One of the oldest competitions in CS:GO returns as Copenhagen Games 2019 draws closer.
One of the oldest competitions in CS:GO returns as Copenhagen Games 2019 draws closer. Last year we saw Team Imperial take down Heroic in the finals, a tournament in which Rokas “EspiranTo” Milasauskas had his big breakthrough. Keep on reading as we break down all you need to know about this year’s tournament.
Team Singularity hoisted the trophy in 2017.
Copenhagen Games is one of the oldest competitions in CS:GO. They have been running CS:GO tournaments since the Beta back in 2012 when the Swedish 1.6 team SK Gaming with Patrik “f0rest” Lindberg and Cristopher “GeT_RiGhT” Alesund defeated ESC Gaming, the team that would later become Virtus.Pro. During the early years of CS:GO, this tournament was able to attract some big names but as prize pools have grown larger, Copenhagen Games has turned into more of a proving ground for up-and-coming teams.
Eight teams in total will be competing at this year’s event, four of whom have received direct invites. The teams will be duking it out in two different groups with a round-robin format. All matches are best-of-three and the top two teams from each group will advance to a single-elimination best-of-three playoff bracket. The tournament starts April 18 and ends April 20.
In the early years of CS:GO, Copenhagen Games was dominated by NiP who won back-to-back titles in 2013 and 2014, as well as the Polish side Virtus.Pro who won this tournament in 2015 and have found themselves in the finals on an additional two occasions. Since then, we have had different winners and finalists each year, as the tournament has been unable to attract teams such as NiP and Virtus.Pro again.
In 2016, we saw a Hellraisers team which at the time included the likes of Tomáš “oskar” Šťastný and Martin “STYKO” Styk defeat the Bulgarian team E-Frag in the final. Two players who later went on to have a lot of success under the banner of mousesports.
In 2017, the young Danish side of Team Singularity took down the Swedish mix-team Dreamchasers in the finals. A final that featured players such as Simon “twist” Eliasson, now on fnatic, as well as Allan “AnJ” Jensen whos performance at the tournament earned him a spot on NRG.
EspiranTo was brilliant for Imperial when they won Copenhagen Games 2018.
In 2018, Copenhagen Games opted to cut the team total down from sixteen to eight and the prize pool was increased. In that event, we saw the international team Imperial, now known as Valiance, defeat the Danes from Heroic in the final. This was a breakthrough tournament for the Lithuanian Rokas “EspiranTo” Milasauskas, who at sixteen years old dropped multiple thirty-bombs on his way to the final, ending the tournament on a total rating of 1.24. He led all players in K/D differential (+42) kills per round (0.85) and headshots per round (0.52) which made him an excellent play for fantasy that year.
Much like the Dreamhack Open events, this tournament mostly features lower-tier teams who are looking to make a name for themselves and we will see the same thing this time around. However, these tournaments are usually good fun to watch, as you get a glimpse into the players of tomorrow and observers with a good eye for talent will have a good chance of profiting off fantasy and betting.
The Danish team Tricked will be replacing Heroic after they chose to withdraw from the tournament. They have been on a pretty good form after picking up former Fragsters player Lucas “Bubzkji” Andersen last month. Since the addition, they have wins against the likes of Windigo, AGO and NoChance on their record. All of those wins came in best-of-threes, proving that their map pool is not to be underestimated.
One of Tricked’s key players during their recent run on form has been b0RUP. The young Dane leads his team his team in kills since Bubzkji joined the roster and he has one of the highest headshot accuracies in the scene, which makes him an excellent option for fantasy. In 2017, Tricked found themselves in a similar situation at Dreamhack Tours, having to replace Gambit who withdrew from the tournament due to VISA issues. In that tournament, b0RUP played a big part in upsetting G2 in groups — scoring 285 fantasy points in total which was the best on the server by quite some margin.
Next up is the Russian team forZe. They have been in fine form online, with wins against the likes of ENCE and OpTic on their record. Their most recent LAN event was PGL Grand Slam in Dubai where they won against teams like AVANGAR, G2 and INTZ as well as just narrowingly losing to fnatic in a three map series. The Russians definitely shouldn’t be underestimated, as they have a lot of skill on their roster with players like Bogdan “xsepower” Chernikov, Dmitriy “facecrack” Alekseyev and Almaz “almazer” Asadullin.
xsepower has been with forZe since early 2018 and he was always one of the team’s best players, but he was often trailing facecrack and almazer in terms of fantasy production. However, xsepower has made a rapid improvement since October of last year. The last two weeks he has outperformed both facecrack and almazer with big performances against the likes of Heroic and OpTic. xsepower is a bit of a greedy player, which is exactly what you want for fantasy. It’s worth keeping in mind, however, that he is a dedicated AWPer and with that comes fewer points for both headshots and assists.
The international team Epsilon will be attending their first big tournament together after winning the European division of Mountain Dew League. The team features players like Kia “Surreal” Man and Joey “CRUC1AL” Steusel, most known for their time in The United States playing for teams like compLexity and Splyce. Epsilon will likely be the underdog in this competition, as they have never beaten forZe and Sprout with their current lineup.
A lot of people outside of Germany might not be too familiar with k1to, as his teams rarely make it to international LANs. He is probably more known for his play in Faceit Pro League and his money matches with s1mple. k1to has been Epsilon’s standout performer since the team was formed and his high headshot accuracy of 60.1% makes him a very viable pick in fantasy.
Last up is the German team Sprout. This will be their second LAN together after a disappointing showing at The United Masters League where they lost to both Windigo and GamerLegion. They have struggled online too as of late, losing four out of their last five games played. The Germans are a solid team and work well together as a unit, but it begs to question if they really have enough skill to beat a team like forZe. If they are to do so, they need the likes of Florian “syrsoN” Rische and Josef “faveN” Baumann to perform at their best.
Both syrsoN and denis are solid picks for Sprout, but I prefer faveN who is a good middle ground between the two. He is a good aimer and his play style makes him a more consistent fantasy performer than denis who tends to die a bit more due to his role on the team. faveN has scored the most fantasy points on Sprout since the team was formed, despite getting fewer frags than both syrsoN and denis in total, which shows that he earns a lot of points due to his high headshot accuracy and low death numbers.
This tournament will be a hard one to call after Heroic withdrew from the tournament. Out of the top teams I favor forZe and I do think Tricked are a sneaky pick. However, many of these teams are closely matched and we could potentially see a team make it through the open qualifiers and do some damage. Teams like GODSENT, Chaos, Team Vulkanbet and Nordavind certainly have enough skill to challenge some of the invited teams if they make it through the qualifiers.