The Onward VR Master League Season 8 Championship concluded this weekend and the Beginners have retained the crown. Although the European team was almost dethroned, they once again relied on teamwork and some impressive sniping skills to claim another seasonal championship.
The Season 8 Championships kicked off on November 9 and 10 with the Challenger Cup. All teams registered played against other teams in their corresponding group (A or B).
Challenger Cup Finals were held on November 16 between Rome and The 5 Horsemen. Rome took the win 2-1 and advanced to stage 3.
Stage 3, held on November 16 and 17, consisted of a round-robin between teams ranked #1 to #7 in the VRML season worldwide season standings plus the winner of the Challenger Cup.
Four teams advanced from the round-robin stage. These four teams participated in a single elimination bracket. Semifinals matches consisted of a best-of-3 maps format.
The four teams that advanced to semifinals from stage 3 were G-Men, Vikings, SMC Tactical, and Beginners.
This team consists of some nice-looking, 30-something VR gamers who have been made it very obvious that they belong in the big leagues since they began playing in season 1. They were able to compete in the ESL and Oculus invitational tournament in August 2018, where they placed third. G-Men also placed second in the VR League Season 3 finals in June 2019.
Members of the America’s East team include 404, Dr Leo Marvin, swooty, The Man, AmiraclDev, Brass2Mouth, and Zakfontaine. Of course the team also has member and founder BiggieSmalls, the only Canadian in the bunch.
The Vikings have been around since season four of the Onward VR Master League. According to their VRML social page, the team has a play-style that “adapts to the situation” and they had a goal of breaking into the top ten. They certainly achieved this goal during season 8, coming in second place overall and nearly taking away the championship title from Beginners.
The European team has some well-known names in the Onward circuit: Cruorzy, Fimicolus Fungi, Mantis, Nollic, LoneMiyagi, Nachtom, and UncleSam. Team member and owner Spoilty is a Viking who hails from Germany.
The team name for SMC Tactical comes from “Shoot, Move, Communicate, Tactical.” It’s a Marine Corps cadence and a motto for how the team plays together. Since they formed for season 2, the Americas East team has achieved some impressive stats, including the upset over Beginners in the Season 2 Championship (which was ultimately won by Globochem) and Season 4 VRML quarter-finalist. SMC Tactical has consistently proven their skill on the virtual battlefield of Onward.
Members of SMC Tactical include husband and wife team Landon and Edna Jordan, as well as Captain Sota, mrbeefy, and Trip13Nipp13. Team owner and captain is Canadian Pwncake!
It might appear that this team needs a name change since they keep winning championships, but it has become a battle cry of sorts. The team originally called themselves “Beginners” because they were beginners at some point. The name should remind and encourage all novice teams that glory is possible through dedication and teamwork.
Beginners team members include ICWoods, kev, Smoils, Woods43, KushBerries, Peasley, and snyKas. Dr. Killinger is captain and team owner.
Ultimately the Beginners were able to take the best-of-5 maps against Vikings in the Grand Final. With that win, they claimed merchandise coupons worth 1000€ from ProTube VR, accessories from VR Cover worth $400, and VRML player-personalized t-shirts.
VR Master League
The VR Master League was started in 2017 by DaKinMan and it has continued to thrive as a community-driven league that supports some of the most competitive VR esports in the industry. Downpour Interactive’s Onward was the first game featured in the VRML.
You can watch the entire Semifinals and Grand Final matches (as well as previous competitions and Season 8 Championship matches) on the VRML Twitch channel.