As part of BlizzCon, the StarCraft II WCS Global Finals are underway, with the quarterfinals bringing plenty of action all by themselves. We talked about the victories of Joona “Serral” Sotala and Riccardo “Reynor” Romiti already. Now let’s look at Kim “Classic” Doh Woo vs. Lee “Rogue” Byung Ryul and Park “Dark” Ryung Woo vs. Cho “Maru” Seong Ju.
StarCraft II WCS Global Quarterfinals: Classic vs. Rogue
This was more than just a Zerg vs. Protoss matchup at the WCS Global quarterfinals. It was a battle between two StarCraft titans. Rogue had an amazing 2017 and was on quite a hot streak for a while. That fell off a bit, but he has been coming back into form again this season. Meanwhile, Classic is one of the greatest Protoss players ever. This match was guaranteed to be exciting.
Map 1 – Thunderbird
Rogue began by searching the map thoroughly, showing respect for Classic. This was a smart move because the Korean Protoss player is known for hiding things around the map in the very last place his opponents look, but it was unnecessary this time around.
At 5 minutes into the game, Classic’s build was still very macro-oriented, and though he began putting pressure on at the 7-minute mark, Rogue handled it well and dealt an expensive blow to Classic.
This left the Protoss player stuck building back up his army as Rogue’s Nydus finished, and he began putting his own pressure on with his Swarm Host and Nydus combo. Rogue ultimately took this push to a reckless excess, pouring everything he had into his attack, but the risk paid off. Rogue took game one in a rather dominant fashion.
Map 2 – Acropolis
Classic began by proxying gateways to build Adepts and tried signaling that he was building Phoenixes as he did so to throw Rogue off. Rogue might not have totally bought it, but he also didn’t scout it soon enough to put a stop to what Classic was doing. When Rogue realized he was getting all-in’d he immediately pulled back and tried to defend, but he was out of position just enough during the fight to fall to Classic’s attack, and Classic was able to win game 2.
Map 3 – Disco Bloodbath
Rogue did some serious work with Spine Crawlers on Disco Bloodbath. Ten minutes into map 3 and the Zerg was still playing completely defensively. Then, when Rogue finally rolled out his army, it was swarming with Banelings to try and counter Classic, which turned out to be a very effective strategy. It was a lot of fun watching an absolute ton of Banelings rolling across the map to take out Classic’s forces, and it won Rogue the third game, bringing the score to 2-1.
Map 4 – Triton
Map 4 was a Protoss cannon rush on Triton! This was beautifully executed by Classic. Rogue almost beat it right at the beginning, but Classic pulled it off in a truly stunning fashion. This game was short and awesome and definitely worth a watch if you want to see a great cannon rush used to tie up the match.
Map 5 – World of Sleepers
Map 5 on World of Sleepers was another weird and amazing game to watch. Classic played risky, blinking his Dark Templar into Rogue’s main base, scouting so he could let them come off cooldown while staying hidden, and then blinking again and taking Rogue’s Hatchery down.
Rogue had a lot of Roaches at the 9-minute mark, and while their army count was similar, Classic’s army was all Archons and Immortals. That’s a great position to be in, and Classic used it to great advantage, winning the last game of their WCS Global quarterfinals matchup, securing his place in the semifinals.
StarCraft II WCS Global Quarterfinals: Dark vs. Maru
Maru was the only Terran left in the WCS and a fan favorite, with good reason. He was the first player to win an OSL, an SSL and a GSL, and is well-known for being the youngest GSL player of all time, winning his first televised game at the age of 13. He is also one of the highest-grossing players of all time and a fierce opponent for Dark. Three years ago, at WCS 2016, Dark made it to the finals, losing to ByuN 2-4. Dark is known to be the best Zerg player in Korea, but first place often eludes him in big tournaments. He’s been doing particularly well lately, though, coming first in the GSL Super Tournament and season 2 of Code S.
Map 1 – Acropolis
The first map between standard. Dark went with Zerglings, Hydralisks, and Banelings, with the tech to go for Vipers and Ultralisks in the late game, but 18 minutes into the game he hadn’t done so yet. Maru had Marines, Marauders, and Medivacs and was going with Ghosts and Liberators for the endgame army, but the Ghosts struggled to deal with the little units Dark kept building. Maru was never able to make a big push, and he was simply worn down over time. Dark beat Maru on an even playing field.
Map 2 – Disco Bloodbath
This match was all over in under 10 minutes, with Dark’s Mutalisks picking off too many of Maru’s early units for the Terran player to recover. Maru was prepared for ground units but unprepared for an air attack, so a minimal number of them were able to wipe out his supply and win Dark the second game.
Map 3 – Winter’s Gate
Another quick map leading to a rather one-sided victory on Dark’s part, map 3 on Winter’s Gate was over at the 6-minute mark, when Dark took down Maru’s third command center.
Dark played incredibly well against Maru. He 3-0’d one of the best players in the world, and he made it look easy, which doesn’t make for the most exciting games but takes serious skill. The Zerg player is in excellent form and looking like a formidable opponent going into the semifinals against Classic.
Check back for our StarCraft II WCS Global semifinals and finals coverage!