Chapter 1360: Excellent Era’s Return
Translator: Nomyummi Editor: Nomyummi
Round 35 had ended, but strangely, the rankings hadn’t changed in the slightest. Hundred Blossoms, Wind Howl, and 301 had all won, while the leaders Happy and Thunderclap had tied 5-5.
There were only 3 rounds remaining, but none of these teams held a firm spot for playoffs. The leader among these five teams was Team Thunderclap in fifth place, but the difference between Team Thunderclap and the ninth place Team 301 was only 9 points. If Team Thunderclap performed too poorly in the following three rounds, they might not make it into playoffs.
The fight for top eight had reached such an extent. Everyone wanted to analyze this battle between the five teams. Those who published print issues all felt like there wasn’t enough space to write what they wanted. And even at such an urgent moment, they had no choice but to give a few pages to cover another competition.
The Challenger League.
The Season 10 Challenger League.
This time’s Challenger League finals had a certain level of hype to it.
Team Excellent Era was back!
Even though they were no longer powerhouses and they no longer had the Battle God One Autumn Leaf, the name Excellent Era could not be buried. The team had charged their way through to the final step in the Challenger League. Just one more step, and this name would once again return to the Glory Alliance.
What was Excellent Era like now?
Now that Excellent Era had reached the final stage, the Esports Weekly was finally willing to give a few pages to give an introduction.
This new Excellent Era was still centered around a Battle Mage.
Qiu Fei and his Combat Form.
Those who watched last season’s Challenger League matches should still have an impression of this youth. When Excellent Era crumbled and their players went separate ways, he had been regarded by numerous teams as a talented youth and had received numerous invites. In the end, this youth chose to stay; he chose to stay in a team that had fallen and looked to be at death’s door.
Excellent Era still had a number of fans, but the media had practically abandoned it up until this moment. Now that they looked to have hopes of returning to the Alliance, a few introductions and reports started coming in. As it turned out, the surviving Excellent Era wasn’t as bad as people had initially imagined.
Qiu Fei’s talent had already been recognized. This year, he seemed to have improved remarkably. Combat Form had been a part of Excellent Era’s main roster in last season’s Challenger League. As a team with vast amounts of experience with a Battle Mage, they had been able to create impressive equipment for him, and this year, his equipment had been upgraded to Level 75. The other main roster players were found to be members of Excellent Era’s training camp that year. New Excellent Era no longer had the capacity to continue operating the training camp. Instead, the exceptional trainees from there were directly kept as official members.
During the disbandment, while Excellent Era’s players, characters, and precious materials were being sold wantonly to other Clubs, Excellent Era’s successor Xia Zhongtian made his move at the last moment and secured two items.
First was Qiu Fei as New Excellent Era’s core and soul.
Second was Guild Excellent Dynasty. Xia Zhongtian had accurately grasped the fact that competitive Glory relied on the game. Having a firm control over the in-game guild was an important foundation for a club and a team.
New Excellent Era had set foot onto another season of the Challenger League and had once again reached the finals. Friday would decided their final fate.
Excellent Era’s opponent was Mysterious Fantasy, the other team that had been relegated alongside Excellent Era in Season 8. But in Season 9, the one to have the last laugh was Happy. Both teams had been eliminated by them. After another bitter struggle, the two sides stood against each other in the finals.
The Excellent Era now was not the Excellent Era then, but the Mysterious Fantasy now was still the same Mysterious Fantasy. Their coach Zhang Yiwei had stayed last season, and Mysterious Fantasy’s players had stayed as well. On their way through to the finals, Mysterious Fantasy had eliminated the two Season 9 relegated teams, which had boosted their confidence greatly.
As for their opponents in the finals, the new Excellent Era did not scare them. Mysterious Fantasy were extremely confident from top to bottom in wait for the finals to come.
Friday was the day before the Pro League matches. Teams usually wouldn’t arrange for any practice on this day. As a result, Ye Xiu was walking in circles out of boredom in Happy’s Forest Park residence.
“Are you going to watch?” Chen Guo asked.
“Watch?” Ye Xiu asked back. He didn’t ask what she was referring to. Everyone knew.
The TV was turned on and switched to the esports channel. Six Pine Stadium, the place Happy had battled at one year ago.
Both sides had entered the venue and were just waiting for the match to officially begin. Pan Lin and Li Yibo, the golden duo, once again commentated for the Challenger League, though they didn’t seem to spirited at the moment. The story for this year’s Challenger League finals didn’t even come close to last year’s: a mere river was nothing after having crossed the vast sea.
“Okay, the first players for the individual competition are about to go up,” Pan Lin remarked dully.
“Ahem,” Li Yibo coughed.
Pan Lin glanced at Li Yibo in confusion. The TV director’s angry roar quickly made him realize his mistake.
“Oh, it’s not the individual competition. It’s the group arena. I’m sorry friends, a slip of the tongue,” Pan Lin hastily apologized. The Challenger League finals was based on the playoffs competitive format. A 5v5 group arena and a team competition with the points calculated based on the results. Pan Lin had been thinking it was an ordinary regular season game and failed to react in time.
“Excellent Era’s first player will be…” Pan Lin did a clear pause before the introduction. He didn’t recognize this person! So he could only take a look at the lineups and match the name to the position.
“Wen Li.” Pan Lin announced the player’s name and then dully read the information on him. That was all of his understanding of this player. He clearly had no personal opinion on him.
“As for Mysterious Fantasy, their first player is…” After introducing one side, he moved to the next. He knew a bit more about Mysterious Fantasy though. Even if it had been two years since the player had competed in the Alliance, he still had a rough impression of him.
“Okay, the match is starting now,” Pan Lin recited.
But soon afterwards, Pan Lin was sucked into the contents of the match and gradually grew spirited.
After all, the Challenger League finals was an important match for these two teams. Their entire year’s worth of efforts would be put to the test in this one hour. There was no retreat. It was either you die, or I die. Although the level of their fight might not be able to compare with the fights for top eight in the Pro League, their thirst for victory was no less, and it could clearly be seen through their playing on stage. This sort of competition would always be able to move the spectators.
When the fourth player for Team Mysterious Fantasy went up, Team Excellent Era was already at their fifth and last player. Pan Lin was starting to worry for Excellent Era.
“Excellent Era has been making a bit too many mistakes! They originally should have had a good chance at the group arena! What are your thoughts Coach Li?” Pan Lin said.
“Yes,” Li Yibo nodded. “Just from a technical skill perspective, Excellent Era’s players are no worse than Mysterious Fantasy’s. However, in terms of real match experience, the current Excellent Era is lacking. Mysterious Fantasy’s players have at least experienced the Pro League before. On the other hand, Excellent Era’s current members have never participated in a real professional match before. Their match experience is still somewhat deficient, especially in this sort of life and death match. All of them look nervous, and that nervousness is certainly one reason for their mistakes.”
“If they don’t deal with this issue, Excellent Era might not perform well in the team competition either,” Pan Lin said.
“It’s up to Excellent Era’s final player. Right now, the team needs something to boost their resolve,” Li Yibo said.
“Mm, Excellent Era’s final player for the group arena has gone onto the stage. He’s Excellent Era’s current team captain, Qiu Fei. He’s very young actually. The information I have on hand is telling me he’s only 19,” Pan Lin said.
“But he is truly a very talented player. I heard that last year, Tiny Herb tried to recruit him, but he rejected them,” Li Yibo said.
“It looks like he still holds a lot of feelings for Excellent Era. But feelings alone isn’t enough. We all know that what matters in the end is strength,” Pan Lin said.
“Qiu Fei, 1v2! Let’s see how far he can go!” Li Yibo said.
The two team’s characters set out and started fighting in the middle of the map.
“Beautiful!” After a few blows, Pan Lin shouted a word of praise. Qiu Fei’s Combat Form had taken the initiative and was attacking ferociously.
“Very solid foundations!” Li Yibo sighed.
“His opponent doesn’t seem to be able to defend,” Pan Lin said.
“This Qiu Fei. I remember in last year’s Challenger League finals, he produced a combo that even Ye Xiu was helpless against,” Li Yibo said.
“If even Ye Xiu was helpless, that’s truly the peak of what can theoretically be accomplished,” Pan Lin said.
“It’s looking pretty hopeless for this Mysterious Fantasy player,” Li Yibo gave a fairly bold prediction. He could see the difference in skill between the two sides.
His prediction was correct. Qiu Fei won.
“Combat Form still has 68% health left! That was an impressive fight. Qiu Fei truly lives up to his name,” Pan Lin said.
“But next up is Mysterious Fantasy’s captain, Tang Xin. He’s quite skilled too,” Li Yibo said.
“If Qiu Fei can really pull off a 1v2, it’ll be a huge blow to Mysterious Fantasy’s morale. Let’s see how Tang Xin does!” Pan Lin said.
In the end…
“He won, Qiu Fei won again! The last laugh belongs to Excellent Era, and they now have a one point lead. That wasn’t easy at all. Excellent Era sure has a capable captain, even though he’s only 19 years old right now,” Pan Lin yelled.
“Yes, even if it’s only a one point lead, it’s a huge swing for Excellent Era. The blow to Mysterious Fantasy’s morale must be huge. I hope they don’t get discouraged and can bring their spirits back up for the team competition,” Li Yibo siad.
“Neither side will let the other win easily!”
“But there’s only one champion.”
Challenger League, final victor: Excellent Era.
“We’re back!” In the post-match press conference, Team Excellent Era’s new-generation captain, Qiu Fei, faced the cameras and gave a solemn declaration.