As events come to a close this weekend in Katowice, a rematch of the VR League Grand Finals at Oculus Connect 5 will pit European teams against North American teams in Onward and Echo Combat.
- Name: IEM VR League Showmatch
- Games: Onward (Beginners vs. Globochem) and Echo Combat (Eclipse vs. Team Gravity)
- Date: 3 March 2019
- Time: A Bo5 in Echo Combat begins at 1:30 pm CET and then a Bo5 in Onward begins at 3:00 pm CET.
- Watch: YouTube, Twitch, Facebook
In September, North American team Eclipse claimed their second consecutive seasonal grand championship title when they came back from the lower bracket to defeat Team Gravity in the fifth and final match of the tournament.
Although European-based Team Gravity might feel like they’re always one goal short for a win against Eclipse, they’re definitely getting closer so it’s only a matter of time before the kings are dethroned.
In fact, the top two Echo teams will actually be playing Echo Combat rather than Echo Arena so it will be a rematch with a slight twist. Echo Arena, a sport-based game in zero-gravity, requires a lot of real-life physicality, quick reflexes, and teamwork. Although it uses the same movement model within a zero-G environment, Echo Combat is a first-person shooter that requires different skills such as tactical awareness, planning, and accurate shooting.
It will be interesting to see which team will be able to transfer their Echo Arena skills to Echo Combat and claim the IEM VR League Showmatch title.
When this incredibly popular VR first-person shooter was featured in VR League season 2, Onward had recently completed their fifth season as part of the VR Master League. It’s another story of dominance, but this one ends with proof that reigning champions can be unseated.
Globochem, a North American team, has consistently been ranked number one throughout the VRML seasons. With the exception of season 2, when BossFight (an EU team) took the title from them, Globochem has claimed every season title for VRML Onward.
Beginners, a European team established in season 2, couldn’t quite catch the world’s top Onward team until they chased them to San Jose, CA. It was there that they claimed victory during the Oculus Connect 5 Onward Grand Finals and the European players could be pleased that they defeated Globochem on their home turf.
VR esports is a rapidly growing industry. Since virtual environments are convincingly immersive, there’s a unique social bond in VR communities. There’s also a sort of friendly rivalry between the regions and one region or country (i.e. South Korea) doesn’t dominate the entire scene. Literally anyone who is focused, willing to practice, and loves the game can become a pro player. This has resulted in some amazing teams on both sides of the Atlantic and now we have another opportunity to watch the best VR esports teams in action.
Tune in for the rematches this weekend between the world’s top Onward and Echo Arena teams to see who will earn bragging rights for themselves and their region when they claim the IEM VR League Showmatch title.