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ML5: The Finals + Affiliate Events Recap

Many years ago there was a marketing slogan that went something along the lines of “every battle tells a story”. It’s been about eight years since we’ve first started making these stories. If you’ve been here for all this time then you’ve certainly made many of them. We all thought we knew what we were getting into, huh? I’d wager to say that none of us realized how deep this would go.

We’ve waited longer now for the next CoH than we waited for CoH2 if you can believe that. Through all of this waiting we’ve stayed strong. Some have come and gone, some of us came a little late and are still here. Some dipped their toes and made a big splash but didn't stick around. Raise your drink to those that have gone and remove your caps for the ones that have moved on! Eight years is barely anything when looking back but living through it makes it feel so long ago.

Just one year can feel long, too. It has been a tough one for many of us but it’s been undeniably a good year for CoH2. This little project, the Master League, is just about a year old. But it represents something unique to this game. It’s thousands of hours of effort put in by streamers, players, staff, patreons, and viewers to keep something that we love going. It’s been a year, and even though this is called The Finals, “this is not the end. It is not even the beginning of the end. But it is, perhaps, the end of the beginning.”

Master League 5: The Finals

The Master League is back, folks! The fifth Master League tournament is a six-day, double-elimination extravaganza that stretches over seven weeks from April 10th to May 22nd. With more than $4000 in prizes and $2000 to the winner this is going to be an event you won’t want to miss. And the best part is that you’ll have six Saturdays to catch the action!

Watch the official announcement here:

Format & Custom Rules

Format: First and foremost, ML5 is designed to maximize viewership and minimize player fatigue. The Patreons have voted and they have decided on a double-elimination bracket. We will have so many matches to watch but with these games spread over seven weeks and six Saturdays players will have time to sharpen their sticks between rounds!

Commanders: A new format has emerged from the ether of discussion, debate, and review. After the first day, the remaining 24 players will choose to veto future opponents’ commanders. Each player will select three Ost/Sov and two USF/UKF/OKW commanders that they do not want to play against. This will be publicly available information so players have time to practice and the rest of us can theorize about.
Commander Terminator still exists but only applies for each match. Winners will get a fresh start when they move on but their opponents will have the luxury of not being beaten by the same commander twice.

Observer mode & Balance: For the time being, matches will be played on the 32-bit client and with the Winter 2020/2021 preview — Tournament Edition mod. This tuning pack takes out the frustrating RNG elements of coh (like vehicle abandon, main gun destroyed) and combines this with the same game balance as the live 64-bit version!

Sign-ups, How to Watch: Sign up by heading on over to the Master League Discord server. Matches begin at 14:00 British Summer Time on Saturday April 10th. Tune in by visiting various community streams on Twitch (just check the front page of coh2.org) or catch the main event on A_E’s Twitch channel. Check out the format for yourself by viewing the brackets!

ML Affiliate Events

There’s been a lengthier break in official ML tournaments but February and March saw three successful tournaments with unique formats featuring top players and smaller (but not insignificant) prize pools!

In the first weekend of February we saw The Angry Dutchman’s Vanilla Deluxe Tournament. Sixteen players competed for the title of Vanilla Meister. This tournament outright banned all commanders and all bulletins and required players to play a faction no more than once in a series.

The second ML Affiliate event was Olvadi’s Tactical Resurgence in mid-March. Featuring a tantalizing battle planner by Rosbone that visualized commander and map vetoes for everyone to see, it was an excellent 16-player event!

The third ML Affiliate Event was just one week after Olvadi’s: The Angry Bears’ Anti-Hibernation Quest for the Honeypot saw would-be Bears fight through four rounds of ColdTech. Winter maps featured in ML4 were repurposed and turned into freezing, blinding hellscapes. Sixteen top players competed for the top prize of $400. It was an honor to organize my own tournament with support from the Master League! Thank you!

About the Company of Heroes Master League

The Company of Heroes Master League is a community-driven project that showcases CoH’s competitive scene. It features tournaments every two months and is broadcast live on Twitch. The prize pool is funded by members of the community chipping in small dollar amounts every month. By becoming a Patron, anyone can have the chance to vote on a variety of things that affect future tournaments and events via the exclusive Discord channel that brings together fans, players, and the organizers. In addition to the regular tournaments, the Master League is a living history of Company of Heroes. Detailed statistics of past tournaments are documented and results from the twenty most recent events are used to seed players in upcoming tournaments. This is to ensure that the Master League stays as competitive as possible while providing an archive of past achievements. The best part about this is that the data is free to access and available to the public! Check it out in the Master League spreadsheet. For more information about the CoH Master League, read the announcement post and, if you’re interested in getting involved, visit the CoH Master League Patreon page.

Additional Links

  • Become a patron at the CoH Master League Patreon page!
  • Watch the ML5 Announcement Video
  • Visit the ML5 brackets.
  • Catch the best action of the Master League tournaments via Twitch.
  • Check out A_E's YouTube channel here.
  • For a history of competitive CoH tournaments and to see how seeds for the Master League are calculated, click here
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