The Case for Fnatic to Win Worlds

Fnatic’s last two years have consisted of defeat after defeat. This summer, they truly looked done and dusted, sitting in the lower half of the LEC. It looked like they couldn’t even scrape by to make playoffs. To call this roster’s summer split shaky would be an understatement. As spring split’s previous finalists, the expectation was for them to qualify for playoffs as one of the top 2 seeds, only falling behind their main rivals G2 Esports — at least that’s what most people thought would’ve happened. So is it possible for Fnatic to win worlds? Read on to find out our take on the story.

In that split, they didn’t look like the stable and methodical team that the LEC was used to; instead, they struggled to find an identity throughout the summer split. Even at Week 7, they still looked like they were lost — and fans were not happy.

SHANGHAI, CHINA- October 10th: Day 7 of the League of Legends 2020 Worlds Group Stage on October 10, 2020 in Shanghai, China. (Photo by David Lee/Riot Games)

Let’s talk about Nemesis

At the centre of all the criticism was their midlaner, Nemesis. Nemesis definitely hasn’t had the cleanest split, he even admitted it himself on a stream. It’s always felt like he has been in the shadow of G2 midlaners, whether it be his predecessor, Caps, or rival, Perkz. Although they struggled to find him mid lane picks that would be consistently strong, by the time the last couple weeks of the split rolled around, his Orianna was looking solid.

Bans were focused heavily on Fnatic’s jungler, Selfmade. So Nemesis had a variety of control mages he could choose from that could support Selfmade’s aggressive jungling. In their first playoffs series, the team finally found Nemesis’ bread and butter: Lucian mid. Nemesis is a beast on Lucian, and he was able to show his mechanical talent that’s usually overshadowed by G2 Caps and RGE Larssen. However, his ability to play safely in lane and scale will be his best weapon against Top Esport’s Knight and other better midlaners. 

SHANGHAI, CHINA- October 10th: Day 7 of the League of Legends 2020 Worlds Group Stage on October 10, 2020 in Shanghai, China. (Photo by David Lee/Riot Games)

Lane Kingdom? More like Jungle Kingdom.

Nevertheless, the team was finally able to find their identity through their jungler, Selfmade. Selfmade is reasonably the best jungler in the West. His pathing is incredibly smart and efficient. His mechanics are unmatched by any other Western jungler. Even in games where he lost, Selfmade was almost always ahead of the enemy jungler and carrying games. From the beginning of summer playoffs, Selfmade has been the hard carry of this team. Whether it be his Evelynn, Hecarim, or Graves, no enemy team should take him lightly. 

SHANGHAI, CHINA- October 10th: Day 7 of the League of Legends 2020 Worlds Group Stage on October 10, 2020 in Shanghai, China. (Photo by David Lee/Riot Games)

Hylissang’s creativity

Most people know Hylissang for his coin flippy, high-risk high-reward playstyle. Although half the time he looks like he’s inting, Fnatic simply doesn’t function without him. The way he sets up vision for Selfmade, picks off unsuspecting enemies, and takes risks that more often than not, win games for Fnatic. This makes Hylissang the mastermind behind their success. Hylissang will be the difference maker if Fnatic wants to make a deeper run at worlds.

SHANGHAI, CHINA- October 10th: Day 7 of the League of Legends 2020 Worlds Group Stage on October 10, 2020 in Shanghai, China. (Photo by David Lee/Riot Games)

Bwipo in the Top Lane

When you watch Fnatic’s top laner, Bwipo, play, there’s no need for a nameplate to be slapped onto the champion. From watching his gameplay, you can tell it’s him. Bwipo is the opposite of Nemesis, there’s no farming for late game, the lane starts at level 1. Bwipo’s aggressive laning and trading often times wins games for Fnatic or loses them completely. Recently, Bwipo has been performing far better than in the summer, so there’s definitely hope that he will be able to show up and carry from top lane.

SHANGHAI, CHINA- October 10th: Day 7 of the League of Legends 2020 Worlds Group Stage on October 10, 2020 in Shanghai, China. (Photo by David Lee/Riot Games)

Rekkles, the best ADC in Europe

If there’s one person who has consistently been the highest performing member on Fnatic, it’s Rekkles. Rekkles is the best ADC in Europe, there’s no question about that. His stellar positioning and team fighting, as well as his solid laning is what makes him special. He’s also able to play a supportive carry role, which allows Selfmade play more carry-style junglers. As he’s showed in group stage at Worlds, his exceptional wave management allows him to always be even or ahead, even against the best bot lanes like Gen. G’s Ruler and Life.

But how can Fnatic win worlds?

Top Esports is definitely one of the top 2 best teams to draw if you want to end your season in quarters. This team is filled with some of the best players of their respective roles, like Knight and JackeyLove. On top of that, they also play smart around the map.

But if there’s one thing I’ve learned about Fnatic, it’s that you can never count them out. Unlike Top Esports, this team is filled with veterans who have proven time and time again that they can step up when it matters. Although this quarterfinals match will be difficult, if they’re able to beat Top Esports, they can conquer the world.

Check out our article about the game-breaking umbral glaive bug on jungle plants that was a game-changer in the Day 5 tiebreaker match between Suning and G2 Esports. And while you’re at it, take a look at our run-through of Day 1 and 2 of Worlds as well!

Catch their quarterfinal match on Saturday, October 17th against Top Esports! Don’t forget to fill in your World’s Pick’ems choices here. Who did you choose to make it out of quarters? Let us know in the comments below!

FNATIC unfortunately fell to Top Esports in the first reverse sweep of worlds history. Although this is the end of their journey this year, this certainly isn’t the end of these player’s careers. We look forward to see their performance carry onto the LEC in 2021!

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