The first ever Tournament of Position kicks off this week. Players from divisions as high as Gold will face off with standout players from Silver and below, the latter vying for the possibility of significant promotion. 16 total competitors are taking part in the four-round swiss tournament, seeded first by division, then by standings. The 1st place finishers in Bronze and Copper (Sheph and Max Edward Snax) elected to take the auto promotion to the next division up instead of competing in the ToP; players replacing them are marked with asterisks in the list of pairings below:
- Wodar (Gold 4th) vs. Tabsies (Challenger 2nd)
- Turnout8 (Gold 5th) vs. ekajarmstro (Challenger 1st)
- Skrewwl00se (Silver 2nd) vs. InfamousCupcake (Oak 2nd)
- Pofke (Silver 3rd) vs. Legorve Genine (Oak 1st)
- Ryooo (Bronze 2nd*) vs. jd105l (Obsidian 2nd)
- Pox (Bronze 3rd*) vs. Ascendbeyond (Obsidian 1st)
- Zerodoom (Copper 2nd*) vs. Dukit (Iron 2nd)
- Iggythegrifter (Copper 3rd*) vs. Kotte (Iron 1st)
Matches for the ToP are played with a maximum of 16 games, instead of the 12 game maximum seen in the regular season. Thus, the match ends either when a player reaches 9 wins, or at an 8-8 draw. In the event of a draw, the higher seeded player is declared the winner.
Let’s take a look at each matchup:
Wodar vs. Tabsies
Wodar’s 4-5-1 record is not indicative of the success he had this season. He took a match off of both Lazybear (4-5-1) and Gold Finalist OpiWrites (6-2-2). Wodar has been playing since the early days of SpyParty, and is a force to be reckoned with after a hard-fought season in Gold division. His venue choices are unconventional, picking almost exclusively Balcony, Teien, and Courtyard. Being the top seeded player in the tourney, Wodar will always be paired against the lowest seed. Because of this pairing mechanic, it is a fair bet that he will make it far in the ToP, and is a likely candidate to retain his spot in Gold for SCL6.
Tabsies clawed his way to a tie for first place in a 15 player Challenger division, with his only loss coming to division champ ekajarmstro in a tiebreaker match this past week. Tabs loves to play Library and Ballroom, and plays extremely well on both; he boasts over an 80% spy win rate and 75% sniper win rate on Library, over a large sample size (38 games). Traditionally, Tabsies bans Balcony, and against Wodar, who favors it, it would be surprising if that strategy changed.
Prediction: It’s hard to bet against Wodar, one of the most storied players in SCL. Wodar may be unpredictable at times, but the skill gap will be noticeable. Wodar wins 8-1.
Turnout8 vs. ekajarmstro
Turnout8 is the only player in the ToP that has previously played in Diamond, but that was way back SCL’s first season. This season, he had a tough go of it, but did go 1-0-1 against both Wodar and Royalflush. Despite his 2-6-2 record, he’s a favorite against most of the field, and has a good shot at avoiding demotion.
Ekaj (Jake) is the undefeated champion of Challenger division thanks to a tiebreaker match against Tabsies after the final week of the season. His sniper can be a bit jumpy at times, but this probably won’t be a huge issue against Turnout8 given his generally aggressive spy play. Jake’s spy is how he gains an advantage over the competition, winning 75% of all spy games, and getting civilians shot at a very high rate of 45%. Expect a Teien ban from Jake, as he’s banned that venue in every match this season.
Prediction: Against most Challenger opponents, Turnout8 would probably catch them off guard with his spy aggressiveness, but ekajarmstro may actually be well-suited to handle it. Turnout8 still wins, but it’ll be closer than most may expect. Turnout8 wins 8-5.
Skrewwl00se vs. InfamousCupcake
Skrewwl00se had one of the most impressive seasons in SCL5, earning his 2nd place finish in Silver with an undefeated 9-0-3 record, one of just two two players to secure a draw against Silver champion DOWSEY (10-0-2). Skreww is a camping-style sniper with an outstanding 81% sniper win rate this season. He favors Gallery and Library, two large venues with easily camped missions. His sniper rates on those two venues are 92% and 88%, respectively, so it is a tall task to try and get a spy win past him if he can get either in the draft. His spy play, while not exceptional compared to some, still has a strong 50% win rate, and he rarely times out.
InfamousCupcake (10-2-0) is one of the players merged into Oak from Bamboo at the start of SCL5. She had a tough gauntlet in the first four weeks of the season. Cupcake beat 3rd place Dels 7-3 in week 1, lost to eventual Oak champion Legorve Genine 2-7 in week 2, then upset 4th place monaters 7-3 in week 4. Her season, unfortunately, had a rather lengthy break in the mid to late weeks, with drops and a bye week, she didn’t get to play an official match for over a six week stretch. This rustiness may have contributed to her late season loss to Paratroopa (7-5-0). Cupcake’s venue choices may actually line up in Skreww’s favor. She likes to pick Courtyard, Moderne, Library, and Veranda; all camping favored.
Prediction: Skreww’s sniper is going to be too tough for Cupcake to get much past, and Cupcake’s lack of recent play should lead to a few spy wins from Skreww. Skrewwl00se wins 8-2.
Pofke vs. Legorve Genine
Pofke (9-1-2) was edged out in the final weeks by Skrewwl00se and fell to 3rd place in Silver. His sniper play was even better than Skreww’s winning 87.8% of the time, the second-highest in the entire SCL. He is one of very few snipers in SCL history to not allow a single mission win throughout the season. Much like other outstanding snipers, Pofke performs best on the 5/8 venues, Courtyard, and Gallery.
Speaking of great snipers, it’s not hard to see why Legorve Genine took first place in Oak with an undefeated 11-0-1 record. Much like Dowsey and Ascendbeyond, he was heading into his final games without a blemish. Prior to the dramatic tie with Yglini (8-3-1) in week 13, Legorve’s closest match was a 7-3 win over Paratroopa! While Legorve can boast sniper stats almost as incredible as Pofke (84% win rate, only 8% civ shot rate), what sets him apart from the rest of Oak is his spy play. He has an absurd 72% win rate as spy this season, contributed greatly by the highest civilian shot rate in SCL5, 56%. While this match has all the telltale signs of a great sniper duel, if Legorve can get some other guests shot against Pofke, it could potentially fall in his favor.
Prediction: Nobody can predict how Legorve is going to respond after losing his perfect season (via a draw against Yglini) in the final week, but it’s possible his play is elevated with the additional motivation and close match experience. Pofke’s consistency and oppressive sniping are too much to bet against, however. Pofke wins 8-7 .
Ryooo vs. jd105l
Ryooo finds himself as the top seeded Bronze player in ToP, as champion Sheph elected to take auto promotion into Silver. His 9-1-2 record was well earned, only losing to davidw (7-1-4), drawing with Sheph and furbyfubar (4-4-4), and beating both Pox (9-1-2) and Turnipboy (9-3-0).
Ryooo loves to play the sniper favored venues, but actually performs exceptionally well on them as spy. His courtyard spy record is 71%, a full 21% higher than when he plays sniper. As both spy and sniper, Ryooo has an eye for the overall party that rivals the perfect information spectators have. He will play right into another guest’s suspicious narrative, getting civilians shot just as much as completing missions.
Jd105l quietly went 10-1-1 in an Obsidian division that was plagued by drops from start to finish. His spy play was the highlight of his season, winning 71% of the time. Jd’s only loss came at the hands of Obsidian champion AscendBeyond, his draw was against Silverthorn (9-2-1), and he secured impressive wins over Tflameee 7-4 (10-2-0) and daheadhunter 7-2 (8-3-1). These two second place finishers are poised to have an exciting match, with the spies being the aspect to watch.
Prediction: Ryooo is likely to ban High-rise, jd’s most picked venue and one of his best. Ryooo’s spy should be the deciding factor, as he is capable of picking sniper favored venues and still get spy wins. Ryooo wins 8-5.
Pox vs. AscendBeyond
This match could be the most volatile of round one. Pox (9-1-2) is one of the most well-rounded players in SCL, and can take a set off just about anybody. Ryooo was the only player who managed to beat him in SCL5. He has a 50% or better win rate as spy on 10 of 12 venues in his SCL career, which means he can play well on basically any venue. His 3rd place finish managed to get him a spot in the ToP due to Sheph’s decision.
Nobody can deny that AscendBeyondis deserving of a promotion or two after his incredible 11-0-1 season in Obsidian. Both his spy and sniper stats are eerily similar to Legorve Genine’s in Oak (77% spy, 78% sniper). Until the final week of the season, he only had 4 sniper losses to his name, and had a perfect record on five different venues as both roles. His week 13 draw against daheadhunter was thrilling: daheadhunter won the last four games after being down 6-2.
Prediction: Much like the matchup between Pofke and Legorve, this is going to be Ascend’s biggest test of the season, but the first upset of the tournament will go to AscendBeyond in a match that makes it to the final venue. AscendBeyond wins 9-6.
Zerodoom vs. Dukit
Zerodoom (10-1-1) can’t be too upset about jumping up one seed after Max Edward Snax’s decision to bypass the ToP. His only loss of the season came at the hands of Max (10-1-1) himself. He drew with Calvin Schoolidge (6-1-5), who had the lowest point total of any one-loss player in SCL5. Doom has over a 60% win rate on both roles, and is similar to Pox in his consistency across venues.
Dukit barely missed out on winning Iron division outright in the final week of the season against Kotte. Their draw gave Dukit a 9-1-2 record, and gave him some experience in a close, down to the wire match. Dukit’s win rates are nearly identical to Doom, both around 60%.
Prediction: Dukit keeps himself in the match by picking Iron’s venue of choice: Terrace, but Zerodoom hangs on and wins by virtue of being the higher seed. Draw, 8-8.
Iggythegrifter vs. Kotte
Iggy acquires a spot in the tournament due to Max’s decision, rewarding his impressive 9-2-1 season. His only losses are against 1st and 2nd in the division, both extremely tough opponents. Iggy is a bit of a wildcard in the ToP. He prefers soft-tell variants, with solid records on all the 3-5 venues. Iggy should be right at home if Terrace is picked by his Iron opponent.
Kotte, like the champions of every division except Copper, finished the season undefeated. Kotte sits upon the Iron Throne that is Terrace, boasting a 79% spy win rate and 73% sniper. He is no slouch on other venues, though. Kotte only has two venues with a role under 50% this year; Library spy and Ballroom spy.
Prediction: This match may look like a toss-up, but Iggy’s performance on soft-tell venues will secure a round one victory over Kotte. Iggythegrifter wins 8-4.