The 2005 National Championships played host to only 10 teams in the Halo 2 4v4 competition — and there’s good reason for that. This event was strictly for the most elite the sport had to offer, and every team in attendance worked feverishly during the regular season to earn exclusive invites to the Conference Championships, where they proved themselves worthy even among that high-caliber competition to be the select few invited to the 2005 Season Finals in New York. Although every team there had already shown their talent and mettle, only two remained when the curtain raised on the tournament finals: Team 3D and Team Phreaks. Check out this overview of their thrilling showdown, and get ready to catch every moment of it on VoD as we roll out the full-match footage in the coming days!
|Game 1 – CTF Warlock|
|Winner: Team 3D (5 – 4)|
- Team 3D had to come from behind to barely win 5 – 4.
- 3D was able to power their flags home through pure slaying and excellent relay timing.
- As the Post-Game report shows, all members of Team 3D had a positive kill/death ratio, and all members of Team Phreaks went negative.
|Game 2 – TS Sanctuary|
|Winner: Team 3D (50 – 47)|
- Walshy’s incredible 20 – 10 game really helped 3D stay a few kills ahead when it mattered most. The majority of the game, the teams were neck-and-neck.
- Although Team Phreaks employed some truly crafty tactics, popping up in the most unexpected places Hogan’s Alley-style, Team 3D’s quick tracking and clean headshots were able to counteract.
|Game 3 – Oddball Lockout|
|Winner: Team Phreaks (5:00 – 2:49)|
- Although Team 3D racked up 1:05 of ball time before Team Phreaks even got their first second, Phreaks really took advantage of the opportunities they created, eventually tying the game up at 2:46.
- From the time Phreaks took the lead to the end of the game, Team 3D only managed three more seconds with the ball.
- Phreaks set up a nearly impenetrable stronghold at the BR tower, and with complete sword/sniper control, were able to render Team 3D ineffective as they racked up ball time.
- With a final score of 5:00 – 2:49, Team Phreaks made an almost unprecedented comeback considering their extremely slow start. This was one of the most thrilling games of the entire tournament and a textbook example of how to maintain control of a map — even with a man carrying the Oddball. A stunning display by Team Phreaks.
|Game 4 – CTF Beaver Creek|
|Winner: Team 3D (3 – 1)|
- Team Phreaks was really on a high cloud of confidence after their rousing comeback (and who could blame them?), but it could have led to their downfall during this game, as their trash talk was quickly met with authoritative slaying and weapon control from Team 3D.
- This game was over in a matter of minutes due to Team 3D’s precision timing of their flag assaults. They would quickly dispatch all four of the members of Team Phreaks, and then control their spawns as they swarmed into the base to capture the flag.
- 3D’s ability to keep Phreaks spawning and disoriented gave them a couple of nearly-uncontested scores, ending the game swiftly and sending Team Phreaks reeling to the Losers’ Bracket.
|Game 5 – TS Midship|
|Winner: Team Phreaks (50 – 42)|
- Team Phreaks returned to the Championship Match vs. Team 3D after ousting long-standing rivals Str8 Rippin in the Losers’ Finals. Having proved their worth, they found themselves toe to toe once again with the only team to have defeated them during the tournament.
- The members of Team Phreaks are known for their mastery of TS Midship, and this coupled with their boosted confidence coming off their win against Str8 Rippin made them a serious force in this game.
- StrongSide led the way with an intimidating 13 – 6 game, and Team Phreaks preserved themselves very well by escaping impossible battles and coming to each others’ aid just in time to prevent further deaths.
- Team Phreaks kept ahead of 3D throughout the game, ending it swiftly at 50 – 42.
|Game 6 – CTF Sanctuary|
|Winner: Team 3D (2 – 1)|
- With the overall series at 3 – 2 in favor of Team 3D, Phreaks really needed this game to equalize their disadvantage — and it looked like they had the momentum to do just that.
- Team 3D also understood the dire nature of this particular game, and pushed forward harder than ever to retain their lead. Pinching Phreaks down on their side of the map, Team 3D did what they do best — control space and eliminate options for their opponents. This afforded 3D the luxury of timing their attacks rather than scrambling.
- Although clearly being out-slayed by 3D, Phreaks managed to fend off most of their scoring attempts, and 3D was forced to take their win 2 – 1 due to the time limit.
- Ogre 1′s unstoppable 31 – 14 game speaks volumes of the amount of pressure 3D was able to put on Team Phreaks.
|Game 7 – TS Ivory Tower|
|Winner: Team Phreaks (50 – 47)|
- In the initial power weapon struggle, Team Phreaks came up huge, snagging the OS, sniper and rockets, which aided them in building a cushy 21 – 13 lead.
- Controlling the top ground of each map section, Phreaks were able to keep 3D on the floor and force them to make difficult vertical shots.
- Although down by roughly 10 kills for most of the game, 3D made a massive surge toward the end, spearheaded by Walshy’s taking control of the rockets and making an extremely improbable rocket kill followed by a no-health melee/BR kill that had the crowd sensing a comeback.
- Shockwav3 helped his team tighten their grip on the lead just at the end, which saw Team Phreaks end the game at 50 – 47.
|Game 8 – Midship Oddball|
|Winner: Team 3D (5:00 – 4:58)|
- Once again finding themselves down only one game in the series (4-3 Team 3D), Team Phreaks knew that this game would be crucial to their chances of survival in the tournament.
- Team 3D’s significantly higher kill count did little to draw a score difference in this game, as they simply weren’t devoting their resources to the right places, and much energy was wasted. Although they led the game by over a minute at some points, they were left disorganized when Phreaks acquired the ball and sacrificed a lot of ball time.
- With Team 3D up slightly at 4:46 – 4:42, Team Phreaks spawned right on the Oddball and snatched it up, stealing away the lead.
- 3D’s quick response neutralized the advantage, and the two teams found themselves at a stalemate, tied at 4:58.
- A huge domino chain of slaying ensued, with most of the members of both teams blindly charging at the ball, which laid in the center of the map. As each player approached it, they were killed by the next incoming player from the other team, until finally Ogre 2 was able to snag the last two seconds of time to cinch the victory for Team 3D.
- This was far and away one of the most exhilarating matches ever to take place at an MLG event, and will surely make the “Legendary” section of the VoD archives.
|Game 9 – CTF Midship|
|Winner: Team 3D (5 – 3)|
- Understanding that they were on their last legs, Team Phreaks made a final rally to keep the series going and prevent 3D from earning the MLG Season Title. They started out strong, scoring two unanswered flags in a matter of minutes.
- 3D fought back hard with three consecutive flag caps, taking the lead and control of the map with typical 3D-style aggression and teamwork.
- Team Phreaks would then see their final flag cap of the game, succumbing to 3D’s impenetrable defenses and brilliant counterattacking sensibilities.
- With a final score of 5 – 3, Team 3D ended their season on the highest possible note, earning their rightful title as the 2005 Season Champions, and reasserting that there is simply no greater Halo force in the entire world.