Something Magical Happened In The Rocket League Finals

This morning, for the first time, Major League Gaming ran a Rocket League tournament. The stakes were relatively low. The prize pool was meagre. At stake -- not much really. Bragging rights.

No-one could have predicted how insane the final outcome would be.

Rocket League, as an eSport, is in its infancy. This was really the first tournament of any significance. As a massive fan of the game I watched a few matches this morning -- to familiarise myself with what a high level Rocket League match looked like, to get an idea of what a high level Rocket League team looked like.

Turns out high level Rocket League team looks a lot like Cosmic Aftershock.

I wasn't aware before watching, but the commentators made it clear from the outset: Cosmic Aftershock were the favourites. Led by the consensus top player Kronovi, Cosmic Aftershock had never lost a series. Ever. In the very first match covered by Major League Gaming's livestream I watched as Kronovi and his team utterly destroyed their opponents. At one point the scoreline was something like 9-1. I can't even remember how it finished. But was almost hard to watch -- brutal. Cosmic Aftershock were clearly on another level.

I tuned out. Went back to work.

Later in the early afternoon I jumped on Twitter. Just by chance, a tweet from the official MLG account...

Okay, the actual finals. Maybe I'll check it out.

I jumped back on the stream.

The finals were a best of three series. By the time I jumped in, Cosmic Aftershock had won the first game. As expected. I started watching halfway through the second game -- a tie at that point. That was unexpected. Cosmic Aftershock's opponents: a highly regarded trio called 'Urban'.

Urban were making things difficult for Cosmic -- pressuring, defending well. Towards the end of the match things started getting interesting: Urban scored, taking the game to 3-2. In a last gasp attempt to tie the second game Cosmic got aggressive and lost another goal. 4-2.

Cosmic got one back, but the match ended with a 4-3 scoreline.

Interesting, but not unprecedented. Cosmic Aftershock had never lost a series but they had lost single games. The expectation: Cosmic would rally and clean up easily in the third game.

That was not how things played out.

The third game. The decider. Urban score early. Almost straight from kick off. 1-0 in Urban's favour.

Pressure.

Another goal. Shit. 2-0.

Then another. Whoa. What the hell is going on here. 3-0.

The comments of the livestream start exploding. Choke. Choke. Choke.

But Cosmic Aftershock did not choke, they got into gear. Over the next two minutes they orchestrated an incredible shift in momentum. They got one back. Bam. Then another. Holy shit, could the comeback be on?

A third goal. Wow. There's 15 seconds left on the clock. We're going into overtime for sure.

Now: a little known fact about Rocket League. The game does not technically end when the timer runs down to zero. The game ends when the timer runs down to zero and the ball touches the floor. This is important. Sometimes, if players are skilled enough to keep the ball in the air, the game can continue for a few extra seconds after the timer has run out. This is rare.

And that's when this happened:

The timer: down to zero. The game: tied. The ball: juggled, floating in the air.

From midfield Kyle Masc of Urban spots an opportunity. He rushes in with a perfectly timed charge. He leaps into the air, he takes the shot.

Back of the net.

Urban wins the series and the very first MLG Rocket League tournament literally at the death.

Honestly, it doesn't get any closer than this, in literally the most important Rocket League match to date, that is how things ended.

Absolutely incredible. Almost unbelievable. Probably one of the greatest eSports moments I've ever witnessed live.

A moment that -- 100% -- has convinced me that competitive Rocket League has a future.

WATCH MORE: Gaming News


Comments

    The only thing I don't believe is that you went back to work Mark. You totally watched the whole tournament :-P

    as soon as I started playing this when it was free on PS+, my thoughts were 'this needs to be an e-sport'. I'm glad it's picking up steam!

    And that is why there is a separate league for the competitive pro players

    I came home from work and put it on to watch with the kids. We were lucky enough to see Cosmic vs Ass. The entire game was a highlight reel! 16-0.
    Although it was a walkover, watching the plays of Cosmic was amazing.

    Wish I had of seen the final now :(

    YouTube yet?

      Final match here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZwGFZk9NLaU

    youtube of the final is in the article, and it was good!!
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZwGFZk9NLaU

    Thanks for posting. Magical final game. What Rocket League is made of. Some of the heights those guys reached were amazing. I am lucky to hit the ball on the ground let alone whizzing through the air. Good fun!

    Holy Shit! Never watched E-Sports or MLG properly, but I'd definitely be all over this if it picked up steam.

    Literally

    For what it's worth, @markserrels - this is exactly the sort or write up I'd like to see more of from Kotaku when it comes to eSports. If I have an hour free in front of the TV, 99% of the time I'd play Rocket League before I'd watch it, but a good write up like this - including the occasional GIF - keeps me up-to-date quickly without requiring a trawl back through YouTube or Twitch.

    TL;DR - more articles like this please

      Agree with you BJ! I'm hoping with Alex Walker on the team now we'll see some quality write ups from both him and Mark which would be great!

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