sjow upsetting Life at DH, can never awe you like Snute beating Rain and Classic right after their GSL/SSL victories.

With this system, we are to a degree closing the book on how successful a foreigner can ever be in SC2.
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12-20-2015 , 06:27 PM
I used to feel the same way you did Goofy back during WoL. I always wanted to watch the best matchup possible and I hated when tournaments were handicapped for foreigners.

Now I kind of see the appeal of watching foreigners play against each other. It's fun in a different way. We still get to see high level matches, but we also get to see the guys we watch stream and bm each other all the time play too.

Like MLG pre Koreans with Kiwikaki and his mothership stuff was pretty fun too. That's gone now though.
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12-22-2015 , 03:09 AM
any 2p2ers on europe?
i played a bit in WOL getting back into sc2 now, but don't have any sc2 friends =(
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12-22-2015 , 07:50 PM
totalbiscuit tweeted a quick audio blog earlier today on the WCS changes which seems fairly relevant and insightful
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12-23-2015 , 02:34 AM
It's 25 minutes long - is there a transcript? I'm sure his insights are great but I can't possibly be arsed to listen to something that long. WTF is with him and audio blogs instead of typing **** out?
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12-23-2015 , 03:44 AM
i'd write cliffs, but light has started playing brood war again, so along with free and zero that's most of stars (**** soulkey, and especially **** shy)
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12-23-2015 , 03:52 AM
I like those guys
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12-24-2015 , 08:13 AM
Im getting back into sc2 as well and i dont want to see foriegners play, I want to see top level koreans playing against each other. Ive been catching up on the ESL rerun stream and watching foreigners **** up left and right vs koreans really reinforces this for me. Watching foreigners play is like watching college basketball/football....and who wants to see that ****.
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12-24-2015 , 08:15 AM
To the point of why starcraft died:

It became incredibly boring to watch a 30 min game over and over and over. It would be 10 mins into every game and nothing had happened. People complained about cheese being too strong, and then blizzard introduced gigantic maps and ****, thats what ruined it for me.

Last edited by IHeartAsians; 12-24-2015 at 08:22 AM.
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12-29-2015 , 03:05 PM
Code A starts Jan 8, matches are set:

soO vs Trust
ByuL vs aLive
Sorry vs Cure
Dream vs HyuN
GuMiho vs Dark
Forte vs BrAvO
Trap vs Shine
DeParture vs Stats
Bbyong vs 이원주 (unknown/teamless Zerg?)
Bomber vs Seed
TY vs Patience
TaeJa vs Blaze
Sacsri vs HerO
Dear vs sOs
KeeN vs Journey
Hurricane vs Soulkey
Reality vs SpeeD
Creator vs Armani
Life vs Bunny
Impact vs Solar
Classic vs jjakji
RagnaroK vs Super
Billowy vs Rogue
ByuN vs Curious
Leenock vs Jaedong
Maru vs Zest (!!!)
Hush vs DongRaeGu
INnoVation vs Stork
Losira vs Choya
Symbol vs TRUE

The teamless guy had a walkover against MarineKing, lost to Reality, and beat Ryung to qualify. Qualifying was pretty easy, there were like 90 players in the qualifier with 60 Code A spots available. Notable names who tried to qualify and failed:

MC (lost to Super 2-0 and Departure 2-1)
JYP (lost to Soo 2-0 and Armani 2-1)
Arthur (lost to horror 2-1 in opening elimination round, then horror lost to Ragnarok and Alive)
Ryung (lost to sOs 2-0 and new teamless Zerg 2-1)
TheStc (lost to Zest 2-1 and to DRG 2-1)
Tails (lost to Dark 2-0 and to Symbol 2-0)
Some Swiss Zerg named Elroye came very close (lost 2-1 to Life and 2-1 to Shine, winning either series would have put him in)
Daisy (lost to Apocalypse 2-1 in opening elimination round, then Apoc lost to Trap and Choya)

Also, TL had previously reported that Shine was retiring and would be the new GSL observer. Yet, he qualified for Code A. So, that's weird.
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12-29-2015 , 08:09 PM
I really hate that it if I fire up twitch on any given day there are no good/entertaining streamers on. I have to watch boring people I've never heard of or Maximus Black who as at no point in his career been able to beat me. So I'm either bored or frustrated by bad play. One potential good of encouraging foreigners to play is to re-breathe some life into the domestic streaming game.
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12-31-2015 , 03:48 PM
Originally Posted by Gospy
I really hate that it if I fire up twitch on any given day there are no good/entertaining streamers on.
do all the sc2 koreans use twitch or do some use afreeca?

Originally Posted by goofyballer
Also, TL had previously reported that Shine was retiring and would be the new GSL observer. Yet, he qualified for Code A. So, that's weird.
is this the same shine that in brood war went hydra all-ins vs protoss every single game and it worked precisely never, apart from against bisu?
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01-01-2016 , 05:13 PM
While I know nothing firsthand of Brood War, from what I've read on TL, yes, that is him.
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