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MOBAFire MSI 2023 Fantasy Tournament - Intro...

Creator: Jovy May 1, 2023 10:34am
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‎‎ ‎ Introduction


Hello everyone, and welcome to our brand new article series covering the MSI 2023 Fantasy Tournament! In this first article, we’ll go over the fantasy tournament rules before quickly taking a look at the MSI format itself. Then, as you read on, you’ll be able to learn a bit about each of the play-in teams and figure out just how to make the best fantasy team for the first stage of the tournament.


‎‎ ‎ Intro To The Fantasy Tournament


If you participated in our previous Fantasy Tournaments, for Worlds 2022 or the LEC Winter and Spring Splits, you know how it works. If not, here's a quick breakdown of MOBAFire's MSI Fantasy Tournament:

You will create a team of pro players from different teams playing at MSI this year. You will then earn points based on the real world performance of the players you've chosen. Put together the best team you can and see how many points you can earn while you're enjoying the show!

📋 Which players should I choose?

That’s something that this article should hopefully help you with. Essentially, you’re meant to pick players that you think are going to do well at MSI. You earn points when the player you’ve chosen has gotten a kill, an assist, has killed a minion, and you lose points when the player has died. Additionally, you’ll earn points when the player’s team destroys a turret, kills the Dragon or Baron Nashor, achieves First Blood, and, naturally, when the team wins an MSI game.

Sounds tempting to just pick up every player from the historically most dominating team, right? Well, there are two restrictions to keep in mind:

  • You may only have up to two players from each time. Unfortunately, it won't be as easy as just grabbing every single T1 or Gen G player; you'll need to diversify!
  • Cost - each player is assigned a certain cost and you will only have $1000 to spend in total. This also forces you to diversify and mix ‘n’ match players from different teams and of different costs.

💰 What are the prizes?

The prizing distribution has been updated since our latest fantasy tournament to reward more players:
  • 1st place: $5,000 USD
  • 2nd Place: $2,500 USD
  • 3rd Place: $1,000 USD
  • 4th Place: $600 USD
  • 5th Place: $300 USD

🏁 How do I get started?

To curate your team, head on over to this link!


‎‎ ‎ MSI Format Explained


Thirteen teams have been invited to MSI, and the first seed from Korea, China, EMEA, and North America have bypassed the play-in stage. These teams are Gen. G from the LCK, JD Gaming from the LPL, MAD Lions of EMEA, and Cloud9 from the LCS. Additionally, LCK's second seed has received a bye as well thanks to the region’s victory at Worlds in 2022, so T1 will join these four teams in the group stage starting May 9th.

Three more teams will join these five in the fray in the bracket stage if they succeed in the play-ins. There are eight teams fighting for these three spots, and they are: Bilibili Gaming (LPL), G2 Esports (EMEA), Golden Guardians (LCS), PSG Talon (PCS), GAM Esports (VCS), DetonatioN FocusMe (LJL), LOUD (CBLOL), and Movistar R7 (LLA). For this first stage of the fantasy tournament, you'll be making a dream team consisting of players from these eight teams.

As far as the format is concerned, the eight play-in teams have been split into two double elimination brackets, which means there is a Group A with four teams and a Group B with the other. The winner of each group moves forward into the bracket stage alongside Gen. G, JD Gaming, MAD Lions, C9 and T1. Double elimination means that the teams need to lose two series before they’re totally eliminated. Losing just one series means they will remain in play, but be moved to the lower bracket. After two of the eight teams have advanced to Stage 2, a third will be decided based off the results of the lower bracket run. All of the series in the play-in stage are best-of-three matches.



Stage 2, the bracket stage, has a very similar format. The games will also be double elimination, but the matches will be best-of-five instead, for twice the excitement! Additionally, there will be no division into groups, the eight teams will all be seeded into one big group.



You can learn even more about MSI by reading Elrubicante’s article at this link!


‎‎ ‎ Meet the Play-In Teams


‎‎‏‏‎ ‎
Bilibili Gaming
.Bin
.Xun
.Yagao
.Elk
.ON
Bilibili is the LPL's second seed. Historically, the LCK and LPL are by far (by which I mean, there has only ever been two exceptions) the most dominant regions globally, and the ones most likely to win. With just this in mind, BLG is a great team to bet on getting out of the play-in stage and into stage 2. But ignoring that, BLG is just a great team. Any one of these players would be a great addition to your fantasy team, though especially impressive is top laner Bin, who had previously played for RNG and who had won the MSI 2022 cup alongside them.

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‎‎‏‏‎ ‎
G2 Esports
.BrokenBlade
.Yike
.Caps
.Hans Sama
.Mikyx
Likely EMEA's best hope for an international title, and their second seed. G2 had previously won MSI in 2019, becoming the first non-eastern team to do so ever, and have been looking to reclaim that glory ever since. Though EMEA has only won MSI the one time, they tend to make it to the group stage without trouble, so any G2 player is a safe bet for your fantasy team. G2 is coming in as EMEA's second seed, after something of a rockier Spring Split than usual, but between Yike, Caps, and Hans Sama, fans are hopeful that the team's exceptional carries can pull through and have a great showing at MSI.
‎‎‏‏‎ ‎
Golden Guardians
.Licorice
.River
.Gori
.Stixxay
.huhi
Golden Guardian's are the LCS's second seed, having lost to C9 in the Spring Split finals after a frankly incredible underdog run in the North American league. GG's current roster is sporting three NA veterans, Licorice, Stixxay and Huhi in top and bottom lane, as well as PSG Talon's previous jungler River and mid laner Gori. Historically, NA has made it through play-ins safely at international events, though this will be the Guardian's first international tournament ever, after a history of being in the 6-10th place in NA for the past five years.

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‎‎‏‏‎ ‎
PSG Talon
.Azhi
.JunJia
.ubao
.Wako
.Woody
PSG Talon is the champion team from the Pacific Championship Series (PCS) league. Though this is a minor league, PSG is likely a name esports fans know well, as a team that has made it to Worlds and MSI every year since they've formed. Last year at MSI they ended in the top 6, and, after another dominant Split in the PCS, where they won their fifth consecutive championship, they may arguably be the most likely team alongside BLG and G2 to reach the bracket stage.



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‎‎‏‏‎ ‎
GAM Esports
.
.Kiaya
.Levi
.Kati
.Sty1e
.Zin
Vietnam's champions GAM Esports have been the most dominant team at VCS since 2019. They've had two Worlds appearances, but have never managed to make any waves internationally, and their roster hasn't changed since Worlds 2022. That said, they've had an especially impressive Spring Split this year, having not lost a single series in the VCS in 2023.








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‎‎‏‏‎ ‎
DetonatioN FocusMe
.tol2
.Steal
.Aria
.Yutapoon
.Harp
Without debate, DetonatioN FocusMe is Japan's best team. They have won the LJL 9 out of the last 10 Splits, naturally including Spring 2023, even after losing their longtime veteran top laner Evi to Heretics in the EMEA. That said, in spite of their unprecedented regional success, DFM has never achieved impressive international results, which includes lacklustre Worlds 2022 and MSI 2022 appearances. Their new top lane, tol2, will be playing an international tournament for the first time, but perhaps this change was just the one they needed to finally achieve results on the big stage.
‎‎‏‏‎ ‎
LOUD
.
.Robo
.Croc
.tinowns
.Route
.Ceos
LOUD is a very young team but one that has already established a large fan base and achieved great things regionally. They've won their second championship this past spring and are now looking to expand their success internationally. This will be only their second international appearance, having played at Worlds 2022. Although they didn’t get far in, they had some great games, winning against prestigious teams like Fnatic and DetonatioN FocusMe and advancing past play-ins. Since then, they've swapped out their bot laner Brance for Route whose stats in Split 1 of CBLOL have been quite impressive.
‎‎‏‏‎ ‎
Movistar R7
.
.Bong
.Oddie
.Mireu
.Ceo
.Lyonz
LLA's first seed Movistar R7 is making their first international appearance since Worlds 2020, and now with a new name and an almost totally new roster. As Movistar R7, they're champions of LLA and are coming in with veteran LLA player Oddie, who’s been in the scene for a whopping ten years and has made three MSI and two Worlds appearances. None of the other members of the roster have international experience, so, harsh as it may be to say, success at this MSI would be quite unexpected.



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‎‎ ‎ Players To Watch


TOP LANE

.
>$200 Cost
<$199 Cost
Bonus Suggestion



Bin ($231)


Licorice ($196)


Robo ($185)

BLG's Bin will without a doubt be one of the most impressive top laners you'll see at this year's MSI. Unlike what you might be used to seeing in professional play lately, Bin is known for playing carries and dive top laners such as Irelia, Fiora, and Camille rather than tanks. His playmaking style coupled with the fact that he's on a team that's sure to make groups is a sure recipe for getting a great amount of fantasy points.



.
Licorice may be a good cost-effective pick-up for the first stage of the tournament. Licorice has been on the scene for nine years and has made two Worlds appearances in his career, both times while playing for Cloud 9. His highest international achievement was made in 2018 when, alongside C9, Licorice reached the semi-finals at Worlds. He’s hoping to make another run like that one, this time with Golden Guardians. Though his record has been spotty since that amazing Worlds run, this past Split has, as mentioned, been quite impressive from the whole GG roster, and Licorice himself was pivotal in many of their playoff games.
LOUD's Robo is another good cost-effective top lane option. He's been on LOUD for a year now and has helped the team win both Splits 3-0 since then. Like Bin, Robo seems to gravitate towards more aggressive picks such as Renekton, Olaf, and Aatrox. However, whether or not LOUD will do well at MSI is anybody's guess, so while Robo's stats and price are both good, he might still be quite a risky pick up.




.
.


JUNGLE

.
>$200 Cost
<$199 Cost
Bonus Suggestion



Yike ($219)


River ($198)


Levi ($209)

As an EMEA fan I have to recommend G2 Esport’s Yike here. The young Swede had big shoes to fill with Jankos' departure from G2, but over the last two Splits fans are confident Yike has managed to fill them and then some. Known for playing spicy picks, like much of G2 is, such as Lilia, Bel'Veth and Kindred, Yike is a playmaker who's not afraid to take resources for himself and carry his team from the jungle.


.
Once PSG Talon's jungler, River had moved to the LCS in 2021 to join Team Dignitas. The team struggled in spite of River's efforts, many referring to him as the best player on a floundering team, and by Summer River was picked up by the Golden Guardians instead. While the team struggled that Summer, the Golden Guardians we saw in Spring were a whole other team, and River was a big driving force in many of their Spring games. River gravitates towards reliable meta picks, with most of his games this year being on Sejuani, Vi, Wukong, and Maokai.
Best known for his excellent Lee Sin, Levi has been GAM Esports' jungler for the last 4 years. While GAM hasn't seen much international success, they have consistently placed first in the VCS since basically the dawn of time. Aside from Lee Sin, fans should look forward to his Wukong, with whom he has a near 100% win rate in 2023.




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MID LANE

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>$200 Cost
<$199 Cost
Bonus Suggestion



Caps ($207)


ubao ($185)


Yagao ($208)

G2’s super star Caps. What is there to say about Europe’s best mid laner that hasn’t been said before? Lately Caps has become famous for unorthodox picks like Zac, Sejuani, and Malphite mid lane, but historically the man can and will play anything. Sometimes known as a coinflippy player, Caps will either earn you heaps of fantasy points, or none, depending on the day.
.
PSG Talon's ubao is likely the best cost-effective mid laner you can get. ubao has only been playing with PSG as of this year but seems to have made himself quite at home, winning the Spring split 3-0. In the past, he had made two Worlds appearances, both times, sadly, not performing quite up to standard. This year he has preferred to play utility, with Ryze and Azir being his most played champions overall.
Bilibili's mid laner Yagao is synonymous with dependable. On BLG He is known for playing utility with picks such as Ryze, Galio and Taliyah, in an effort to set things up for Elk in the bot side. Yagao doesn't take up a lot of resources, instead preferring to be useful through roams, crowd control, and consistent damage.

.
.


BOT LANE

.
>$200 Cost
<$199 Cost
Bonus Suggestion



Elk ($230)


Yutapon ($186)


Hans Sama ($210)

Elk is Bilibili's new ADC, though he's been playing professionally for a little over three years now across different teams in the LPL. He is known as an extremely aggressive ADC, and, now on a great team like BLG that’s ready to give him the resources he needs, he is able to show it. Elk boasts the highest damage/min and total damage stats in the entire league, and favours hypercarries like Zeri. Xayah, and Aphelios.
.
As unbelievable as it might sound, Yutapon has been DFM's bot laner since 2013 - 10 years now! And he's still showing his opponents in the LJL how it's done. These days Yutapon is hyper focusing on hypercarries, with Xayah, Jinx, Varus, and, naturally, Zeri, being his most picked champions in 2023. He has an impressive KDA of 7 (14 in Playoffs) and is looking to show everyone in London that he's still got it.
.
Hans Sama has been on the scene since 2016, playing for Misfits, Rogue, briefly TL in the LCS, before coming to G2 Esports this year to play alongside his favoured support, Mikyx. He's always been a stand out player, but I don't think he's reached the same highs on other teams as he is reaching on G2 right now. Though they didn't win in Spring, Hans has had an amazing start to the year on G2, and he's probably best known for his Draven, which is a must-ban against G2 in the LEC.
.


SUPPORT

.
>$200 Cost
<$199 Cost
Bonus Suggestion



ON ($203)


huhi ($192)


Woody ($170)

ON has been playing for Bilibili since the start of the year alongside Elk and this bot lane is scary. Known for playmakers, and especially hook champions like Nautilus, Thresh, and Blitzcrank, ON is all in on getting as many kills onto his ADC as possible.


.
Golden Guardians' veteran support player, huhi, has been playing in the LCS since 2014, though he's only been a support player since 2019. He's played support for 100 Thieves and Golden Guardians and is likely best known for his enchanter picks these days. As such, he boasts an impressive KDA that will make any fantasy team look good, provided that GG does well in the play-ins.
Woody has ecently joined PSG Talon alongside his ADC Wako, and the two have fit into the lineup beautifully. Woody is an incredibly versatile support, with great performances on engage supports like Thresh and Rakan, as well as enchanters like nami and Lulu alike.


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‎‎ ‎ Fantasy Tournament Tips & Tricks


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Assign the right captain. Captains will earn you 1.5x more points across the board, so do a little research once you've assembled your team to figure out which player should be made captain. In general, mid laners and bot laners tend to make great captains, as they tend to garner the most kills and creep score across the games. Supports, on the other hand, may be a bigger gamble because they are comparatively weaker which could spell dying a lot.
.
.
Choose teams that you predict will do well. Sounds obvious, but basically, you'll earn points if your fantasy players' teams win. Moreover, if your fantasy player is on a team that keeps losing, they'll probably not be able to deliver on fantastic stats. It's a lot harder to not die when your whole team is losing inhibitors by the 15th minute mark. There are players that tend to do well even on underperforming teams, but make sure to have at least a few players on your roster that are on winning teams.
.
.
Double Double Dip! The best results come from having more than one player from a winning team. Ideally, you’ll be able to predict the two teams that will make it past play-ins (for example, G2 and BLG) and then add a third player, who will, ideally, also come from a team that might make it past play-ins. This third team will be hard to predict, but let’s say you think Golden Guardians will join G2 and BLG. If you can finesse two players from G2, two from BLG, and one from GG, you’ll get way more points than if you were to have a super diverse team, even if the players individually are very good.
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.
If you do end up in a situation where you've selected and captained a player that, against all odds, is now on the 10th place team, you can always sell them. You have one sell token per stage, so this is a precious resource and you should treat it this way though. Some teams/players might take a little to get their groove on, but others will show you by the second or third week that it might be best to call it and move on.
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Invest more $$ on mid lane and bot lane. As mentioned previously, these are the key roles when it comes to KDA. You won't be able to purchase five $200+ cost players, so focus your funds on mid lane > bot lane > .... > supports. While supports can have great KDAs, and often do, most of the supports cost less than $200 and are actually fantastic. This is one category where it's totally okay to go low and not feel like you're missing out at all.
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‎‎ ‎ Conclusion


You've reached the end of our first article covering MSI! International tournaments can be quite daunting for fans who normally only watch one or two regions, and it can be quite hard to form the right fantasy team when you don't know half of the teams or players participating in these huge events. We hope this article helped you, and wish you the best in the fantasy tournament!

A huge, huge thanks goes to Silverman43 who has been an incredible help with researching all of these play-in teams! Credits also go to LoL.fandom Wiki for their collection of player portraits, up-to-date statistics, overviews and all-around fantastic work documenting LoL esports.

by jhoijhoi

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