Overwatch

Road to the Finals: Untitled Spreadsheet

ConRoar / LUSH / Mosh / yuki / Refz / Gnb

Untitled Spreadsheet entered ZOWIESTAH as the Number One seed and has remained favourite to take out the Grand Final throughout the League’s qualifying stages. After becoming the first team to beat Chiefs ESC during JAM-stah, they maintained their unbeaten run right up to Week 5 of ZOWIESTAH. It was fitting that Chiefs ESC were the ones to break the unbeaten run, setting up a regional rivalry between the two teams that will be played out in the League Finals on Saturday. Untitled Spreadsheet’s “Road to the Grand Final” will require them to beat Orbit in the Quarter Finals, and then the winner of Chiefs vs Thanks in the Semi Final.

Their first hurdle is going to be getting past Orbit, who will be playing with two subs. But so will USS – they’ve lost rqt and raz right before the Finals, and have substituted in ConRoar and Lush. While you’d be forgiven for expecting them to take the Quarter Final, the Semi Final match against Chiefs ESC, who have had two weeks now to settle into their roster along with the new meta, will be a different story. There’s a preface to that story, though, as most recently USS beat Chiefs ESC in Heroes League – with their new lineup.

And so we come to the League Final, the final chapter in the ZOWIE Gamestah Overwatch League. Untitled Spreadsheet are seeded first and any team that expects to win the Grand Final will have to get past them at one point or another.

Untitled Spreadsheet play their Quarter Final against Orbit at 14:30pm AEST on www.twitch.tv/gamestahtv1 – don’t miss it!

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Overwatch

Road to the Finals: Quentiam

Slidzorj / Shu / zumen / Twiiggy / Presh / Bim / kiki

No one will forget the upset-that-almost-was when Quentiam shocked Untitled Spreadsheet in Week 4 of ZOWIESTAH. They took the first game on Dorado, one of USS’ strongest maps, in thrilling fashion, and for the first time in a month, USS were looking less than invincible. To their credit, USS came back to close out the Semi Final match and knock Quentiam out, but the point had been made: Quentiam has the goods to take on the top teams in the region and do themselves proud.

They’re playing in the League Finals as seventh seed, having put in a lackluster performance in Week 2, and failing to compete in Week 3. But points don’t tell the whole story, as Week 4’s SF against USS showed. Expect Quentiam to look for an upset in their match against second-seeded The Wood Cucks tomorrow.

Towards the end of the qualifying season, Quentiam picked up Squizzy as Manager. We asked him about Quentiam’s performances:

“Our results have been getting better each week of ZOWIESTAH, we hope to make it to the grand final on Saturday, but have a tough road to get there.”

Quentiam will have to get past The Wood Cucks in the Quarter Final at 12:50pm AEST as the first step on that tough road. Tune in to www.twitch.tv/gamestahtv1 to see if they can make it through!

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eSports

ZOWIESTAH Seeding

There have been a number of questions about seeding for the weekly playoffs that are worth addressing in long-form rather than ye olde 140 character tweetage.

Good Seeding is the Foundation of Good Competition

First, at Gamestah we understand that good seeding is the foundation of good competitions. We know that the purpose of seeding is to provide the best possible chance for the two top teams in a tournament to meet in the Grand Final, and not before. This means that seeding is especially important in single elimination brackets. With Double Elimination, you can still have the one and two seeds meet before the Grand Final, and have the loser work their way back to a Grand Final berth through the lower brackets. That is simply not possible with single elimination.

This is why, before JAM-STAH started back in May, Gamestah convened the Overwatch Oceanic Power Rankings Panel. We needed some basis for seeding the JAM-STAH tournaments, especially considering they were all single elimination. The Power Rankings has been tremendously helpful in this regard, not just for our own competitions, but also for others in the region. We also used the Power Rankings to determine our first four auto-qualified teams in Week 1 of the ZOWIE Gamestah Overwatch League.

ZOWIE has a unique tournament structure that requires different approaches to seeding for each bracket on a weekly basis.

Weekly Qualifiers

The Weekly Qualifiers use a six-round Swiss format bracket. The Qualifiers are open, so each week there is a mix of teams that are new to the competition, and teams that have played before. The latter will have established League Points and a position on the ZOWIE Leaderboard. The Leaderboard is our primary resource for seeding the open Qualifiers each week. We supplement this with reference to the Power Rankings. For example, if a team enters the Qualifiers in Week 5 and doesn’t have any League Points, but has been ranked by the Power Ranking panel at no. 2 (for argument’s sake), it would be foolish for us to give the team a bottom seed and have them face the top seed in Round 1.

The Swiss bracket is played out and at the end of the sixth round, battlefy generates standings based on the results of all six matches each team plays. From these standings, the top four teams qualify for the Playoffs.

It should be noted that Swiss format brackets require tie-breakers to determine final standings. While there are multiple methods of breaking ties, battlefy’s bracket software uses “the average of the percentage of 1. Rounds your opponents won 2. Individual games you won.” We accept this method without question as it takes into account battlefy’s round-generation algorithm.

Weekly Playoffs

At the end of each Weekly Playoff, battlefy generates a standings table based on results. First place goes to the Grand Final winner, second place to the Grand Final loser, third place to the Semi-Finalist that lost to the Grand Final Winner and fourth place to the Semi-Finalist that lost to the Grand Final loser. These four teams automatically qualify for the next week’s playoffs, and we seed them based on their standings as generated by battlefy.

The four teams that come through the qualifying Swiss bracket are seeded according to the standings table generated by battlefy. This means that the first-placed qualifier is seeded fifth, second place is sixth, third place is seventh and fourth place is seeded eighth in the Playoffs.

Your Tie-breakers Suck and You Should Use Mine Instead

A number of players have approached us with this notion. Many methods suggested are quite valid. They just aren’t used by battlefy’s system. To be clear, Gamestah did not sit down and discuss whether or not we would use head-to-head, or opponents-win-percentage, or least-opponent’s-score-overall, or Bucholz or any other method to break ties. We simply noted that battlefy implemented a tiebreaker system, that the system used two accepted Swiss-format tiebreaker algorithms, and we decided to use that system.

The battlefy system has been used to determine rankings for every Qualifying stage from the start of the League. Those who have recently qualified for a playoff round, and who would have preferred a different method of tiebreaker because it would have resulted in a higher seeding for their team (excuse me, would have been “more fair), should be aware that applying a unique tiebreaker to this week’s Qualifier standings would unfairly disadvantage all of the teams from the previous rounds.

In short: we have a valid system for breaking ties, it has been equally and thus fairly applied to all teams throughout the League, and we won’t be using a different method to suit special snowflakes.

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