It’s one of those special seasons in ETF2L where we wish there was room for more than eight teams in Prem. Four spots are already reserved for SE7EN, Arctic Foxes, nerdRage, and Lowpander. That alone tells you how exciting European TF2 is at the moment – the four teams that made playoffs last season just so happen to be the four guaranteed to return.
A fifth team is hoping to participate in a second successive season – Bug Slayers, formerly known as Nunya. With a slightly modified roster, they need to re-earn their Premiership spot after finishing near the bottom of the table last season. They’re joined by eleven (count ’em: eleven) other teams who are also keen to participate in Prem. Among them are some familiar names such as B@GSER FIVE and LEGO, although these teams’ rosters have changed noticeably since we last saw them in Prem. Check the ETF2L post for a rundown of all the protagonists.
The pseudo-double-elimination tournament that awaits us over the coming week will determine which four of the twelve will earn Prem honours. In this post, I’ll be using a mixture of my Ranking system and projection machine to simulate the whole tournament and predict who will succeed. The rosters used in this simulation are all based off of information from the morning of May 12th. The tournament structure is based on this graphic by Bloodis.
Many of these teams feature at least some players who are unknown to the Rankings. The projection machine is only happy to spit out a score prediction if there’s at least one previously-gilded player on each team. In many cases here, down to the limited scope of the records that determine the Rankings, the machine doesn’t have enough data on the participating players to make a guess. In these cases, I’ll determine the winner to be the one that has a higher average score among its players in the Rankings. Unranked players will contribute a score of zero to that average.
What this all means is that this simulation, especially in the early matches, isn’t very well informed. This system defaults to treating all players it doesn’t recognise as being equal, even though we all know that some of these people, such as Svmzi, are very capable indeed regardless of their lack of on-record appearances.
With that in mind, here is the simulation:
Day 1 – Opening rounds
Four of the twelve teams are given a seeding advantage based on past successes, Prem heritage, etc. They are AMS’s team, Loli Squad, ChampGG, and Bug Slayers. They get to skip the opening day of matches and get an automatic pass to Round 2. The other eight teams will participate in a match against one of their peers, and if they win they get to join the big four. If they lose, they’re knocked out of contention with no second chances.
B@GSER FIVE vs. ★★★½: Very few of the players expected to take part in this match are known to the Rankings. The prediction for this match comes down to Lippy having two matches on record – enough to make his team slightly less of an unknown than ★★★½. Therefore, B@GSER FIVE is given preference in this match.
Nation Leave When vs. Sleep Club: There’s enough data on the players here for the projection machine to make a score prediction, and it greatly fancies the chances of NLW (formerly known as no dd + 5 abs). This team features several previously gilded players whereas Sleep Club have much less of a presence in the Rankings. The score projection given was 4.7-0.3 to NLW.
Perminators vs. Team CoolestMaster: This is another case where there’s not enough data available for a score prediction. However, since Team CoolestMaster only have three appearances on record between all six of its players, and that Perminators features previously gilded players, it’s clear who the more favoured team should be.
LEGO vs. Ora Elektro: This is a similar case. Several of the LEGO players have lots of data on record and very good gilding ratios, whereas the only Ora Elektro player the Rankings even recognise is Letto. That means there’s technically not enough data for a projection, but there’s no doubt that LEGO have the far more impressive CV and they should be expected to win.
At the end of the day, twelve becomes eight and the four teams expected to drop out are ★★★½, Sleep Club, Team CoolestMaster, and Ora Elektro.
Day 2 – Upper Bracket Round 2
The next four matches will see the previous day’s winners face off against the four top-seeded teams who sat out the opening matches. No teams will be eliminated on this day, as all the losers will get a second chance in the Lower Bracket.
AMS’s Team vs. B@GSER FIVE: B5’s roster isn’t well known in the Rankings, so again the projection machine is unable to reach a solid conclusion. However, nobody on AMS’s Team has fewer than three gildings on record whereas nobody on B5 has any. This is why AMS’s Team is predicted to take victory here.
Loli Squad vs. Nation Leave When: Loli Squad’s roster isn’t entirely unknown since their match in last season’s High final went on record. They only have one gilding on record between them, courtesy of Vani. In contrast, four of NLW’s players have at least one gilding on record. The projection machine heavily prefers NLW in this match, predicting they’d win with a radically hefty average score of something like 0.5-4.5.
ChampGG vs. Perminators: Adysky’s ChampGG roster has been looking good ever since we first saw it. Since then they’ve been joined by the great Italian scout Sorex, one of the most highly-ranked scouts in the world. The combination of him and Adysky are the driving force behind the projection that sees ChampGG bettering Perminators (a team this system doesn’t know well at all) in this match to the tune of 4.3-0.7.
Bug Slayers vs. LEGO: This is one of the first matches where the projection machine has lots of data on both teams with which it can formulate something of an informed opinion. It sees LEGO beating their opponents with an average scoreline on all maps of 1.6-3.4 in their favour, therefore winning about twice as many rounds as Bug Slayers all in all.
Once all these matches are done, four teams will have begun to stand out after qualifying to participate in the third upper bracket rounds. In this simulation, those four teams are AMS’s Team, Nation Leave When, ChampGG, and LEGO. Meanwhile, B@GSER FIVE, Loli Squad, Perminators, and Bug Slayers are all demoted to the Lower Bracket to fight amongst themselves.
Day 3 – Upper Bracket Round 3, Lower Bracket Round 1
Four more matches await today. The first two, in the Upper Bracket, will result in the first two teams receiving their Prem promotion. The two matches in the Lower Bracket will result in two teams being eliminated from contention for the remaining two open spots.
AMS’s Team vs. Nation Leave When: The first of the two UBR3 matches is expected by the projection machine to be pretty one-sided. AMS and his motley crew have shown how potent they can be in scrims and, even though the machine doesn’t know about those, it believes the quality of players on this team vastly outmatches that of NLW. It’s expected AMS’s Team will win the match with an average score of 4.4-0.6, thereby securing their Prem promotion.
ChampGG vs. LEGO: This one could be considered something of a grudge match, with the newly-acquired Sorex assisiting ChampGG in their match against the Italian’s former colleagues at LEGO. The projection machine expects the Sorex factor to be real, and it thinks ChampGG could win perhaps twice as many rounds as the new LEGO roster in this match. It gives a score projection of 3.3-1.7 in their favour.
Perminators vs. Bug Slayers: And now we’re into the Lower Bracket where the teams are fighting to stay in contention. This simulation sees Perminators taking on Bug Slayers here and, perhaps controversially, it thinks Bug Slayers will win it. I’ll reiterate that this system still has a lot to learn about Perminators and it hasn’t even met Svmzi and Cookye yet, but based on what it knows, it’s leaning slightly towards their opponents in this match with its projection of 2.0-3.0. If all this comes true, Perminators’ chance to participate in Prem would be gone.
Loli Squad vs. B@GSER FIVE: Vani is the only player in this match currently gilded. This means the projection machine is unable to make a precise prediction. Loli Squad has a slight advantage in overall number of appearances, and the single gilding they share between them exceeds the zero that B5 have. This makes them the perceived favourite in this engagement, which would lead to B5 being eliminated.
Heading into the final day, AMS’s Team and ChampGG are simulated to have already won their Prem spots. The four remaining teams (Nation Leave When, Bug Slayers, LEGO, and Loli Squad) would be set to spend the final day scrapping amongst themselves to claim the remaining two open slots.
Day 4 – Lower Bracket Round 2
There’s just two matches today, and the winners will get their promotion. Based on all that’s happened so far in this simulation, they would look like this:
Nation Leave When vs. Bug Slayers: This could be another relatively close one. There’s plenty of data for the projection machine to make a judgement, and it thinks Bug Slayers would win with an average score across all maps of 2.0-3.0. If all this came true, Bug Slayers, formerly Nunya, would reclaim their rightful place in the Premiership.
LEGO vs. Loli Squad: Some of LEGO’s players, such as Josh and Dmoule, are heavily decorated in this system presently. In comparison, Loli Squad remains highly unknown and have just a single gilding between them. The machine therefore expects LEGO to have no trouble at all dispatching their opponents, expecting a general scoreline of 4.8-0.2.
And with that, the Season 27 Pre-season Premiership Playoffs would come to an end. This tournament looks like it should be just as compelling as the actual main season. Somehow, twelve teams will become four in a week filled with triumph and heartbreak.
Based on the available data, the TF2Metrics prediction for this tournament sees the following teams getting promoted to Prem:
- AMS’s Team
- Bug Slayers
Personally, I expect the enigmatic Perminators crew to exceed what’s expected of them here. They could thrive in this high-pressure environment, using their vast experience to help keep their heads screwed on throughout. Kaidus and Svmzi especially have been producing ever more impressive numbers in their scrims. They’ve taken rounds off of SE7EN. They probably deserve to qualify, possibly to the detriment of Bug Slayers, or even ChampGG.